Meet the Team
Ashlynn is an Communications Associate at SecondMuse where she leads the Communication and Marketing strategies for the NASA Space Apps Challenge. She has a background in strategic communications, social media management, and content creation. Her passions are focused on diversity and social impact. She has DEIA experiences across the nation and world, from representing Hawaii’s social impact in Japan and education leadership at Harvard Business School. She hopes to bring her passions to the Space Apps community, bringing people together and solving challenges that impact the world.
Ben is the Senior Vice President of Strategy and Design at Mindgrub. He has been a member of the Space Apps Global Organizing team since 2015, supporting the development of Space Apps' digital platforms. He appreciates the opportunity to enable tens-of-thousands of participants to collaborate, innovate, and share their work on the challenges set forth each year.
Bridgette is the Community Manager for NASA Space Apps Challenge where she is the main point of contact for all Space Apps Local Leads and the Space Apps Community. She provides them guidance, support, and resources for their local communities. As a Program Manager as SecondMuse, Bridgette has built and maintained internal and external relationships for ongoing global projects and research initiatives. She has managed and supported global communities through community events, global trainings, and mentorship programs. She is passionate about connecting, empowering and supporting communities, and her work in solving complex global problems.
Cara is an industrial/organizational psychologist and Senior Consultant at Booz Allen Hamilton. She was first introduced to Space Apps during her DEIA (Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility) internship at NASA, where she combined her love for learning and development with diversity and inclusion to drive the DEIA goals of NASA’s Applied Sciences team. She is committed to using her psychological expertise to develop the best in individuals, teams, and organizations.
Chris is the Data Visualization Specialist for the Space Apps Program. He is also the Chat Platform and Universal Event Lead for the 2022 Space Apps Challenge. Chris is always hungry to learn something new; always appreciating the journey and respecting the difficulty. Some other fun facts about Chris are: he has over 20 years of experience in Tae-Kwon-Do, is an Eagle Scout, was a volunteer EMT, and was a Data Science Coach! As one of the newest members of the Space Apps Team, he looks forward to giving his all to making the community better in any way he can.
Carolyn is a Lead Project Manager at Mindgrub and oversees all things related to the Space Apps website for the NASA Space Apps Challenge program. She is a dynamic project management professional who has more than a decade of experience spanning across project management, brand marketing, public relations, and events. Carolyn is a Certified Scrum Master (CSM) and has an MBA from North Central College. She is inspired by the work of those who have a passion for science and technology and what they can do with the information made available to them via Space Apps. She enjoys seeing the end results that come from the collaborative efforts of each team.
Daniela is a Communications Specialist for the NASA Space Apps Global Organizing Team. She joined the Space Apps team in 2022, bringing a decade of experience spanning broadcasting, marketing, media relations, and communications strategy in the public and nonprofit sectors. Daniela has a personal passion for the arts and innovation, and is excited to witness the intersection between the arts and sciences that occurs during the NASA Space Apps Challenge!
Emily Abid is a Software Engineer at Mindgrub Technologies where she has been building web apps using React. She comes to Space Apps with a wide range of experience in Aeronautical Software Design. She has worked with Air traffic control, the Navy, and the Army and is excited bring her knowledge and problem solving skills to the team to help create a fun and inclusive hackathon.
HaeMee is the Assistant Deputy for the Space Apps 2022 Hackathon. Prior to joining the Space Apps Global Organizing Team in 2022, HaeMee worked on digital transformation efforts within the Aerospace industry. She has experience in IT project management, process improvement, and organizational design. HaeMee is a strong STEAM advocate and is looking forward to having a positive impact on our youth and future generations through NASA Space Apps.
Ilene is a Product Design Manager at Mindgrub. Over a variety of media she works to create simple user-focused solutions to address complex challenges. Ilene joined the Space Apps team in 2022 as a User Experience Designer, and is excited to help grow and improve the experience for Space Apps' global community.
