Our Team

Below are the people building Art of Problem Solving from our office in sunny San Diego. Click on each image to learn more, and check out our Careers page if you'd like to join the team!

We also have dozens of amazing instructors teaching in our online school. They're a lot like our full-time team. They grew up loving math, and many were winners of major math awards and graduates of schools like MIT, Harvard, Stanford, and Princeton. Click here to learn more about our teachers.

Jovany Araujo
Shipper
Jovany likes to read and play video games in his spare time. He is also an aspiring software developer and likes to code to solve problems.
Doga Ari
Graphic Designer
Doga Ari is a graphic designer who was born in Turkey. After a few years of work experience as a professional graphic designer following her bachelor’s degree, she was awarded a scholarship to study in Milan Polytechnic University where she got a masters degree in Communication Design. After returning from Italy to Turkey, she began work as a teaching assistant. She is now living and working in San Diego. As a graphic designer, she finds her greatest joy in making artist's books, illustrating children’s books, collecting zines, and experimenting with DIY projects.
Kevin Arlin
Math Curriculum Developer
Kevin joined AoPS full-time in 2021 after teaching in the Online School for several years. For the first few of those years, he was named Kevin Carlson, but then he got married. He has a mathematics PhD from UCLA, where he did research in category theory and algebraic topology, as well as degrees from Cambridge and Indiana. He's loved working with budding young mathematicians since joining the Ross summer program during college. He's also taught a range of math courses at Santa Monica College and Pomona College. He can usually be found, if not doing math, petting one of his cats, tending his citrus trees, or wandering the California wilderness with his partner.
R.J. Ashmore
AoPS Academy Project Manager
R.J. joined AoPS in 2016, shortly after completing his Ph.D. in Cinema & Media Studies at the University of Southern California. While honing his research, writing, and teaching skills at USC, he studied the ways that the American media has reflected, as well as shaped, the changing roles that young people have played in our society over the last hundred years. Previously, R.J. earned his B.A. in English from the University of California, Irvine and his M.A. in the same subject from The Ohio State University. In his spare time, he loves watching movies (with a particular fondness for Classic Hollywood and silent comedies), reading (his interests run the gamut from William Shakespeare to Jane Austen to contemporary comic books), playing board games, and looking for new and interesting subjects to learn about.
Lorelei Atkins
Senior Customer Service Specialist
Lorelei has an AA degree in graphic design and a BA in multimedia focusing on web design. After college, she got a job in tech support for an E-commerce software and web hosting company where she became an engineer and spent her days either helping clients with the E-commerce platform or doing more technically oriented things like migrating data and launching sites. In her spare time, Lorelei enjoys knitting solo or with friends. She has several projects going at once, so she's generally pretty busy with that or going out to various events with friends. Occasionally, she likes to take the train or local transit for the fun of it. She calls it backpacking. She of course brings her knitting with and knits in various places, especially in places someone probably wouldn't expect to find her knitting in (like the bar). Sometimes she also plays video games like The Sims 1-4.
Vanessa Baeza-Apodaca
AoPS Online Operations Coordinator
Vanessa joined AoPS in 2018, shortly after finishing up her degree in Applied Math at UC Riverside. She grew to love math and physics in high school, and, naturally, felt right at home with the AoPS team. When she's not working, Vanessa loves to find every opportunity to have fun. Whether that's swimming, hiking, camping, rollercoaster-ing, eating, or discovering new spots in SoCal with her husband and family, she's probably planning her next adventure now! Some of her interests include listening to 80's pop and 90's alt rock, spending an afternoon on a huge jigsaw puzzle, and working on home DIY projects with her husband. She's also a very active member of her church congregation.
Allen Bahng
Digital Marketing Manager
Allen thinks of himself as a data driven marketer for 7+ years. With expertise in many aspects of digital media acquisition and a specialization in performance paid media. Having managed multi-million dollar budgets in both agency and in-house settings, he is constantly looking for ways to push and show incremental ROI. When he is not marketing to students that want to maximize their potential with AoPS, you can find him with his family playing guitar, probably involuntarily shredding on nursery rhymes tunes at his daughters' behest. When not shackled down by the chains of parenthood, however, he is probably training jiu-jitsu, playing basketball, or just outdoors cycling under the warm San Diego sun.
Stephen Barrack
Software Engineer
From a young age, Stephen put his creative mind to assembling sets of interlocking bricks, taking them apart, and arranging them into something new or next-level. The game was over when he learned he could do the same with electronics and programs. As soon he was old enough, Stephen got a work permit from his high school and, putting himself through the wringer, graduated SDSU with a bachelor’s degree in computer science in 2019. He came out having reverse-engineered a video game controller and self-taught knowledge of web technology. Building upon that knowledge, Stephen has made and improved various web apps for different clients and businesses. Today, he enjoys swimming, reading philosophy or fantasy, and playing table-top games with friends and family.
Joseph Barron
Senior Director of Engineering
Joseph joined AoPS in 2018 during his final semester studying Software Development at Western Governors University. He first picked up programming by learning to create computer games in elementary school. Since then, he has spent years creating bizarre game prototypes and practicing web development. Joseph also utilized his self-taught skills to lead game development teams at both Grossmont College and UC Berkeley. Prior to attending WGU, he spent a year away from academics, in the spirit of entrepreneurship, to develop and market his own desktop app for gaming live-streamers. Outside of programming, he enjoys digital art, karaoke, sushi, and Guitar Hero.
Jason Batterson
Beast Academy Senior Product Strategy Director
Jason joined AoPS in 2010 to lead development of the Beast Academy series. Before joining AoPS, he taught math and coached some of the top students in North Carolina, coaching teams to multiple state MATHCOUNTS titles and numerous individual awards. While teaching, Jason wrote and published Competition Math for Middle School and developed AGMath.com. He is also a nationally competitive masters distance runner with a 2:38 personal best in the marathon. When he's not out running, Jason enjoys solving puzzles, skiing, and playing in the pool with his two favorite math beasts, Parker and Ada.
Tasha Beatty
BA Classroom Associate Director
In 2009, Tasha graduated with a math degree from Arizona State, where Barack Obama gave her commencement address. After college, she joined Teach For America and taught Algebra I and Algebra Readiness for two years at Willow Glen High School in San Jose, CA. She then moved to Oakland, CA to teach Precalc and AP Calc at KIPP King Collegiate High School. At King, she also served as Math Department Chair. In 2014, Tasha joined AoPS, where she has worn many hats. Now, she could not be more excited to be back in the classroom. In her spare time, Tasha enjoys exploring San Diego with her friends, running and doing yoga by the beach, and cuddling with her adorable cat Eli.
Ashley Beck
AoPS Academy Regional Director
Ashley is the West Regional Director for AoPS Academy. She has always been interested in mathematics education, earning a BS from Brigham Young University, an MS from Arizona State University and is currently writing her dissertation to finish her PhD. She’s been teaching math since 2010. While teaching at ASU she was awarded the Teaching Excellence Award by the graduate and professional student association. She has a long history with math competitions, ranging from earning a perfect score in the Continental Math League in 6th grade, being the resident math expert on Scholastic Bowl, competing on her high school’s math team (which won state every year), to solving the problems on the current AMC for fun. She’s a Chicago native who loves reading, hosting game nights, playing volleyball, competing in trivia, and catching all the Pokémon.
Noah Benjamin
Master Instructor
Noah is a life-long student of mathematics, earning a BA at Lewis & Clark College where he double majored in physics and mathematics. His main mathematical interests are differential geometry, field theories and general relativity, where Noah has contributed published work on point particle initial data for Einstein's Field Equations. Noah has wide-ranging teaching experience with an emphasis on K-6 and AP mathematics and physics. When not sharing math with friends and students, Noah is often climbing, playing instruments, hiking, mountain biking, solving puzzles, skateboarding, surfing, juggling and generally recreating outdoors.
Rodney Bills
Beast Academy Art Director
Originally from Provo, Utah, Rodney grew up spending summers in California and winters in Utah, which is odd, and probably this oddness has defined his life. From his earliest days he loved Disney animation and Disneyland. His dream was to work as a Disney animator and eventually for Walt Disney Imagineering. He was especially drawn to the work of Marc Davis, whose characters were imbued with life and story. After graduating from college with a BFA in illustration, he moved to LA where he worked as an animator, did some character design, illustrating, and creative development for games, film, educational products, Internet and mobile, eventually working with Walt Disney Imagineering on a project for the theme parks. Family needs and a great recession led him to return to his hometown where he worked creating games and interactive activities for the education industry and taught part-time at a local university. Always wanting to improve his craft, he earned a Master of Fine Arts degree in Animation and Visual Effects from the Academy of Art University. Most recently, he was able to return to his first love: animation, where he worked as an Art Director for 2D Animation at Rooster Teeth Animation in Austin Texas. His wife Jill is a special education teacher, but has spent most of their time together as a stay at home mom managing their 6 (Jill will say 7 or 10 depending on who and what you count) children.
Bryn Bishop
Senior Physics Curriculum Developer
Bryn joined AoPS in 2021. She has a B.S. in Physics, a master’s in STEM education, and taught physics courses in public high schools for a decade. Bryn is passionate about developing innovative and equitable curricula that nurture lifelong curiosity in all learners. She is also actively involved with the American Association of Physics Teachers and her local chapter in Southern California. In her free time, Bryn enjoys adventuring with her family throughout San Diego and the world via foot, bike, car, boat, or plane. She also has numerous hobbies such as photography, astronomy, reading, and martial arts.
Emily Boardman
Beast Academy Science Curriculum Developer
Emily joined AoPS in 2021. A California transplant, she has also lived in New England, Scotland, and, briefly, in Sierra Leone. As an educator, Emily loves taking an interdisciplinary approach by incorporating subject matter that reaches beyond the scientific field. As a member of the ADHD community, she also sets a priority for creating materials which are accessible to neurodivergent students. Prior to AoPS, Emily taught STEM subjects informally for non-profits and formally for an independent school. She earned an MSc in Sustainable Aquaculture from the University of Stirling in Scotland and a BS in Marine Sciences with a minor in Neuroscience from the University of Maine. Outside of work, she can usually be found open water swimming, surfing, biking, hiking, or rock climbing in an attempt to burn off her seemingly never-ending energy
Marychello Bockenhauer
Director of HR
Marychello began her career in Human Resources at one of the largest financial institutions in Canada over 25 years ago. Since moving to San Diego from Vancouver in 1998, she obtained a technical degree from SDSU in HR Management and a PHR (Professional in Human Resource). She has held roles in a variety of industries: financial, environmental/manufacturing, technology, biotech and pharmaceuticals. Marychello's interest in education is close to her heart. Her husband is an elementary school teacher specializing in special needs at the San Ysidro School District. Marychello has two sons, Mackenzie and Jack, and two step kids, Vivien and Jackson, along with her ultimate baby, her golden retriever, Dexter. In her spare time, she is also a competitive curler (yes that weirdly awesome Olympic sport). She competes with a women's team out of Tempe, AZ and has represented California at US Nationals. Marychello can be found banging on the glass cheering on her son Jack who is a hockey goalie, or spending time with family, friends and traveling.
