Senior Operations and Finance Manager
“I retain details in a variety of ways and my learning style varies, depending on the type of information I am receiving. One thing I am currently learning more about is early childhood education and the impact it has on development in those critical years.”
Andronica comes to Digital Promise from Working America in Washington, D.C., where she worked on audit readiness, vendor contracts, and insurance policies. She earned her B.A. degree in Psychology from Spelman College in Atlanta, where she also coordinated two summer college readiness programs. She is continuing her education through an early childhood development endorsement program with the Virginia Department of Social Services. You can reach Andronica at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Maker Learning Coach
“I find videos on YouTube, follow experts on Twitter, and dig for code samples on GitHub. You can tell how excited I am about an idea by checking how many browser tabs I have open.”
Chief Communications & Development Officer
“When I’m learning something new and complex, a combination of methods is the best way for me to master it. I love the team dynamic – discussing the topic, hearing other ideas and opinions, building visuals – but then I need time to reflect, time to read and think it through.”
Kristin serves as Chief Communications & Development Officer. She has 20 years of development and communications experience, with a decade of experience in education technology. Before joining Digital Promise, Kristin was with Qualcomm, Inc., where she headed up business development for Qualcomm Education. Prior to that she ran the company’s Corporate Social Responsibility program, where she built the education vertical from the ground up, which eventually spanned 40 projects across the globe. The goal of each project was to ensure everyone had access to learning opportunities through internet connectivity. In her free time, when she’s not on adventures with her family, including her three little learners, she volunteers as a Girl Scout co-leader for two troops. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Southern Methodist University. You can reach her at email@example.com.
Project Manager, Educator Micro-credentials
“I learn by tinkering. When I was 11, I wanted to play computer games but my family couldn’t afford a computer. I got a computer assembly book from the library and collected recycled computer parts in my neighborhood until I could build my own.”
Before joining Digital Promise, Robert worked as a high school science teacher in New Jersey. Robert came to teaching from a background in science, working in microbiological research and cancer diagnostics. He graduated from Rutgers University with a degree in biological sciences. Robert can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Research Scientist, Coaching Fellowship Program
“Learning for me is like being lost in a jungle and trying to use all the knowledge that I can gather and all the innovation that I can make to find a way out.”
Mahsa has more than eight years of research experience in the field of education, working with academia, government, and non-profit organizations across US and Canada. She holds a Ph.D. in Educational Foundations from University of Montreal with “Excellence” honor. Her main research area includes factors and dynamics influencing social and educational development of immigrant-origin children and youth. She has authored several books, journal articles, and book chapters on this topic. Before joining Digital Promise, she worked as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow with joint affiliation with UCLA School of Education and McGill University. Her fellowship was prestigiously awarded by the Government of Quebec (Quebec Research Funds – Society & Culture) for outstanding quality and significant research potential. You can reach Mahsa at: email@example.com.
Research and Project Management Fellow
“I try and learn something new (outside of school and work) each week. Some recent learning experiences that I thought were interesting include classes I took on glass art making and pottery wheel throwing, learning to conduct water quality tests, and training for political canvassing.”
Austin comes to Digital Promise from the University of Maryland, where he researched learning technology policy and design. Austin’s research at UMD included blended learning implementation research with the D.C. Public Schools and design-based research aimed at developing STEM learning technologies. He has also worked as an Open Educational Resources Fellow at the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) and as an intern with the PBS Education team. Before moving to the D.C. metro area, Austin analyzed data for the research team at Imagine Learning and taught high school courses on a part-time basis. He studied economics at Brigham Young University and is currently finishing a graduate degree in human-computer interaction at the University of Maryland.
Chief Learning Officer
“The next thing I want to learn is to be a better songwriter, to write and play something that resonates with someone other than my Mom (who politely likes anything that I play).”
Jim comes to Digital Promise from Apple, Inc., where he was a Senior Specialist and Development Manager as well as the National Senior Manager of Professional Development. Jim’s career at Apple included working in a wide variety of large and small urban, suburban, and rural school districts, and on many laptop and tablet one-to-one projects. Prior to his work at Apple, Jim owned a consulting business that provided professional development, software development, peer coaching and change management consulting in the area of education technology. Jim taught middle and high school social studies and was a technology coordinator. Jim recently received his Ed.D. from North Carolina State University with a focus on the effect of adult learning theory on educator professional development and technology adoption models. He holds a B.A. and M.A. in history from the University of Tennessee and Appalachian State University, respectively, and studied doctoral-level curriculum and instructional technology at the University of Texas at Austin. You can reach Jim at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
President and Chief Executive Officer
“I am a social learner (just ask my 8th grade teachers!); I prefer to learn with and from people. I believe many minds create better ideas and that social interactions incent action. I am increasingly interested in how online interactions can be designed to improve learning opportunity, regardless of location.”
Karen Cator is President and CEO of Digital Promise and a leading voice for transforming American education through technology, innovation and research. From 2009-2013, Karen was Director of the Office of Educational Technology at the U.S. Department of Education, where she led the development of the 2010 National Education Technology Plan and focused the Office’s efforts on teacher and leader support. Prior to joining the department, Cator directed Apple’s leadership and advocacy efforts in education. In this role, she focused on the intersection of education policy and research, emerging technologies, and the reality faced by teachers, students and administrators. She began her education career in Alaska as a teacher, ultimately leading technology planning and implementation. She also served as Special Assistant for Telecommunications for the Governor of Alaska. Cator holds a master’s in school administration from the University of Oregon and received the 2014 College of Education Distinguished Alumni award. The American Association of Publishers has awarded Cator with the 2014 Visionary Award. She received her bachelor’s in early childhood education from Springfield College and received the 2015 Distinguished Alumna award. She is an Aspen Pahara Fellow, the past chair for the Partnership for 21st Century Skills and has served on boards including the Software & Information Industry Association- Education. You can reach Karen at: email@example.com.
