Professional Women in Virtual Reality Group Created


Professional Women in Virtual Reality Group Created

BOSTON – September 17, 2014 — Women active in virtual reality technology, business, media and education have formed a new association to promote and celebrate contributions women have made and continue to make in virtual reality and to attract more women to this field.

Increase Visibility

Women in Virtual Reality will work to increase the visibility of women in this important field, highlighting both their contributions and expertise.

Women are already playing a significant role in the use and development of virtual reality technology. They are founding companies, developing technology, and inventing new and better applications.

The founding members of Women in Virtual Reality include the following industry pioneers:

  • Julie Le Moine, founder of 3D ICC, providers of Immersive Terf™, an immersive, unified collaboration virtual environment used by Enterprise, Organizations and Educational Institutions. She was the former head of the Fidelity Center for Applied Collaboration and a serial entrepreneur.
  • Crista Lopes, a professor at UC Irvine and former researcher at Xerox PARC, helped found the field of aspect-oriented programming, is a core developer of the open source OpenSimulator virtual environment platform, and is the inventor of the hypergrid system that allows users to travel between virtual worlds.
  • Nicole Yankelovich, director of the Open Wonderland Foundation which governs the Open Wonderland open source virtual environment project. She is also a visiting scientist at MIT’s Center for Educational Computing Initiatives and the CEO of virtual environment consulting firm WonderBuilders. She was also Sun Microsystem’s leader for Project Wonderland, which later evolved into Open Wonderland.
  • Jacquelyn Ford Morie, long-time virtual reality researcher and pioneer, formerly Sr. Researcher at USC’s Institute for Creative Technologies and now Founder of All These Worlds, LLC

“It’s common for virtual reality conferences to be dominated by a very narrow demographic,” said Women in Virtual Reality president Maria Korolov. “But there are, in fact, women working in virtual reality, women in leadership positions, women working on difficult technical problems. It’s time to recognize these women and to start making virtual reality a more welcoming field for people of all backgrounds.”

Women in Virtual Reality goals include connecting journalists and event organizers to female experts, encouraging networking and mentorship, and looking for additional opportunities to increase the visibility of women in the profession.

Women in Virtual Reality is open to all individuals and companies who share the goal of increasing the number of women working in virtual reality, and in raising the visibility of those who are already doing so.

Other founding members include PookyMedia founder and CEO Pooky Amsterdam, AvaCon cofounder and president Joyce Bettencourt, Public Works Group founder Pam Broviak, Colorado Technical University professor Cynthia Calongne, University of Cincinnati Center for Simulations & Virtual Environments Research founder and AvaCon cofounder Chris M. Collins, Kings College lecturer Margaret de Jong-Derrington, Fandor CMO Robin Harper, virtual reality platform developer Chris Hart,  former head of Linden Lab’s Community Gateway program Katrin Janssen, Business College Learnmark professor Inge Knudsen, Hypergrid Business editor Maria Korolov, University of Central Florida’s ACTIVE Lab director Stephanie Lackey, Cooperative Extension’s virtual reality specialist LuAnn Phillips, InWorldz co-founder Beth Reischl, National Defense University professor Paulette Robinson, military simulations researcher Gwenette Writer Sinclair, OpenSimulator core developer and Avination founder Melanie Thielker, virtual reality educator Barbara Truman, Absolute Computing Solutions founder Jane Wilde, virtual environment educator Francisca Yonekura, Federal Consortium for Virtual Worlds founding member Aimee Weber, and virtual reality learning consultant Karen Zastudil.



Maria Korolov
Founder and president, WiVR
Editor, Hypergrid Business
Phone: 508-443-1130


List of founding members of WiVR

Expert directory