Iana Borova
AoPS Online Project Manager
After getting her bachelor’s degree in physics in 2017 from UC Santa Barbara, Iana began working at a small photonics research company that specialized in nano-scale tuneable infrared lasers. During her three years working there, her work transitioned from semiconductor test engineering toward project management. This transition inspired her to return to UCSB to pursue a master’s degree in technology management. After graduating in 2021, Iana joined AoPS! Outside of work and school, Iana has many different hobbies. She loves the outdoors, roller skating, skiing, and hiking. She is also very artistic and regularly spends her time painting, taking photos, sewing, and crafting. She also really enjoys dancing and used to participate in ballroom dance competitions during her undergrad years.
Jeremy Brummel
Director of IT
Jeremy hails from the Midwest. He originally got his bachelor’s degree in New Media Printing and Publishing from Ferris State University, but fell into tech work because “it was fun.” During his studies he worked at a school district before being called to go back to school for ministry. At Great Lakes Christian College Jeremy received a bachelor’s in Christian Ministries, all while taking over the IT Department and starting to develop their online courses. He briefly left education to work in other tech positions, before getting his master’s degree in Non-Profit Organization from Biola University. He and his wife are now settled in California with their two dogs (Mac n’ Tosh) and their bunny (Milo). In his spare time Jeremy is a carpenter, graphic designer, Bible teacher, and videographer.
Chris Campos-Valdes
Talent Acquisition Specialist
Chris has worked in recruitment for about 5 years and loves making a difference in someone’s life by presenting new opportunities. She also believes in the power of education and has been a tutor, instructor, and teacher. Chris loves traveling, learning about new cultures, languages and history. She lived in South Korea for almost 6 years, where she obtained a Master's in Business Administration by Dongguk University. She speaks English, Spanish, and some Korean. Chris also enjoys reading, watching documentaries (all kinds really, but history ranks very high), and restoring old furniture.
Marisa Carlson-Flores
Virtual Campus Customer Success Specialist
Marisa joined AoPS in 2021. She is a native San Diegan with a background in graphic design, marketing, customer service, and librarianship. Her nine years working in a library stemmed from not just a love of reading, but interest in research, reference, and working closely with her community to help parents and students find the necessary materials and tools they needed for their love of learning to thrive. Her interests leaned heavily towards children's programming, homework help, and creating fun and engaging crafts and projects for families, as well as encouraging creativity and early literacy in young readers. In her free time, Marisa enjoys making music, roller skating, and napping with her pets.
Emily Castner
Master Instructor
Emily Castner started working for AoPS in 2015 as thereisnotry54 and joined headquarters full-time as ecastner in 2020. A math major and music minor, she graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Mount Holyoke College after launching a student chapter of the Association for Women in Mathematics and earning numerous awards, including the Carol Loeb ’63 Fellowship in the Teaching of Mathematics. Her 7 years competing in math contests culminated in her top-quartile score on the Putnam Competition. (She solved one problem!) Her paper "On the equivalence of Playfair's axiom to the parallel postulate" is published in Springer's Journal of Geometry and available on arXiv as well. (Ask her about the fugitive equilateral right triangle.) She also plays board games, dabbles in language creation, and holds the rank of shodan in Naginata, a Japanese weapons art.
Katlin Chadwick
Marketing Content Studio Director
Katlin joined AoPS in 2020, hailing from the digital agency world. For over a decade, she's brought meaningful stories to life across products and platforms — from the newsroom to product UX to digital marketing. As a content specialist and digital generalist, she's led content strategy and messaging initiatives across health, education, consumer, and technology sectors. She has a particular zest for accessible education and brands that are doing good in the world. Katlin currently resides in Charleston, SC. When not working, you can find her running, hiking, paddleboarding, traveling, painting, trying new restaurants, enjoying live music, or hanging with her dog — a spoiled boxer named Gus. She earned her BA from the University of Virginia and her MA in Journalism from the University of Missouri.
Jefferson Chen
Software Engineer
Jefferson is a University of California, San Diego BSc. grad who has built a self-driving car, bitcoin mining chip, and ways to help people in need avoid scalpers. His current side project is a robot that mirrors hand movements and juggles, and he contributes to open source. In his free time you can find him fermenting kombucha and sourdough as well as playing DnD.
Qianyi "Channie" Chen
AoPS Academy Customer Service Coordinator
Channie joined AoPS in 2021 after working in the higher education field. She received her master's degree from the University of Pittsburgh and spent the past ten years in undergraduate admissions and recruitment. During her previous career, she enjoyed working with school counselors, students and parents, and held a passion for helping students find the best fit in education. She played significant roles in campus-wide initiatives to plan, establish, and deliver support services to student populations with specific needs. Channie became an AoPS parent before joining its professional team. Her daughter is delighted with the AoPS textbooks, teachers, and fellow students, and has made significant academic progress. Channie enjoys hiking in high mountains despite altitude sickness. She hopes to visit the Tibetan plateau again to explore more beauty of nature.
Jeremy Copeland
Senior Product Strategy Director
Jeremy joined AoPS in 2009. He earned his Ph.D. in mathematics from the University of Chicago in 2006 and was a C.L.E. Moore Instructor at MIT from 2006 to 2009. He once specialized in turning hard problems in geometry, algebra, and mathematical physics into easy problems in combinatorics and graph theory. Now he specializes in helping to redistribute mathematics from brilliant teachers to brilliant students. He gets his signs right 50 percent of the time, struggles with problems that lack symmetry, and secretly believes that every problem somehow reduces to the Chinese Remainder Theorem.
Kathy Cordeiro
Virtual Campus Customer Success Manager
Kathy joined AoPS in 2020 and has fifteen years of experience in mathematics education including coaching MATHCOUNTS teams, facilitating math circles, managing math competitions at UT Dallas, and working for a mathematics program.  These experiences culminated in a book that Kathy co-authored in 2019, Awesome Math: Teaching Mathematics with Problem Based Learning for middle and high school teachers. Passionate about connecting ideas, people, and resources, Kathy has spent her career guiding generations of students and their families to get the most from their educational journeys.  Both of Kathy’s sons are AoPS alums who have greatly benefited from the experience. For fun, Kathy loves strategy board games and spending time with her family. Kathy earned a BA in Communications and an MBA from the University of Rhode Island and Instructional Design Master Track Certification from the University of Illinois – Urbana Champaign.
Tina Cruickshank
Senior Account Manager
Tina is the Administrative Accounts Manager for Art of Problem Solving. She has been with AoPS since 2007. If you have taken an AoPS class, you may know her as Ubermoderator. Tina graduated from the University of Nebraska with a Masters degree in Public Administration. Tina learned to love the California weather when she was a United States Marine stationed at Camp Pendleton, and couldn't wait to move back. She loves her fluffy dog Gizmo and bad vampire movies.
Katie Doles
Talent Acquistion Specialist
Katie Doles has been a fan of Art of Problem Solving since she started the curriculum in middle school. After earning her Master's degree in Mathematics from Wake Forest University, she immediately came back to work here, joining the company in 2017. Katie works in Talent Acquisition after having served as the Campus Director at the Morrisville AoPS Academy for five years. When she's not trying to convert everyone into a math person, she may be found spending time with her husband, singing, dancing, or learning a new skill.
Craig Doss
HR Business Partner
Craig joined AoPS in 2021. Born in Chicago, he gave up delicious food and lakefront views for delicious food and ocean views when he arrived in San Diego in 2015. He received his master’s degree in Human Resources and has worked in employee relations & payroll as well as recruitment. When Craig was a young lad, he wanted to be a car designer, but he loved HR just as much and followed that path. Craig still loves cars, interior design, brunches, and is growing more fond of hiking as he spends his time in San Diego.
Elizabeth Dunn
School Staff Specialist
Elizabeth's academic and teaching background is diverse, with graduate degree coursework in professional writing, music, mathematics, and education. She is K-12 music and secondary mathematics certified (and actually has taught every grade level K-12) and has been a college professor, tutor, and administrator since 2000. Liz is a proud recipient of the National Institute of Staff and Organizational Development (NISOD) Teaching Excellence Award. She also previously worked as an Associate Director for AoPS Academy Gaithersburg before making the move over to the AoPS Online School Staff team. Outside the classroom, Liz enjoys crocheting afghans, creating calligraphy keepsakes, and spending time with her friends, family, and four cats.
Mark Eichenlaub
Physics Curriculum Team Lead
Mark joined AoPS in 2018 after completing a PhD in physics (focusing on physics education research) at the University of Maryland. There, he also prepped the U.S. Physics Team and attended IPhO as a coach. He has been teaching physics and astronomy classes since undergrad, and is always impressed by creativity and resilience students show when they have a great problem to work on. If you start explaining a proof to him and he happens to see how it works half way through, he'll spend the rest of the time flailing his arms around conducting the final steps like Willem Dafoe in Boondock Saints. On weekends you might find him exploring the miles of trails San Diego has to offer.
Nicole Ellis
Copywriter
Nicole joined AoPS in 2019. Having graduated from UC Davis with a degree in Anthropology and minors in Education and English, Nicole is fascinated by the different methods with which people communicate their ideas and processes with the world. She has volunteered in classrooms, libraries, and other platforms that connect people with new concepts, and she can’t wait to expand on these experiences here. After transplanting from the Bay Area, she is enjoying her new life in Southern California immensely and is constantly delighted by how beautiful the landscape can be. In her spare time, Nicole writes with her friends for a self-published flash fiction magazine. She also enjoys reading, drawing, and museum-hopping.
Stephanie Ellis
Account Manager
Born and raised in San Bernardino California, Stephanie moved to San Diego two years ago. She is a strong believer in the positive and powerful influence education can have on children. She has 8 years of experience in the classroom working with children of all grade levels and loves to see them grow and develop as critical thinkers. Outside of work you’ll find her with friends and family enjoying their time together.
Rose Fein
Beast Academy Product Director
Rose enjoys any excuse to get outside, including hiking, gardening, and playing ultimate frisbee. She is an avid coffee drinker and loves spending time with her husband Jake and their dog Peanut. Rose loves learning and sharing what she knows about a wide variety of topics, and her education has spanned majors from firefighting to mathematics to business.
Brad Fischer
Virtual Campus Operations Coordinator
Before joining AoPS in 2020, Brad taught math and coached quizbowl at Keith Country Day School and wrote quizbowl questions for almost every tournament imaginable. His favorite lesson to teach is the Saint Petersburg Paradox, and a staggering percentage of his favorite questions in his old exams were lovingly borrowed from AoPS. Brad earned his BS in mathematics from Northern Illinois University in 2010. In his free time, he enjoys solving logic puzzles, listening to the Beatles, rooting for the Chicago Cubs, and teaching his son probability through card games.
Kat Flores
Shipper
Born and bred in the dull town of Escondido, Kat manages to distract herself from boredom – whether it's watching too many films, cartoons and anime, or listening to too much music, they inspire the creation of her own world through too much daydreaming. Although she isn't a math wiz, she has an obsession with Lewis Carroll's works, art, crafts and making comics. She also enjoys learning about cultures, trying and cooking new cuisine, and writing poetry and stories. She's a collector of oddities and teacups, but nothing beats annoying and pampering her fluffy kitten: Butters Panchon. Coyoacán (in México City) is her home away from home, where she stays with her rather extensive family for long periods of time. Kat plans a career in education and arts for children and teenagers.
