x Staff and Board of Directors | GeekGirlCon

Staff & Board of Directors

Programming Department

Panel Program Manager – Marina Martinez (she/her)

“As Panel Program Manager Marina crafts the programming schedule for the con and helps curate the panels that are selected. Marina grew up in San Diego, California reading fantasy novels and watching Shaun of the Dead on repeat. She fell into the world of online fandom and fan culture at a young age when she discovered other people were as obsessed with Yu-Gi-Oh! as she was. Marina’s hobbies include learning k-pop choreo, reading copious amounts of fanfiction, and watching BL dramas from around the world.

DIY Science Zone Project Manager – Raychelle Burks (she/her)

When a career as a deadly ninja assassin proved too tame, Raychelle turned to chemistry. She’s currently an Assistant Professor at a super-secret-but-not-that-secret institution. To relax from a day of mad scientist duties, Raychelle enjoys sci-fi/horror movies, knitting, and consuming books of all genres. In her spare time, she writes about science and culture for a number of blogs and tweets up a storm.

DIY Science Zone Events Coordinator – Torrey Stenmark (she/her)

Stenmark is an award-winning costumer and a college chemistry instructor at Shoreline Community College. The same skill set (attention to detail, exacting record-keeping, and refusal to be intimidated by new problems, among others) that earned her a master’s degree in organic chemistry has enabled her to compete and win in the masters division of costume contests on the local and national levels. Follow Torrey on Twitter @tereshkova2001.

Programming Assistant – Teal Christensen (she/her)

Teal (she/her) joined GeekGirlCon in 2016 and is currently Manager of Editorial Services. Her team runs the blog and creates most of the public-facing copy for the org.

Outside of GeekGirlCon, Teal is studying to become a librarian. Some of her library-related interests are curating good collections and programs for queer teens and helping our public libraries become the anti-racist institutions they have the potential to be.

Teal’s primary geeky arenas are books and TV, where she gravitates mostly to women- and queer-centric media. Right now, her main hobbies are trying to write novels about magic and science and meeting every week with her Twilight book club. She lives in Seattle with her three sisters and two cats.

Activities Manager - Deepika Anand (She/her)

I am a software developer by profession and a budding flow artists by heart. I am the activities manager responsible to keep tech interactive as I am fascinated by the intersection of technology and creativity. I believe that geekiness knows no gender boundaries, and with the right support, we can all soar to unimaginable heights. Let’s change the game together!

Do you know the term bug actually originated from a real insect. The engineers working on Harvard Mark II computer found out that the cause of the problem was a moth that got trapped in one of the machine’s relays.The engineers documented this incident by taping the moth to the logbook. From that point on, the term “bug” has become synonymous with computer errors

Talent and Hospitality Coordinator - Sophie Evans (She/Her)

Sophie Evans is a Talent and Hospitality Coordinator at GeekGirlCon. Based in New York City, this will be her first year being a part of such a wonderful event, as well as her first time being on the west coast! Currently, Sophie is geeking out over creating her own Dungeons and Dragons one-shot. She has an immense love of cats, sweets, and cozy indie games.

Workshop Coordinator – Kay Ratcliff (she/her)

Growing up, Kay went from reading under the desk in math class to studying math, physics, and computer science in college. Since graduating, she has worked to improve representation in stem fields as an informal educator and tutor, and is excited to bring this perspective to GeekGirlCon workshops.
Alongside her existing crafting and baking hobbies, she is always seeking out new things to learn. She is currently learning how to stay upright on a snowboard and how to keep plants alive.
Kay’s interests include Star Wars, Star Trek, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Lord of the Rings, and most stories where a woman has a sword. She spends her time planning board game nights, replaying Dragon Age for the millionth time, and overthinking her favorite stories.

Arts Talent Coordinator – Jessie Gaupel (she/her)

Jessie Gaupel supports the Directors of Programming to help make GeekGirlCon the geekiest it can be! She received her BA in Theatre at CSU Long Beach and her MFA in Arts Leadership at Seattle University. Jessie is a veteran geek who still remembers livejournal and when using “XD” was cool. At any given day, you can be sure she’s watching cartoons, crying about Kingdom Hearts, or writing her manuscript (which she’s also probably crying about). Jessie is excited to be working to be bring this incredible event to Seattle.