Multimedia Content Producer, Research
“When you ask people about memorable learning experiences, you hear many stories about informal environments. I know times spent in museums, libraries, and parks are the ones that stand out for me.”
Corinne documented the work of artists and filmmakers as a video producer at BRIC TV, a community television station in Brooklyn. She’s also edited content for MoMA and The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Corinne left her heart in New York City when she moved to the Bay Area to pursue her master’s in Learning, Design and Technology at Stanford. Her area of focus is reimagining the field trip experience through storytelling. She holds a B.S. in Television-Radio from Ithaca College. Corinne can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Director of Adult Education Initiatives
“Learning something new requires diving in and taking a risk. You’re never sure if you’ll sink or swim, and initially it may seem like you’re sinking, but in the end you conquer it and float to the surface.”
Patti has a long-held commitment to innovation, technology and education and has spent the bulk of her career in the educational technology field largely working with adult learners. Prior to Digital Promise, Patti was the Director of Product, Content and Curriculum at GreatSchools.org and was responsible for several large parent education initiatives that included developing digital media components, implementing on-the-ground workshops and events, and managing community-based media campaigns. Prior to GreatSchools, Patti worked with several start-ups, developing and implementing e-learning courseware, online educational games, and mobile apps for a variety of audiences, including English language learners, older returning community college students, parents and families, and teachers. Patti earned her PhD from the University of Texas at Austin in communications, with an emphasis in Spanish-language media and Latinos in the U.S. She received her master’s degree in Radio, Television, Film, also from the University of Texas at Austin, and a dual bachelor’s degree in journalism and Spanish from New Mexico State University. You can reach Patti at: email@example.com.
Professional Learning Engineer, Verizon Innovative Learning Schools
“I have always been a social learner. I watch how other people delve into problems and love to see how they problem solve. Most recently, I have learned so much from my own children. Their curiosity and the way they address concerns offers me a new perspective and helps me appreciate things in a new way.”
Sara comes to Digital Promise from The Arizona K12 Center where she was the Technology Project Director, overseeing technology professional learning opportunities, technology conferences, and other leadership and learning events for educators across Arizona. Previously, Sara was a Standards Coordinator and Professional Development Coordinator for Maricopa County Education Service Agency (MCESA). She was also a 1st and 5th grade teacher as well as an Instructional Technology Specialist for kindergarten through 8th grade teachers in the Cartwright School District. Sara received her Bachelor of Arts in elementary education from Arizona State University, her Master of Education in elementary education and reading specialist endorsement from Northern Arizona University, and an Educational Doctorate in educational administration and supervision from Arizona State University. You can reach Sara at firstname.lastname@example.org.
“The public elementary school that I attended was able to purchase a computer cart full of laptops that would travel between classrooms. Being able to have a computer of my own, even for just a few hours a couple of times a week, was monumental for my growth as a learner and a student. And, as a bonus, I’m pretty good at fixing my own computer now!”
Prior to joining Digital Promise, Emily worked in the accounting department of an international NGO, supervising accounts payable functions and assisting in general day-to-day accounting activities. In her volunteer life, Emily is the board treasurer of a DC non-profit, where she is responsible for its financial stewardship. At Digital Promise, Emily is part of the finance and operations team and supports the accounting work of the organization. You can reach Emily at email@example.com.
Professional Learning Engineer, Verizon Innovative Learning Schools
“Long ago, I realized that everyone brings value and perspective to the conversation, and by listening and asking more questions, I grow and learn.”
Mark Dohn was a technology teacher and coordinator for fifteen years in the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD). He has an MS in Education Media Design and Technology. Mark’s emphasis is on equity and accessibility in the classroom for students with disabilities as well as at-risk and adjudicated youth. His approach focuses on technology integration, Universal Design for Learning and Inclusive Design to create meaningful learning environments.
Beyond the traditional education environment, Mark has volunteered for the educational nonprofit impossible2Possible (i2P) as Education Coordinator. He was a participant on a ten-day expedition to the Brazilian rainforest to study biodiversity with four youth ambassadors. During the expedition, the team was able to connect live via satellite with over 15,000 students in six countries.
Mark has been honored for his innovative and creative teaching style by Apple Inc. (ADE), LAUSD (Innovation in the Classroom), Computer Using Educators Los Angeles (CUELA Teacher of the Year) and Next Vista for Learning (Distinguished Content Creator). Mark now lives in Chicago, IL and and is one of the founding members of the eRotary Club of the Silicon Valley. You can reach Mark at firstname.lastname@example.org.
“I have always been a very tactile learner. When I was young I built an entire make-believe city out of playdough and popsicle sticks on a rainy afternoon, and, now in adulthood, I love to build things. New concepts come clear when I have the opportunity to experience it hands-on.”
Michelle is the executive assistant to Digital Promise President and CEO Karen Cator. Michelle brings experience in volunteer management, event planning, and arts administration to Digital Promise. In her last position at the San Francisco Symphony, Michelle supported all large-scale fundraising events and managed major donors and sponsors lists. Michelle received her M.A in arts administration from Indiana University and her B.M in vocal performance at San Jose State University. Michelle is an advocate for creative learning and inspiring adults to always continue improving through education. You can reach Michelle at: email@example.com.
Project Manager, Educator Micro-credentials
“There is something satisfying about receiving immediate feedback on a skill or topic you have just learned. This is a benefit technology has provided my learning process, and helped me to realize the meaningful impact it can provide in driving education innovation.”