James Fung
Data Analyst
James joined AoPS in 2012. He received a PhD in electrical engineering and computer science, studying machine learning and linguistics, at UC Berkeley where he spent several years as a teaching assistant in engineering math courses. James has been tutoring and teaching math and science since high school. He was a National MATHCOUNTS contestant, qualified for the USAMO each year of high school, and attended the Physics Olympiad Summer Program. In his spare time, he applies math to boardgames, thinks of ballroom dancing as a Markov process, and is a novice kitchen scientist.
Alejandro Garcia
Warehouse Manager
Alejandro Garcia joined AOPS in 2019 and is willing to learn and expand in different areas within the company. He came to AoPS from a bigger warehouse with experience that he is hoping to integrate into our smaller warehouse. Alejandro is always looking for new ways to better himself work-wise and in his personal life. When he isn't working, he is spending time with his wife and son and teaching his son all he can while also learning himself. He enjoys playing video games late into the night and exploring new places that expand his horizon and outlook on life. He also enjoys watching superhero movies and is a collector of superhero items as well.
Josie Gerk
Outreach Initiatives Student Services Coordinator
Josie joined AoPS in 2021 after providing program analyst support to the Navy as a contractor for six years. Since receiving a degree in theatre from California State University Fullerton, she has worked in various industries, including for-profit and not-for-profit, large, and small businesses. She also works in theatre as an Assistant Stage Manager, Production Assistant, and occasional Lighting Designer. Working with high school theatre programs to develop lighting designs and train students instilled a passion for providing unique learning experiences for students. In her limited spare time, she enjoys board games, hiking, and going on mini adventures with friends.
Vince Gil
Pathway Program Manager
Vince has been with AoPS since 2019 initially working with our physical AoPS Academy locations as an associate director before becoming the Pathway Program Manager in February 2021. He looks forward to bringing AoPS to a more diverse audience in his new role! Previous to joining AoPS he chaired the Math Department at Western Hills High School in Fort Worth, Texas, where he was 2017–2018 Teacher of the Year. Vince is passionate about making learning fun. He has taught middle and high school math in the US and in Korea and has worked with IB, AP, and pre-AP students. Vince has a BS in math and MS in mathematics teaching from Texas Woman’s University. In his free time, he likes to dance kizomba, salsa, bachata and is open to trying anything once.
AJ Gonzales
IT Specialist
AJ started off his journey into tech with a job at Apple Retail right after exiting High School. After working in multiple positions (Sales, Logistics, Technical Support, and Teaching) AJ took the leap and moved to San Francisco to work in Enterprise IT. After about 5 years in San Francisco, it was time to return home and start the next chapter of his life. When AJ is not at work, he can either be found at the local bowling alley or with his brothers at a local brewery.
Hannah Goodwillie
Senior Math Instructional Coach
Hannah Goodwillie holds a BA in mathematics and music from Amherst College and an MMus in choral conducting from the Yale School of Music. After working for a while as a choir director and music teacher, they returned to mathematics and joined AoPS in 2020. They are committed to equity in math teaching and believe deeply that every student deserves a real opportunity to fall in love with math as something accessible, beautiful, and fun to explore. In their free time, they can often be found hiking, knitting, writing songs, and hanging out with Mitts, their big friendly polydactyl cat.
Matt Granoff
Language Arts Curriculum Developer
Matt majored in folklore and mythology at Harvard before slowly drifting into teaching English. This new field is unquestionably of more use to the world in general, but if you ever want to just talk about world mythology, he's pretty much always down for that. Matt started teaching rhetoric at a classical academy in Minnesota before moving to the Bay Area and teaching English, ethics and game design theory (three separate courses, sadly) at the Menlo School and English and philosophy at Saratoga. He's always found the most exciting part of teaching to be getting students to push beyond their intellectual comfort zones and see just how much cool stuff is out there in the world to learn about. When he's not teaching or taking care of his 3-year-old, Matt spends his time doing competitive trivia, puzzle hunts, computer gaming and reading lots of sci-fi and comics.
Amanda Grant
Payroll and HRIS Manager
Amanda joined AoPS in 2020.  She moved from the Bay Area to San Diego with her family in 1990. Amanda enjoys new challenges in work and in life. She enjoys the outdoors and traveling with her husband and two boys (Marc, 22 and Michael Jr., 10). She has recently adopted 4‐month‐old terrier‐mix puppy named Buddy. Amanda and her family keep busy with her younger son who plays year-round travel club soccer and travel club basketball.
Ellie Grantman
Math Curriculum Developer
Ellie earned her BA in Elementary Education from the University of Iowa. While in school she interned as a research assistant with PhD candidates in the department of math education, and studied abroad in Bilbao, Spain. After graduation she returned to her hometown of Chicago, IL to work as a 5th grade teacher for several years, specializing in math and gifted education in Chicago Public Schools. Ellie's passion for creating unique, fun and engaging real world learning experiences led to her success as a teacher, earning the high honor of being called "the cool math teacher" by a bunch of 10 year olds. Outside of work Ellie loves traveling, playing games, trying new things, and spending time outdoors with her partner Charlie and her dog Barkley.
Jessica Hardy
VP of Finance
Jessica joined AoPS in 2020. After graduating from BYU with her master's in accounting, Jessica went to work at Andersen Tax (nee WTAS) in downtown San Francisco for over seven years. Once her husband graduated from his orthodontics residency, they relocated to San Diego with their two young kids. After getting settled, Jessica joined Signature Analytics where she worked for 5.5 years helping provide business owners with custom financial solutions and business advisory services. She is thrilled to be part of the AoPS team as she has enjoyed watching her kids grow through Beast Academy. Whenever they get a chance, the Hardys like to explore National Parks and go on long hikes together.
Christie Harrison
AoPS Online Associate Product Director
Christie joined AoPS in 2018. She received her Bachelor’s in Psychology and Social Behavior from UCI and Master’s Degree in K-8th Mathematics Education from SDSU in 2012. After teaching first grade for a few years, she returned to school (because sometimes one Masters just isn’t enough). She earned her MBA from the UCSD Rady School of Management in 2019 and enjoys finding order in the chaos of operations. In her free time, she is an avid beach-goer and rock climber. Christie jumps at any opportunity to travel with her husband, especially to exotic locales.
Justin Hellweg
Software Engineering Intern
Justin is currently pursuing a bachelor's degree in computer science with a minor in mathematics at San Francisco State University. He has been passionate about mathematics and education from an early age. Justin joined his high school's math team in middle school scored perfectly in the 2019 Wisconsin High School Math Contest and qualified for the AIME in 2020. His passion for education led him to co-teach several summer school robotics courses and to become a Python programming tutor at his college. Recently, Justin has become very interested in computer science and is interested in learning more about machine learning. Justin joined AoPS as a grader and teaching assistant in 2021. Other than mathematics and coding, Justin enjoys playing tennis, exploring new places, and hiking.
Mark Hendrickson
Senior Math Curriculum Developer
Mark Hendrickson came to AoPS in 2020. As a student, he read several books and wrote several poems in the process of earning his BA in English and MFA in creative writing at UC Irvine. This (somehow) led to a career teaching middle and high school math for many years at a nearby independent school. There, Mark witnessed the efficacy of the AoPS curriculum first hand by teaching it in the classroom. During this time, Mark also developed and taught after-school programs including a manipulatives-based math program for elementary students, a cooking class for middle school students, and a creative writing workshop for high school students. Aside from reading, 'riting, and 'rithmetic, Mark loves cooking, camping, and trying to think of a third hobby that also starts with c. Cross-stitch? Could be fun!
Sara Henson
Talent Acquisition Associate
Sara is originally from Ohio, but she has been lucky enough to have lived in 6 different countries and now calls Savannah, Georgia her home. After graduating from the University of Pittsburgh, Sara moved to France where she worked as an English teacher and au pair. This experience inspired her to then move to China, where she lived for 3 years, managing a kindergarten and training individuals from various backgrounds and nationalities to create a learning environment that was both interactive and fun. Her experience working with international students inspired her to move back to the US and begin working with au pairs, where she always kept in mind that everyone’s individual experience is unique and should be embraced. This perspective is one which she hopes to bring to her role at AoPS as a Customer Service Specialist. In her free time, Sara enjoys learning new languages, painting abstract art, and playing the cello.
Amanda Hong Galemmo
Software Engineer
Amanda joined AoPS in 2021. After graduating from Chapman University, she worked in film and television for a few years before shifting into software engineering. Obsessed with computers most her life, she fell in love with programming in high school and has been writing code ever since. When not working, she likes making and playing video games, cooking, and tending to her large and rowdy cat.
Alvin Hsu
Software Engineering Intern
Alvin is from Chula Vista and is a second year at the University of California, San Diego studying computer science. He is involved in the Association for Computing Machinery at UCSD and works on other projects related to his school clubs to fuel his passion for creating applications and solving problems through code. After graduating, he plans on working in the industry and ultimately starting his own business. In his free time, he enjoys hiking, running, playing video games, and eating lots of good food.
Derek Jiang
Software Engineer
Derek joined AoPS in 2021 after graduating from UC San Diego with a degree in cognitive science with a specialization in machine learning and neural computation. In his time at UCSD, Derek was able to learn computer science principles, as well as how humans think, remember, and learn. Derek started his passion for computers when he was 5, when he noticed that the computer cursor was the same shape as the birthmark on his leg. Since then, he has been tinkering with personal coding projects varying from a weight loss calculator to a virtual reality video game. Before joining AoPS, Derek worked as an online instructor, teaching kids computer science through video game modding. In his free time, Derek enjoys playing video games, modifying his keyboard, cooking, and working out.
Aaron Demby Jones
Math Curriculum Team Lead
Aaron joined AoPS in 2017. His PhD is in Media Arts and Technology from the University of California, Santa Barbara, focusing on audiovisual representations of mathematics. Before that, he got his master’s degree in mathematics at the University of Rochester and a joint bachelor’s degree in mathematics and music at Brown University. Aaron has had the pleasure and privilege of teaching the next generation of math superstars for many years at the CTY and HCSSiM summer math programs. Outside of math, he enjoys designing experimental electronic music, playing the piano and percussion, chess, Xiangqi, Go, and badminton.
Kelly Jones
AoPS Academy Regional Director
In 2014, Kelly became the Language Arts Director at the inaugural AoPS Academy campus in Morrisville, North Carolina. She went on to manage the language arts program nationally prior to taking on her current role of overseeing the campuses in the eastern half of the country. In a past life, Kelly was a public school teacher. She is a licensed reading specialist and language arts teacher, spanning all grade levels from kindergarten through high school. Kelly holds a bachelor's degree in education from Penn State and a master's degree from UNC Chapel Hill. When she has time on her hands, Kelly runs a lot, reads a lot, and hangs out with her two kids, objectively the coolest kids on the block.
Michelle Kane
Curriculum Coordinator
Michelle joined AoPS in 2021 after teaching middle school English and theater for nine years. During her teaching career, she developed curriculum for many middle school courses and focused on helping students improve their critical thinking and communication skills. Michelle has a master’s degree in education and a B.A. in English with a minor in theater. Figuring out elegant solutions to tough problems (in any subject) is one of her favorite things to do. In her free time, Michelle enjoys playing complicated board games, going to plays, drawing and painting, writing fantasy and sci-fi, and occasionally venturing into the outdoors. She appreciates the existence of coffee, poetry, dice with more than six sides, and parallel structure.
