Filament Brain Power

EXECUTIVE TEAM

Alex Stone - Filament Games CTO
Alex Stone
CTO
Alex has 10 years of experience developing educational software and is credited on 30 released learning game titles. Prior to co-founding Filament, he developed content management and learning management systems. Alex has a bachelor's degree in Computer Science from the University of Wisconsin.

Fun Fact
Alex's favorite city is San Francisco, but Madison is close enough.
Dan Norton - Filament Games CCO
Dan Norton
CCO
Dan Norton is a founding partner and CCO at Filament Games. He specializes in crafting educational game design documents and storyboards that originate from learning objectives. Dan sees Filament as an opportunity to merge his life long love of games with his incessant quest to learn about new and interesting things. Aside from games and game design, he enjoys bicycling, playing guitar poorly and spending time with his incredibly stupid chickens.

Fun Fact
Dan's initials spell his name!
Dan White - Filament Games CEO
Dan White
CEO
Dan White wants learning to be associated with meaning and inspiration rather than accountability and drudgery. Accordingly, he believes that learning should be highly interactive, and that game-based learning, like project- and inquiry-based learning, is a "best practice" in the field of education. An alumnus of Cornell University and the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Dan has two primary passions: making outstanding learning games and building sustainable businesses.

Fun Fact
Dan will grant control of the company to any staffer who can beat him in a push-up or pull-up contest.

GAME DESIGN

Abby Friesen - Filament Games Game Designer
Abby Friesen
Game Designer
Having worked at Filament since 2011, Abby has designed more than 20 learning games around a variety of subjects, including kindergarten verbs, middle school biology and civics, college-level contract law, submarine sonar, and more! Her game Reach for the Sun has won multiple awards and is available on Steam, along with the plant genetics game Crazy Plant Shop. She has experience designing systems, AI, puzzle mechanics, multiplayer experiences, simulations, quest-driven games, and much more.

Fun Fact
Abby plays roller derby in her spare time under the moniker "Why Male Models".
Luke Jayapalan - Game Designer
Luke Jayapalan
Game Designer
As a Game Designer at Filament, Luke works with clients and with Filament's talented development team to find the most fun and effective way to help players learn new skills and subject matter. Luke loves working on educational games because the new subject matter often calls for new approaches and makes every game different.

Fun Fact
Luke loves singing and has been doing so for as long as he can remember.
Matt Haselton - Filament Games Game Designer
Matt Haselton
Game Designer
Matt Haselton is a Game Designer at Filament Games, and specializes in porting learning objectives into game mechanics. Prior to working at Filament, Matt was a designer at Quest Atlantis. Matt holds an M.S. in telecommunications from Indiana University – Bloomington, and a B.A. in English literature from Guilford College.

Fun Fact
He once bullwhipped a cigarette out of a friend's mouth. At a party.

ART

Alex Yaeger - Game Artist
Alex Yaeger
Visual & Interaction Designer
Alex's skills bridge graphic design and digital fantasy/scifi illustration with over five years experience in designing for advertising agencies and video games alike. Growing up around drafting tools: Alex has a natural affinity for precise increments, orthographic three-view projections, grid-based layouts, and a nearly unhealthy obsession for "pixel perfection."

Fun Fact
Despite being so very pale, nocturnal, and deceptively youthful—Alex is most likely not a vampire.
Alexander Cooney - Filament Games 3D Artist
Alexander Cooney
3D Artist
As a 3D Artist at Filament, Alexander is responsible for modeling and animating the characters, environments, and effects that populate Filament's Unity3D-powered projects. Alexander studied film and media at Carleton College prior to joining Filament, where he gained formal training in cinematography, film direction/production, screenwriting, studio art, and motion graphics.

Fun Fact
In quieter times, Alexander can be found writing sappy Star Wars fan films.
Casey Arendt - Visual & Interaction Designer
Casey Arendt
Visual & Interaction Designer
With over a decade of professional design experience solving design problems for everything from print, branding and packaging to Web, UI and interactive, Casey is excited to add game-specific interaction, UI and UX design to her tool kit at Filament Games. When not at work, find her biking, crafting, cooking or involved in epic games of city planning, wrestling and destruction with her kids and their imaginary friends.

Fun Fact
Casey always has a pocket knife on her if possible, even tucked into a satin belt on her wedding day. With her preparedness combined with resourcefulness and dumb bravery--people have told her, should the zombie apocalypse start, they will be running to her for protection and guidance.
Chenya Chang - Filament Games Game Artist
Chenya Chang
Game Artist
As a Game Artist at Filament Games, Chenya draws round things, cute things, and dirt. Sometimes the dirt is cute and round.