Jeffrey has been involved in public education, technology-enhanced assessment products, and the development of innovative education tools for the classroom. Teaching high school math for 13 years allowed him to develop a sense of the public education space, and to experience first-hand the impact educational technology can have once integrated into the classroom. Acting on a passion for educational technology, he became the Math Curriculum and Assessment Lead for an edtech startup specializing in assessment, and later as a member of the content team for Amazon Education’s product. He earned his B.S. in Secondary Education Mathematics from Kansas State University and Masters of Teaching degrees from St. Xavier University and Arkansas State University. Jeffrey can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Chief Research Officer
“For me, learning something new requires making it bigger before making it smaller. I gather a lot of information in a somewhat chaotic manner and then distill it into a clear and coherent “big picture” framework that I use to develop expertise.”
Aubrey has more than six years of research and development experience spanning academic, industry, and government settings. Aubrey comes to this role from the biomedical research field, where she developed and evaluated novel materials for treating lower back pain. Aubrey has taught at the undergraduate and graduate level, and has served as a mentor for 8th-grade girls interested in math and science. She is also engaged in science outreach as a curator for +ScienceSunday, a STEM-focused social media outreach group that promotes and curates science content on Google+. Aubrey earned her Ph.D in Biomedical Engineering from Duke University and her B.S. from Syracuse University. You can reach Aubrey at: email@example.com.
Project Director, Education Innovation Clusters
“I learn best by doing — and by finding a way to love what I’m learning. That was never truer for me than when I was learning to be a teacher — one lesson plan, one student conversation, one sleep-deprived morning at a time. The only way to learn to swim is to jump into the pool (or the deep end) and start paddling.”
Cricket first joined Digital Promise as an Education Pioneers Fellow, working on Leadership Coaching and Education Innovation Cluster initiatives. She is excited to now support EdClusters around the country full-time. Prior to joining Digital Promise, Cricket ran the OpEd department at The Christian Science Monitor, where she featured solution-oriented education commentary. Before her stint in journalism, Cricket was a K-12 classroom teacher and educator with Teach for America, the New York City Department of Education, the Harlem Children’s Zone, and the Horace Mann School, focusing on curriculum design and technology integration. She has a Master of Science in public policy and management from Carnegie Mellon University (with honors), a Master of Science in teaching from Pace University, and a B.A. in English and sociology from Bates College (with honors). You can reach Cricket at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
“I want to learn how to cut and polish stones so I can design jewelry and décor. I already have a small collection of stones that I have saved for this purpose. I want to learn this because I enjoy working with my hands and it gives me to joy to create something with aesthetic value.”
Representing Digital Promise Global, Elyse collaborates with Digital Promise.
Prior to joining Digital Promise, Elyse worked at Vital Voices Global Partnership, where she supported the VVLead Fellowship Program, a capacity-building fellowship for women leaders across the globe. Her work on the VVLead Fellowship Program included managing and producing online courses, building the fellowship’s virtual mentoring framework, producing audio stories, and organizing the fellowship’s in-person exchanges. Elyse received her Bachelor of Arts in international affairs with a concentration in international development from The George Washington University. She can be reached at email@example.com.
Program and Communications Manager, League of Innovative Schools
“I’m taking improv classes right now and it’s some of the most fun I’ve ever had. It’s all about learning how to identify and develop patterns and characters, and how to build upon what’s been handed to you by others.”
Before working at Digital Promise, Melissa worked with the Office of Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, the New York City Department of Education, Discovery Communications, and the Wilson Center’s Science and Technology Innovation Program. At George Washington University, where she graduated from the honors program with a B.A. in political science, she conducted two years of research on crowdsourcing and public behavior. You can reach Melissa at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
“While teaching at the Brooklyn Autism Center, one of my students was musically gifted, especially on GarageBand. He was stoked when I asked him to teach me how to use it, and after weeks of his diligence and hard work, I now know how to make my own songs! We loved using the tool as a way to communicate and express our feelings and thoughts together; technology offered him and all of my students opportunities to have their own voice and explore their passions and interests.”
Prior to joining Digital Promise, Sierra was an applied behavior analysis instructor and curriculum coordinator for the Brooklyn Autism Center. While working on her Masters in Education Policy and Management from Harvard Graduate School of Education, she also served as project manager and policy analyst for NoticeAbility, an organization creating hybrid academic and SEL courses for students with Dyslexia. Sierra received her B.A. in Government with a minor in Human Rights and Genocide from Claremont McKenna College. You can reach Sierra at email@example.com.
Senior Creative Director
“I love working in a team environment, but I am most comfortable learning on my own with great source material and the time and freedom to fail. Some of my greatest breakthroughs and successes have come from taking creative risks, falling on my face, getting back up and repeating.”
Nathan comes to Digital Promise from the creative firm Positive Six, which he founded in 2006. Serving primarily non-profit and corporate social responsibility programs, he’s traveled to more than 20 countries to document and promote tech-based programs that benefit the underserved in areas of education, healthcare, social equality, and poverty alleviation. His clients have included Qualcomm, The Lawyer’s Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, USAID, and wireless carriers on nearly every continent. With over 20 years in marketing and advertising, he’s created and contributed to dozens of award-winning national and international campaigns. His photography and documentary film work has been featured at countless international exhibitions and in publications including the New York Times and National Geographic. In his free time, he enjoys cycling, archery, backpacking, and spending time with his family. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Project Manager, Learning Studios and 360 Filmmakers Challenge
“I love learning from and with people from all over world, and helping to connect people from different networks and disciplines in the process. For the past few years, I’ve been learning to surf and grow food.”
Director of Educator Micro-credentials
“When I was 10, I took a computer course on something called ‘PowerPoint’ where I got to explore topics on this thing called the ‘World Wide Web.’ Suddenly I could access information far beyond the encyclopedias at home and display what I learned on slides with pretty pictures I downloaded. It sounds simple now but I was overwhelmed by the new tools available to me.”