Mark Kemper
Software Engineering Intern
Mark is a current student at the University of California, San Diego studying for a B.S. in Computer Science. he has an interest in educational software and web design, and his previous experience includes designing a video game for an educational summer camp. Mark was born in San Diego, but currently lives in Temecula. In his free time, he enjoys playing pick up basketball and going on long runs.
Jason Kenny
Math Curriculum Intern
Jason is a recent math graduate from Michigan State University where he found a love of math instruction through community outreach, tutoring, and as a TA. He is excited to be joining AoPS to learn more about the landscape of math education as he prepares for a career in teaching. In his spare time, he enjoys playing board games, reading science fiction, baking bread, and folding origami. Other interests include the wonders of modern printing, undersea internet cables, and bee waggle dances.
Bowen Kerins
Senior Math Curriculum Developer
Bowen has been writing math curriculum for nearly 20 years, with a focus on helping students learn higher-order thinking skills at the same time they are learning new content. He has been a lead writer on multiple published curricula for Grades 6-12, and is the author of an AMS book series. He has a BS in mathematics from Stanford University and a master's in teaching from Boston University. He scored in the top 10 on the USAMO and attended the Math Olympiad Program in 1990. He has been a mathematical advisor for over 20 game shows. He loves Slurpees and once won $1000 for knowing the number of degrees in a right angle.
Richard Kreutz-Landry
Software Engineer
Richard joined AoPS in 2018 as a developer. Previously, he spent several years tutoring for math and science and completing a double major in theatre and mathematics with an emphasis in secondary education at the University of California, San Diego. After that, he moved on to become a self-taught software test automation engineer. Outside of work he designs original origami models, writes tabletop roleplaying games, edits and guests on podcasts, and does archery. He has also been known to attempt geeky knitting and crochet projects when the mood takes him.
Ryan Ku
Software Engineering Team Lead
Ryan grew up playing board games and solving puzzles, which fostered an early passion for mathematics and problem solving. This led him to pursue a BS in computer science & engineering and an MS in software engineering as part of a 5-year program. There, he joined his school’s Robotics Systems Laboratory to kick off a multi-year effort to create an application-agnostic robotic chassis. After his 4th year, he decided to join AoPS to combine his love for computer science and teaching. In his spare time, you will likely find him solving puzzles, tinkering with cars, learning about new tech, and discovering music.
Ryan Kuroyama
Senior School Staff Specialist
Ryan first joined AoPS as a math curriculum intern and is now a School Staff Specialist. He graduated with a B.S. in math from UC Santa Barbara in 2019. There, he spent much of his free time doing improv comedy, juggling, designing video games, teaching music, practicing memory sport, and explaining his major to people who think they don’t like math. “But perhaps,” Ryan would protest, “it was just taught badly.” Now Ryan gets to do something about it.
Shari Kuroyama
Senior Software Engineering Team Lead
Shari joined the software development team at AoPS in June 2019 after completing her B.S. at Caltech in computer science. She has been interested in math since participating in math camps and competition math in middle school and has been interested in math education since she had problems with the pace of her first grade math curriculum. Shari is very excited to give back to the math community! In her free time, Shari also loves puzzles of all sorts, Japanese archery, making metal jewelry and other DIY art, animals (particularly her snake, Lemma, and her cats, Arrow and Quiver), and fire spinning.
Jamie Lacosta
Customer Service Specialist
Jamie graduated with a BA in English Literature at San Diego State University in 2020. Currently, she is pursuing her MA in Education with a Concentration in Counseling. She was born in Everett, Washington, but grew up in San Diego. At a young age, Jamie has had a passion for education with her grandma and great-grandma both being educators here in the United States and the Philippines. She has always been driven by her passion to help others and make an impact, so she always goes above and beyond to help in any way that she can. In her free time, Jamie loves to take pictures (film or digital), going to the gym, watching sunsets, and cuddling with her corgi, Kobe.
Stephanie Lage
AoPS Academy Associate Product Director
Stephanie has been working with AoPS students since 2017 and was previously an Associate Director at AoPS Academy Bellevue. Stephanie has always had a deep interest in understanding how the world works. This led to the decision to major in mathematics and physics at Washington State University and led to tutoring others in math and science classes while in school. She quickly realized how much fun it is to help people explore new and difficult concepts by challenging them to think through their own ideas. She then spent two years as a graduate student in mathematics at the University of Colorado, where being a TA who taught Calculus was the most rewarding part. Next steps included teaching students of all ages and ability levels, including teaching high school math and science for three years. Stephanie loves working with students who are excited about math, helping them rise to new challenges and discover new problem-solving strategies, but also loves working with those who aren't as excited about math, helping them to see how fun and rewarding it can be. When not talking about math, Stephanie enjoys traveling, hiking, and making crochet hats.
Andres Lebbos
Software Engineer
Andres joined AoPS in 2019 after receiving his dual Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science and Electrical Engineering from Duke University. He has always been passionate about mathematics. As a math contest participant, he received two bronze medals representing Colombia at the OCMM (Central American and Caribbean Mathematical Olympiad) and the OIM (Iberoamerican Mathematical Olympiad) in 2013. He also was a candidate for the Colombian IMO team in 2014. His passion for math led him to computer science. Intrigued by the way robots think, he started programming them at the age of 12 by helping his mother at her bead sewing business. Outside of numbers and code, Andres enjoys creative writing, poetry, board games, origami, and cooking.
Jeannine LeBeau
Senior Talent Acquisition Specialist
It was Jeannine's childhood dream to attend USC, and it did not disappoint! Upon concluding her studies, Jeannine began a career in the small business sector that took her from operational management to business ownership. During this time, she balanced her career with volunteer roles supporting leadership development for collegiate women. Jeannine applied her passion for growth and resilience in helping these young women at USC, UCLA, and UCSB to pursue their goals. That passion was then diverted to the cultural exchange students that Jeannine's family hosted from 9 different countries. By joining AoPS, Jeannine will be focusing on supporting students to reach their goals and explore how they can recognize their potential. In her free time, she now focuses on developing these skills in her young daughters and sometimes her husband too. She is quick to share a joke over coffee or a glass of wine with a friend in need.
Lydia Lee
Marketing Operations Manager
Lydia joined AoPS in 2020 after working in an agency setting for multiple years. The educational mission of AoPS is what initially drew Lydia to the team, and she is dedicated to utilizing her marketing background to connect students and families with what AoPS has to offer. Outside of establishing marketing processes and keeping things organized, Lydia enjoys traveling with her husband and frequenting cafes, breweries, and restaurants in San Diego.
Ryan Lemon
Software Engineer
Ryan joined AoPS in early 2022 as a Software Engineer. Born and raised in Las Vegas, he always enjoyed learning math in school and wondered how his favorite video games were made, leading him to the world of computer science. Ryan graduated from UCSD in 2019, where he majored in mathematics - computer science and minored in music. During his time in college, he was a Peer Counselor Coordinator for UCSD's Filipino cultural organization, mentoring his fellow peers academically, professionally, and mentally. He was formerly an instructor and operations lead at his previous company, where he taught kids computer science and supervised all instructors and their training processes. He is excited to continue his tech and education career here at AoPS, working alongside amazing people and building tools to help kids succeed. Outside of work, Ryan enjoys playing video games, singing, taking care of plants, and spending time with his cat, Meelo.
Sarah Leuver
Cartoonist
Sarah is a cartoonist from the Bay Area. After graduating from California College of the Arts with a BFA in animation, she had a variety of freelance art jobs, including storyboarding for live-action and animated features. Most recently, she's done comics and illustration work for DC Comics and IDW. Somewhere in between all that freelancing, she was a substitute teacher, and taught comics/cartooning at an independent study school. When she's not drawing (for work OR for fun) she likes to go on walks, hang out with her dog Oliver, and read comics.
Leo Li
Software Engineer
Yulin joined AoPS at the beginning of 2021. After playing his first video game during elementary school, he decided to create his own video game, and that kicked off his journey in software engineering. Later on, he decided to pursue a computer science degree at UC Merced and developed an interest in neural networks and genetic algorithm based machine learning. In his free time, you will find him continuing to help the development of the neural network simulation software his university professor develops and watching YouTube videos on tech, software development, gaming, finance, and more.
Yating Liu
VP of Online Live Instruction
Yating Liu oversees online live instruction at AoPS. Before taking his current role, Yating founded AoPS Academy Virtual Campus, and served as the Product Director and the National Operations Director of AoPS Academy. Yating was the designer or significant contributor of seven AoPS Academy courses. He was a university professor and doctoral advisor before joining AoPS. Yating earned his BS in math from Peking University and his MS in math and PhD in math education from Ohio State. He was a one-time champion in China's national level math competition and a two-time champion in provincial level physics competitions by the age of fifteen—the same year that he received an entrance exam waiver for any university in the nation. In his free time, Yating enjoys tinkering and antique hunting.
Robin Long
Language Arts Curriculum Developer
Robin joined AoPS in 2020. She has been in the education field for over fifteen years and has taught a diverse range of students, from highly gifted elementary students to college undergrads. She is a former local teacher of the year, and in 2015, she was awarded the Outstanding Teaching of the Humanities award from Humanities Texas, the state affiliate of the NEH. She has been a statewide writer and instructor for PD courses for teachers and principals, and she has worked with schools on enhancing writing curriculum for advanced learners. Robin is passionate about creating engaging, innovative learning experiences that empower students to think outside the box—because she believes adaptability and versatility are the keys to our students’ future goals. Robin holds an MA in English and Creative Writing, as well as a BA in Elementary Education. An enthusiast of all things writing, she has published original poetry, and she enjoys reading and writing historical fiction. She loves hiking, cooking, traveling, and The Great British Bake Off, even though her baking is still really terrible.
Bridget Lynch
Director of B2B Operations
Bridget joined AoPS in 2019. As a philosopher by education and a non-profit program director by prior experience, she has always been elbow-deep in problem solving. Fiercely not-competitive, her greatest joy comes from helping others so that they can find more joy in their own lives. When not trying to bring order to chaos - or incessantly asking “why?” - you’ll find her throwing dinner parties, photographing friends’ life events, and providing emotional support services to her giant greyhound.
Grayson Maas
VP of Sales
Grayson joined AoPS in 2015. He recently earned his Ph.D. in sociocultural anthropology from the University of California Santa Barbara. Grayson understands culture as the lens through which we assign meaning to the world and everything in it. Culture shapes our perception of reality--how cool is that?! For the past three years, he has been conducting research, writing, and teaching about the various factors contributing to underrepresentation in STEM education and in the workforce. Prior to becoming an anthropologist, Grayson earned a BA in biology from the University of Pennsylvania during a time when he was considering a career in veterinary medicine but then thought better of it. He loves animals (especially dogs), music (especially playing his acoustic guitar), traveling (especially everywhere!), and sports (especially basketball, football, and all professional teams representing Philadelphia, the city that raised him).
Corinne Madsen
VP of Beast Academy and Technology
Corinne attended her first math competition in the 5th grade and continued competing through her high school years at the Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy. While attending Mount Allison University, she fell in love with coding and switched over to computer science competitions. There, she also tutored in various subjects, taught middle school students how to code, and learned how to live with 6 feet of snow. After graduating with a combined major in Math and Computer Science in the spring of 2015, she was very happy to join AoPS in a position that lets her combine her passion for mathematics, teaching, and computer science.