Fun Fact
Chenya is trilingual and is incomprehensible in all three languages.
David Hoffman - Filament Games Visual and Interaction Designer
David Hoffman
Visual & Interaction Designer
Dave spends his days thinking about menus, buttons, fonts, color schemes, illustration, code, and all the little bits of interactive and visual design that go by mostly unnoticed if he's done his job right.

Fun Fact
Dave is Filament's most far-flung employee, currently operating out of rural Shikoku, Japan.
Joe Horan - Visual & Interaction Designer
Joe Horan
Visual & Interaction Designer
Joe was born in Boston, MA and raised in Appleton, WI. He started as a web designer and became a marketing director at one point in time. Joe also helped work on DayZ mod and is now enjoying a career as a full-time UI designer.

Fun Fact
Joe likes making animations.
Madeline Folz - Filament Games Web and Graphic Designer
Madeline Folz
Web & Graphic Designer
A graduate of the Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Communication Design, Madeline is a graphic and web designer who also collaboratively works on game development. Her other areas of design interest include branding and identity, typography, packaging, information graphics, and letterpress printing.

Fun Fact
She will stop traffic to save turtles.
Megan Tran - Filament Games Visual & Interaction Designer
Megan Tran
Visual & Interaction Designer
Megan has a love for all things digital, and specializes in creating game interfaces and websites! In her spare time, she can often be found illustrating crazy scenes of dinosaurs, dogs, and nice blobs. Her latest endeavor involves tackling the world of 3d software, because why only make games in 2D, when they can be in THREE DEEEE.

Fun Fact
Megan mains a pretty tough Jigglypuff in Smash Bros!
Natasha Soglin - Filament Games Game Artist
Natasha Soglin
Game Artist
Natasha is a Game Artist, having received her Art degree from UW-Madison in 2011. She specializes in the conceptualization, painting and animation of creatures, critters, and all things animal-related.

Fun Fact
Natasha finally got a Tokota.
Addendum: Some people will pay a lot of money for Tokotas
Roma Jensen - Game Artist
Roma Jensen
Game Artist
Roma is a graduate of Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design, where she studied illustration and animation. She now puts both of those skills to use at Filament, drawing various chickens and jungle plants. In her spare time, Roma watches cheesy 80’s films and draws clowns who are also cops.

Fun Fact
Don’t look now, but I’m right behind you.
Trevor Brown - Filament Games Art Director
Trevor Brown
Art Director
Trevor relishes the many challenges inherent in the creation of learning games, from designing intuitive interfaces, to wrestling with the latest web technology, to crafting attractive, audience-appropriate graphics. He loves working with such a talented, well-rounded group of people in a field brimming with possibilities. Before he moved to Madison to join Filament Games' ranks, he ran one-man illustration and animation studio, Pixel Chef Productions. In his free time, Trevor enjoys bicycling, cooking, and gardening with his wife.

Fun Fact
Trevor believes that the delicious but neglected art of deliberate food decomposition will save the world!

ENGINEERING

Alex Beauchesne - Game Engineer
Alex Beauchesne
Game Engineer
Alex is a game developer and engineer at Filament. He believes a good engineer works to give as much creative power to the rest of the team as possible while minimizing the pressure of technical constraints. To this end, he takes a particular interest in systems and tools work.

Fun Fact
Alex writes his own interactive fiction in his spare time.
Alex Larioza - Game Engineer
Alex Larioza
Game Engineer
At one point in time Alex was convinced games were magic. He has since then learned they are not made with some arcane wizardry, but he still likes to pretend he’s casting spells when typing on the keyboard.

Fun Fact
Alex has a set of LED balls that he likes to juggle with to live music.
Arthur Low - Filament Games Engineering Director
Arthur Low
Engineering Director
Arthur is a 5th year Filament veteran. He has contributed to countless projects in either advisory or lead engineer roles. When not working on Filament's line of curriculum based games, he directs the professional development of the studio's other engineers and oversees some of the more challenging technical aspects of our ambitious products. Arthur's core competency revolves around framework and game engine development including graphics and networking. He holds a BS in Computer Science with a focus on Real-Time Interactive Simulation and Mathematics from DigiPen Institute of Technology.

2014 Games+Learning+Society 10 "Best in Show" - Reach for the Sun
2013 Games for Change 10 "Best Gameplay" Winner - Reach for the Sun
2013 Filament Game Jam - Lunar Impact
2012 SIIA "Most Innovative" Award - You Make Me Sick! & Cell Command
2011 National STEM Video Game Challenge Winner - You Make Me Sick!
2009 SIIA CODiE Winner - Best Education Game or Simulation - Energy City
2008 1UP.com's 101 Free Games - Gridiron Tactics

Fun Fact
Arthur moonlights as an electronic music producer.
Chun Zheng - Game Engineer
Chun Zheng
Game Engineer
Chun works as a game programmer at Filament games. He likes to think of himself as a strategist. In some ways, he would like to follow in the footsteps of the great Sun Tzu. He tries to foresee how decisions made about a game could affect future sprints. He likes to try poke holes in potentially bad ideas. He feels that everyday is like a battlefield, but he is fighting for a good cause: a better smarter world.