Jennifer comes to Digital Promise from KIPP LA Schools, a high-performing charter management organization in Los Angeles, where she managed corporate and foundation relationships and led external engagement efforts to ensure the schools and students have the tools they need to succeed. Previously, she worked at two Washington, D.C. think tanks, the New America Foundation and Urban Institute, researching and writing about federal education funding, policy, and reform. Jennifer received her master’s degree in policy, organizations, and leadership studies from the Stanford Graduate School of Education and graduated with honors from Stanford University with a bachelor’s degree in public policy with a focus in education. You can reach Jennifer at: email@example.com.
Senior Communications Manager
“I like to think there’s an opportunity to learn from anyone and everyone — we all have our own stories to tell and information to share, and it’s exciting to view any interaction as having the capability to change the way you think.”
Erica supports Digital Promise’s strategic and digital communications efforts across all initiatives. Previously, Erica provided media relations and social media consulting to a range of for- and non-profit clients, including Williams-Sonoma and The Salvation Army, while working at Xenophon Strategies, a public relations firm in Washington, D.C. Erica received her master’s degree in strategic communications from American University, and she earned an Honors B.A. in communication from Bryant University. You can reach Erica at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Research Project Manager
“I learn by making connections – between new content and what I already know, and between academic disciplines. My college transcript (which includes courses in Global Contemporary Art, Buddhism, Astrophysics, and Children’s Literature) may seem random to the casual observer, but the variety of topics and approaches I was introduced to helped me to discover unexpected connections and to make my own meaning as a learner.”
Before joining Digital Promise, Babe worked at the Center for Childhood Creativity, the research and advisory division of the Bay Area Discovery Museum, where she managed projects to help schools, libraries, media outlets and toy companies use the latest education and child development research findings to improve their work. Previously, she facilitated educational programs for children and families at several museums and cultural institutions, including the Museum of Modern Art, the New York Botanical Garden, and the Brooklyn Historical Society. She holds a B.A. from Yale College and an Ed.M. from the Harvard Graduate School of Education.
“I learn the most from my friends. I consider myself lucky to have a group of friends that work in such diverse fields as politics, academia, design, law and media. Every time we hang out, I learn a little bit more about their corner of the world.”
Before joining Digital Promise, Sam served as an editorial producer for MLB.com in New York. There, he produced content for all 30 MLB club websites. He earned a degree in Journalism at American University in Washington D.C. He can be reached at: email@example.com.
Executive Director, Verizon Innovative Learning Schools
“I try to learn from everyone. One of the things that I find exciting about meeting new people is figuring out what makes them tick. I usually learn a lot in the process of getting to know someone. ”
Lydia Logan is the Executive Director of the Verizon Innovative Learning schools initiative at Digital Promise. She is founder and principal of Educology Advisors, education and philanthropy consultants. Previously, she served as managing director of Chiefs for Change at the Foundation for Excellence in Education. Before joining Chiefs for Change, Lydia served as the senior director of policy at the Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation, where she focused on national policy, K-12 school improvement in Michigan, and investments improving management, human capital, quality, and transparency across district and charter public schools in Washington, D.C. Prior to The Broad Foundation, she held the position of vice president and executive director of the Institute for a Competitive Workforce at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, where she worked with the business community on national and state policies and programs to improve early childhood, pre-K through post-secondary public education, and workforce training. Lydia also served as the vice president of programs for the Kimsey Foundation, where her grant portfolio focused on strategic support for district leadership, charter school expansion, closing the digital divide for low-income families, and wrap-around services for students in D.C. Public Schools. Lydia holds a B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania and serves on the boards of the American Youth Policy Forum and the Edvance Foundation. You can reach Lydia at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Project Director, Marketplace Research
“I learn best by example. If I have a chance to observe or experience a new learning, it is easier for me to replicate and adapt it. With a good model, I am able to adapt new knowledge and skills more easily.”
Before joining Digital Promise, Christina led program evaluations for federal and state initiatives and delivered professional development and technical assistance to school districts at Measurement Incorporated. Formerly a high school English teacher, Christina left the classroom to study education policy with a desire to improve student outcomes by offering a practitioner’s perspective to education research. For instance, in 2014, she researched the effect of state induction policies on novice teacher attrition. Christina earned a Ph.D. in education administration and policy from the State University of New York at Albany and a bachelor’s degree in secondary education and English from Boston College. You can reach Christina at: email@example.com.
Technical Project Director, Verizon Innovative Learning Schools
“I consider myself to be an experiential learner. I start by gaining foundational knowledge from a publication or video, pick the brains of people knowledgeable on the subject, and create a process to accomplish what I want to learn or do. Along the way, and at the end, I continue to reflect on my progress and make adjustments as needed. I’ve learned to do many things, from building furniture to enterprise networks, and have come to appreciate that learning is the journey to accomplishment.”
Mike comes to Digital Promise from a fast-growing school district near Madison, Wisconsin. Working for 10 years as the Director of Technology, Mike guided the implementation of enterprise network systems and numerous innovations in digital media and learning, including interactive technology, mobile devices, and instructional gaming through a partnership with Filament Games. Major accomplishments include founding WISEdash Local, a data warehouse and dashboard system consortium of 20 school districts, and implementing 1:1 laptops to 5,000 students and teachers. Mike started his career in education as an English teacher, earning a Bachelor of Science degree in English and a Master of Science degree in Educational Media from the University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse. He also earned his Doctor of Education degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with an emphasis in technology staff development. A strong believer in the use of data and continuous improvement, Mike recently completed training in Lean/Six Sigma Greenbelt. Contact Mike at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Associate, League of Innovative Schools
“I realized technology could help me learn when I needed information on unique topics such as piano theory, Chinese dialects, and basketball fundamentals.”