Kristine Magat
Senior Accountant
Kristine joined AoPS in 2021. She grew up in San Diego and moved to the Bay Area after earning her bachelor’s degree in Business Management and Accounting from UC Santa Cruz. Her love for numbers and process improvements led her to various roles in tech and video game companies. While she enjoyed the hustle and bustle of San Francisco, she took a big leap of faith and bought a one-way ticket to Europe to fulfill her childhood dream of traveling and seeing the world. After travelling through 20 countries for 24 consecutive months, she came back home to San Diego to live closer to family. Kristine enjoys all things related to finance, food, fitness, photography and puzzles.
Nurit Mandel
Employee Engagement Program Manager
Prior to joining AoPS in 2022, Nurit worked in higher education, HR, and nonprofits. Most recently, she supported students through their university life-cycle from applicant to alumni at UC San Diego. A transplant from Switzerland, Nurit is fluent in Swiss/German and can muddle her way through French as well. She completed her BA in Psychology at UC Santa Cruz and is currently pursuing a certificate in Human Resources Management. Nurit is a people-person with a passion for employee engagement, wellness and development. Outside of work, she enjoys spending time with her family, reading (and occasionally writing), listening to international music, baking, and drinking ridiculous amounts of herbal tea. She also enjoys traipsing around in the mountains, taking nature photos and hugging trees.
Miriam Martinez
Customer Service Specialist
Miriam graduated with a degree in architecture from the Institute of Technology of Mexico and earned a diploma in sales and marketing. Working for a worldwide corporation for twenty-one years provided her with the knowledge and experience in various fields including design, marketing, sales support and customer service. It was a great journey but her passion has always been education. During her first years in college, Miriam started her own tutoring business teaching English in her native country of Mexico. After she graduated, she taught painting classes to young children.She found these experiences to be truly rewarding and they inspired her to pursue a master’s degree in education to help others excel and achieve their learning goals. Miriam is always looking for opportunities to learn new skills and enjoys painting, cooking, gardening and bike riding with her family. She is new to San Diego and looks forward to relocating soon with her husband, 12 year old son and little Chihuahua “Estrellita."
Madeleine Maruaniy
Project Manager-Beast Academy
Madeleine joined AoPS in 2021 after 7 years with a Toronto based E-learning company. She graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce from York University in 2016. Shortly after, Madeleine completed her Project Management Professional Certification in 2017. She has a passion for organizational behavior methodologies and theory - exhibited through her continued teaching of organizational behavior for CPHR Canada. In her time as a project manager, she has worked with diverse internal and external stakeholders to provide creative and efficient solutions to complex problems. In her previous position, Madeleine was instrumental in the development, implementation and monitoring of organizational policies and procedures. Madeleine is known for loving to travel (recently demonstrated through her move to San Diego), gaming with friends, and creating imaginative meals for anyone bold enough to try her latest creation.
Asia Maung
Web Designer
Asia Maung is a web designer hailing from the San Francisco Bay Area. After finishing her degree in English and Comparative Literary Studies at Occidental College in Los Angeles, Asia took an interest in UX and began her career as a web designer in San Francisco's burgeoning tech industry. As a web designer, Asia continues to advocate for data-driven design, ADA and WCAG compliance, and UX best practices. In tandem with working at several SaaS startups, she designed and built structural art for events throughout the bay, one of which was featured at Google I/O 2019. Forever intrigued by user behavior at the intersection between visual design and storytelling, she enjoys narrative-forward video games, experimental/graphic novels, and immersive art. When she's not working, Asia can be found dancing, DJing, sketching, catching a view, trying out recipes, or giving her cat face massages.
Palmer Mebane
Software Architect
Palmer joined AoPS in 2012 shortly after graduating from Harvey Mudd College the same year. As a math contest participant, he was honorable mention on the USAMO in 2007, a US IMO team candidate in 2008, and a top 15 finisher on the Putnam in 2009 and 2011. During his four years of college, he graded for the USAMO and MOSP four times and single-handedly managed the WOOT "Problem of the Day" service. Outside of mathematics, Palmer solves and writes logic puzzles. He solves them fast enough to have been named the US Puzzle Champion in 2011, 2013, and 2014, and World Puzzle Champion in 2011 with top-3 finishes in 2012, 2013, and 2014. His best constructions can be seen on the tests he made for Logic Masters India.
Chantilee Mendenhall
Student Services Specialist
Chantilee was born and raised in the Imperial Valley, but in 2009 she moved to San Francisco to obtain a bachelor's degree in social work from San Francisco State University. It was there that Chantilee developed a love of community support and educational advocacy, so she returned to school to obtain a master's degree in education from Capella University. After obtaining her degree in education, she began her teaching journey and quickly perused administrative roles. She has been inspired by the amazing children, families, and educators she has worked with in the past and is excited to be joining the AoPS community. In her free time, Chantilee enjoys active adventures with friends and family, taking her amazing tear drop camper for beach bonfires, stand up paddle-boarding with her pup Gidgette, and loves thrifting for treasures at the local antique shops.
Yadira Mendoza
IT Specialist
While earning a BS in Business Administration and Psychology, Yadira worked in the IT department of Humboldt State University. Initially, she joined "just for fun," but later found interest in resolving technical issues. In 2021, she moved back to San Diego and joined AoPS, where she hopes to continue facilitating end-user experience by providing excellent technical support. In her free time, she likes finding delicious places to eat or doing recreational activities such as going to the beach, swimming, walking or hiking.
Grant Menke
Software Engineer
Grant is a full-stack software engineer with roots in STEM education and biology. He loves to learn, thinks logistically, and is always building. He has always enjoyed math and science - specifically geometry, statistics, and physics. He enjoyed competing in the American Math Competition 8 and 10 contests in middle school and is always up for working through a fun logic puzzle. He graduated from UCLA in 2020 with a Bachelors of Science in Biology and worked in math education before discovering both a passion and knack for coding. In his free time, he enjoys disc golfing, backpacking, cooking, table top gaming, flying drones, and carpentry.
Alex Michael
Customer Service Specialist
Alex joined AoPS in 2020. She was born and raised in San Diego and spent four years living in the Bay area where she earned a bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts for studying Visual Development from Academy of Art University. After graduating, she moved back to her hometown of San Diego and started working in the family tax business as a support staff member before joining AoPS. She has a passion for character concept art and creating her own character designs and artwork. In her free time Alex also enjoys playing video games (Animal Crossing mostly), watching animated shows, and reading. She has a cat named Maxine McSoftpaws (Max) and a dog named Rutabaga Ruettiger (Rudy). When she has the chance Alex loves to get out into nature. Some of her favorite places include Yosemite National Park and Lake Powell.
Karla Micheli
Director of Talent Acqusition
Karla joined AoPS in 2019. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Marketing Communications from Columbia College Chicago and is an AmeriCorps VISTA alum. She earned dual Master's degrees in International Public Administration and Education Management from the Monterey Institute of International Studies (MIIS). Karla has a passion for education, philanthropy, and travel which has inspired her to work, study, volunteer and/or immerse herself in nearly 30 countries to date. In her spare time, she loves to go on adventures with her family, including her husky who she brought back from Nicaragua. She is currently working on writing her first children's book.
Amy Mills
Office and Facilities Manager
Amy joined AoPS in 2018 when she relocated to San Diego from the east coast and is loving it! She has three beautiful children and three amazing grandchildren! Her hobbies include bicycling, cooking, quilting, needlepoint and gardening.
Brent Min
Software Engineer
From an early age, Brent had an interest in mathematics and statistics from puzzles and games on old computers. After trying to create a game himself, he stumbled upon coding tutorials and realized that computers can be used for much more. He loved the idea of data science because it melded statistics and computer science into one, so he jumped headfirst into the new field. He used the concepts that he learned to create a personalized recommender for rock climbing and occasionally computer in machine learning Kaggle competitions. In his free time, he enjoys surfing, rock climbing, camping, backpacking, and reading.
Adrian Mitchell
Staff Accountant
Adrian joined AoPS in 2020 as a Staff Accountant. Her background may be in music -- graduating with a master's in Music Technology & Digital Media from the University of Toronto in 2017 -- but her professional calling truly rests within finance. She joins AoPS after 5 years of experience within a variety of industries, focusing particularly on education-focused nonprofits. She is excited to join the team, as she cares for AoPS' goals and mission. In her free time, you'll find her watching movies, making synth music, and playing video and board games.
Heidi Ng
Outreach Initiatives Program Coordinator
Heidi joined AoPS in 2020. Her professional pursuits have been varied, including license and royalties management at a biotech corporation, a stint teaching English in France, and overseeing operations at a local pet-sitting company. Heidi is a homebody who also loves to travel and has friends all over the world. She's a closet nerd who enjoys solving math puzzles and playing word games like Codenames. When Heidi's not working, you can find her cooking, reading, or practicing yoga.
Brent Nicklas
School Staff Manager
Brent first joined AoPS as an assistant in 2013. He received bachelors degrees from Michigan Technological University in both mathematics and physics with concentrations in secondary education in 2014, then went on to obtain a masters degree in statistics in 2016. Exploring the many paths to a solution and sharing discoveries is part of what makes mathematics so fun and enjoyable for Brent. When he's not doing math, he enjoys drawing comic sketches, playing board games, cooking, riding his bicycle, and swing dancing.
Alex Ohlson
Controller
Alex was born and raised in San Diego, CA. He graduated with a bachelor's degree in accounting from San Diego State University. For the last 5 years, he worked as an outsourced accounting consultant at Signature Analytics working with multiple business owners and providing them with streamlined internal processes and financial solutions to allow for proactive business decisions. In his free time, he loves exercising outdoors. He also loves to cook and host get-togethers while testing new recipes out on friends and family.
Eric Olsen
VP of Marketing
Eric joined AoPS in 2020 having spent the previous decade as an education marketing executive, supporting some of the fastest-growing online brands in higher education and the fastest-growing social emotional learning program in K12. Endlessly curious and obsessed with making sure students on both ends of the performance bell curve don’t fall through the cracks, you can usually find Eric with his family making music or trying to track down the most delicious bites and prettiest sunsets in San Diego. Eric earned his BS in Marketing from Bradley University and his MBA in Marketing Analytics from Lewis University.
Kevin O'Neal
AoPS Academy Operations Manager
Kevin is the Operations Manager for AoPS Academy. He is responsible for national operations, customer service, and project management for all ten of our campuses. He joined AoPS in 2020 after many successful years in retail management. He graduated Summa Cum Laude from Waldorf University with a Bachelor's Degree in Criminal Justice Administration in 2020. Kevin is married to his high school sweetheart and together they raise two cute little girls. They enjoy traveling and the outdoors... and Frozen and coloring and baby animals and playing in the dirt. Kevin plans to visit all 63 U.S. National Parks, is a wannabe history buff, and makes way too many trips to The Home Depot.
Erich Owen
Principal Visual Creator, Beast Academy
The actual date that Erich "joined AoPS" is still in question. It's a long story. After eight years as the Lead Illustrator of AoPS's Beast Academy math series for younger children, he is now the Art Director for all Beast Academy curricula. Erich doesn't have a degree in mathematics, but he draws awesome creatures doing math better than anyone else in the office, so he has that going for him. He has been drawing since he was old enough to hold a crayon and has put that experience to good use in his 20 years as a professional illustrator. Some highlights of his career other than AoPS include co-creating and illustrating the internationally published graphic novel and comic strip series, Mail Order Ninja, working with William Shatner on a comic book series based on Mr. Shatner's TekWar novels and TV series, illustrating Teen Titans GO! for DC Comics, and co-writing/illustrating a Fruit Ninja graphic novel. In his spare time, Erich draws other stuff and builds/drives Ford Mustangs; currently driving a 750HP 2012 Shelby GT500.
