GeekGirlCon’s staff is made of 100% volunteers. Right up to our fearless leaders. We are all really geeky. Get to know a little about us.
Care to join us? Check out our open volunteer positions.
Manager of Design – Rachelle “Raye” Abellar
Raye is a designer, illustrator, and Whovian. Always one for impromptu adventures, she moved to Washington State from Southern California on a whim. She has spent the better part of her life immersed in art, sci-fi/fantasy, video games, and comic books. Other interests include time travel, typography, henching for the Mighty Monarch, oxford commas, roller derby, and carbs. Her geekiest point of pride is her Seal of Rassilon tattoo.
Raye is excited to meet like-minded individuals and be involved with a community where she can let her geek flag fly. You can follow her on Twitter @rachelleabellar.
Designer - Sayed Alamy
Sayed Alamy was created by an American and Afghan in the humid sun drenched mountainless void known as Alabama. He finished his twelve levels of eduction by the year two-thousand and advanced on to five more years of advanced training where he received knowledge of design and soul capturing skills of photography. Since graduating from university Sayed has had the opportunity to create in publishing, health and theater. After twenty-eight long years in the void, Sayed packed his car and drove cross-country with his brother. After this epic trip he came to live in the great damp city of Seattle. Sayed has since been doing freelance design while seeking a full time gig in design. When he’s not designing you can find him off doing photography, at a show, playing video games, exploring, trying new foods, hanging out with friends or whatever the great city of Seattle has to offer.
Volunteer Program Manager - Jessica Ballard
Jessica, aka “Jex”, has been a gamer since the age of 3 when she picked up her first controller and rocked out those Atari games. If she wasn’t gaming, she was reading. Still an avid gamer and book lover, Jex strives to feed her addiction with the latest and greatest in both worlds. On top of that, she’s added a love of board games, sci-fi movies, and anything paranormal. Jex has known all her life that event planning was a passion of hers, but it wasn’t until half way through college that she realized she could make a career out of it. She helped plan her first convention at the age of 16 for a youth group she was involved in. From there it was college events and whatever non-profit event would let her volunteer to get experience. In 2009 Jex attended her first geeky convention, PAX. From then on she volunteered at every con in the geek world (well, in the northwest) in order to soak in more of the amazing community and to learn more about the world of convention planning. She has sinced paired down the list to three cons that she works every year (PAX, Emerald City ComiCon, and GeekGirlCon), but hopes that someday she’ll find a paying gig in the con industry so she can work cons full time. Find Jex on Twitter @jexball
Merchandise Manager – Shubz Blalack
Hailing from Seattle, WA, Shubz’ geekery comes from years of gaming, dance classes, and martial arts movies that Jean-Claude Van Damme has been in. Shubz made her debut as a rapper in NerdcoreNow’s First Annual Vocalist/Producer Competition and also won the site’s 2011 Best Newcomer award. Follow her Twitter @shubzilla for more hilarity or find her at facebook.com/shubillamc for music updates.
DIY Science Zone Project Manager - Raychelle Burks
When a career as a deadly ninja assassin proved too tame, Raychelle turned to chemistry. She’s currently a postdoctoral researcher 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.
Visual Merchandise Designer - Amber Dawn Bushnell
Amber was born in Seattle and raised in the ‘burbs. She is a graphic designer, painter, and crafter; a real artsy-fartsy type. She loves all kinds of music, books, and movies, as well as learning: Researching new stuff is the best thing ever. Amber’s dad got her hooked on sci-fi movies at a young age and while she loves them, she still can’t watch Aliens without having nightmares (Totally worth it!).
Her movie obsession grew when she bought her first DVD player. Her favorite fandoms are Doctor Who, BBC Sherlock, and Supernatural (SUPERWHOLOCK). Avengers is also quickly climbing her list (thank you, Joss Whedon).
Lately, she’s been cheating on Twitter with Tumblr. She thinks GeoCaching is an awesome thing, even though she hasn’t actually tried it yet. Miss Piggy is her personal hero. And she thinks The Pretender was the greatest show to ever be on tv and no one will convince her otherwise.