Cosplay Contest Coordinator – Shiree Espinoza (she/they)

Hi! I’m Shiree! I live in Puyallup, WA and love to cosplay and act around the state! I currently have worked at (least) 4 of the cons in WA state and one in Oregon, this taught me how to work into the field you see me in at this con, Cosplay Contest Coordinator!

With that in mind I have been part of the cosplay community for 12 years now and seen everything; the good, the bad, and your seams. Just kidding.

I value cosplay diversity in skills we learn from the people around us. We don’t all need to be seamstresses to be the best cosplayers, we just need to show what is our best. If that means to alter clothes, buy an outfit, or other ways… so be it! I do not want anyone to feel discouraged to ask questions either. Cosplay is the best hobby ever and it broke me out of just being a potato my whole life after high school.

Manager of Gaming – Julia Kallweit (she/her)

Julia used to be a Special Agent at GeekGirlCon and joined the Programming Department and then Game Team. Born and raised in a small German town, she found out about the lack of local Geeks early and discovered her passion for video gaming while quarreling with her older brother to play Maniac Mansion on his C64 and conquering foreign nations in Age of Empires on her Dad’s PC. Over time she developed an interest in different fandoms and won her first carnival costume contest as Leonardo from Ninja Turtles (“And the first prize goes to this cute tortoise” – 5-year-old Julia shouting into the microphone: Wrong! I am a TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLE! – True story, unfortunately there is no video evidence). Even though her environment mostly ignored her early advances into Geek culture, she never stopped doing what she loved and eventually found a partner who is equally interested in overthrow…*cough* rescuing virtual worlds together. When she is not tending her farm in Stardew Valley or leveling her Hunter in Destiny, she can be seen kayaking on Lake Washington or training for her next half-marathon.

Tabletop Coordinator – Mikey Brandt (he/him)

Mikey was doomed to nerdery from the start; his family’s first TV was a Commodore 64 with an attached VCR and his kindergarten teacher still remembers him as “the kid who could find the answer to any question about dinosaurs.” Growing up he often pooled money with his brother to pick up every board game they found at garage sales. Missing pieces and instructions posed no real hazard for them and they spent hours making rules to work with the mysteries lurking in those marred and much loved boxes.

Tabletop Coordinator – Abby Hollinhead (she/they)

Abby is a well rounded geek who has a special love for tabletop and video games. She enjoys streaming board games and baking on her Twitch channel and sharing gaming photos on Instagram. She loves playing just about any board gane and loves talking non-stop about them. She is passionate about creating a safe, diverse, and inclusive gaming space. When she isn’t sitting around the table with a game, she can often be found with her kiddo and fiance. You can find her everywhere on social media as thebakermeeple.

Video Gaming Coordinator - Terra (she/they)

Hellos! My name is Terra and I am the Video Gaming Coordinator! I’m frooty by day (Produce Manager) and causal gamer by night (Puzzles and Adventures). I’ve lived in Seattle for 17 years and have been a part of GGC, in some capacity, for almost a decade. I’ve also worked at ECCC and PAX. I hope to bring a lot of new and interesting games and programming to the con. I also look forward to buying as many stuffed animals as I can carry.

Random facts about me:
Portal 2 is my favourite video game.
My favourite word is between “Potato” and “Meow”, which I do say a lot.
I have an unholy love for cheese and have charcuterie almost once a week.
I have a large collect of baseball caps that I love putting pins in.

Operations Department

Exhibitor Services Manager – Amanda Smith-Hughes (she/her)

Amanda is a relative newcomer to the PNW. Having worked in various cons across the South, she is excited to bring her strengths and talents to GeekGirlCon as Exhibitor Services Manager. You can usually find Amanda dabbling in her many geeky interests from DnD to MCU to MtG and more. The consummate nerd, please come up and say, “Hi” as she can be a little shy.

Amanda is also a certified sign language interpreter and is currently pursuing her PhD in Leadership with a concentration in DEI.

