Our Staff

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Becky Margraf
Production Lead

Becky is a designer and toymaker motivated by learning about learning. She makes sure there’s interesting data coming in from the community and going back out into the world in all ways possible. She currently lives in Portland, OR and Berlin, Germany.

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Dirk Uys
Development Lead

Dirk makes sure that just the right amount of tech is developed at P2PU. After travelling through South and Central America, he is now back home in South Africa and based in Cape Town. When he is not writing code, he is most likely hiking Table mountain, surfing the Atlantic or tinkering with a Raspberry Pi.

code27_ | www.thebacklog.net
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Grif Peterson
Executive Director

Grif joined P2PU in early 2015 to start learning circles with Chicago Public Library. Since then, his role has grown with the program, and he does his best to make sure that folks around the world have the opportunity to keep on learning things they care about, for free. Once he presented about learning circles in a bank vault to 2 people. He lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

grifpeterson | grifpeterson.com
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Qumisha Goss
Librarian in Residence

Qumisha or Q, as you may call her, is a Detroit native, librarian, and a plant lady, but also appreciates food, travel and good music not necessarily in that order. Q is a contributor to P2PU’s community assisting with the development of resources, facilitation support and library staff training. Q is passionate about education, community building and demystifying technology.

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Ryan George
Financial Administrator

Ryan oversees Financing and Accounting for P2PU. He is a vibrant and energetic person who has been with P2PU since 2012. He loves culture, innovative ideas, people and numbers. He is based in Cape Town, South Africa.

Our Board

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Ahrash Bissell
President, Monterey Institute for Technology and Education

As a board member, Ahrash takes care of staying true to our original values, while pushing us to be more experimental. He is a wise man.

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Allen Gunn
Executive Director, Aspiration

It is not without reason that Gunner is our workshop facilitator of choice. He is Executive Director at Aspiration, where he helps NGOs, activists, foundations and software developers make more effective use of technology for social change.

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Carl Ruppin
Assistant Vice President, MetLife

Carl joined P2PU as a team member soon after the organization was founded, providing incredible operational, legal, and project management support. He transitioned to the Board soon after he left the team and additionally serves as the Board Secretary.

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Catherine Penkert
Library Director, Saint Paul Public Library

Catherine serves as the Library Director at Saint Paul Public Library in Minnesota, where she oversees programs, serves, and community contributions across a 13 branch system. She brings an invaluable perspective to the work of P2PU.

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Delia Browne
National Copyright Director, NSW Department of Education and Training; Board Director, Creative Commons

As a board member, co-founder, and active community member, Delia makes sure things keep running smoothly at P2PU. Next to this she is involved in many of the legal aspects surrounding the organization.

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June Ahn
Associate Professor, University of California, Irvine

June is a learning sciences and human-computer interaction researcher at UC Irvine. He bravely collaborated with P2PU on past research projects and now serves on the board to help think about strategic new directions for peer learning.

ahnjune | ahnjune.com
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Philipp Schmidt
Director of Learning Innovation, MIT Media Lab (P2PU Board Chair)

Philipp co-founded P2PU in 2008 with support from a Shuttleworth Grant. Years later he is still cooking up learning experiences (and mustard) at the MIT Media Lab, and nurturing partnerships for future P2PU projects.

schmidtphi | philippschmidt.org/
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Sidsel Bech-Petersen
Head of Innovation and User Involvement, Aarhus Public Libraries, Denmark

Sidsel is a longtime friend of P2PU. We met her as she was leading the process of transforming the Main Library in Aarhus into Dokk1, the largest public library in Scandinavia. In her current role, she supports user involvement and special projects across Aarhus Public Libraries.

Our Extended Family

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Mark Andersen
Learning Circle Extraordinaire

Mark is responsible for adult learning and workforce development programming at Chicago Public Library. He has been our partner from the start getting Learning Circles up and running in the Windy City.

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Lila Bailey

Without Lila P2PU would still be a clandestine operation targeting the foundations of institutional academia. Lila made us legit.

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Adam Bush
Community Organizer

Adam is the co-founder of College Unbound: a college degree program in Providence, RI for first generation college students that values civic engagement and focuses on real-life experiences. He works with P2PU on our Writing for Change initiative, listens to jazz and bakes a mean sourdough.

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John Britton
OG Edupunk

As an invaluable part of the volunteer community and later as staff, John has helped P2PU make large leaps forward. The Mechanical MOOC is his work, and the list of P2PU features John has been instrumental in developing is endless.

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Pippa Buchanan
Webcraft Warrior Emeritus

Pippa was the original Webcraft Warrior who facilitated the setting up of Mozilla School of Webcraft. She is currently living in Austria where she makes, sells and sails boats.

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Steve Carson
Grandfather of the Mechanical MOOC

Steve has been invaluable as an advisor and for his service at MIT OpenCourseWare. Pretty good work for someone who is actually not a robot himself.

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Cathy Casserly
Advisory Council Creative Commons

One of the original pioneers of opening education, Cathy gave P2PU its very first grant when she was at the Hewlett Foundation.