Chris Page
Senior Math Curriculum Developer
Chris is old enough to have used a slide rule before calculators were a thing. High school math competitions led to a math/physics double major at Rutgers University. A physics Ph.D. at the University of Pennsylvania followed, including three years of TA’ing calculus. It also led to meeting Richard Garfield, and being a developer and expansion designer for the early years of the card game, Magic: The Gathering. After graduation, he worked in labs analyzing protein oxidoreductase reactions, and electron microscope tomographic reconstructions. His mid-life crisis was returning to math and AoPS in 2016. In his spare time, Chris choreographs contra dance, collects Eurogames, studies TV animation, and sleeps in on weekends.
Andrea Pasley
HR Manager
Andrea was born and raised in Brazil but has been in the US for over 20 years. She has a master's degree in psychology and has worked in Human Resources for 19 years. She is also certified as a Professional in Human Resources (PHR) from the HRCI institute. Andrea lives with her youngest son, Alex, who is a high school senior at Rancho Bernardo High School. Her oldest son Christiano has recently moved to Portland, OR to work and live independently. Outside of work Andrea enjoys going to the movies, a nice dinner out, or staying in watching Netflix. Travel is also her passion and while she hasn't been able to travel much in the last few years, she has a goal of starting to travel a lot more once her nest is totally empty.
David Patrick
Senior Math and Science Curriculum Director
Dave joined AoPS in 2004. He is the author of Art of Problem Solving's Introduction to Counting & Probability, Intermediate Counting & Probability, and Calculus textbooks, and co-author of Prealgebra. Dave earned the sole perfect score on the American High School Mathematics Examination (AHSME) in 1988 and was a USA Mathematical Olympiad winner that year. He attended the Research Science Institute (RSI) in 1987, and the Math Olympiad Summer Program in 1988, where he first met fellow student Richard Rusczyk. He also finished in the top 10 on the Putnam exam in 1991. Dave graduated from Carnegie Mellon in 1992 with a BS in Mathematics/Computer Science and an MS in Mathematics. He went on to earn his Ph.D. in mathematics from MIT in 1997. He was an acting Assistant Professor at the University of Washington from 1997 to 2001. Dave is originally from Western New York and is an alumnus of the SUNY Buffalo Gifted Math Program.
Allison Patterson
Payroll Specialist
Allison was born and raised in East County San Diego where both her parents grew up and met in high school. She is newly engaged and will be getting married in the fall of 2023! She has two bonus children that she loves to spend her time with and is very busy with their schedules. Her fur child Kawii (short for Kawasaki) is her forever baby! Along with her new kitten brother and sister that her family recently adopted, Colt and Ainsley. She loves to have have fun and be around her family.
Lizette Payneward
Senior Graphic Designer
Lizette Payneward is a visual designer/motion graphics artist with 14 years under her belt. She has a certificate for Branding & Identity for Marketing from SDSU. Teaching graphic design for the past 4 years, she gained a passion for understanding how individuals learn, which keeps her sharp in the design field. One claim to fame in her career was getting an IMBD for working on the motion picture Man of Steel converting 2D film to a 3D IMAX experience (no, she never got to meet Zack Snyder). Free time is spent on the beach with her wife and their daughter, watching horror movies, restoring their 1914 Victorian home and always living by the motto..."No Payneward, No Gainward."
Kiyoshi Pedroza
Senior Student Services Specialist
Kiyoshi joined AoPS in 2020 after earning his AA at Santa Ana College and his BA in English at UC Berkeley. Prior to AoPS, Kiyoshi assisted students with a variety of career-related issues and concerns as a Peer Advisor for the UC Berkeley Career Center. He is always happy to help students and parents, and he hopes that this enthusiasm will help them appreciate AoPS as much as he does! He also enjoys spending time with his fiancée and their cat, Domino. In his free time, you can find him playing video games, reading, taking walks, watching YouTube, or finding something new to learn.
Ivan Perez
Shipper
Ivan is a shipper for the AoPS warehouse. He has a well rounded knowledge of shipping and warehousing as well as a knack for process improvement. Ivan enjoys nature photography and music. He is married and enjoying life with 3 goofy pets who have traveled more than he has. With a good cup of coffee and a guitar in hand everyday is a good day for him.
Jeremy Pham
Software Engineer
From an early age, Jeremy had always gravitated towards math and sciences during school. His first exposure to programming was back in middle school, when he took an interest in Lua scripting in the game Roblox. He decided to foster these interests by pursuing a computer science degree at UCSD. During his time in college, he served as an officer for his school's gaming organization, hosting tournaments for hundreds of people and building communities centered around people's favorite video games. He also served as a tutor for computer science, where he quickly discovered a passion for working with students and having a positive impact on their education. In his free time, Jeremy enjoys working on his anime recommendation project, practicing calisthenics, and playing piano.
Sarah Pierpoint
AoPS Academy Operations Coordinator
Sarah is a past high school biology and Japanese teacher and magnet coordinator, with a few years in banking. She majored in Environmental Studies at UC Santa Barbara, then graduated from CSU Northridge with a master's degree in secondary education. She just moved to San Diego after three and a half years in Japan, and is loving the perfect weather. Most of her free time is spent on indoor and outdoor gardening, playing phone games, and listening to Audibles. Her husband is in the Navy and they have two adorable dogs, Yuzu and Lala, who they love cuddling with.
Laura Pierson
Math Curriculum Intern
Laura currently teaches part time for AoPS Virtual Campus, AoPS Academy Lexington, and AoPS Online, and is excited to join the curriculum team this summer! She has a bachelor's in math from Harvard and is currently finishing a master's in education, and she hopes to apply to math grad school this fall. She was a student at the Berkeley Math Circle, Canada/USA Mathcamp, and MOP, and has also taught at various other math enrichment programs. In her free time, she currently enjoys social dance, drawing and painting, and origami.
Celeste Pilkington
AoPS Academy National Operations Director
After a 20-year career in corporate meetings and events, specializing in operations management and leadership, Celeste returned to her roots in education and joined Art of Problem Solving in 2020. AoPS’ mission speaks to her core as a person and a parent - teaching resilience and problem solving to her two young kids is a top priority and her mantras are “you’ve got to blossom where you are planted” and “you can figure it out!” In her free time, Celeste loves to run, hike, bike and explore the great outdoors with her family.
Dylan Pizzo
Software Engineer
Dylan started at AoPS in the Associates' Program in 2021, doing Software Engineering and Math Curriculum Development. He graduated from the College of Creative Studies at UCSB with a B.S. in mathematics, and of all areas within math, his favorite is by far foundations of math and computability theory. He taught himself programming since he was in elementary school, and enjoys developing web apps, games, and other useful things. Dylan has varied hobbies including juggling, making games, video editing, and continually learning math, physics, economics, and programming. Also, he loathes taxes and the way math is taught in schools.
Seth Poulson
Product Development Intern
I'm a Ph.D. student at University of Illinois Computer Science. I'm interested in Computing Education, Programming Language design and implementation, Math Education, and any interesting intersections of the above. My current research focuses on improving the teaching and learning of mathematical proofs, specifically using the Proof Blocks tool which I created. I have also been involved in various educational data mining projects. Previously, I was a Software Engineer at Amazon.com, working on Kindle Web Rendering and the Kindle Lite Android app.
Dustin Ransom
VP of AoPS Academy
Dustin first joined AoPS as an assistant in 2013, and assisted the intermediate group at the Los Angeles Math Circle while studying math at UCLA. Dustin became interested in math through music. Interested in digital audio synthesis, he realized he'd need to actually learn some math in order to build synthesizers from the ground up. Soon after, math overcame his musical interests. Outside of math, Dustin is obsessed with endurance sports and training. An avid runner himself, you'll often find him running in the San Diego mountains wondering, "When are we going to run that sub-2 hour marathon already?!"
Amanda Reilly
Software Engineering Director
Amanda joined the Software Development team at AoPS in April 2019. She has been obsessed with computers and technology most of her life. She built her first website when she was 12 years old, back in the bad old days of table-based layouts and dancing-squirrel GIFs. In high school, she joined her school's FIRST Robotics team, where she worked on the website and community outreach teams. After attending Purdue University, Amanda held various business administration roles, always gravitating towards roles that allowed her to indulge her first love of programming and development. In her spare time, you'll most likely find Amanda reading historical fiction or planning her next trip. She's working towards a lifelong goal of visiting every US state and six continents before she turns 50.
Mark Richard
Sales Operations Manager
Mark joined AoPS after graduating from the University of Minnesota in 2018 with a degree in mathematics, doing a senior thesis involving physics and probability. He dabbled in just about every subject in college and has a particular passion for mathematics history. You can find him playing percussion in a local concert band or reading and writing at home. He is an avid baseball player and fan, although he enjoyed playing squash in college. He does two podcasts and owns seven harmonicas.
Hazel Ringelberg
Software Engineer
Hazel majored in computer science at UCSD in 2017 and with a minor in linguistics. She started going for her master's in computer science at UCSD shortly after, but decided that path wasn't right for her and started working instead. In her spare time, she streams herself playing video games on Twitch and has amassed a small, but wonderful following. She absolutely loves entertaining people and making them laugh. If you ever get a chance to talk to her, she really like talking about a number of things including video games (as you might expect), linguistics, herself, Disney stuff (but like in a normal way she promises), and gender.
Ethan Rioux
Outreach Associate Director
Ethan is thrilled to be a part of the BA Classroom team and has previously worked as an Associate Director at the AoPS Academy in Princeton, NJ. Ethan entered the education field while serving with the AmeriCorps program City Year. This experience ignited a passion for helping all students achieve greatness and enjoy mathematics. He has earned a Bachelor of Music from Temple University and a M.Ed. degree in Secondary Education and Mathematics from Drexel University as part of the Philadelphia Teacher Residency program. Over the past decade he has taught students at every grade level from late elementary to high school and really enjoys engaging students with any kind of puzzle he can find. Ethan is also a performing musician, loves to go camping, and is an avid Philadelphia Eagles fan.
Alisa Rogers
Software Engineering Team Lead
Alisa joined AoPS in 2020. She grew up competing in local mathlete competitions and having long conversations about math with her dad and brother while on family road trips. She graduated from UCSD in 2019 with a B.S. in Mathematics - Computer Science. During her time in college, Alisa served as president of Phi Sigma Rho, a sorority aimed at fostering female empowerment in STEM. Alisa's favorite thing about her job is contributing to the enrichment other young math students' education. In her free time, Alisa enjoys reading, running, going to the beach, and hanging out with her corgi, Reggie.
D.J. Rogers
Language Arts Instructional Coach
D.J. has been an educator for the last 11 years and has been with AoPS since 2019. He is passionate about making ELA fun and accessible and helping others discover a love of reading and writing! After working in a Youth Development Center and schools for disadvantaged youth, he is excited to share his knowledge with a new audience. When he's not teaching, D.J. likes to write, cook, and play games of all kinds.
