The Twelve Finalists and Their Concepts for “The Next MacGyver” Contest


“The Next MacGyver” Competition aims to create a show with a female engineer protagonist, one that will encourage women and girls to pursue careers in STEM fields, particularly engineering. The five winners will win $5000 each plus will be mentored by successful Hollywood TV producers in developing their pilot scripts. The twelve finalists have proposed a wide array of shows, historical, science fiction, mystery. They show a lot of promise among them.


“The Next MacGyver” Concepts

<caption-side: “bottom”;>Concept art and descriptions from


“The Next MacGyver” finalists are:

Kristen Bobst Marina Del Rey, California Drama / Procedural Doctor Tailor
Wesley Burger Long Beach, California Comedy Imagineers
Shane Courtney Fayetteville, Arkansas Sci-Fi / Drama Kansas
Shanee Edwards Culver City, California Historical / Steampunk Ada and the Machine
Beth Keser San Diego, California Adventure / Procedural Rule 702.
Jayde Lovell New York, New York Comedy / Drama SECs (Science and Engineering Clubs)
Craig Motlong Seattle, Washington Spy / Action Q Branch
Nao Murakami Seattle, Washington Sci-Fi / Crime Drama The Mind
Sam Ruano Ontario, Canada Drama / Procedural Enhanced
Miranda Sajdak Los Angeles, California Historical Drama Riveting
Daniel Wright Queensland, Australia Science Fiction / Drama Isabelle.exe
Judy Wu San Mateo, California Interactive Crime Drama @Gnosis


The judges and mentors* for “The Next MacGyver”


•          Wanda Austin, Aerospace Corporation president and CEO; member of the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology

•          Madeline Di Nonno, CEO of the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media

•          America Ferrera*, actress/producer (Ugly Betty, Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants)

•          Clayton Krueger*, senior vice president of television at Scott Free Productions (3001: The Final Odyssey)

•          Maja J. Matarić, professor and Chan Soon-Shiong Chair in Computer Science, Neuroscience, and Pediatrics; vice dean for research at USC Viterbi School of Engineering

•          Lori McCreary*, CEO and founder of Revelations Entertainment; president of Producer’s Guild of America (Madam Secretary, Through the Wormhole with Morgan Freeman)

•          Gabrielle Neimand*, head of Take Fountain Productions; producer (The Last Exorcism, The Thing)

•          Roberto Orci*, writer/producer (Star Trek, Scorpion, Sleepy Hollow, Hawaii Five-O, Fringe)

•          Debbie Sterling, founder and CEO of GoldieBlox

•          Valerie Weiss, biophysicist; founder, PhD Productions 

•          Lee Zlotoff, MacGyver creator 

•          Anthony E. Zuiker*, creator and executive producer of the CSI franchise, including CSI: Cyber



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