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Alison Jean Cole
Community Wrangler Emeritus

Alison’s famous catchphrase: Just like, do it--free after a famous sportswear company--has stuck with P2PU since the fall of 2009. She just made most of the instructional materials and has now left P2PU to do an open masters while inspiring others to just keep doing as much as possible.

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Larry Cooperman
Associate Dean for Open Education, University of California Irvine

Volunteering his experience since P2PU’s inception, Larry continues to actively communicate P2PU to the world and innovate learning at his home institution UC Irvine.

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Maria Droujkova
Lead School of Mathematical Future

Progressive views on education can and should also be tossed into the mathematics education equation, must have been what Maria thought several years ago when she started the school of the Mathematical Future. She was right.

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Chris Ewald
MOOCster Emeritus

Lead developer on P2PU's Mechanical MOOC project.

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Karen Fasimpaur
Dean School of Ed

Karen Fasimpaur is owner and manager of K-12 handhelds, an educational technology company focused on mobile learning. She founded the School of Ed at P2PU and is currently building her off-the-grid house in Arizona. From scratch.

kfasimpaur | www.k12opened.com/blog
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Jose Flores
P2PU API Creator

If there would be one badge for most active community member who has never been employed by P2PU, it will be hard to pass Jose on volume and quality. Chances are good that you are doing one of his courses or using a feature he developed.

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Karen Gabriels
National Treasur(er)

Keeps our finances tidy. And our monies safe. And us out of jail.

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Vanessa Gennarelli
Learning Scientist

Vanessa built many learning communities on the web for P2PU. Much of the slang spoken by the team was inspired by her.

mozzadrella | mozzadrella.me
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Stian Haklev

Recently hailed as one of the ‘Fantastic 5′ in open education where he was portrayed as Ben Grimm, Stian has been destroying old institutional structures as a rock solid board member since P2PU’s inception.

houshuang | reganmian.net/blog/
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Laura Hilliger
Webmaker, Troublemaker

Laura eats, breathes and sleeps openness. At the Mozilla Foundation she's building out a community of mentors on the Webmaker initiative. And reminiscing about the 80s.

epilepticrabbit | about.me/laurahilliger
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Rebecca Kahn
Happiness Officer

For a long time Bekka made the trains at P2PU run on time (or as close to it as possible). A London-dweller by day but a South African in spirit, Bekka is currently finishing up her PhD in Digital Humanities at King's College, and serves as the Coordinator for the Open Coalition

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Alexander Kehayias
Founder of the P2PU Mentor Program

Alex has been working on a mentorship platform for people to connect with knowledgeable mentors to guide them through learning a topic. He is also applying his vast real-life experience in coming up with great opening lines to create an ice-breaker functionality to butter up online interaction.

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Sharon Kennedy
Web developer

Sharon is a web developer and designer based in Toronto, Canada. She's working on making the this website a beautiful and useful resource for the P2PU community. When she's not fused to her laptop, she leads wilderness camping and hiking tours.

codeandcanoes | www.followthewhitesquirrel.ca
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Molly Kleinman
VP of OER and Microwave Oven Programming

Molly takes time out of her busy snacking schedule to drop copyright education bombs on the academic world. She’s a strong believer in understanding rights when it comes to creating and sharing content, especially in the open peer-learning world.

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Pieter Kleymeer
Destroyer, Builder

Piet has been quietly learning about learning for several years, many of them while working with the University of Michigan’s Open. Michigan initiative. He is a founding volunteer with the School of Open, but also contributes to P2PU’s work on mentorship, interface design, the Open Masters project, and pretty much any place people are thinking about the intersections of learning, identity, and information.

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Nico Koenig
Community Lead

Nico is a facilitator and designer of participatory in-person and online workshops, and an organizer of adult learning initiatives. He trained, developed and facilitated many workshops for P2PU and 'coconut' and Canadian handshake will stay with us for a long time.

nicokoenig | nicokoenig.com/
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Kate Lapinski
Chicago Public Library Coordinator

After the first Learning Circle pilot ended, it was Kate who was handed the reigns to make sure the program continued to thrive at Chicago Public Library. She's faciliated Learning Circles, remixed courses, and ran workshops. A real model community member!

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Gary Matkin
Dean of the Extension School, University of California Irvine

He taught Philipp everything he knows about accounting--in 45 min--and infused P2PU with an awesome *beg for forgiveness, rather than ask for permission* attitude from the start.

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Katherine McConachie

Katherine lends her insights and support to P2PU on a daily basis. In fact, it was she who coined the term "Learning Circles". By day, she is the Learning Initiative Coordinator at the MIT Media Lab, working alongside P2PU's co-founder, Philipp Schmidt.

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João Menezes
Design Thinker

João is a user-centered design expert, and the projects he engaged in during his UX design course have inspired much of the design of the early p2pu.org platform. João continues his journey at P2PU and aims to help build meaningful interactions among peers through the design thinking philosophy and tools.