Before joining Digital Promise, Greyson was a Confidential Assistant at the U.S. Department of Education Center for Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships, where he supported The President’s Challenge, My Brother’s Keeper, and The Fellowship for Race and Equity in Education. Greyson’s professional experience also includes working as a Program Analyst for Chainbridge Technologies, where he supported the development of FEMA’s deployment database. He has also coded statistical data for USAID projects related to climate change services in developing countries. Further, as Princeton in Asia fellow in Shanghai, China, he served as a bilingual teacher, debate coach, basketball coach, and dorm parent. He received his Bachelor of Arts from Wofford College in Government and Chinese with a concentration in World Politics. He can be reached at email@example.com.
Professional Learning Coordinator
“As I watched my children learning a new skill, I realized that everything we do has a learning curve. I try to approach every situation as a learning experience and think about my own learning curve. If I can find a golden nugget that I can make my own, I feel the experience was successful.”
Kathryn Marinos is the Professional Learning Coach at Digital Promise. In this role she focuses on curating lessons learned across Digital Promise and the field and sharing them with interested schools through consulting services. She also leads the assessment of Digital Promise’s Deeper Learning micro-credentials. Prior to joining Digital Promise, Kathryn served at the San Mateo County Office of Education (SMCOE) on the Accountability, Innovation, and Results team. In this role, Kathryn led innovative education technology projects in San Mateo County School Districts. She assisted districts with advancing their strategies and practices to improve student learning with a particular focus on student data privacy. She also worked on the iZone San Mateo County initiative, a public private partnership with the Full Circle Fund to spur innovation across the county’s schools. Before SMCOE, she worked in the public education, IT industry and nonprofit sectors. She helped start the non-profit Jean Nidetch Women’s Center at University of Nevada, Las Vegas while earning a bachelor’s degree in Sociology. She is very active in her community including the Parkside Intermediate School PTO, past board member of the San Bruno Education Foundation, and is currently serving as the President of the San Bruno Lions Club.
Video Producer & Digital Storytelling Coach
“I learn from everyone I encounter. I love asking an open-ended question such as “Do you enjoy what you do?” and watching people take their answer toward what they are most passionate about or what they wish they could accomplish. Every conversation is an opportunity to learn something new as long as you listen to the person’s soul.”
Representing Digital Promise Global, Dimitri collaborates with Digital Promise.
Since 2001, Dimitri has worked at Columbia College Chicago, Youth Speaks, Bay Area Video Coalition, Mill Valley Film Festival, SF Sketchfest, Illinois Leadership Seminars and Free Spirit Media, where he learned how to breakdown, organize and produce projects of all types. He graduated from Columbia College Chicago with a BA in Film and Video Producing. Dimitri has trained youth in media production, leadership development and workshopped adults in discovering their preferred work culture. He has produced music videos for Bay Area artists, short narrative films, promo videos for small businesses, training videos for Facebook and Yahoo, and documentaries. He is currently the creator of a web series that focuses on The Ignition Point of addiction and passion and a resident at San Francisco Film Society’s FilmHouse Residency Program. Dimitri can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Online Community Manager
“I seek out people who have walked the path I am attempting and if I am pursuing a new path, I seek out those with experiences similar to what I want to learn and see what applies.”
Representing Digital Promise Global, Scott collaborates with Digital Promise.
Scott Moore has 20 years‘ experience establishing, growing, and fostering large and small online communities and the teams that support those communities using a variety of community platforms including virtual worlds, live chat systems, forums, and unconferences. He has managed and directed community at Answers.com, Charles and Helen Schwab Foundation, Communities.com, and Fujitsu, and consulted with clients such as Healthsparq, Diabetes Hands Foundation, Edutopia, and Autodesk. Scott seeks opportunities to use his experience in online communities to help people help each other to make a positive change in their own lives and those around them.
Project Associate, Verizon Innovative Learning Schools
“The thing I want to learn next is the art of photography. I love taking photos and, next, I really want to explore the entire process in depth – from framing good shots, using equipment, editing, and everything else.”
Prior to joining Digital Promise, Emily worked on the research and policy team at the Arts Education Partnership (AEP), where she tracked and analyzed arts education policies in all 50 states and helped coordinate a research review panel. Emily has also worked on Capitol Hill, as a legislative assistant to a member of U.S. House of Representatives. In that role, she monitored education policy, regularly meeting with students and educators. Emily graduated from American University, where she earned a B.A. in political science and completed a certificate program focusing on women in politics. Emily can be reached at: email@example.com.
Digital Promise Fellow, Challenge Based Learning
“I love to learn. And I learn by jumping in the deep end, splashing around, making waves, and learning from the experience. My most profound insights have emerged from challenges, risk, adventure and discomfort.”
Mark has over 30 years of experience in the field of education, including positions as a middle and secondary teacher and coach, outdoor educator, wilderness guide/instructor, district technology and curriculum director, professional development provider, multimedia/web/graphic designer, consultant and faculty/program director at the university level, and entrepreneur. During his 10 years at Arizona State University, Mark moved from director of educational technology at KAET/PBS, to a faculty member in the COE, to a director within the University Technology Office.
Intertwined with his experience in public and private education is over a decade working with and for Apple in a variety of roles including Apple Distinguished Educator, contractor, a Development Executive, and Manager of Online Content. Mark was an integral part of the original Apple Classrooms of Tomorrow – Today (ACOT2) team that developed the concept of Challenge Based Learning (CBL), co-authored the CBL white paper, and managed the pilot and implementation projects for Apple. Mark has degrees in political science and economics (Colorado College), theology and education (Princeton Theological Seminary), and public policy (Claremont Graduate University), and is currently pursuing a degree in graphic information technology. He is also a proud owner of a lifelong ABD/PhD in Education. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Partnerships Director, Learner Positioning Systems
“Powerful reflection happens in digital spaces. In my case study research of high school seniors, individual reflection grew naturally from participating in digital communities of practice. These learners looked back on all they had done in the digital space and saw their personal learning processes and best practices laid out. That is powerful learning.”