Noah Rogers
Lead Shipper
Noah Rogers joined the AoPS team in August 2020 after leaving his hometown of Lancaster, CA, for sunny San Diego. Growing up, Noah enjoyed playing soccer for both his school and club teams. Noah plans to transfer to San Diego Miramar City College from Antelope Valley College to study Buisness Administration and Management. In his free time, Noah can be found playing video games, usually Call of Duty or League of Legends, watching anime (his favorite is Angel Beats!), or hanging out with his favorite sister, Alisa.
Shannon Rogers
Director of Project Management
Shannon is the Director of Project Management for AoPS. She has executed a variety of roles since joining AoPS in 2011, including co-author of AoPS's Beast Academy series, curriculum developer, teacher in the AoPS Online School, and manager of customer service, internal operations, and new AoPS Academy campus launches across the nation. Shannon holds a degree in mathematics from UCLA and has been actively involved in Math Circles in Los Angeles, San Diego, and New Mexico for nearly a decade. She loves math jokes and all things combinatorics.
Damian Romney
Language Arts Department Chair
Damian is the Language Arts Department Chair for the AoPS Academy Virtual Campus. He joined the AoPS Academy team in 2019 as a physical campus director. After graduating from Guilford College in 2011, he served in City Year Boston, an AmeriCorps program, from 2011-2013 as an in-school tutor and a physical service project manager. From 2013-2017, he taught 6th and 7th grade Language Arts and Social Studies in Boston charter schools. He moved to the Atlanta area in 2017, continuing to teach for a year and then attending the University of Georgia to earn a master's degree in education in 2019. In his free time, Damian enjoys biking on nearby trails and woodworking.
Daniel Ruch
Senior Math Instructional Coach
Daniel joined the AoPS Academy Virtual Campus as a Math Instructor in 2020. His Mom has always said, “You should be a teacher.” After several years of resisting her advice, he taught ESL as an AmeriCorps member following his graduation from the University of Pittsburgh, realizing that Mom was (obviously) correct. As an elementary school teacher in Allentown, PA, and later in New Orleans, LA, Daniel has taught various subjects from grades K-8, including reading, writing, history, science, math, and trumpet. His other passion besides teaching is performing music, which he has done as a trumpet and tuba player and vocalist on many stages and in many parades in Pennsylvania, New Orleans, and throughout the US.
Robert Ruiz
Shipper
Robert Ruiz joined the AoPS team in May 2021. Growing up in San Diego, Robert enjoyed playing multiple sports such as golf, basketball, and baseball. With a passion for sustainability and climate justice, he earned a Bachelor’s degree in International Security and Conflict Resolution with a specialization in Justice in the Global System at San Diego State University. Eager to expand his knowledge, Robert will be starting a Master’s program in Social Justice Human Rights at Arizona State University. When not in school, Robert enjoys going on runs around his neighborhood and staying active, as well as a casual round of golf or disc golf with his friends.
Richard Rusczyk
CEO
Richard Rusczyk founded Art of Problem Solving in 2003 to teach avid math students in an innovative, interactive way. Richard is one of the co-authors of the Art of Problem Solving classic textbooks, author of Art of Problem Solving's Introduction to Algebra, Introduction to Geometry, and Precalculus textbooks, co-author of Art of Problem Solving's Intermediate Algebra and Prealgebra, one of the co-creators of the Mandelbrot Competition, and a past Director of the USA Mathematical Talent Search. He was a participant in National MATHCOUNTS, a three-time participant in the Math Olympiad Summer Program, and a USA Mathematical Olympiad winner (1989). He received the World Federation of National Mathematics Competitions Paul Erdös Award in 2014. He graduated from Princeton University in 1993, and worked as a bond trader for D.E. Shaw & Company for four years. AoPS marks Richard's return to his vocation - educating motivated students.
Sean Russom
Sales Executive - West Region
Before working in the AoPS Sales division, Sean worked as a Campus Director at two separate AoPS Academy campus locations in Santa Clara, CA and Vienna, VA. He also served as Area Director for the greater South Bay region. An experienced teacher of gifted children, Sean has taught math at both the middle- and high-school levels, served as the coach of a successful MATHCOUNTS team, and designed the Algebra 1 curriculum for the high school where he used to teach in North Carolina. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in math from UNC. In his spare time, Sean loves creating challenging math problems for his students.
Ashley Paul Ryu
Senior Software Engineer
Paul joined AoPS in 2009. Paul discovered QBasic on his computer when he was six years old and has been programming ever since. Before attending Harvard, he was a third-place winner at National MATHCOUNTS, a two-time perfect scorer on the American Mathematics Contest (AMC) 12, a participant at the Research Science Institute, and a prize winner at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair. In his free time, he enjoys emacs, waterbending, learning musical instruments, talking about himself in the third person, watching crime shows, and herding cats.
Stephanie Sadrian
Senior Life Science Curriculum Developer
Stephanie joined AoPS in the summer of 2021. Before moving to San Diego, she spent much of her life as a human ping pong ball living in Texas, Northern and Southern California, and New York City. Stephanie completed a BS in Molecular Biology from the University of CA, Davis and a PhD in Biomedical Sciences from the Icahn School of Medicine in NYC. Following a postdoc in a cardiology lab at the University of CA, San Diego and the birth of her second child, Stephanie decided to explore teaching as a career. She spent four years at a private K-12 school teaching and building curriculum for the Biology department there. Stephanie finds STEAM education thrilling because it reveals a hidden world of curiosities, mysteries, and secrets. Outside of work, Stephanie enjoys spending time with her three kids and all kinds of arts and crafts – particularly knitting.
Zachary Salomon
Customer Service Specialist
Zachary started at AoPS in 2022. The year previously, he graduated from UC Berkeley with an undergraduate education in linguistics and literature. He’s interested in texts, contexts, textiles, and other groups of words that connect like that. Joining AoPS at the HQ location also means Zachary gets to return to the North San Diego beach-breaks he grew up surfing. Assisting others with the processes of learning is something he’s more than happy to be taking part in.
Jack Sanchez
AoPS Academy Associate Product Director
Jack joined AoPS in 2020 as the Academy Language Arts Curriculum Lead. Despite being drawn to math in high school, he completed a BA in philosophy from Arizona State University and an MA in religion from Yale University. Jack taught a variety of philosophy courses at the college level before entering a PhD program in philosophy at Purdue University. During his doctoral program, Jack fell in love with crafting lesson plans that helped students become more creative and analytical thinkers, so he moved to San Diego to teach humanities classes at a private school. Most recently, Jack has been teaching 5th-8th grade language arts classes at AoPS Academy in San Diego. In his free time, Jack enjoys spending time with his wife and two sons.
Mariela Sanchez
HR Business Partner
Mariela joined the Accounting and Human Resource team in September 2017. She is a native San Diegan and loves the outdoors. She graduated from Kaplan University in 2015 with a Bachelors of Arts in Business Administration. Mariela has worked in the finance department of San Diego State University and Thomas Jefferson School of Law. Currently, she is working on obtaining her Masters in Human Resources from Southern New Hampshire University.
Anakaren Santana
Beast Academy Associate Product Director
Anakaren earned her degrees in Mathematics and Art Practice from UC Berkeley. Throughout her college career, she worked as a Physics tutor for the Biology Scholars Program focusing on Introductory Physics for college students. At the Art Department in UC Berkeley, Anakaren worked on combining her art practice and fascination for math through various projects based on fractals. After graduating, Anakaren volunteered as a Science and Art teacher at a bilingual school in Honduras where she also contributed to the development of the Science curriculum. She often tutors Middle School, High School, and College students in various Math and Science subjects. On her free time, Anakaren likes to play board games, work on art projects, cook, and, when possible, she helps out at a family owned candy factory that specializes in dulce de leche and other traditional Mexican candies.
Naoki Sato
Senior Math Curriculum Developer
Naoki joined AoPS in 2005 after a successful career in investment banking. He won first place in the 1993 Canadian Mathematical Olympiad, and represented Canada at the 1992 and 1993 International Mathematical Olympiads, winning a bronze and silver medal, respectively. He has also served as deputy leader for the Canadian IMO team in 1997, 2002, and 2006. A native of Toronto, Canada, Naoki earned a Bachelor's in mathematics from the University of Toronto, and a Master's in mathematics from Yale University. His interests include cycling and wine tasting.
Melissa Schulz
Virtual Campus Associate Product Director
Melissa joined AoPS in 2016. She spent the last decade before that immersed in the worlds of language and teaching. She earned a BA in Comparative Literature from UC Irvine (where she studied abroad in Sweden, learning the delicate arts of eating caviar from a tube and pronouncing words with the letter å) and an MA in English from UC San Diego. Along the way, she has gained more than a decade of experience teaching Language Arts in classrooms ranging from elementary through college, developing curriculum, and supporting other teachers. Aside from books and words, Melissa enjoys landscaping, playing the piano, and learning Spanish.
Dane Scott
Associate Language Arts Curriculum
A San Diego native, Dane studies Classics and Religious Studies in Massachusetts, and he hopes to graduate in 2021. He is excited to return to San Diego for the summer and join the Language Arts team at AoPS. His hobbies include music composition, learning different languages (especially constructed or dead ones), and he is an avid reader of fantasy and sci-fi!
Jessica Seekamp
Lead Math Instructional Coach
Jessica is a Senior Instructional Coach for AoPS Academy Virtual Campus and was previously a director at a physical Academy location. Jessica sees math as a record of human creativity and perseverance and loves sharing this view with her students. Jessica holds a BS in applied math from the University of Texas at Dallas and formerly served as a high school Math Department Chair, where she wrote curriculum and taught everything from middle school math to AP Calculus. As a teacher, she wants her students to think deeply as they discuss math, to be creative as they approach problems, and to appreciate the beauty of mathematics. Outside the classroom, you can find Jessica running ultra-marathons or climbing mountains in Colorado.
Greta Selman
Senior Artist
Greta first started as a freelance colorist and artist for the Beast Academy books in 2012. She joined AoPS full-time in January of 2016 in order to help work on the BA websites. Prior to working for AoPS, she worked as a designer for many years in the home decor industry as well as taught Adobe Illustrator courses. When not coloring for a living, she enjoys cycling, cooking, and creating.
Tom Shelly
Math Curriculum Developer
Before joining AoPS in 2020, Tom spent two years as a visiting faculty member at Mount Holyoke College and two years as a faculty member at Edmonds College. Prior to teaching full time, he spent several years drinking lots of coffee while filling up notebooks with drawings of tangled strings, for which he was eventually given a PhD in math from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. While at UMass, Tom also ran the undergraduate math seminar, served as an advisor for two REU’s, and was awarded the Distinguished Teaching Award from the UMass Math Department. When he is not doing math, he can usually be found drinking coffee while doing something else. Just know that there is always coffee.
Daniel Shu
Software Engineering Intern
Daniel is a rising senior at Vanderbilt University where he is enrolled in the accelerated combined BS/MSc degree program and studies both computer science and mathematics. He discovered his interest in problem solving as an elementary school student through encounters with logic problems, math puzzles, and various strategy games such as chess. Over the following decade, he continued to develop this interest by avidly participating in math competitions, being an active member and leader of his school’s math club, and engrossing himself in computer programming. In his free time, he enjoys attempting to play his favorite songs on the violin and piano as well as working on spreadsheets to minmax video games.