Community Outreach Manager - Amy Cash
In an alternate universe Amy is a New York Yankee’s relief pitcher by day, Broadway chorus girl by night, and hardboiled 1930’s type newsman on the weekends. In this reality she is a teacher and tutor who enjoys science (fictional and non), swing dancing, sailing, and the company of her fellow nerds. Manufactured in New York during the Nixon administration, she moved to Seattle in the mid-Aughts to study Oceanography at UW. Her proudest Geek accomplishments are coming in 181st at the 2005 American Crossword Puzzle Tournament and beating IBM’s Watson in a Jeopardy test match.
Game Floor Ops Manager – Audrey Chang
Audrey grew up in Hyrule, and moved to Pallet Town early on. She then relocated to San Andreas, and after graduation, attended a University in Piltover on a blitzball scholarship. Her first day of work in Raccoon City didn’t turn out well, so she took another tour of duty on the USS Ishimura and SSV Normandy before becoming the newest resident of Emerald City, on the lookout for her next adventure. Every party needs a grizzled veteran, and (while not exactly ‘grizzled’), when the time comes, you’ll be glad for her extensive EXP in organizing post-apocalyptical civilizations. But until Ragnarok dares to show its ugly face, she will apply those organizational powers to the gaming floor at GeekGirlCon.
Marketing Assistant - Rachel Crowell
At a young age, Rachel believed in much more than she saw. Memorable nights of watching Star Wars, The Princess Bride, and Beauty and the Beast among other classics bloomed into full time love of all things geeky. Having four older brothers, she never has to look far for a fellow adventurer in a MMO. Rachel frequently takes bubble baths with literature, actively plays RPGs, indulges in sushi, and hopes to one day have a ceiling to wall bookcase in need of a ladder. As an adventurous spirit who’s traveled the world from Beijing to ancient Egyptian tombs, she has realized Glenn Yarbrough’s quote in The Hobbit animated film is true, “The greatest adventure is what lies ahead…” Rachel lives incognito by night as a RN who is currently settled in Seattle with her husband and Durzo Blint the hedgehog.
Facebook Administrator - Anna Daniell
Anna Daniell is a 23-year-old lady who blames/thanks her family for her growing up as a geek. She watched Buffy: the Vampire Slayer with her dad from the first episode; was shown the world of webcomics by her brother; and her mother taught her how to solve a cryptic crossword (which Anna has yet to do on her own). She is studying to be a Speech-Language Pathologist with an emphasis in Deaf Studies. Her career path was influenced by her love of language. Her other obsessions include print comics, webcomics, B-movies, crosswords, dinosaurs, baking cupcakes, cartoons, sci-fi shows & movies, young adult novels, demolishing Super Mario World on the SNES repeatedly, old black & white movies, attending conventions, and all sorts of puzzles.
Copywriter – AJ Dent
Long ago, in a land of lakes far, far away (Minnesota), AJ grew up finding solace from winter winds by curling up with Archie comics, feverishly playing Scrabble, and collecting TMNT action figures. After supercharging her bookworm powers and word wizardry through a B.A. in Creative Writing, she moved to the Emerald City to dive into its thriving geek culture and arts community. She currently works as a copywriter for Zulily.com and contributes concert reviews and pictures to a number of local music blogs. If she’s not out photographing poetry slams or dance parties, she’s probably cruising around on her bike pretending to be Catwoman. Either way, she’s definitely Instagramming and tweeting it all like mad. Go say hi!
Copywriter - Erin Doherty
From Anna to the Infinite Power and the Xanth series (puns!) as a youngster, to Doctor Who, Octavia Butler, and all things Whedon as an adult, Erin has always been a sucker for sci-fi and fantasy. She enjoys studying linguistics (specifically sociolinguistics and discourse analysis), being grossed out by how cute her dog is, knitting, and running the fatgirlsshorthair blog. She’s done everything from union organizing to sex education to software-box assembly line work; she believes in social justice, the power of language, and the Oxford comma. A queer femme Minnesotan, Erin currently lives in the wilds of Olympia, working for a domestic violence advocacy nonprofit and freelance editing.