Jess is the Space Apps Deputy Lead and the Space Apps 2022 Hackathon Lead. When she first joined the Global Organizing team in 2020 she was the NASA communications lead for Space Apps. Jess has an MBA from McGill University and has worked in the private, public, and non-profit sectors and has experience in project management, marketing, and building long-term relationships with partner organizations. Jess is excited to help grow Space Apps so that more people can join in the fun!
Joe is a Software Engineer at Mindgrub and a ten year veteran of front-end and back-end web development. He has experience in everything from large scale enterprise architectures both public and private to small business and non-profit sites. He joined the Space Apps organizing team in 2019 as the lead developer. He is excited to be a part of the team and can not wait to see what solutions the Space Apps community brings to this year's challenges.
Julie is the Space Apps Deputy Lead and Foundry Lead (a sister program of the Space Apps Challenge). She served as the Hackathon Lead for Space Apps 2020, Space Apps 2021, and the Earth Observation Dashboard Hackathon. She grew up in Huntsville, Alabama as part of a NASA family, and is excited to continue the tradition from NASA Headquarters in Washington D.C. Julie specializes in project management and brings a wealth of experience from years of organizing international exchange programs and teaching university courses while pursuing her PhD. She is passionate about fostering learning and innovation in digital environments.
Katelyn is a Community Management Specialist for the NASA Space Apps Challenge where she works closely with the entire Space Apps Community at large. Having been a participant, a three time Local Lead, and a two time Ambassador herself, she looks forward to using her unique experience to provide new resources, support, and connection for the whole community. Katelyn is also a data engineer with a passion for climate hacking. She is currently the CEO and Co-Founder of WindtelligentAI, a machine learning program that predicts wind speeds at 100m for the sustainable wind sector using NASA’s open data. Katelyn looks forward to leveraging her past experience with Space Apps and her experience with NASA’s open data to make this year’s hackathon an unforgettable experience for all!
Katey is the design lead for Space Apps. She is exploring ways to best support and grow the impact for the Space Apps community. Katey participated in Space Apps 10 years ago as a community lead in the second ever Space Apps hackathon, was a speaker at the inaugural Space Apps bootcamp sharing about her experience hacking as a non-technical participant and supported the smooth delivery of Space Apps events in 2016, 2017 and 2018. She has attended events in Philadelphia, NYC, and Buenos Aires. This year she brings her design skills to the team. She co-leads the Practice Group at SecondMuse where she focuses on developing and codifying best practices for how to build community and impact in a diversity of settings to solve some of our most pressing global challenges – inequality, access and climate resilience. She is passionate about the power of hackathons because her attendance at Random Hacks of Kindness in 2011 gave her experience building a technology later adopted by food justice organizations but also turned her career on a path to where she is now.
Keith is a five-time Space Apps challenge writer and became the Space Apps program scientist in 2022. He also serves as program manager for the Ecological Forecasting program and program scientist for the Biological Diversity program within the Earth Science Division at NASA Headquarters (HQ). He is a former AAAS Science and Technology Policy Fellow, visiting assistant professor at Texas A&M University, and Peace Corps volunteer in the Islamic Republic of Mauritania.
Lauren is an Interactive Art Director at Mindgrub where she leads the Emerging Technologies design practice. Lauren was a participant in Space Apps 2014, and has helped design the digital Space Apps experience since 2018.
Lena is a Lead Associate at Booz Allen Hamilton with a background in Earth science, technical writing, and project management. She has supported NASA endeavors for over 30 years and is excited to contribute to the Space Apps mission of inspiring people around the world to use NASA data in creative ways.
Marie is a Senior Program Manager at SecondMuse. She joined the NASA Space Apps Global Organizing Team in 2019 and since then has led the Collaborator work for the program. With a strong focus on inclusive ecosystem development, she also advises on program design to help meet the needs of our Space Apps Community. She has over 12 years of experience bringing together collaborators to strategically support innovative programming. With a passion for social impact and talent for project management, she has worked across sectors including non-profit, corporate, higher education, and government.
