Dr. Russell Miller, WONDERREEL’s founder and CEO, is a psychologist and a veteran creator of media for kids, having designed activities–electronic, print and live–for Disney, Scholastic, Nickelodeon, PBS Kids and, for ten years, Sesame Workshop.
An honors graduate of Harvard College, Russell holds a doctorate in educational psychology from the Graduate Center of the City University of New York (CUNY) as well as masters degrees in education, from New York University; journalism, from the Graduate School of Journalism at Columbia University; and sideshow arts, including fire-eating, sword-swallowing, and human blockhead, from Coney Island USA’s Sideshow School. He has taught elementary and middle school, as well as child psychology and graduate-level communication theory, practice and ethics at CUNY’s Queens, Hunter and Baruch Colleges and at Harvard University. He currently studies the relationship between children’s use of media and their emotional well-being at the CUNY Graduate Center and, at Brooklyn College, CUNY, teaches undergraduate courses on children’s media and social-science research methods.
As Director of Education at Nickelodeon Digital TV from 2001 through 2004, Russell pioneered the concept of network-wide learning objectives, designing unified messaging in both long-form and edu-stitials for two children’s TV/online services: Noggin, with a standards-based curriculum for preschoolers, and The N, with a lifeskills curriculum for adolescents.
To support Noggin’s electronic programming, he created Club Noggin, a live monthly hands-on program for preschoolers, offered in more than 80 shopping malls nationwide. With The N’s teen drama Miracle’s Boys, he introduced formative research to dramatic programming for adolescents; the resulting mini-series won a Writers Guild Award for Best Episodic Childrens Script. He served as consultant in adolescent development for the first ten seasons of the classic teen drama Degrassi: The Next Generation.
Since 2005, Russell has led the Center for Intentional Media, crafting and delivering educational activities for clients as diverse as the American Museum of Natural History, the Metropolitan Opera and National Geographic Kids.
A New York Foundation for the Arts Fellow in Non-Fiction Literature and member of the Writers Guild of America, Russell has reported for The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Rolling Stone and WNYC/New York Public Radio. He’s written documentary films for Turner Network Television and the American Film Institute, as well as industrials for clients from A&E Networks to the Juilliard School of Music. A pioneer in interactive media, he designed his first software activities for TRS-80s, Commodore 64s and Apple IIs; his most recent, the child-centered interface for WONDERREEL.