Fun Fact
He likes to draw.
Rachel Berkowitz - Filament Games Game Engineer
Rachel Berkowitz
Game Engineer
Rachel is from Philadelphia and attended Carnegie Mellon University, originally as a violin performance major. Half-way through college she took a robotics course for fun and out of nowhere, fell in love with computer science. The rest is history. At Filament games, she works in Actionscript3, Javascript, HTML5 and Java on a variety of projects. She likes solving crazy problems (even though some days she may say she doesn't), getting to come up with sweet software architecture, and making games come to life through code.

Fun Fact
Rachel is also a certified nursing assistant and enjoys volunteering in the medical field on the side!
Stephen Calender - Filament Games Game Engineer
Stephen Calender
Game Engineer
One of Stephen's favorite quotes is Arthur C Clarke's law "Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." As a game engineer, his deepest desire is to make magic.

Fun Fact
Stephen can keep a secret.

PRODUCTION

Abigail Rindo - Filament Games Associate Producer
Abigail Rindo
Associate Producer
Abigail has worked in agile software development for more than seven years and makes sure that Filament's games come in on time and that the teams making those games stay sane. She believes that meaningful play can make a difference in the lives of others and loves working in the games industry.

Fun Fact
Abigail once worked at a Wildlife Rehabilitation Center in California where she did everything from IT work to feeding baby animals. When she decided to move back to Wisconsin the Center Director tried to get her to stay by offering her a tame crow named Marley.
Maike Loane - Associate Producer
Maike Loane
Associate Producer
Maike has over a decade of experience in the video game industry. She has worked as a Localization Producer on hit titles from Rockstar Games, Disney Interactive and Sony Computer Entertainment Europe. She is a native German, spent her formative years in England and now finds herself here, happy as a clam in beautiful Madison Wisconsin.

Fun Fact
Maike spelled backwards is Ekiam! …which is just gibberish really… Oh and she loves all things Ghibli especially Totoro!

WEB DEVELOPMENT

Andy Bourassa - Web Architect
Andy Bourassa
Web Architect
Although he started building websites on Geocities with his best friend in 1996, Andy has been developing web and mobile applications professionally for over nine years. His role at Filament ranges from front-end user interface development to database optimization to API design and construction. Prior to joining Filament Andy worked on a wide range of software projects including native iOS applications, lexical analysis software and various content management systems and social networks.

Fun Fact
Andy has traveled to 20 countries and is a licensed pilot.
Jason Novick - Web Developer
Jason Novick
Web Developer
Jason is a member of Filament's web development team. With over 18 years of web design experience he is tasked with taking complex designs and features from concept to reality, and specializes in implementing new features and tools using the latest technologies and tools. When not coding creative web solutions he enjoys playing drums in the epic heavy metal band, the Rotten 76.
Ryan Baron - Filament Games Web Developer
Ryan Baron
Web Developer
Ryan is a web developer at Filament Games primarily tasked with creating and maintaining the new FilamentGames.com site. He enjoys working with HTML, CSS, JavaScript and using responsive design techniques to ensure that websites work on all devices known to mankind.

Fun Fact
While terrified of heights, he enjoys indoor rock climbing and roller coasters as a way to conquer his fear.

QUALITY ASSURANCE

Brian Czech - Filament Games QA Analyst
Brian Czech
QA Analyst
Brian has been doing software quality assurance professionally since 2007. He worked on the Cardiology Cardiovascular Information System at Epic for 5 years, and has been breaking games at Filament since November 2013. As anyone can attest, QA is definitely the most important and most awesome department at any software company.

Fun Fact
Brian tries to make delicious craft beer in his free time, but often fails because chemistry is hard. Also he's ambidextrous or whatever.
Kara Finley - QA Associate
Kara Finley
QA Associate
After traveling to China to teach English, Kara started her Quality Assurance career testing the Ambulatory Meaningful Use Report engine at Epic. There she learned about software testing and its benefits to a company. Shortly after leaving Epic, Kara came to join the Quality Assurance team at Filament Games. She particularly enjoys playing and breaking our physics and time management games.