Representing Digital Promise Global, Susanne collaborates with Digital Promise.
Prior to coming to Digital Promise, Susanne was a teacher and administrator, leading and advising 1:1 programs at middle, secondary, and collegiate levels, as well as teaching English and advising yearbook staffs. She earned her Ph.D. in Composition and New Media from Old Dominion University, focusing her research on creating effective digital communities of practice. She earned her M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction from Virginia Commonwealth University and her A.B. in English with Teacher Certification from Duke University. You can reach Susanne at: email@example.com.
Project Manager, Verizon Innovative Learning Schools
“This past spring I was working on a research project on education technology use in India that included some field work in different parts of the country. I learned a TON about not only the Indian education system, but also the culture, people, and of course, delicious food in the country.”
Stacey comes to Digital Promise with five years of experience in education and education technology. She began her career as a high school physics teacher with Teach For America in the Boston area, while completing a graduate degree and thesis focused on resource allocation in K-12 school districts in Massachusetts. She left the classroom to pursue research in education technology full-time at MIT. Through her research, Stacey designed a rubric for administrators to use to assess readiness for large scale technology implementations in schools. She has earned a Master’s degree in Technology and Policy from MIT, an M.Ed. in Teaching and Curriculum from Boston University, and a bachelor’s degree in Economics from MIT. You can reach Stacey at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Chief Operating Officer
“When I need to learn something new, I break it down into small discrete bits of knowledge or information I can learn along the way. This helps me figure out where to start and makes the process much less overwhelming for me.”
Prior to joining Digital Promise, Kathryn worked at the Association of Small Foundations, an organization dedicated to strengthening and inspiring small-staff philanthropy. During her nine year tenure at ASF she held a variety of positions, most recently Managing Director. Kathryn also worked in environmental policy at the Environmental Protection Agency, implementing innovative market-based mechanisms to reduce air pollution and was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Bulgaria. Kathryn holds an M.B.A. from the Yale School of Management and a B.S. in Environmental Engineering from Cornell University. You can reach Kathryn at: email@example.com.
Communications and Content Manager, Educator Micro-credentials
“Thanks to a second grade science project, I had the opportunity for my mother to show me how to use this thing called the “Encyclopedia” tucked away in a bookshelf at my grandma’s — the same Encyclopedia my mom used in college. I didn’t have the words then, but I know now that type of learning is the strongest because it put connection and discovery in the center.”
Before joining Digital Promise, Hashim worked as an elementary reading and writing teacher for Atlanta Public Schools. After this, he supported community and student engagement programming at Emory University and the United Negro College Fund.
Hashim most recently led the marketing and strategic communications for the District of Columbia Public Schools’ teacher recruitment, retention, and diversity efforts. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature from Georgetown University and a Master of Arts in English and Critical Theory from Vanderbilt University.
External Director, XQ Vista High
“I learn from everyone and everything around me. I’m like a sponge absorbing new ideas and perspectives that shape who I am and how I relate to the world.”
Kim is the External Project Director for Vista High School’s XQ Super School grant, a collaborative project with Digital Promise. She has spent more than a decade as a public relations strategist in corporate and nonprofit sectors, designing and executing strategy for community engagement, media campaigns and events. Kim is also a writer with a knack for translating complex concepts into clear and compelling copy. She is passionate about connecting communities in support of education innovation and strengthening partnerships, and since 2012 has been a leader in the STEAM movement in K-16 education. Prior to that, Kim managed corporate communications for life science companies in Southern California. She earned a bachelor’s degree in Communication from Santa Clara University. You can reach Kim at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Project Manager, Learner Positioning Systems
“When I was about 12 years old, my dad bought my older brother an early CD-based video game system that included an interactive encyclopedia. I remember spending hours searching the encyclopedia for videos of great 20th century speeches and content about astrophysics. It was clear then that technology would democratize and transform learning at a massive scale.”
Representing Digital Promise Global, Tyler collaborates with Digital Promise.
Prior to joining Digital Promise, Tyler was the Professional Development Manager for the City of Philadelphia’s Out-of-School Time (OST) programs for grades K-12. There, he and his team of Program Analysts developed and implemented a learning program that covered topics such as project-based learning, supporting diverse learners, and creating positive program culture. Prior to that, Tyler served as a Special Education teacher and OST Program Analyst in Philadelphia, PA, and as Education Director for a Boys and Girls Club in Camden, NJ. He earned his M.Ed. in Elementary and Special Education from Chestnut Hill College, and his BA from Rutgers University in sociology/anthropology. You can reach Tyler at: email@example.com.
Maker Learning Associate
“I’m surrounded by a lot of people who are truly passionate about their work and interests. Their enthusiasm motivates me to listen and learn as much as I can.”
Before joining Digital Promise, Maria was the Climate Fellow at the Institute at the Golden Gate, where she supported a group of informal educators dedicated to increasing climate literacy and action in the Bay Area. Her fellowship projects included designing a survey to assess environmental educator needs and identifying best practices of databases related to climate change. Maria received her B.S. at Simmons College where she double majored in environmental science and computer science, with a minor in biostatistics.
Operations and Finance Associate
“When I learn something new I like to try to look at it from all the perspectives I can. Being open-minded while learning helps me understand concepts and feel more confident in what I am learning. I like the gather as much information about something as I can.”
Alex graduated from Western Washington University with a B.A. in Business Administration with a concentration in finance. A week after graduating, she moved across the country to join the team at Digital Promise. She was actively involved in her university as the president of the Financial Management Association, manager of the Student Scholarship Fund and lead finance tutor. She helps with the operations and book keeping at Digital Promise. You can reach Alex at Alex@digitalpromise.org.