Registration & Admissions Manager – Khrystine Raymond (she/they)

One of the newest additions to the GeekGirlCon squad, Khrystine was born into a house of dragons, starships, and falling blocks, spending their formative years adventuring on Pern, seeking out new life and new civilizations, and chasing the ever elusive tetris.

Unfairly banished from the living room each night at bed time only to hear the sounds of Dr. Mario, Crash Bandicoot, and Super Mario Bros floating down the hallway Khrystine quickly developed a competitive streak that blossomed into a deep love for games in all their myriad forms.

Khrystine is excited to bring professional skills to bear in a passion role as the Registration and Admissions Manager for GGC. When not glued to a screen you can find them wandering the city in search of all of the best foods, being a lounger for the fluffiest of fluffy cats, Salem Purrcival, or exploring new hobbies.

Volunteer Manager – Maggie Franquemont (she/her)

Maggie is serving as the GeekGirlCon Volunteer Manager. Originally from Colorado, Maggie has settled in Seattle after living in most of the Western US. She likes to combine her geeky tendencies with her passion for the outdoors and is always up for an adventure whether at the table or in the woods. She is a jack-of-all trades and will give most things a shot at least once. Her most repeated activities include climbing tall rocks, using thread to make cool things, and protecting her party with her Aura of Protection. Maggie’s favorite dinosaur is the Stegosaurus.

Registration Coordinator - Sarah Mongiat (She/They)

Born on the East Coast and raised in the Midwest, Sarah is pleased to be now living in the Pacific Northwest. With many years spent volunteering at event registrations for years as well as attendance at several conventions and extensive administrative work experience, she is bringing a solid presence to the role of Registration Coordinator.

Like many other neurodivergent people, she has a small amount of knowledge on any number of subjects, and her interest jumps from topic to topic regularly. If you ever want to have a discussion on scifi shows shot in Vancouver, the Queens of Crime, lesser known GBA titles, pi shawls, blackwork, British cozy mystery series, that one fantasy novel series you grew up with, obstacle course races, how cats have the squishiest paws, Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything, homemade gummy bears or button making, she’s your person.

Interpreter Services Coordinator – Julie Tergliafera (she/her)

Julie Tergliafera has been working with GeekGirlCon since 2013 as a volunteer interpreter. Originally from Louisiana, she has lived in Seattle since 2008 and enjoys everything the area has to offer: from outdoors activities such as hiking and camping to game nights and craft beers. Julie is an avid knitter and crocheter and is known for completing projects during science fiction movies and Star Trek marathons.

Survey and Data Manager - Jess Howard (they/them or she/her)

Jess wants all your details and opinions! They are the creator of surveys and keeper of responses for GeekGirlCon.

If you ever need a topic to discuss with them, we recommend time travel stories or socialist utopia (eg, the Star Trek episode “Yesterday’s Enterprise” for both).

A five-year-old child once informed them that Jess’s catchphrase is “That’s true.” And that’s true.

Senior Web Administrator – Eric Mack (he/him)

Eric Mack is an Atlanta native who wanders the world in search of the legendary Sushi-X.

His path led him to the PNW where he spends time either working on IT projects, assisting in surgery, watching anime, reading Korean subtitles, or listening to music. He is happy to join the team and put his information security skills to work.

Diversity is our strength.

IT & Web Administrator – Erin Moon (She/Her)

Erin is an IT & Web Administrator for GeekGirlCon. She lives with her 2 cats, and can be found most weekends playing video games and watching anime.

Marketing Department

Outreach Coordinator - Jenn King (She/Her)

Jenn King is an Outreach Coordinator with Geek Girl Con, working with partners to collaborate and celebrate all geeks.

Jenn’s interests and fandoms cover many topics and hobbies.
After researching art history, anthropology, and various languages in university, Jenn went on to become a game developer, truly diving into her life long interest of video games.

Her spare time is often full of attending Renaissance Faires, practicing archery, digital painting, learning new languages, finding eclectic music and creating the perfect playlist for any mood, and learning random facts about astronomy.

Marketing Copy Assistant -Olivia Near (she/her/hers)

Olivia Near works as the Marketing Copy Assistant for GeekGirlCon. She plans on studying film production and business in college and is currently working on earning her International Baccalaureate Diploma. In her free time, she enjoys binging Christopher Nolan movies, rewatching Lord of The Rings, and catching up on the latest episode of Critical Role.