Fun Fact
Kara likes running half-marathons and petting cats, but hasn't yet found a way to combine the two.
Shaina Peshkov - Filament Games QA Director
Shaina Peshkov
QA Director
Shaina has over 7 years experience working in this industry in Quality Assurance. Her resume includes companies like Blizzard Entertainment and IBM. Her role is largely focused on planning out the test cycle for projects. This includes things like test planning, attending sprint meetings, and training the test team. Shaina has shipped 7 AAA titles, and is also certified with ASTQB as a Tester and Test Manager.

Fun Fact
Shaina really, really, really enjoys Star Trek.

A/V

Josh Bartels - Filament Games Sound and Video Engineer
Josh Bartels
Sound & Video Engineer
What kind of music would accompany the growth of a cactus? What does the inside of a stomach sound like? These are the type of questions Josh asks himself every day. Josh spends most of his time in a quiet, padded room where nobody can hear him scream...composing music, creating sound effects, recording voices, and producing video and cinematic content for ALL of our games!

Fun Fact
Josh's musical style is influenced by movie composers Hans Zimmer, Michael Giacchino, and John Powell.

CORPORATE SERVICES

Brandon Pittser - Filament Games Marketing Director
Brandon Pittser
Marketing Director
As Marketing Director at Filament Games, Brandon Pittser is focused on engaging teachers who are leading the way into a world newly suffused with technology and related skill sets. With a finger on the pulse of education industry trends, Brandon has helped guide major manufacturers such as Adobe, Symantec, and LeapFrog in crafting and executing their strategy and messaging for students, teachers, and school administrators.

Fun Fact
In his free time, Brandon is a professional stock photographer.
Charlie Klein - Filament Games Accounting Manager
Charlie Klein
Accounting Manager
Charlie earned a bachelor’s degree in Accounting from St. John’s University. In his pre-Filament life, he studied abroad in Beibei, China, lived on the Big Island of Hawaii, worked as an auditor and accountant, and became a Certified Public Accountant and Certified Managerial Accountant.

Fun Fact
Charlie believes in fiscal transparency, spreadsheets, and the poetry and symmetry of The Beautiful Game. And sushi.
Elle Jacobson - Filament Games Account Executive
Elle Jacobson
Account Executive
Elle is currently the lead of internal sales for Filament Learning. She acts as a purchasing liaison for teachers, schools, and districts to help find the best possible game-based learning solution for their needs. Passionate about student success in the classroom, she empowers and mentors educators on how to introduce games into their classrooms by helping lead professional development courses on using games and game design.

Fun Fact
Every spring and fall you can find her at the Chicago Vintage Toy show hunting to add to her collection of Worlds of Wonder toys.
Jennifer Javornik - VP of Sales
Jennifer Javornik
Vice President of Sales
Many moons ago, Jennifer helped launch a laser tag business and ever since then she's been trying to make "play" formally a part of her professional career again. Jennifer leads Filament's business development and sales initiatives where she is passionate about helping organizations see how game based learning can accelerate and deepen their educational mission. Jennifer has rich background in professional IT consulting where, most notably, she spearheaded several state-based healthcare reform initiatives from concept, through sales, and to operation. A certified Project Management Professional (PMP), she has a deep respect for process and methodology. Jennifer holds a BA in Drama from Dartmouth College and a Masters of Science in Information Technology from Northwestern University.

Fun Fact
If you are ever in Madison on a Saturday night, you can catch Jennifer making funny with her professional improv comedy group - the Monkey Business Institute.
Kat Shanahan - Marketing Coordinator
Kat Shanahan
Marketing Coordinator
As the Marketing Coordinator, Kat is responsible for creating charts, graphs, dashboards, and content for Filament’s marketing channels. She is passionate about building brands and designing marketing tactics that solve business objectives. She has a master’s degree in Integrated Marketing Communications from West Virginia University and bachelor’s degrees in Multimedia Digital Arts and Advertising from UW-Whitewater.

Fun Fact
Kat is a professional photographer.
Marshall Behringer - Filament Games Community Development and Outreach Specialist
Marshall Behringer
Community Development & Outreach Specialist
Marshall is the Community Development and Outreach Specialist at Filament Games, a role that only occasionally involves saving the galaxy from hyper corgis. He focuses on teacher outreach, community building, game testing, and making sure that teacher and learner interests are represented in game design and development.

Marshall went to school for English and was trained as an Educator. He is the loving father of two cats, and is eternally bummed that the office only allows dogs to visit.

Fun Fact
Marshall has totally been to the Legend of Zelda Symphony. Multiple times.

IT

Jon Rakocy - System Administrator
Jon Rakocy
System Administrator
Jon is in Information Technology and loves working with people and computers. His strengths cover a variety of areas. His current focuses are on Linux servers and VMware.

Fun Fact
Jon is proud to be a nerd.