“I learn from everyone around me! I am surrounded by smart friends, family, and colleagues who each have their own unique skill set. It’s incredible what you can learn just by asking questions and listening.”
Representing Digital Promise Global, Alison collaborates with Digital Promise.
Alison is currently finishing her Ph.D. in Cognitive Psychology at the University of Maryland with a focus in language and cognition. Prior to moving to D.C., she was involved in a few research projects in the Boston area, including investigating the biological underpinnings of autism at the Shriver Center and working to develop more linguistically-sound reading assessments for young-adult readers at Boston University. Alison received her M.S. in psychology from the University of Maryland and her B.A. in cognitive science from Vassar College. You can reach Alison at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Senior Innovation Fellow for Education R&D
“I started creating and programming games when I was working on my Ph.D. research in psychoacoustics to see how hearing develops over time in children. I was amazed at how well simple games worked at capturing attention and creating engagement. These same techniques served me well developing game for training and education for both kids and military personnel.”
Dr. Russell Shilling is a Digital Promise Senior Innovation Fellow funded by the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative. In this role, he is responsible for exploring innovative approaches to EdTech development that draw upon his experiences in education, research, and as a former program officer at the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA).
Previously, Shilling was appointed by the Obama Administration to the U.S. Department of Education as the Executive Director of STEM Initiatives. He is a retired Navy Captain and served for 22 years as a Navy Aerospace Experimental Psychologist focusing on training, education and psychological health. In addition to a variety of program management positions, he served as an Associate Professor at both the United States Air Force Academy and the Naval Postgraduate School. Shilling was an early pioneer in the serious games movement and has been responsible for award-winning games for STEM education, medical training, and psychological health. He has developed successful programs to treat PTSD in service members using virtual reality and graphic novel art therapy while also developing award-winning outreach programs with Sesame Workshop to help military children cope with deployments, injury, and grief. As the parent of two autistic boys, he advocates for improved technology and research for autistic students and adults.
He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Wake Forest University and a Ph.D. in Experimental Psychology / Neuroscience from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.
Executive Director, League of Innovative Schools
“I like to surround myself with people who continually teach me new things or introduce me to new experiences. I tend to learn by observing others and then trying my hand at it. I figure if I get started, I will quickly know what questions to ask and what information I need to move forward.”
Prior to joining Digital Promise, Ms. Smith served as Chief Learning and Innovation Officer with the Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship (NFTE), leading the innovation strategy for the global leader in youth entrepreneurship education. Ms. Smith oversaw the development of a portfolio of college- and career-ready programs to empower disadvantaged youth to lead economically sustainable lives and research on the Entrepreneurial Mindset Index (EMI) – a pioneering tool for measuring the impact of non-cognitive skills on student success.
Previously, Ms. Smith was Vice President of Education at PBS, where she directed the education strategy, including the launch of PreK-12 digital curriculum and teacher support services in partnership with school districts and states. Ms. Smith also served as Vice President of Product Development for Discovery Education, where she oversaw thecreation of a portfolio of broadband services and learning tools for K-12 schools, including Discovery Streaming and curriculum digital products. Prior to Discovery, Ms. Smith was at the Annenberg/Corporation for Public Broadcasting Project, where she developed digital tools to support students taking college courses for credit at a distance.
Ms. Smith is an Aspen-Pahara Institute fellow, member of the Maryland State Department of Education Business Management and Finance board, former board member of the Black Alliance for Educational Options (BAEO) and former board chair of the Arts and Technology Academy Public Charter School. She received her Master of Business Administration from Johns Hopkins University and her Bachelors of Science from the University of Colorado at Boulder.
Director of Story
“I learn by asking a lot of questions. Once I identify a challenge, I love to figure it out by looking to my personal network, connecting the dots, and then telling the story of my experiences along the way.”
Marco Antonio Torres taught middle school and high school for ten years. He also was a media coach, an education technology director, and one of the professional learning leaders for one of the nation’s largest urban schools in Los Angeles. In addition to his work in the classroom, Marco Torres is also a professional filmmaker and photographer who uses digital storytelling skills to add value to his curriculum and showcasing evidence. He has been recognized locally and internationally for his accomplishments in the classroom, focusing on teacher learning and storytelling. Marco is also a keynote speaker who focuses his talks on the why, what, and how of creativity. As the Senior Specialist/Learning Engineer at Apple, he was in charge of designing and implementing a professional learning plan for teachers, leaders and students of the Los Angeles Unified School District. You can reach Marco at: email@example.com.
Project Director, Verizon Innovative Learning Schools
“I learn best by drawing, diagramming and taking hand-written notes about the subject I want to learn about. In my world there is little better than a well-sharpened #2 pencil (and a smartphone to take a photo of my drawings and diagrams to share with others).”
Kristin comes to Digital Promise from Verizon, where she was a Senior Manager for Education Programs within Corporate Social Responsibility and the Verizon Foundation. Kristin’s career in corporate philanthropy focused on establishing content and state partnerships to support educational programs, as well as national professional development models to scale professional learning. Prior to Verizon, Kristin taught visual art to middle school students, primarily in Loudoun County, VA. Kristin earned a B.F.A. in Visual Arts from Cornell University and an M.Ed. in Art Education from Pennsylvania State University. You can reach Kristin at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Program Manager, League of Innovative Schools
“By the time I was 8 years old, I travelled to India, England, Viet Nam, China, Egypt and about 30 other countries all through a CD-ROM that came with the purchase of my family’s Packard Bell computer. As someone who didn’t start traveling until I went to college, I learned about a world beyond my own through a shiny disc that every now and then skipped, but nonetheless provided a wealth of knowledge.”