Neisan is the Director of Data and Strategic Programs at SecondMuse. He has 10 years of experience implementing data innovation programs with leading development and technology organizations such as Intel, NASA, NYCEDC, UNEP and the World Bank Group. His areas of expertise include big data, corporate strategy, civic tech, entrepreneurship and sustainability. Neisan is passionate about addressing complex development challenges through collaboration, human-centered design, and technology.
Russel has a background in program management and partnerships at SecondMuse. Over the course of ten years, he has successfully implemented open innovation programs with several Global 500 organizations, including HP, Rabobank, ExxonMobil, Toyota Material Handling, and Peraton. His areas of expertise include corporate innovation, entrepreneurship, DEIA, and access to capital. Now, he is bringing his expertise and passion to the NASA International Space Apps Challenge Global Organizing Team as part of the global community management for the NASA Space Apps Challenge and the NASA Space Apps Collective.
Sam is a General Management Consultant at Booz Allen Hamilton and works on the NASA International Space Apps Challenge Global Organizing Team in internal communications and as the Team Formation-Project Submission lead. Sam's favorite part of the Space Apps Challenge is watching people come together to create the most innovative and creative solutions for the toughest challenges every year
Sarah (MS, MPH) is a Canadian and British environmental health scientist and a Lead Associate with Booz Allen Hamilton and the Earth Science Division at NASA HQ. As the lead for Space Apps programming, she relies on her background in remote sensing, ecology, international relations, and design to guide the Space Apps enterprise to new heights. Sarah is always on the lookout for experiences that complement personal interests in health disparities, environmental and infectious disease, and international development.
Shobhana (MD, PhD) serves as the Open Innovation and Community Applications Manager with Earth Science Division’s Applied Sciences Program at NASA Headquarters. She manages crowdsourcing activities to invite talents and experiences outside of the NASA community for the discovery and development of applications of Earth observations for decision-making. She brings to Space Apps her biomedical and scientific expertise, as well as her passion to engage and elevate the brightest and most creative minds around the world who come together to solve problems we face in space and on Earth. Shobhana completed her medical and graduate training at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology, and trained as a postdoctoral fellow at Yale University School of Medicine in the Department of Neurology.
Simone is the Senior Manager of Program Communications & Marketing at SecondMuse. She joined NASA Space Apps Global Organizing Team in 2020 where she has since collaborated with the team to create marketing strategies that support the Challenge and encourage collaboration. With a passion for social impact, Simone prides herself in community building and ecosystem development. She draws on her experience in the development and execution of successful communications campaigns for brands as well as other programs at SecondMuse.
TJ is a Lead UX Designer for marketing website experiences at Mindgrub. With over 8 years of experience creating award-winning website user experiences, marketing communications plans, and content strategies, TJ comes to the Space Apps program to create an engaging, seamless, and intuitive experience for users of the Space Apps website. He is excited to join the Space Apps global community and see what incredible solutions participants can create this year!
Toni is a Communications Lead and Project Manager for the NASA Space Apps Global Organizing Team. She is experienced in strategic communications, media relations and program management across sectors including manufacturing, non-profit, technology and government. Toni is passionate about empowering innovators in the transformation of their ideas into viable pieces of technology, startups and other entrepreneurial endeavors. As a former local lead of Main Stage events in Huntsville, Alabama, she looks forward to supporting Space Apps' continued growth.
Valeria is the Analytics Lead for the NASA Space Apps Program. She has also served as a data scientist and strategist for NASA’s Office of Diversity and Equal Opportunity and NASA’s Chief Information Officer. Valeria is passionate about leveraging analytics for social good innovation and has experience doing so through leading hackathons and pro-bono efforts. She is excited to leverage her knowledge in data analytics to support the Space Apps community as they solve challenges that impact the world.
Yasha is an Associate at Booz Allen Hamilton with many years of program design and management experience. He comes to NASA from the World Bank where he worked at the Global Partnership for Social Accountability while completing his MBA at Georgetown University. Yasha is a big believer in the power of people coming together to make the world a better place and thus could not be more excited to be a part of the Space Apps community.