Who We Are

The Applied Concepts Group is a flexible network of seasoned professionals who come together as unique project teams tailored to each engagement.  The Group includes innovators in organizational development, entrepreneurial innovation, nonprofit enterprises, dialogue development and management, and technology integration and more.  Robert Corman serves as president of the Applied Concepts Group working closely with co-founder Laura Landy who assists with overall project design, strategy and analysis.  Biographies of some of our key Group members are included below.


Robert is President of Applied Concepts, a consulting firm that specializes in assisting corporate and nonprofit leaders to strategically address the challenges of constantly changing personal, economic, market and social realities.  His expertise resides in helping organizations create conducive environments for making complex decisions and addressing difficult situations, while capitalizing on exciting opportunities.  Additionally, Robert provides executive level consulting and guidance services to university and foundation executives and their boards. He also offers a program to select clients entitled "The Anatomy of Thoughtful Conversation."

Parallel to his time at Applied Concepts, Robert led the National Partnership for Social Enterprise, a nonprofit that focused on market driven approaches to various social issues: public health, higher education, and bank services for lower income populations.  Previously, he was Executive Director of the Gallup International Institute, an organization that used survey research to address domestic and international social issues.  

Starting as a criminal and environmental lawyer, he became president of The Fund for New Jersey, a private foundation.  Among his accomplishments there were the creation of the Community Foundation of New Jersey with assets now over $200 million, the Center for Non-Profit Corporations and the Council of New Jersey Grantmakers.  Robert was also a Founding Director of the New York Regional Association of Grantmakers (now Philanthropy New York).  A trustee of numerous grant-making and nonprofit organizations, he received gubernatorial and judicial appointments to various entities, including service on Ramapo College Board of Trustees for 16 years, including three years as chairman. He currently serves as the Chair of A Growing Culture. Robert has been honored for his work by the legal services community, environmental groups, the Hispanic community, and nonprofit coalitions.   


Laura founded Applied Concepts in 1983.  Throughout her career, Laura has brought sound business and strategic thinking to creating sustainable solutions to pressing social issues.  As President of Applied Concepts, her efforts focused on the changing dynamics in health, higher education, finance, social services and culture.  Among her activities have been extended and diverse relationships with Adelphi University, the 92nd Street Y, Pfizer, the New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services, AT&T, the Tribeca Film Institute, and others.

Laura’s expertise in entrepreneurship and corporate venturing led her to create and direct the Institute for Nonprofit Entrepreneurship at NYU’s Stern School of Business where she also taught and served as Associate Director of the Center for Entrepreneurial Studies.  She has also been a member of the adjunct faculty of Columbia University, Carnegie Mellon, the New School, and Fairleigh Dickinson.  Laura received her undergraduate degree from Washington University in St. Louis. After graduate work at the University of California, Berkeley, she received her MBA from New York University.  She is a Fellow of the New York Academy of Medicine.

In 2006, she was named President and CEO of the Fannie E. Rippel Foundation and has served as a member of the Board of Trustees since 1998.  She is also the founder and chair of ReThink Health, an initiative of the Rippel Foundation.

Glenna is a gifted facilitator, coach, designer, and leader, with 25+ years of experience working in both not-for-profit and for-profit organizations.  Her passion is designing and facilitating structures that enable individuals and groups to access and bring forward their unique individual gifts and collective wisdom and produce the outcomes they desire.

In the 1990s Glenna pioneered the development of dialogue within organizations as a form of conversation that fosters collective awareness and wisdom, while building relationships grounded in respect and trust.  She co-authored “Dialogue: Rediscover the Transforming Power of Conversation,” published by John Wiley & Sons in 1998, and translated into Germany, Portuguese and Chinese.  More recently Glenna has created guided reflection experiences she calls Presence Walkabouts.  Today, Walkabouts with Glenna tap the power of nature and place to build individual and collective capacity to take clear and necessary action.

Over the years, Glenna has designed strategic initiatives using dialogue within a variety of organizational contexts.  She has facilitated strategic dialogues in health care systems and universities; created and facilitated leadership programs for senior and executive leaders; coached facilitators and leaders to enhance and grow their skills; and designed curriculum in the areas of dialogue, facilitation, coaching, leadership, innovation, strategic thinking, and reconciling differences.


Linda Ellinor is a visionary leader and experienced facilitator.  She loves to convene and lead learning groups, facilitate participatory planning processes, coach leaders, and participate in conversations focused on high-stake social issues such as climate change. 

She is a writer, currently authoring a book and blog on the topic of “Dialogue as a Way of Life.” Linda offers  workshops at her conference facility at Moonreach Ranch in Tubac, AZ. Her workshops and learning groups encourage participants to integrate a sustainable and holistic worldview into their daily lives.  

Linda holds a PhD (abd) in Jungian Psychology from Pacifica Graduate Institute, an MBA from Columbia University, and BS from NYU. She currently serves on the board of the Sonoma College of Leadership and participates in the Resilient Neighborhood Project (sponsored by Physicians for Social Responsibility).  Also, Linda serves as coordinator for the newly launched D&D Climate Action Network.  

Linda has worked for such companies as AT&T, International Paper Company, Exxon Office systems, and a start-up company, called Mnemos. In these companies she held marketing positions translating customer needs into new products and services. She has a decade of experience as an out-placement consultant for Drake, Beam Morin and as an executive coach at the Center for Creative Leadership in La Jolla. 

Linda is best known for her pioneering work in training facilitators in “Dialogue” a communication practice based on the work of David Bohm.  She is co-founder of The Dialogue Group and co-author of Dialogue: Rediscover the Transforming Power of Conversation, Wiley & Sons, 1998, which is now available as an on-line text book.


Fern has a unique background in educational technology, working with students, teachers, and administrators since 1987 to support successful technology integration.  In 1992 she received the Pioneering Partners award for her early work in technology integration.  In 2009 she left the Milton Hershey School, in Hershey Pennsylvania, the largest residential K-12 school in the United States, where her title was Integrator, Learning Technologies.  Today she teaches online doctoral courses for University of Phoenix and online Life Skills courses for Everest College.

Fern’s doctoral degree in Instructional Technology and Distance Learning is from Nova Southeastern University in Florida.  Her master’s degree is from West Chester University in Pennsylvania where she also taught undergraduate courses.  Her doctoral research focused on technology and critical thinking.  Her research on high school students and online learning, “Online High School Courses: Preventing Dropouts and Providing a Successful Learning Experience” was published in the peer reviewed journal Distance Learning.  Her current research, unpublished, focuses on adult learners and successful teaching strategies in the online classroom.

Ari is a skilled manager and facilitator who has worked to help those in the non-profit and corporate sectors generate increased revenues and improve staff performance.  Among his accomplishments have been enhancing web visibility for a strategic consulting business through market research and creating unique content, leading Appreciative Inquiry visioning process with an international charitable organization, and facilitating focus groups and designing and conducting interviews, as well as researching best practices to enhance successful recruitment at Gallup Consulting.  He also coaches individuals on effective communication and public speaking techniques and is particularly skills at compellingly conveying and helping align the priorities of diverse stakeholders.  

Earlier work included roles in development with the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation and Georgetown University.  Ari also served as General Manager of a restaurant in lounge in downtown Washington, DC where he trained and developed staff to perform in accordance with a rapidly changing strategic vision.

Ari graduated from Bates College and earned his MBA in Leadership and Human Capital Management from American University's Kogod School of Business.