Public Relations Coordinator - Ivy B (she/her)

Hi, I’m Ivy!
I am the PR Coordinator for GeekGirlCon!
I am a chaotic neutral American, living in Canada!
My professional career is filled with many years of administrative work, 3 years of Social Media and Community Manager work, as well as being a professional Dungeon Master for almost 2 years, and DMing in general for 8.

I have been a nerd, and geek since I was a child. I started off watching Star Trek, Sliders, etc with my dad, and my first console was my mom’s N64! I am an all-around nerd with a strong love of Doctor Who, Animes, Cartoons, and TTRPGS. I have been attending conventions since I was 16!

Marketing Designer - Harper Woods (she/her)

Self-proclaimed design nerd, Harper is a graphic designer (and sticker maker) who is thrilled to join the GeekGirlCon team as a Marketing Designer.
Harper tripped and fell into geek culture at a very young age, and never found her way out. She enjoys campy Grade-B horror flicks, classic monsters, science fiction, graphic novels, and all things spooky. Hobbies include drawing, zine-making, and sometimes writing about her favorite movies and music.

Harper holds a Bachelor of Design with a certificate in UX. She believes in creating responsible, inclusive messaging, and is always looking for ways to build new skills.

Marketing Coordinator – Tiffy Daud (she/her)

Tiffy’s favorite trilogies are the Broken Earth, Imperial Radch, and Machineries of Empire. As a Ravenpuff, Tiffy is untempered in her voracious reading and pursuit of coziness. She lives with her geek boyfriend, adorable bunnies, and tower of science fiction books.

Community Communications Manager – Emerald Peterson (she/her)

INFJ Hufflepuff Emerald Peterson is constantly on the lookout for ways to be more like a hobbit. When being a music major wasn’t for her, she instead graduated from Pacific Lutheran University with a major in history and a minor in psychology. Since learning new things is great, she then went on to receive a graduate certificate in Children’s Literature and another in Storytelling and Content Strategy. Hobbies include reading, writing, NOT ‘rithmatic, but drawing her friends as superheroes, baking for her weekly board game night, and taking life advice from her cat, Brisco. She is committed to encouraging growth, harmony, and positive change among the geek community, as well as supporting everybody’s right to enjoy both Star Wars and Star Trek.

Community Manager – Krissy Oh (she/her)

Krissy Oh is a recent graduate from UW Bothell as a Media & Communications major. She enjoys reading romance novels and is a huge fan of film franchises such as the Maze Runner and the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Through being on the social media team she hopes to become more familiar with social media marketing on larger social media platforms/applications.

Principal Content Strategist – Caitlin Foskey (she/her)

Caitlin (she/her) is thrilled to pair her professional writing and editing background with her nerdy interests as a Content Strategist for GeekGirlCon. A lifelong geek, Caitlin grew up with Star Wars, wrote awful anime fanfics in middle school, celebrated her love of Tolkien’s writings and art with a full back tattoo, and has a lot of thoughts about the MCU.

Email Marketing Specialist – Julia Nolan (she/her)

In addition to managing email marketing for GeekGirlCon, Julia works full time as a data scientist at PSE. In her free time, she loves cosplay, science fiction, hiking, and indulging a very spoiled dog. She’s also published a video game on Steam, is a senior editor at Allegory, and has had short stories published in a number of science fiction magazines.

Marketing Designer – Milynda Moore (she/her)

Milynda (she/her) is excited to be joining GGC as the newest Marketing Designer. She is very excited to be in this role as Milynda is currently in the process of changing careers and completing her Design degree. One of Milynda’s favorite things to do is mess with layouts and absolutely loves the UX side of design.

She absolutely loves all things Sailor Moon (especially Sailor Uranus and Neptune), Bob’s Burgers, and The Great North (look it up, it’s a fantastic show). Gravity Falls and Star vs the Forces of Evil also hold dear to her heart. When not spending time with work and school, Milynda spends a lot of time with her cat, Darwin, and husfriend. But when it’s time to have fun you can find her playing games from Hades to DBD to Little Witch in the Woods.