Customer Service Manager - Brittany Edwards
A recent transplant from upstate New York, Brittany wishes she could get paid to be silly, make squee-inducing cute things, and help others at the same time. Since that’s not likely to happen, she toils away in corporate America during the week. In her free time, she’s usually either tripping over her own feet with her nose buried in a book, playing piano, or working on whittling down her backlog of PC games to avoid getting sucked back into WoW–a real exercise in futility. Commander Keen and Illidan are her favorite game characters. Occasionally, the wild Britality can be found at Green Lake Park with her dog, Corky. She also likes to plan travel expeditions, both impromptu road trips and big trips abroad. Thailand, anyone?”
Copywriter - Sarah Grant
Sarah’s true ambition in life is to proofread the Internet for a living. Until that dream comes true, she continues to write her way through life – mainly science fiction and fantasy, but technical writing, copywriting, proofreading, and editing are the mainstays of her business, Write Words, LLC. Sarah’s first memorable geek experience was meeting Star Trek’s Walter Koenig at a convention in 1987; her first words to Mr. Koenig were unintelligible. Sarah mainly gravitates to science fiction/fantasy movies, television shows, books, and short stories, but recently discovered the wonders of comics and graphic novels as well.
Accounting Manager - Karen Hampton
Karen spent her formative years growing up as a girl geek in the suburbs of the Jersey Shore. She studied accounting and psychology following the financial crises of the early 2000s. She’s had the opportunity to develop her skills by working in the finance department of hospitality companies. In late 2010, she went on a big adventure – she left everything she ever knew to move cross-country to Seattle, and live among her own kind. Shortly after arrival, she started attending the big conventions in the area and had some of the best days ever.
By day, she works in (and continues to study) finance and accounting. By night, (when not studying,) her interests include but are not limited to: video games and video game music, animation and gender studies.
Director of Operations - Melodie Hardwick
Melodie is a software engineer who loves science fiction, playing all kinds of games, and cooking weird recipes from the internet (much to the chagrin of her two kids). She plays WOW very recreationally, but can probably pwn you at Tetris and would welcome the challenge. She grew up in a small town in Eastern Washington, moved to the Seattle area in early 2002, and loves it here. The trees are green, nerds and geeks are everywhere, and there is no shortage of pub trivia. When she is not at a computer or off on an adventure, she can be found reading her Kindle Fire in the dark, running just fast enough to elude zombies, or rooting for the underdog.
Twitter Administrator - Kristine Hassell
In a nondescript Texas town, Kristine’s nerd cred began early. Each month, her father returned from his Naval reserves with a stack of Marvel comics. It soon became tradition to read them together at home. When she wasn’t playing Galaxian and Centipede at the local arcade, she could be found rollerskating happily for hours. To this day, she still laments the loss of her Commodore 64 with her well-worn copy of Bubble Ghost!
She has played in a Star Wars RPG that’s lasted over a decade, run by her boyfriend who spirited her away to Seattle in 2006 with their polydactyl cat. She can be mercurial but some enduring addictions include live music, reading, food photography, anime, hockey, eating out, collecting Pinky:st figures, video games, and new wave music.
Geek bragging rights include: watched every Star Wars film on opening day, even skipping school for ESB, walking the red carpet and attending the world premiere of Serenity, and being invited to attend the final KITH taping at the CBC. You might find her practicing scales on her cello but you’ll definitely find her twittering madly @GermanCityGirl.
Programming Project Manager - Meg Humphrey
Meg’s first and true love is Star Wars, even though it has hurt her. She has gone steady with Stargate SG-1 and has Disney’s letterman’s jacket, but Marine Biology’s class ring. Meg has been on-again-off-again with Baking and has a crush on Criminal Justice. This year she’s hoping that Comics will ask her to prom, or at the very least, share a milkshake (two straws!) with Kirby!
Meg has been Programming staff for Sakura-Con for several years and hosts panels at many geek-themed conventions around the PNW. She enthusiastically shares her geekiness with anyone and everyone and does her best to bring it out in others. Every year she tries to increase her nerd-cred and every year she is successful!
No, she does not dislike Star Trek. The episode “I, Borg” from TNG made her cry.
Manager of Gaming – Alyssa Jones
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 sock-monkey slippers playing xbox.
