Emily Pilloton founded Project H in 2008, believing deeply in the power of design and building to excite learning and citizenship. Her first crush, MacGyver, sparked her love of constrained problem-solving and tinkering. She went on to study architecture and building because it was the one thing that allowed her to geek out about everything, from math and structural engineering to ethnography and the fascinating behavior of people.
In 2010, Emily moved to rural Bertie County, in North Carolina, to engage in a bold experiment of design-led community transformation. She's teaching a design-build class called Studio H that engages high schoolers' minds and bodies while bringing smart design and new opportunities to the poorest county in the state.
Emily believes that by giving youth, particularly girls and students of color, the skills to design and build their wildest ideas, we can support the next generation of creative, confident changemakers.
Her ideas and work have made their way to the TED Stage, The Colbert Report, the New York Times, the cover of MAKE magazine, and more. She is the author of two books, Design Revolution: 100 Products that Empower People, and Tell Them I Built This: Transforming Schools, Communities, and Lives with Design-Based Education.