Our Team

Angela Nino, CFI

Founder and Chief Executive Officer

Angela Nino, CFI (Certified Forensic Interviewer) is the Chief Executive Officer for Empathic Workplace. Angela teaches seminars on workplace interviews, investigations, and difficult conversations. Angela trains clients in question formulation; cognitive interviewing for victims, witnesses, and suspects; policy violation investigations; accusatory conversations and pre-employment interviewing. Angela previously worked as an Instructor and Consultant with Wicklander-Zulawski Associates where she taught the art of Non-Confrontational Interview & Interrogation techniques and Behavior Interpretation to Human Resources, Loss Prevention / Asset Protection, Security Professionals, Auditors, Federal Government Agencies and Fortune 500 Companies. Angela has worked for Target Stores and Ralph Lauren Stores in the Asset Protection and Loss Prevention Fields and is a legacy member of the International Association of Interviewers.

Rick Levine

Chief Operating Officer

Rick Levine is a serial entrepreneur. He launches community inspiring, vision sharing and always profitable companies. His approach of Planned Optimism promotes having a solid vision of the forecasted activities, the answers required, and the support needed in order for positive events to unfold. Print media and publishing companies he co-founded or owned include Act I Bookstore, Chicago Plays, PerformInk Newspaper and Made To Measure Magazine. Technology companies include xBx Channel Media, UniformMarket, Sellers Commerce and Intrackt. He is a graduate of the Second City Improv Training Program and has a BA degree from Macalester College.

Lisa Bany

Chief Improv Officer

Lisa Bany is an instructor, director and coach at The Second City. She has authored numerous books, including On Stage: Theatre Games and Activities for Kids; Show Time: Music, Dance and Drama Activities for Kids; Funny Bones; and Family Fun Nights. She started teaching at The Second City in the early nineties has directed and taught throughout the Chicagoland area. A graduate of Columbia College, Lisa is a member of the Association for Applied and Therapeutic Humor.

Jeff Hanna

Advisor & Instructor

Jeff Hanna comes to us from Des Moines, IA.  As a retired pastor and former undercover narcotics detective, Jeff brings a wide range of experiences and deep knowledge of how and why people react to stressful situations.

Besides being an improv teacher, he currently is a chaplain for his local police department.

Jeff holds both a BS in Criminal Justice and a Master of Divinity degree.  He will entertain you with his wit and humor while empowering you with improv tools to assist you in how to react better to stressful situations and incorporate improv into your professional and personal life.

Stephan Owen, Ph.D.


Stephen Owen is a Professor of Criminal Justice at Radford University, located in the New River Valley of southwest Virginia.  Steve holds a B.S. in Criminal Justice from Southeast Missouri State University and a M.A. and Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Missouri – St. Louis.  His research has focused on the relationship between LGBTQ+ communities and the police, teaching and learning in criminal justice, and active assailant incidents.  Steve regularly teaches courses on crime analysis, security planning, and emergency management; has co-authored a textbook, Foundations of Criminal Justice, which seeks to situate the theoretical roots of criminal justice; and presented the Great Courses lecture series titled When Everything Fails: Survive Any Disaster.  Recognized with the Radford University Distinguished Creative Scholar Award and the College of Humanities and Behavioral Sciences Distinguished Teaching Award, Steve seeks to utilize innovative learning opportunities, which led him to develop a new course titled “Communication and Police-Community Relationships,” utilizing applied improvisation to build skills in observation, communication, empathy, and social justice.  Steve has received training from Aretha Sills, including “Teacher Training in Viola Spolin Technique;” from Gary Schwartz; at Theatre of the Oppressed – New York City; and at the Second City Training Center in Chicago.  Steve plays with several Spolin-based groups and is currently exploring how improvisation can be incorporated into law enforcement training.