When she’s not playing video games, you can often find her catching up on various animes, beefing up her D&D character or initiating some kind of nerf battle.
Even though Alyssa spent more time managing her WoW Guild, DoomKittens, than she did studying, she still managed to complete her BA in Visual Communications. Currently she works as a Playtest Coordinator for Microsoft Studio’s Playtest program.
Manager of Programming - Alison Kozar
At age 8, Alison regularly checked out as many books from the library as she could, and then return home to try to read them all simultaneously. The library never stopped being a place of unbelievable wealth to her. In the years since, she’s added video games, music, science, and computers to a long list of passions. She’s left a successful career in IT to pursue a degree in Biology, with plans to save the world using science, empathy, and the power of the human heart.
TBD - Allexa Laycock
Long time Seatlleite Allexa Laycock is an aspiring college graduate, dancer, performer and occasional filmmaker. She believes in Disney magic and dress up with the same intensity that she believes the things we love the most deserve the greatest nuanced critique. A UW Comparative History of Ideas student, Allexa has taught two focus groups on the implications of the Disney Canon. Other over-analyzed loves include, Buffy the Vampire Slayer (Whedon etc.), Harvest Moon N64, Harry Potter, persnickety cosplay, some of which you can see here (Jane Espenson approved) 80’s adventure movies (because Goonies never say die) and musicals. A rampant theory head, she utilizes pop culture and performance opportunities to spoofify and analyze life in accordance with the tingliest of theories. She can be spotted around Seattle performing in various Burlesque and Drag shows and quoting Moonstruck at the grocery store.
Manager of Digital Marketing – Richard Lee
Richard officially became a geek at the age of five, when his cousin put a Nintendo Zapper in his hand. Ever since, he’s expanded to other areas of geekdom: science, comics, consumer technology, and web standards to name a few. While developing his geek credentials, Richard also earned Bachelor and Master degrees in Business and Technology. Today, he practices both subjects at a Fortune 500 company, where he gets paid extra for reciting buzz words.
When he’s not “aligning” and “leveraging” teams for “optimized” “synergy”, Richard dabbles in graphic design, studies recipes from Cook’s Illustrated, and fights off his League of Legends habit – sometimes successfully.
Web Content Producer - Laurel McJannet
Back in the day (we won’t say when), Laurel cut out words from Seventeen™, took pictures of friends/cute boys, and arranged them onto her PeeChee, protecting the final masterpiece with strips of Scotch tape as makeshift lamination.
Fast-forward a ”few” years later where Laurel now writes, designs and consults as a marketing communications professional. The day she got access from IT to update a website (using straight up HTML, BTW) was the day she became… A GEEK. This website led to more websites and managing major ecommerce projects. Today, there isn’t a CMS she doesn’t like, she’s mastered the art of translating tech-speak for the non-techie, and she is proof positive that Marketing and IT can co-exist and not implode.
Reaction Manager – Josh Michaels
When not working cons or climbing rocks, Josh spends his time soaking up the sun when he can, searching the dark corners of the internet when he can’t. A life long geek, eternal nerd, and awkward outdoorsman, Josh enjoys the great open environment that Geek Girl Con provides. If you need help at the convention, don’t be afraid to call on him.
Manager of Registration & Admissions - Rose Minier
Rose Minier is a multi-purpose geek. She recently had to move into a larger apartment to accommodate her book and comic collection, including an entire room dedicated to sci-fi/fantasy. She is also an avid gamer, with especial love of RPGs (traditional or computer) and German board games. At 18, she dropped out of college to found a broadband ISP with friends; the company is still running strong, though she ran screaming from the professional IT world.
Outside of traditionally geeky pursuits, Rose knits almost continuously, serves on a board at Seattle Opera, and tends (and grazes her way through) a large vegetable garden.
GeekGirlConnections Manager - Terra Olsen
Terra credits her family for instilling the geek in her. Family board game nights and Nintendo sessions with her father ignited Terra’s love for gaming. In addition, her family’s extensive comic collections created the false belief that every family must obsess over the Golden and Silver Ages. Terra’s other obsessions include Tolkien, Star Wars, Firefly, 1970’s Sci-Fi, and History. She has happily converted her husband, Randall, into a gamer as well and now he asks her to play MTG. In addition to being a staff member of GGC, Terra also writes for Have You Nerd, a nerdista Blog.
