Rather than do the standard bio (which you can download here if you like), here are twelve things you should know about Peter:
- Originally from Akron, Ohio, he went to The Ohio State University and got a BA in Political Science, though he spent more time in the Dance Department.
- Played bass guitar in a decent alt rock band with his future business partner Ken Walker.
- Attended law school at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland and practiced law for two years. Didn’t take and now refers to himself as “a recovering attorney.”
- Started a web development firm with former bandmate (see above) Ken Walker. Cyberscapes Interactive was one of the earliest web dev firms in the Southeast, started in 1995. Didn’t get rich but learned an awful lot about business.
- Peter met Richard Florida in 2003 which changed his career path. Projects with the Creativity Group included producing the audio book version of The Rise of the Creative Class as well as an accompanying DVD and audio CD. The audiobook was a brilliant collaboration that saw guest readers, each taking a chapter of the book. Contributors included then Mayor of Baltimore (now Governor of Maryland) Martin O’Malley, syndicated radio host Carol Coletta, former Mayor of Austin Kirk Watson and Tina Weymouth, bass player of Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductees the Talking Heads. And Peter even got to read a chapter as well.
- In 2004 Peter and Michelle Bauer produced the first Creative Cities Summit in St. Petersburg, Florida. It was there the Peter first met Charles Landry with whom a long association would begin, including producing and directing the documentary film Charles Landry and the Art of City Making (2009).
- Peter has travelled the world learning and speaking about issues of local community development, talent attraction and retention and creative industries development. Highlights include Australia, England, Ireland, Canada, Singapore, Hong Kong, Jamaica, Trinidad and a very special trip to Rwanda to speak at a UN conference on creative industries.
- From 2006-2008, Peter was one of the developers and producers of the Sarasota International Design Summit, presented by the Ringling College of Art and Design. Peter served as mc and host of the event.
- In 2008 Peter developed and produced the Creative Cities Summit 2.0 with the Michigan State Housing Development Authority (MSHDA). The conference was held in Detroit and despite being in the midst of a once in a generation economic crisis, the conference drew over 800 attendees and speakers from all over the world. Peter also was the host of the event.
- Peter became a certified Innovation Coach in 2009 as part of a project with CIDA International. The project, funded by the EU will have the coaches providing training all over the world and sharing best practice development for how to develop innovation processes inside organizations.
- In 2010 he produced the third Creative Cities Summit in Lexington, Kentucky. Great experience and he met an amazing group of people there who are reinventing that city.
- For the Love of Cities is his first book but he already has an idea for the next one!