University of North Dakota Faculty/Staff Newsletter

Center for Innovation presents Maureen Clemmons at next Entrepreneur Forum

The UND Center for Innovation presents Maureen Clemmons, an internationally recognized innovator with North Dakota roots, at the next Entrepreneur Forum from 5 to 7 p.m. Wednesday, April 28, in the Idea Lab at the Center for Innovation. Clemmons’s presentation is titled "Perseverance and Skill, Courage and Will are the Leaves in Luck's 4-Leaf Clover (old saying); History Channel Documentary: Flying Pyramids, Soaring Stone."

Clemmons—both of whose parents, Loering and Maral Johnson, are UND alums—explores the innovation process, maps barriers and impediments to innovation.

Among many other innovations, Clemmons theorized that the ancient Egyptians, being sailors, built their pyramids using wind energy. She raised her first stone obelisk (3.5 tons) in 25 seconds with a kite, a sled, and two guy wires. Clemmons and her team from the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) demonstrated that kites could raise a 16 ton obelisk and transport the large stones used to build pyramids. Using wind power, Clemmons and 100 students from California Polytechnic State University, Pomona, built a 200 ton pyramid in the Mojave Desert.

Clemmons’s work was the subject of a 2004 History Channel documentary, "Flying Pyramids, Soaring Stones."

Clemmons is the president of Transformations, an innovation and change management consulting practice in Los Angeles. She has a doctorate in organization change from Pepperdine University and an executive Master’s in Business Administration. Clemmons has lectured at many notable institutions, including the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

The UND Center for Innovation Entrepreneur Forum is a periodic gathering of entrepreneurs and experts who share experiences, expertise, strategies, and success stories. The event is sponsored by the UND Center for Innovation and is open to the public.

-- Bruce Gjovig, founder and director, UND Center for Innovation, 777-3132,,

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