Terra has a BA in History from UCLA, and a MA in Medieval Studies from University of Toronto. Terra also enjoys cooking, painting, hiking/backpacking, and traveling.
You can follow Terra on twitter @terrasum.
Exhibitor Services Manager - Kris Panchyk
It took going to college at a small conservative Southern Baptist school to get her started in the geek world, where she was offered the opportunity to join a 2nd Ed. D&D game run by some of the drama majors. Once the first character was rolled up, it was a short step to vampires, werewolves, and superheroes, and she hasn’t looked back since.
When she’s not working as a project manager at a litigation support firm, she’s roleplaying, watching various geeky TV shows, knitting, and attempting to read everything she can get my hands on. In her OTHER other spare time, she volunteers at many of the local cons, specifically ECCC, PAX, and RCCC.
Executive Director - Amanda Powter
Amanda Powter is somewhere in the geek-nerd-dork continuum and considers herself a geek-of-many-interests/master-of-none. Amanda’s geeky tendencies range from technology, science fiction, TV (almost anything Whedon, Doctor Who, Star [Wars|Trek], Red Dwarf..) & web series, to comics & graphic novels, board games, lock-picking, food/cooking, and casual web games.
Amanda grew up just north of Seattle and left a promising junior high career to start college at the age of 14 via the Robinson Center for Young Scholars at the University of Washington. She spent her undergrad studying Latin & Ancient Greek then returned to the UW to master Library and Information Science. She now spends daylight hours working as a Director of Product Management at a technology startup where she secretly hopes to bring about an alternate universe, in which Firefly never got cancelled.
Amanda loves to travel and visit India every couple of years. Her superpower’s draining fun from parties.
Street Team Manager – Cole Lundell
Cole is a full time student and full time System Administrator at the University of Washington. On her rare spare time enjoys playing video games, watching football (Go Seahawks!) and cartoons. Cole spent several years working in the Seattle area video games industry before deciding to return to school, she hopes to return to the video games industry after finishing her undergraduate program. Other aspirations include, becoming Batman, to someday ride an elephant and to find a pair of black sneakers that go with everything.
Manager of Public Relations - Susie Rantz
Susie Rantz is a Whovian, Whedonista, and Ringer. She spends her days at GMMB, a communications company that works with clients who address important social issues, from education to global health. Outside of work, she loves sci-fi/fantasy, documentaries, her two rotten rescue dogs, and sports (including soccer and fantasy football). Her two tattoos have a connection to three different geeky things: Lord of the Rings, the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, and Doctor Who.
Some of Susie’s most memorable moments include: watching the U.S. Women’s National Team win the World Cup in 1999, missing the chance to compete at the state math competition because her brother didn’t fully erase bubble-test answers they changed, and getting to be the Tenderheart Bear during a play in second grade. Say hello to her on Twitter: @susierants.
Hospitality and Transportation Manager - Abby Rhinehart
Abby grew up in Kenmore, Washington, where she spent (perhaps) too much time in front of the television watching Mulder and Scully. She went to Whitman College in Walla Walla, where she studied history and Spanish, and loved it. During the day, Abby works as the Programming Coordinator for Humanities Washington, a statewide nonprofit dedicated to sparking conversation. In her free time, she loves Netflix instaview, her Kindle, British sitcoms, stand up comedy, internet culture, and still watching too much television. She’s really excited to join the GeekGirlCon staff and help make the con happen with all of these wonderful people!
Manager of Editorial Services - Adrienne Roehrich
This intrepid GeekGirlCon volunteer, then special agent, has now found a place among the staff as a copywriter and now Manager of Editorial Services. When not writing on geeky topics for GeekGirlCon, Adrienne is writing about science or reviews of food, books, and podcasts. You can also find her doing science as a chemist, tweeting, cooking, or listening to podcasts.
