Allison Kent

Allison Kent

Founder and CEO at smith & beta
Boulder, United States

About me

Allison Kent-Smith is a writer, speaker and founder/CEO of smith & beta – a Boulder-based talent acceleration company that designs custom training and change management programs for brands and agencies. In 2018, she will also launch a new company called Giide, a multimodal enterprise learning platform that takes employees on expert-guided learning journeys.

Allison has been leading talent development efforts for the past decade working with clients such as MasterCard, Goodby Silverstein & Partners, McCann. BBH, CP+B, Wunderman, Ogilvy & Mather, WellPet and others.

Prior to launching smith & beta in 2013, she was Director of Digital Development at Goodby Silverstein & Partners where she designed and launched an agency school to increase digital literacy for employees and clients. She also held the role of Interactive Development Director at Crispin Porter + Bogusky where she led research and design of a school called Boulder Digital Works.

Her passion for talent transformation and workplace education started the day she joined a small digital agency in Boulder CO (later acquired by CP+B) and was asked to explain complex digital ideas to eager-to-learn clients and co-workers.


Founder and CEO
smith & beta
United States
February 2013 - Present (9 years 6 months)
smith & beta is a talent development and education company. We design and curate digital-centric education programs (classes, workshops, experiments, labs, pop-ups, field trips) for innovative brands and agencies. We focus on helping employees get smarter about digital. Our programs are grounded in research, custom designed, and focused on talent transformation (reinvention). As the founder, I focus on industry outreach, business development, program design, and teacher recruiting.
Director of Digital Development
San Francisco, United States
June 2010 - February 2013 (2 years 8 months)
Head of agency digital development focused on digital and technical programming, curriculum, and content. Launched "school within the agency" for both employees and GSP clients. Led design, development, and implementation of ED program that includes instruction in Interaction Design, UX, Business Development, Programming, Strategy, Social Media, Mobile and other technical areas. Developed programming, designed curriculum, managed (and built) ED department, recruited faculty, designed content and developed annual programs for clients. Managed classes, workshops, programs, field trips, pop-ups, and other experimental forms of in-house and external education. Designed organizational process, structure, approach, and support for L&D agency-wide. Identified industry leaders as "teachers" and executed more than 200 classes.
Senior Director, Community and Industry Development (Co-Founder)
Boulder Digital Works at CU
United States
August 2009 - June 2010 (10 months)
One of three original founders @bdwcu. Established relationships with industry and community, managed sponsorships, generated pr/marketing, and recruited teaching talent. Led development of executive education program and workshops (ex. Making Digital Work) including establishing local, remote and global professional opportunities. Recruited industry talent, led research initiatives, documented industry priorities, and contributed to full-time post graduate program development.
Development Director/Interactive
Boulder, United States
May 2008 - August 2009 (1 year 3 months)
Internal agency lead for concept, research and development of new digital school. Established partnership with the University of Colorado - @bdwcu Boulder Digital Works. Identified structure, approach, and curriculum needed to successfully support industry needs. Recommended content to launch a highly targeted industry supportive program. Worked across industry to uncover priorities, needs, and best practices for embedded and traditional education focused on digital and technology (developing a network was my job). Managed agency partner development and internal programs focused on technical education and external events.

Director of Business Development
Boulder, United States
2004 - 2008 (4 years)
Responsible for client acquisition and strategy for new business opportunities. Manage initial client contacts and presentation of texturemedia's full suite of services. texturemedia is a Boulder based Interactive marketing and advertising agency focused on helping clients build brands online. Some of our clients include PENTAX, Marmot Mountain, Thule, Aspen Ski Company, Steamboat Ski and Resort, Intuit, Google/Sketchup...



2000 - 2002 (2 years)

Other professional activities

Boomtown Accelerator

2014 - Present (8 years 7 months)
Work with accepted accelerator companies to refine ideas, design talent structure, and explore business development opportunities.

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