Rhonesha Simmons
Talent Acquisition Specialist
Rhonesha holds an MEd in elementary education from Texas State University and enjoys mentoring and building relationships with children. Rhonesha has worked as an elementary teacher, team leader, and was previously an Associate Director at AoPS Academy Frisco. Additionally, she spent nearly 8 years in K-12 assessment where she developed language arts standardized tests and was a content lead on several assessment programs. In her spare time, you might find her exploring Dallas, spending time with family and friends, and possibly knitting a scarf.
Kris Siy
Senior Math Curriculum Developer
Kris joined AoPS thrice: In 2011 as a student, in 2016 as a teacher, and in 2019 as a math curriculum developer. They started and coached their high school's math team and won the COMAP High School Mathematical Contest in Modelling twice, but their love for math never really cemented until they discovered graph theory while studying in Budapest and went on to complete their M.Math. in graph theory at the University of Waterloo. Kris is also particularly interested in equity in math education and the teaching and learning of discrete mathematics and has previously worked with San Diego State University’s Centre for Research in Math and Science Education to develop discrete math curriculum for high schools. In their free time, Kris enjoys playing board games and playing the ocarina.
Chris Smith
Beast Academy Classroom Director
Chris has a passion for increasing and diversifying the pipeline of students who call mathematics and science their favorite subjects. Chris received his BS in chemical engineering from Stanford University and his MBA in quantitative finance from New York University. In the last decade, he has led math enrichment programs with elementary, middle and high school students in Philadelphia, New Brunswick, and Miami. Before working in his current role with the company, he also held the position of Campus Director at AoPS Academy Pleasanton. Chris loves exploring challenging math with young learners because it equips them with the skills and mindsets of lifelong learners. Before joining AoPS, Chris spent time as a biologics engineer and master problem solving teacher/coach. When he is not teaching math, Chris enjoys listening to all types of music and is an avid soccer fan.
Rebecca Sodervick
Virtual Campus Director
Rebecca previously served as an Associate Director at AoPS Academy Santa Clara and AoPS Academy Bellevue before joining the AoPS headquarters team. She loves teaching math to students from elementary through college and once coached a state-qualifying MATHCOUNTS team. She holds an MS in mathematics from the University of Michigan and a BS in advanced mathematics from Michigan State University, where she supervised one of the math learning centers and spent her summers helping direct the math summer camp. Working with colleagues from universities in China, she also organized the Discovering America Exchange Program. For fun, Rebecca likes being outdoors, cooking, and spending time with her playful dogs, Dexter and Jill.
Willie Stafford
Senior Accountant
Willie joined AoPS in 2021. Originally raised in the Bay Area, he graduated from the University of Oregon in 2018 with a bachelor's degree in finance. Previous to AoPS, he spent the past 2.5 years working at a local San Diego outsourced accounting firm. In his free time he loves to take advantage of all that San Diego has to offer: beaches, surf, golf, parks, food....and the list doesn't end of course. He also enjoys snowboarding, playing games, cards, or anything with some friendly competition.
Brendan Tang
Software Engineer
Long before joining AoPS in 2022, Brendan spent a large amount of his childhood assembling building toys of various shapes and sizes. When he was in high school, he realized that writing computer programs would allow him to build great things with unparalleled flexibility to encounter setbacks, learn from mistakes, and keep trying again, so after graduating from UC Berkeley, he went on to spend his career writing code. He hopes that his work at AoPS helps students learn math and problem solving skills that help them engineer solutions to future problems. Aside from programming, you may find him engaging in tabletop games, Dance Dance Revolution, or reading or watching videos about whatever topics grab his interest.
Nestor Tomaselli
Motion Graphic Designer
Nestor is a motion designer, animator, illustrator, and filmmaker, originating from the tropics of Venezuela. Earning a double BFA in Film and Motion Graphics from the Savannah College of Art and Design, Nestor has an unending passion for combining film and animation tech to show stories in new and inconvenient ways, whether that be through marketing or visual narratives. His love and dedication to his craft expands beyond the workplace, earning him 11 elections and 3 awards at film festivals across the world for his films, and self-starting his own animation collective with his friends. When away from his drawing tablet, Nestor can be meditating at a Buddhist temple, or playing video games with his nephews.
Sarah Trebat-Leder
VP of Personnel
Sarah joined AoPS in 2018 after finishing a PhD in mathematics from Emory University, where she studied number theory and moonshine (no, not the drink). She first fell in love with mathematics while attending HCSSiM in 2007, and since then has been involved in many other summer math programs, including MathPath, PROMYS, Emory's REU, and BEAM. As an undergraduate at Princeton, she was already president of the math club and helping to run PUMaC in her freshman year. When she moved to Atlanta for graduate school, she started Emory Math Circle, which by the end of her tenure was serving over 200 students each semester. In her free time, she likes to play board games and go on long walks.
Matthew Underwood
Language Arts Curriculum Developer
Matthew joined AoPS in 2021. After graduating from UC Santa Barbara in 2009, he became a certified teacher and spent a decade teaching internationally. He has taught world history and language arts in various educational settings, from enrichment programs to international high schools. His classroom experience has taken him from Shanghai, China, to Santiago, Chile, where he's taught and designed curricula for thousands of multicultural students from elementary school to high school. He's driven by creating interactive, dynamic, and engaging learning experiences that challenge students and spark their creativity. Outside of work, you'll likely find Matthew listening to podcasts, playing board games, playing volleyball, or exploring new places.
Claire Vannette
Academy Launch and Facilities Manager
Claire studied Literature and Writing at UC San Diego and then spent a year in AmeriCorps, completing service projects across the Eastern seaboard. She has also worked as an SAT tutor, but is very glad she doesn't have to take any more standardized tests. Her hobbies include gardening with native California plants, playing RPGs, and giving people advice on the internet.
Zeke Vogler
Software Engineer
In elementary school, Zeke worked for his father's electrical engineering company, quickly becoming a jack of all trades there. With a knack for computers and math, he grew up dreaming he would create video games and pursued a degree in CS at UC Davis, specializing in computer graphics and creating game clones. Due to many awesome math profs there, he double majored in math and pursued a PhD in math. Afterwards, he founded an iPhone app company where he coded an Algebra tool to help math students. Then, he decided to go back to UC Davis to pursue research in cosmology models and lecture math. During his tenure there, he was a finalist for multiple teaching awards, and he quit after 5 years, realizing their philosophical differences in math education. Next, he ventured on his own as a math mercenary, helping individuals and companies with their math problems. He also become a math influencer by creating a math podcast, discord, and Twitch channel. In 2021, he decided to join forces with the like-minded people at AoPS to help shape the future of education. If he isn't working on programming and math education, Zeke will be playing MTG, chess, basketball, or D&D (really any game/puzzle) or socially engaging in philosophical ideas.
Riley Vickers
B2B Operations Coordinator
In 2021, Riley graduated with a BA in math and computer science from Lewis and Clark College in Portland, Oregon. While at Lewis and Clark Riley played collegiate tennis for all 4 years and was elected team captain his senior year. Before joining the AoPS team Riley worked as a surf instructor, for Surf Education Academy, teaching kids of all ages the foundational skills of surfing. In his free time you will most likely find Riley at the beach surfing or in the kitchen cooking!
Anderson Wang
Puzzle Designer
Anderson joined AoPS in 2020 after graduating from MIT in 2016 with a degree in mathematics and working as a software engineer for a few years. In college, he helped write and select problems for the Harvard-MIT Math Tournament. Outside of math, Anderson enjoys solving and creating puzzles of all sorts, especially puzzlehunts (he has edited and written for several puzzlehunts including the MIT Mystery Hunt) and logic puzzles (he has represented the US at the World Puzzle Championship). His other interests include creating video games and sometimes making (very amateur) music for them, participating in security CTFs, listening to "indie" music, and reading, especially poetry. He also tends to overuse parentheses whenever he writes.
Deven Ware
AoPS Online Product Director
Deven joined AoPS in 2014. During this same year he earned both his Bachelor's and Master's degrees in mathematics from UCLA. While there, he led the Intermediate Circle at the Los Angeles Math Circle and played with electron lasers for fun. Outside of school, he attended MathPath twice as a counselor and attended the UCLA Logic Summer School as a student. In his free time, Deven enjoys solving logic puzzles and pondering about interesting math problems. He also acknowledges the concerning fact that in this bio he has claimed attending school as one of his outside of school activities.
Josette Welsh
Customer Service Manager
Josette moved to San Diego with their family in 2011 when their father was stationed at Miramar. While at San Diego State University they did some editing and English tutoring. After graduating, the lovely weather, company, and museums convinced them to stay. In their free time, Josette enjoys tabletop roleplaying games (and designing Google Sheets based character sheets for them), walks around the neighborhood (and the beautiful Balboa Park), cooking (especially when there’s company), and sewing (though they're still getting back into it). They work on two Actual Play podcasts and love working on world development. When they can, Josette loves to take their niece to arcades (namely Nickel City) or host a game day at home.
Andrew Wu
Math Curriculum Intern
Andrew is a current junior in college studying math. He's from Virginia, near Washington D.C. In his free time, he enjoys playing piano, playing chess, and writing.
Phyllis Xu
Senior Software Engineering Team Lead
Phyllis joined AoPS at the start of 2014. Originally from Maryland, she completed her B.S. at MIT in Materials Science and Engineering and continued on to finish her Ph.D. at UC-San Diego where she studied various materials on the nanoscale. In her free time, you'll probably find her walking her pups, eating watermelon, or learning about fermentation science.
Kevin Yaiko
Senior School Staff Specialist
Kevin began with AoPS in 2018 as a grader and assistant but joined the staff full-time in 2020. He earned a BS in mathematics from Houghton College and a M.Ed. from Liberty University. Prior to joining AoPS, Kevin was a high school math teacher for 16 years,13 of which were spent teaching in an International School near Budapest, Hungary. In his free time, he enjoys studying computer programming, reading, and playing Gang Beasts with his four kids, both the video game and their own real-life version.
Laura Zehender
Student Services Manager
Laura first joined AoPS as a middle school student in 2004. After taking AoPS's awesome classes for many years, she was excited to start working as a class assistant while she was attending Stanford and then to join AoPS full-time soon after graduating in 2014. She's loved math and teaching for a long time, whether going to math meets (when she could find enough other homeschoolers to form a team!), attending math camps as a camper and later as a counselor, or coaching a MATHCOUNTS team. While at Stanford, Laura studied a mix of mathematics, computer science, and classics – the latter gave her the chance to study abroad in Italy, where she could visit lots of exciting ancient ruins like those in the photo on the left. In her spare time, she enjoys photography, working on crafts, learning new styles of dancing, and roller skating.
Kiana Ziglari
Software Engineer
Kiana joined AoPS in 2020 after graduating from Cal Poly Pomona. A lifetime love of logic puzzles led her to a BS in computer science with a minor in mathematics. While studying at CPP, Kiana played an active role in the campus community by representing the school’s computer science department at various events, organizing a coding competition for high school students, and leading a club called the Software Engineering Association. Throughout her development experience, she discovered a passion for user experience, focusing on details that make software simple and convenient. In her free time, she enjoys solving puzzles such as Sudoku and Nonagram, spending time with her dog Bella, playing tabletop role-playing games, and indoor bouldering.
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