Always a bookworm, Adrienne’s top two genres are sci fi/fantasy and nonfiction. To her utter glee, she has her name in the acknowledgements section of more than one New York Times bestselling fantasy book. She loves the social justice issues addressed in Farscape (her favorite show for over a decade), wonders who is Breaking Bad next, waits for new companions to join The Doctor, and knows much more about zombies than she ever wanted. She wishes Dungeon Keeper could be played on today’s systems and would love DK III. She also strums a mean bass in her family’s Rock Band®. (As a note, the photo is from attending 2013 SIFF opening night to see Joss Whedon’s Much Ado About Nothing and hear the cast speak.)
Individual Sponsorship Manager – Cynthia Rogers
Cynthia is a ginger. She has a love for the geek world. From Anime to the Zerg she loves books, video games, movies and more. Wanting to help young women discover the wonders of the geek world, Cynthia looks forward to this opportunity to work with Geek Girl Con. Her ambitions are to become a video game producer, make fantastic costumes, and to enjoy everything she does.
Hailing originally from upstate New York, she grew up in Minnesota and went to college in Iowa. In October 2011 life led her to the Emerald City. Cynthia also has a great love for music and languages. She plays flute and piano and has slowly been working towards learning Polish and Mandarin.
Associate Design Manager - Tiffany Smith
Tiffany was born and raised in the PNW. At a young age, she developed a fascination with unicorns (before it was cool, dangit!) leading to copious amounts of fantasy novels involving dragons, lady warriors and magical intrigue.
Later during those turbulent teenage years, a steady rotation of Bradbury, Vonnegut and Crichton novels could be found strewn about her room. Around the same time, she was also turned onto the idea of graphic design. Her lust for sexy typography and Pantone chips was further indulged through higher education.
Post college years she participated obsessively in roller derby, which she still loves despite taking her skates off.
Currently she is an MMO/RPG gamer, sci-fi fiend, pusher of pixels, maker of arts, armchair electronic music maker, squirrel enthusiast and cheese fanatic.
UX Designer - Kathryn Storm
Kathryn’s love of geek began with watching her dad build computers, episodes of Buck Rogers, and Broderbund. Kathryn is Intensely curious about the intersection of human behavior and technology and in her former life, formally studied illustration and authored a monthly food hacking workshop http://www.veganhackersf.com in San Francisco. Currently, she is intimately involved with medieval RPGs, catching up on classic science fiction film, and Pacific Northwest adventures with her awesome dog, Regina.
Director of Programming & Events - Jennifer Kate Stuller
Jennifer Kate Stuller is a professional writer, critic, pop culture historian, and scholar, and the author of Ink-Stained Amazons and Cinematic Warriors: Superwomen in Modern Mythology — a comprehensive history, critique, and reference guide examining feminist history and potential within popular culture (I.B. Tauris, 2010). As an erudite connoisseur of television, films, novels and comic books, with a special interest in gender, sexuality, and diversity, Ms. Stuller strives to be the Joseph Campbell of modern myth — only much more feminist and much less crotchety.
She has written for Geek Monthly and Bitch Media, on everything from James Bond to Jim Henson, to Honey West, Peggy Hill, and Quentin Tarantino, and has also contributed to several books, including Gotham City 14 Miles: 14 Essays on Why the 1960s Batman TV Series Matters (Sequart), What is a Superhero? (Oxford), and Critical Approaches to Comics and Graphic Novels: Theories and Methods (Routledge) – for which she wrote the feminist analysis chapter using 1970s Lois Lane comic books. Her most recent presentation for the Slayage Conference on the Whedonverses, as well as her other work, can be found at her website: www.ink-stainedamazon.com.
Designer – Diana “Di” Wan
After her takeover in the dry Arizona desert, Di, aka Dieborg (a cyborg from the future) now hides out in the overcast city of Seattle. She’s often found at concerts, eating, or exploring the city with her second in command, Pollux, a black and white shih tzu mix. Rumour has it that there are 60+ bears and a growing army of robots lurking in her spaceship and ready for battle. When she’s not designing, she frequently overdoses on Netflix, video games, and shopping for another cd/record to add to her collection of more than 1500 albums. She has a huge weakness for synthesizers and avocados. Her goal is to rid the world of bad design and grow as many avocado plants as possible. You can find her work on dieborg.net and she encourages you to ‘like’ her Facebook page.