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Dany Javier Bautista Montaña
Founder P2PU ambassador program

Disappointed by the lack of easy access to learning about web design in Colombia, Dany gathered a group of people and engaged in learning web design through P2PU. He currently leads this P2PU ambassador program.

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Juliana Muchai
Kenya Coordinator

Juliana is the Principal Resource Mobilization Officer for the Kenya National Library Service, and the point-person for Learning Circles in Kenya. She has substantive experience in resource mobilization, project development, community mobilization and training. Previously, she worked the Green Belt Movement, a community-based NGO that brough about social change through community empowerment and development programmes.

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Paul Osman
Edupunk Technical Overlord

Paul loves open software and the crew over at P2PU. We used his tasty Mozilla drumbeat.org code for eons, and now he helps us out when we need some technical TLC. He's the Director of Platform Engineering at 500px in his native Toronto.

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Neeru Paharia
Co-founder, Assistant Professor, Georgetown University

As original gang-star par excellence, Neeru didn’t think it was enough to theorize about starting a peer learning platform so she co-founded P2PU and created and organized the‘Behavioral Economics’ pilot course. Neeru has been at the root of P2PU’s success in many ways and now employs her vast experience on the board.

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Jane Park
Project Manager, Creative Commons

Another founding volunteer who loves P2PU so much she made it her day job — almost. Jane works for Creative Commons and devotes 60% of her time to co-creating the ‘School of Open’ with open advocates from around the world.

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Beck Pitt
Researcher, Existentialist

Beck is a researcher on the OER Research Hub (OERRH) project and is based at The Open University (UK). Working with Jane Park, the OERRH conducted research on School of Open during 2013 and 2014. Beck also oversaw the development of the project's forthcoming School of Open 'Open Research' course.

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Erika Pogorelc
Pixel Princess

Though hard work and a little bit of fairy dust, Erika transformed from hairdresser to righteous developer. She reports from Ljubljana, Slovenia, where she is active in her local RailsGirls and CodeCatz communities.

ercchy | ercchy.github.io
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Andrew Rens
Founding Volunteer

As a founding volunteer and early course facilitator of Copyright for Educators, Andrew was instrumental at arriving to a choice for a specific open license and the legalities involved in implementing the license at P2PU. He was formerly the legal lead for Creative Commons South Africa.

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Carl Ruppin
Operations/Dreamer Wrangler

An Aussie by birth and an attorney by training, Carl has heaps of experience in the open community as the National Copyright Manager for the New South Wales Department of Education and Training in Sydney.

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Alex Ruthmann
Associate Professor, New York University

Alex empowers music teachers to build tools and become entrepreneurs at the NYU MusEd Lab, and he's brought that tinkerability over to P2PU. Alex and P2PU collaborate and research how to produce creative experiences online.

alexruthmann | about.me/alexruthmann
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Jessy Kate Schingler
Space Captain

Jessy is P2PU’s resident Superwoman–brains, brawn and badassery. Jessy is passionate about the ways that openness and collaboration can advance science and research.

jessykate | www.jessykate.com
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Nadeem Shabir
Technical Lead at Talis

When Nadeem is not eloquently luring people at P2PU workshops into letting their emotions about peer learning run freely, he uses his vast experience in programming adds technical perspective to the board.

kiyanwang | www.virtualchaos.co.uk/blog/
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Niels Sprong
Chief Chef

Niels is a man of many talents. He’ll beat you hands down playing cards, but then he’ll make you dinner afterwards. A founding volunteer at P2PU, Niels ran courses on Poker and Strategic Thinking and Molecular Gastronomy, and keeps asking us difficult questions, which is why we like to keep him around.

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Aleksander Stachurka

Aleksander has done a great job in translating the ideas of the the community into P2PU’s visual identity. Aleks now runs his own photography and design studio in Warsaw, Poland.

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Mark Surman
Executive Director Mozilla Foundation

Mark loves all things open, including wine bars in San Francisco that are still open at 2am. As Mozilla Foundation ED he is leading an army of webmakers to keep the web open. As board member of P2PU he helps Philipp get more done.

msurman | commonspace.wordpress.com
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Joel Thierstein
Co-founder, Vice President for Academic Affairs/Provost at Kentucky State University

Possibly the hippest provost in the history of US academia, P2PU co-founder Joel has been uppingthe cool-level of p2pu since the early days as a co-founder. He currently sits on the board of P2PU and works the US Department of Education as a senior adviser and counsel.

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Chloe Varelidi
Head of Games

Chloe designed the basic way in which you can now structure courses into meaningful and challenging chunks, creating a better learning experience for everyone.

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Zuzel Vera
Very First Tech Lead

Zuzel will probably rank high in any top list of most productive developers ever. P2PU would have been called 'about:blank' if it weren’t for her.

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Alan Webb

Alan supports those who wish to move passionately in the direction of their dreams through creating projects and learning together as peers. He is a seeker and a perpetual incubator of projects, including: the Open Masters Program, Citizen Circles, Emergent Workshops, the Living Transcript, and the School of Social Innovation.