Full of moxie. History/mythology geek. Possibly funny. Hockey Enthusiast. Definite nerd. These elements combined create Milynda.

Merch Assistant – Amanda Zwar (she/her)

As the Merchandise Assistant, Amanda supports the Merchandise Manager in ensuring GeekGirlCon customers have a diverse selection of GeekGirlCon branded merchandise. Amanda celebrates her inner geek by playing and painting Warhammer miniatures, collecting Funko Pops!, Tiny Ghosts, anything Harry Potter (especially Snape related) and comic books. Amanda’s goal is to have the Warhammer/ wargaming community have more women and non-binary representation in a largely male dominated game/community and hopes to produce online painting tutorials for the community.

Design Manager – LaDonna Duncan (she/her)

LaDonna (she/her) is excited to be joining GGC as a Design Manager. She fell into the world of online fandom and fan culture at a young age when she discovered other people were as obsessed with anime as she was. She loves sharing music, macarons, K-pop, anime, stickers, and board/role playing/video games. LaDonna has a degree in graphic design with a minor in web design, and wants to capture the attention of viewers, communicate the right message, and inspire and attract the target audience. Her strongest skill is making a client’s vision come to life and caring about a client’s feelings when solving design problems for them. She always brings out her best work when designing.

Twitch Content Producer – Jannae Fong (she/her)

Jannae Fong is a Twitch Content Producer with GeekGirlCon. She is from Los Angeles and spent most of her formative years at Disneyland. She loves Harry Potter, Marvel, Mean Girls, Star Wars, Disney/Pixar, and Broadway musicals. She is known to never turn down a cookie and to read the Wikipedia summaries of movies and TV shows she deems too scary to watch. Sometimes she eats a vegetable.

Twitch Content Producer – Teryn Bence (she/her)

Teryn grew up north of Seattle researching a constant rotation of interests. After studying English and Linguistics yet ending up in the consumer electronics industry, she has worked in a variety of roles to bring new technologies to a wider audience. As a Twitch content producer, she hopes to continue showcasing what the amazing world of games and geek talent have to offer.

She can be found playing genre mashup video games, shadowboxing, unearthing a new nonfiction book to dive into, or still trying to figure out what her cat wants.

Twitch Content Producer – Jennifer Urrabazo (she/her)

Hello you beautiful creatures! My name is Jennifer but I answer to Jenn or Jenny as well. I am a Twitch Content Producer at GeekGirlCon. I am a recent transplant from Austin, Texas. I have been in Seattle for a year and half. I have two little chihuahuas, knit, sew, paint and dance for fun in my bedroom. A few geeky things I love include Dr. Who, Star Trek (any of them), documentaries about space and aliens, World of Warcraft, Sega games, cute fuzzy things, board games and coffee.

Twitch Content Producer – Marium Khan (she/her)

For Marium, her geek journey started at the age of 10 rewatching her one and only cassette of Sailor Moon. Now she enjoys illustrating, watching anime and reading comics to immerse herself in different worlds. Marium’s life goal is to create and complete at least her own comic story!

Twitch Content Producer - Joe Senese (he/him)

Originally from Staten Island, NY, Joe is a variety streamer on Twitch streaming both video game and tabletop content. He first ventured into tabletop gaming in 2013 when he played his first game of Pandemic.

Joe enjoys all kinds of board and video games but has an affinity for medium to heavy weight board games like 18xx, anything by Vital Lacerda, and Hansa Teutonica but definitely not opposed to trying and playing all kinds of games! As far as video games; JRPGs, Puzzle Games, Platformers, and retro games are where it’s at!

When not streaming Joe loves watching hockey and anime, cooking all kinds of food, hanging out with his fiancée, occasional co-host and fellow staffer Abby, our kid, and enjoys having (a rather large) knowledge and love of game shows!

Joe is a big proponent of maintaining and curating a welcoming, inclusive, safe space and community that folks can be comfortable being a part of and being in. You can find Joe everywhere on social media and Twitch @PhantomMeeple.

