Meet the Next Gen Team
Co- Founder & Director
Jared Fishman is the co-founder and co-director of HMGS Next Gen. He is a familiar face in the world of education and game design thinking. Over the past 15+ years, he has served as a teacher at the Hackley School in Tarrytown, NY. In that time, he's worked as a grade level dean, authored elements of the history curriculum, and was the architect of Hackley’s popular “Strategy Game Club.” He currently teaches two original courses that rely heavily on game related thinking: “Topics in the History of Warfare” and “Collaborative Storytelling and Roleplay Gaming.” In September, 2022, Jared will begin teaching at Brunswick School, in Greenwich, Connecticut.
Jared has been bestowed numerous honors in his career, including the Mary Lambos Award for Teaching in 2014 and the Davidson Chair in History, a position he held from 2016-2020. Jared's classroom experience has set the foundation for his belief that games support critical thinking along many different avenues, from the classroom to the office. He has organized and facilitated several conferences on the subject, entitled “Role Playing, Games, and Simulations in the Humanities Classroom” and has presented at various HMGS, NASAGA, and other game related events. In each presentation, Jared has demonstrated the real world benefits that game related thinking can provide. In 2019, he and his teaching partner Michael Canterino won the NASAGA “Rising Star” award for a role play simulation entitled “Drawing a Line in the Sand: Exploring Leadership Through the Lens of Popilius.”
Jared has partnered with numerous game authors including Chris Pringle (Bloody Big Battles), Brent Oman (Field of Battle), and Simon Miller (To the Strongest!), which has aided in designing rewarding experiences for student and adult gamers. Through this and other gaming efforts, he has become an established contributor to Wargames Illustrated magazine, penning articles on the benefits of wargaming in the classroom, most notably in issue WI369 with a piece entitled “Schooling Borodino,” which highlighted a large scale game involving 30+ students and teachers at the Hackley School.
John Spiess is a co-founder of HMGS Next Gen, Inc. (“Next Gen”). Considered one of the old veterans, John’s gaming experience goes back 50 years. John is also a skilled figure painter and model terrain craftsman, which are other aspects of miniature gaming.
John has also written and published several gaming rulesets, including Trench Wars, which focuses on WWI game simulations, as well as Halberd, Mace, & Great Sword, which can be used for numerous medieval time periods ranging from the Arthurian Dark Ages through the later medieval War of the Roses.
Previous to volunteering for Next Gen, John served for six years on the HMGS, Inc. Board of Directors. Starting as Communications Director, then as Treasurer, and finally as President for two years before retiring and devoting time to Next Gen.
John is now Next Gen’s lead game coordinator and hosts events for players of all ages, specializing in recreations of historical battles using miniatures.
John is a lifelong Connecticut resident, current living in New Canaan, CT with his family. Professionally, John has worked in the banking industry for over 30 years, specializing in the area of Trust and Estates.