Prior to joining Digital Promise, Vina worked at Ernst & Young as a consultant advising financial services organizations in process improvement, change management, regulatory compliance, and systems integration. In the past, Vina completed a fellowship with Education Pioneers where she worked with Pacific Charter School Development to build charter schools in Los Angeles, designed a student ambassador program for the Indonesian International Education Foundation, and authored a manual to guide local investments in indigenous communities with CARE Ecuador. Vina received her master’s in Urban Planning with an emphasis on social and community planning and a B.S. in Business Administration with a focus on International Business, both from the University of Southern California.
Chief Innovation Officer
“I learn a lot from my kids, my parents and my mentors. My kids give me perspective, my parents give me wisdom, and my mentors help me make sense of everything.”
Representing Digital Promise Global, Vic collaborates with Digital Promise.
Vic is a seasoned thought leader in education technology and philanthropy. He is an expert in learning science, innovation, and scaling what works and has launched game-changing initiatives that have increased access to education and improved learning for tens of millions of learners in the Americas, Europe, Asia and Africa. Prior to Digital Promise Global, Vic consulted with a number of foundations and organizations on education technology, innovation and philanthropy. Prior to consulting, Vic developed strategies and managed over $100 million in technology-focused grants at the Hewlett Foundation to launch and grow the Open Educational Resources movement and create and advance the Deeper Learning strategy. Vic completed a master’s degree in education and technology at Stanford University and a bachelor’s degree in systems engineering at the University of Pennsylvania. Vic also received a scholarship and attended Berklee College of Music for a year. Previous experience includes working at startups in Silicon Valley for eight years with expertise in human-centric system design and innovation methodologies. You can reach Vic at: email@example.com.
Program Director, Global Learning
“When I was an English teacher in Brazil, I realized technology’s impact on how we learn because I had students who were fluent in English and had never completed an English class. They learned the language from online videos, games, and learning communities.”
Representing Digital Promise Global, Chelsea collaborates with Digital Promise.
Chelsea Waite directs Digital Promise Global’s work with international partners and global learning programs. She is responsible for managing corporate partnerships for Digital Promise, as well as the 360 Filmmakers Challenge, a project that engages students in sharing their stories through 360 degree video. Prior to coming to Digital Promise, Chelsea was an English teacher and program coordinator at two universities in the Northeast of Brazil, working to increase access to English language learning and international study opportunities. Chelsea’s work in Brazil began through the Fulbright English Teaching Assistant program, where she was assigned to support professors in an English teacher training program at an interior state university. Chelsea is accredited by the Partnership Brokers Association, and has a certification in Advanced Facilitation from the UN and Soliya. She graduated with a degree in history from Brown University, and is currently pursuing a Masters in Social Innovation from the University of Cambridge. Chelsea can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Program Director, Maker Learning
“I learn by reading, talking, and trying things out. When I think I’ve got something figured out, I’ll usually try to write about it. That’s when I discover that I don’t know it as well as I thought and I start the cycle again.”
Representing Digital Promise Global, Josh collaborates with Digital Promise.
Prior to joining Digital Promise, Josh helped develop the makerspace and maker learning program at Friends’ Central School in Wynnewood, PA, and has taught Photography, Information and Digital Literacy, Computer Science, Shop, and STEAM. He is a co-founder of Rough Cut Schools, consulting and advocating for media literacy and production in schools around the world. Before that, he worked in theaters and schools teaching kids about technical theater and design. Josh has a B.A. in theater from Wesleyan University and a Masters of Liberal Arts with a focus in media and cultural studies from Temple University. You can reach him at email@example.com.
Professional Learning Engineer, Verizon Innovative Learning Schools
“I would like to learn a foreign language. Learning a new language opens up international opportunities to be able to collaborate with other cultures.”
Prior to joining Digital Promise, Shaun was an independent contractor for Discovery Education as an instructional coach. Shaun worked with school districts throughout the United States to build capacity of teachers/facilitators in technology-pedagogy integration to improve teaching and learning. Shaun has also served as a global professional development specialist in Cape Town, South Africa increasing the literacy rate amongst adult learners. She was also an elementary/middle school teacher. Shaun received her B.S. in elementary education from Morgan State University and her M.S. in educational leadership from Towson State University. Shaun can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Professional Learning Coach, Challenge Based Learning
“One of my favorite learning experiences came at an unconference organized by students who were experts with technology. I learned to code, how to create animations, and even how to play Billie Jean on GarageBand. It was an incredible day of learning and student empowerment!”
Christine comes to Digital Promise from Apple Professional Development where she was a senior specialist supporting a large high school district. Previously, Christine was a 1st- and 4th-grade classroom teacher and coach in Hershey, Pa. She is passionate about building professional learning communities and is the founder and creator of both edcamp Harrisburg and #1stchat on Twitter. Christine received her B.S in elementary & early childhood education from Elizabethtown College, her master’s of education in language and literacy from Millersville University, and her Certificate in Technology Integration from Penn State University. You can reach Christine at: email@example.com.
Partnership Manager, Educator Micro-Credentials
“My greatest teachers in life have been my parents. Their spirit and passion for life, and especially for education, is what has propelled me to be the woman I am today. I also learn from the communities I work in, listening to their needs and allowing that to create the foundations of my knowledge of them and my work.”
Before joining Digital Promise, Odelia was the VP of Strategy and Talent at a media tech start-up based in Indiana she helped found. Odelia spent several years as a classroom teacher, primarily as a Reading and Language Arts teacher in Miami. Her first class was an Intro to Jazz History course she taught to middle school students as a senior in high school, which solidified her love of education. Odelia left the classroom to pursue research in the sociology of education, focused on the experiences of black male youth. Odelia also has a background in peace education and children’s rights, developing programs for local NGOs in the Greater Accra region of Ghana. Odelia earned an MPhil in politics, development and democratic education from the University of Cambridge and a B.A. in history and literature from Harvard University. You can reach Odelia at: firstname.lastname@example.org