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History of the Creative Education Foundation

1954

Alex Osborn, legendary advertising executive and coiner of the term "brainstorming", establishes the Creative Education Foundation.

1955

CEF holds the first annual Creative Problem Solving Institute (CPSI) at the University of Buffalo, attracting 200 participants. Professor Sid Parnes joins Osborn to develop a comprehensive educational program for the Institute.

1960

CEF sponsors a Leadership Convocation, bringing together the pioneers of the creative thinking movement, including Calvin Taylor, J.P. Guilford, E. Paul Torrance, and Donald MacKinnon.

1961

CPSI inaugurates Leadership Training Program. CEF offers the first of a series of programs to US Army Generals the US State Department Policy Planning Council.

1962

Parnes and Harold Harding edit the first definitive edition of Creative Thinking.

1963

CEF commences a three-year project, under a major grant from the US Office of Education, to study the deliberate development of CPS at Buffalo State College.

1966

Osborn dies, leaving Parnes at the helm of the Foundation. CEF sponsored the nation's first graduate course in Creative Studies at Buffalo State University College.

1967

CEF launches the Journal of Creative Behavior, the first research publication devoted entirely to the science of creativity. Parnes publishes the work of the Institute's creative training programs in Creative Behavior Guidebook and Creative Behavior Workbook.

1969

CEF begins a three-year sponsorship of the most comprehensive longitudinal research ever conducted on the development of deliberate creativity at Buffalo State College.

1972

Sidney Shore launches Creativity in Action, CEF's monthly newsletter. A series of regional problem solving institutes is launched in California, Washington, Minnesota, Connecticut, Florida, and Arizona.

1975

CEF sponsors the Master of Science degree in Creative Studies at Buffalo State University.

1978

CEF publishes The Magic of Your Mind (Parnes), The Search for Satori and Creativity (Torrance), Way Beyond the IQ (Guilford), In Search of Human Effectiveness (MacKinnon), and Creativity and Psychological Health (Barron).

1979

CEF celebrates its 25th anniversary. Over 700 participants attend CPSI's Summerfest in Buffalo, and 200 more attend its Winterfest in San Diego. CPSI now offers four major program streams: Springboard for novices, Leadership Development Program, CPSI YouthWise, and Extending sessions for exploratory studies.

1980

CEF inaugurates Visioning Workshops at Disney World's Epcot Center in Florida.

1981

CEF and Buffalo State College sponsor Creative Studies as a Certificate Program to the University of California at San Diego.

1985

CEF partners with the US Small Business Administration to sponsor the National Creativity, Innovation and Entrepreneurship Conference. CEF launches its Speakers' Bureau.

1987

Incoming CEO John Meyerhoff expands CEF's educational perspective to include business training. In Perspective, a quarterly publication for Institute Alumni launched by Tom Kuby.

1989

CPSI goes global with its first Australian Creative Problem Solving Institute and promotion in South America and Europe. Doris Shallcross initiates two major programs: the President's Convocation to exchange leading edge thinking in the field of creativity, and Global Odyssey to bring young people from around the globe to CPSI.

1990

Shallcross launches CEF Press to enable the Foundation to become an international clearinghouse for publications in the field of creativity.

1992

CEF Publishes Parnes' Sourcebook for Creative Problem Solving, a mini-encyclopedia of deliberate creativity techniques.

1994

CEF celebrates its 40th Anniversary with the publication of a commemorative history of the organization.

1998

CEF offers VIP Days at CPSI Summerfest to introduce local and national government leaders to CPS.

1999

First Encyclopedia of Creativity includes section on "Programs and Courses in Creativity", featuring CPSI, CPS, and the CEF.

2002

CEF established the CPSI Council to oversee the activities of CPSI's two major annual conferences, Summerfest and Winterfest.

2003

CEF Board of Trustees approves new strategic plan to transform CEF into the CEF Guild, broadening its mission to promote Applied Imagination through advocacy, education, outreach and thought leadership.

2004

CEF celebrates its 50th annual Creative Problem Solving Institute in Grand Island, Buffalo, New York.

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