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  • Mary Spio ’98

    Arents Award Recipient for Excellence in Innovation

    Mary Spio ’98 Digital cinema pioneer Mary Spio ’98 is the CEO and president of CEEK VR Inc., a developer of innovative virtual and augmented reality content solutions and experiences. Her companies have created content and technologies used by such global titans as Lucas Films, Universal Music Group, Miami Children’s Hospital, Microsoft XBOX, Tribune News, Clear Channel, and Boeing.

    Under Spio’s leadership, CEEK has created virtual reality experiences for entertainment, health care, and education. CEEK VR’s recent virtual reality experience produced for Universal Music Group won the prestigious Silver CLIO award; it was nominated in the same category as Disney’s Star Wars and Intel’s Lady Gaga Experience. The Universal Music virtual reality experience also won a 2017 Grammy Award for Best Performance.

    A veteran of the U.S. Air Force, Spio holds several patents in real-time streaming and virtual reality technologies. She is an accomplished novelist and screenwriter (A Song for Carmine) and bestselling author of It’s Not Rocket Science: 7 Game-Changing Traits for Achieving Uncommon Success, in which she shares inspirational stories to spur readers to move beyond their comfort zones into creating impact and significance.

    Spio earned a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from the College of Engineering and Computer Science at Syracuse University and a master’s degree in electrical engineering and computer science from Georgia Institute of Technology.

    An innovation and entrepreneurship evangelist, Spio works with the U.S. Department of State in a global innovation and entrepreneurship outreach program. Born in Syracuse and raised in Ghana, she has traveled extensively and given presentations in dozens of countries, including China, Mexico, Russia, Pakistan, Ukraine, and South Africa.

    Spio is a recipient of the Yueh-Ying Hu Memorial National Award for Innovation, the Boeing Outstanding Achievement in Electrical Engineering Award, and Essence magazine’s New Power Generation Award. She was also named alongside Oprah in NBC News’s 100 History Makers in the Making. Spio currently serves on the advisory boards of Amazon Launchpad and Oculus VR for Good.