Board of Directors

President - Hadeel Jeanne

Hadeel is a fantasy writer, cosplayer, and fandom historian (that’s a real thing!). She found her way to geekdom as a child when she accidentally stumbled upon an episode of Sailor Moon and she’s been pretending to be the main character of her own Magical Girl anime ever since. You can frequently find her zipping around town on her hot pink bike, playing Dungeons & Dragons, and streaming her latest costume build or favorite video game on Twitch.

Vice President of Board of Directors - Dr. Amelia Herbst (she/her)

Dr. Amelia is a psychotherapist who works with geeks and gamers in the greater Seattle area. She is a Philadelphia native who fell in love with working with non-profits when she started at the age of 17. She has contributed to books and has spoken on panels about the psychology of video games and pop culture. Amelia loves fantasy and finds herself staying up late hours playing fantasy RPGs. Some of her favorite fandoms are The Elder Scrolls and The Witcher and she loves playing Destiny 2, FromSoftware games, and open-world RPGs.

Co-Chair of Programming Committee - Kristine Hassell (she/her)

Born in a Friday Night Lights-esque town to a dragon mother and a polar bear father, Kristine’s nerd education began early by reading comics aloud with her dad and playing games on their Commodore 64. When she wasn’t gallivanting at the local arcade, she was rollerskating until the sun set or lost in books for days. Kristine plays in several long running RPGs and can play Diablo III for hours. While mercurial at times, she loves dim sum, sharing music, macarons, hockey, K-pop, stickers, board/role playing/video, and dark wave. Geek bragging rights include: watching the original Star Wars trilogy on their opening days, even skipping school for ESB, walking the red carpet at the world premiere/attending the after party for Serenity, and being invited to attend the final KITH taping at the CBC. Find this old school goth twittering madly @GermanCityGirl about the importance of better representation for non-white faces and other sundry things.

Chair of Operations Committee – Alyssa Askew (she/her)

Alyssa is here to utilize her geeky and organizational tendencies to lead the con operations team in coordinating all the behind the scenes logistics that are needed to keep GeekGirlCon running! In the day time, she is a producer working in the video games industry and also volunteers with the IGDA Foundation Next Gen Leaders Program.

Alyssa loves polka-dots, bows, Spider-Man, R2D2, crafting, and playing all the games. Favorite video games include Spyro the Dragon: Ripto’s Rage and Disney Dreamlight Valley. Favorite board games include any game won the first time she played, even if she never succeeds again.”

Co-Chair of Marketing Committee – Tina Burns (she/her)

Graphic Designer, Book lover, Crafting Geek, Gamer Girl, all wrapped up on one sweet package. What more could you want?

Co-Chair of Marketing Committee – Alyssa 'Prime' Jones-Comtois (she/her)

“Alyssa’s first video game experience was wielding the NES Zapper while shooting ducks on Duck Hunt with her grandpa. Since that day gaming has been a big part of her life. Today she can almost always be found scanning Steam for new deals or wrapped up in her snuggie and playing Xbox. When she’s not playing video games, you can often find her catching up on various animes, building props for Halloween parties, or streaming as part of the GeekGirlCon stream team!

Alyssa is a 10+ year video game industry veterean bringing organization to chaos as a Release Manager at Xbox. With a degree in communications and a SCRUM certificate she is always looking for new ways to improve efficiency. “

Co-Chair of Programming Committee -Sarah "SG-1" Grant (She/her)

Sarah is thrilled to be back with GeekGirlCon in her new role as Director of Interactive Programming. She’s a geek from way back, mainly in the fields of Star Trek and Star Wars. Between helping to put on plays featuring both of those genres and reading more fanfic than she can possibly remember, SG-1 geeks out to everything from cats to words to Wisconsin cheese to ice cream and Stargate (in no particular order). On any given evening you’ll find her watching Jeopardy, knitting or crocheting something, and cheering for herself when she gets and answer right, or writing her new quilt circle-based murder mystery novel.

Treasurer – Mary Kimball (she/her)

Mary Kimball (she/her) is a board member for GeekGirlCon. A queer nerd who loves to garden and hike, Mary is also involved with the Edmonds Floretum Garden Club, the Northwest Community Bail Fund, and US Quadball, where she is executive director. Her geeky passions include Star Wars, Marvel comics and the MCU, and books.

Join The Discussion #GeekGirlCon

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