BFF2017 Virtual Reality Panel

Saturday, Sept 23 at 12:00 PM at JUMP Boise in the Pioneer Room

Let's get virtual. Or augmented? We'll figure it out. Join us for our first annual Virtual Reality Panel - moderated by Jose Angel Sáënz, The Virtual Reality Project and Idaho Virtual Reality Council. Participants include:


Jose Angel Sáënz (Moderator)

Digital Marketing Manager, Oliver Russell

Jose Angel Saenz is the digital marketing manager for purpose-driven marketing agency Oliver Russell. Outside of Oliver Russell, he works as a multimedia artist, social entrepreneur, STEM education evangelist and amateur philanthropist. His work spans a wide-variety of expertise from Creative Design, Photography, Film,  Virtual Reality, Design Thinking and Advising Social Entrepreneurs. In September of 2018 Jose launched a new company called iOneiro AI, a machine learning and artificial intelligence company aimed at preserving and sharing the human experience.

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Amy Gile (Panelist)

CEO/Co-Founder, Silverdraft Supercomputing

Amy began her career in media and entertainment nationally and internationally. After spending time in front of the camera as an actor and then as a Producer she identified a need in the industry for a better solution for production and for the artist. The demands of rendering, animation, and visual effects required a sophisticated approach to computing. From that point on she dedicated herself to building the highest performance compact supercomputers on the market for media and entertainment. Today, those same needs she identified for Hollywood are needed across several industries.

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Brendan Smythe (Panelist)

Creator, VR1 Arcade

Brendan Smythe is the creator of VR1 Arcade, Idaho's First Virtual Reality Arcade. A place where all ages gather to share experiences together. Brendan was only 19 years old when he started VR1. Taking a break from business school at BSU to help push and drive the VR movement right here in Boise. Which is why he is also a proud member of the Idaho Virtual Reality Council. Brendan took a big risk with a small investment and he has now inspired and trained young minds in the valley and continues to be a community leader in introducing people to Virtual Reality. When Brendan is not managing VR1 with his 6 staff members he is volunteering with the IVRC. On his free time he invests in his families local architecture firm. Creating new ways to explore architecture in immersive Virtual Reality walk-throughs. Saving time, money and building supplies. VR1 is currently celebrating its 8th month in business as it continues to grow stronger.


Jennifer Lastra (Panelist)

CEO and Managing Director, 360 Immersive

U.S. Navy Veteran Jennifer Lastra has spent the majority of her career in the defense sector working with several of the largest security contractors that supply military equipment and services to help ensure our Nations’ safety.

A certified Project Management Professional, Jennifer’s skills found a niche and cofounded 360 Immersive, LLC at a time when virtual reality was on the cusp of a massive period of growth. 360 Immersive educates organizations about the benefits of immersive training, demonstrates how the technology can be applied within the industry, and collaborates with experts to develop curriculum that fosters a culture of safety and enhanced situational awareness.

As the CEO and Managing Director, Jennifer and her team are dedicated to the company vision of preventing fatal and non-fatal injuries from occurring, one training experience at a time.  In addition to her certificate in project management, Jennifer has also earned a BBA and MBA in Professional Studies.