Mary Rocheleau graduated from McGill University with a degree in neuropsychology. During her last semester there she took a programming class in Java and quickly realized she needed more programming in her life. She went on to earn a masters degree in Computer Science from Brandeis University. While she was a student, she worked as a researcher in groups that bridged the gap between social sciences and computer science. Since graduating, she’s worked at athenahealth, a healthcare technology company. She currently manages the Data Warehouse product team, where she provides technical consulting on an analytics database. In addition, she serves on the executive board of the company’s Women’s Leadership Forum.
Amanda Cheung is a front end developer at DockYard, a web and mobile web app consultancy based in Boston. Amanda grew up in Boston and went to school at the University of Wisconsin - Madison where she studied fine arts with concentrations in painting and graphic design. After graduating she started taking web development classes at night while working as a graphic designer. She has been doing front end programming ever since and loves it! She joined GDI because she wants others to have just as much fun doing work as she does.
Lauren graduated from Northeastern University with a BA in International Affairs and Middle Eastern Studies. Passionate about culture, language and travel, she also realized she had a great passion for web development. Eager to switch into a career involving building, creating and fixing, Lauren enrolled into General Assembly's Web Development Immersive. She now is working as a full-stack developer at Hill Holliday and spends much of her free time helping others take the same leap into the world of development.
For Laura Vecchio, web development was love at first sight. After writing her first lines of code while pursuing a Marketing degree from Bentley University, she knew she was destined to be a geek. After Bentley, her desire to live at the intersection of marketing and technology fueled her to pair her business background with a Web Development Certificate from Boston University's CDIA. She has since worn many hats in the tech industry including social media marketer, digital strategist and now works as a front-end engineer at Bose Corporation. As the head of curriculum and as a core teacher with Girl Develop It, Laura is excited to instill her passion and energy for technology in the women of the Boston area.
At Society of Grownups, Amy is an Interaction Designer helping to tackle the challenge of how to translate the location’s emotionally rewarding, community-based experience to the digital space. In some of her other UX lives, she’s had the opportunity to collaborate with amazing teams to give local communities a voice while maintaining a newspaper’s journalistic integrity (Neighborhood Square), find new and innovative ways to get kids moving in the classroom (Pearson), and build an entirely new community platform for one of the most robust communities on the Internet (The Huffington Post). Work she has contributed to has garnered the 2011 Italian national prize for innovation, an acknowledgement prize in the 2011 Holcim awards for sustainable construction, and a 2014 CODiE nomination for Best Professional Learning Solution for Education.
Elizabeth Long made the transition into the tech industry in 2014. Her prior experience is in legal administration and non-profit management. After taking classes through GDI and completing the intensive product and design program at Startup Institute in Boston, she's found a job she loves as an Application Specialist for MOCA Systems. When she is not at work she can be found at the gym, doing yoga, cooking healthy food and exploring the beautiful city of Boston.
Diane is a self-taught web developer with 15 years of experience developing websites and web applications and adapting to fast-changing web technologies. An early significant achievement was building an enterprise-level CRM web application, Salesnet, from the ground up with a team of colleagues until the company and products were acquired. More recently, as a Senior Lead Developer at Velir, a full-service digital agency in Somerville, MA, Diane has led development on large web solutions for enterprise-class clients such as Bayer, Society for Neuroscience, and Kaiser Family Foundation.
Stephanie studied Entrepreneurship and Business Management in college before deciding to leave a position in marketing to pursue a career in programming. Eager to make the transition, she attended Launch Academy in Boston and works for MeYou Health as a Rails Engineer. She believes in the power of community, hard work, and loves helping others discover, or share, their passion for coding.
Steve is a UX strategist and product design educator, cultivating a simple, no-BS approach to building things that matter. Originally trained in print design, he became fascinated with the web during his final year in the visual design program at UMass Dartmouth. Now he leads the design team at East Coast Product in Boston, MA in building experiences for companies that understand success comes from putting their users first. He's also the former Director of AUX, a user experience apprenticeship program, as well as a writer and conference speaker, and a former podcast co-host.
While pursuing a career in Audio & Media Technology at The New England Institute of Art, Desirae King found herself interested in running a music distribution company on the side. She figured if she could build and manage her own website, in addition to learning some new useful skills, she would be able to save money that she would have spent on a hiring a developer. A couple web classes later, she realized that she would much rather spend 20 hours coding a website than 2 hours in the studio recording. She switched her major the next semester and graduated with a BS in Web Design and Interactive Development in 2010. During her time at NEiA, she was a teacher's assistant and tutor for various web and video classes. She makes learning a priority in her life and loves to share that knowledge whenever she gets the opportunity. She has had the pleasure of building websites and emails for companies such as Bose Corporation, America's Test Kitchen, Neoscape, Boston Neighborhood Network and Putnam Investments. She is really looking forward to aiding in cultivating some new (or brushing up some existing) skillsets with women on their quest towards development. She’s excited to have the opportunity to work with Girl Develop It to give back to the community of women in technology.
Jamie Lee Connor
Jamie Lee Connor is a designer with a passion for making the web beautiful and usable. She works as a User Experience Designer at Epsilon.
Jamie studied Graphic Design at Massachusetts College of Art & Design and has been continuously learning ever since. She is excited to help women transition into the tech field and expand their skill set. Jamie lives north of the city in Newburyport where she enjoys paddle boarding, spin class and the beach!
Colleen Mirabello has been writing code since childhood, programming her VTech computer to play music and her graphing calculator to play games. When she was sixteen she realized that programming could be a career and since that moment has never wanted to do anything else. She has a B.S. in Computer Science from the University of Pittsburgh. After graduating she was hired to do web development at a small company called SurfMerchants. Fourteen years later, she is still there, Director of Engineering and specializing in backend development.
Colleen comes to GDI with the hope that she can help other women realize that programming can be their career as well. She is looking forward to bringing her experience as both a coder and a manager to the GDI team.
In her spare time she geeks out by coding and continuing to learn in her craft. She became involved with GDI in 2014 by volunteering as a teacher assistant and now on to teaching in addition to helping the leadership team of GDI. Tai is passionate and loves what she does and if she can empower other people then she can call that a good day. :-)
Emily Xie grew up building hilariously ugly 90s sites replete with scrolling marquees, blinking text, and lo-fi MIDI soundtracks. She loved coding because it allowed her to channel her creative energy into building things with real application.
Though she decided to pursue her passion for aesthetics in full at Harvard by studying history of art and architecture, Emily reunited with the web soon after graduating when she joined an art tech startup as a product manager, and eventually transitioned into software engineering at Wayfair. As a TA and member of the Leadership Team at Girl Develop It, Emily is eager to help other women discover their love for coding.
Annette Arabasz is a developer with a background in graphic design. She joined GDI because she wanted to show women that coding can be fun, rewarding and not scary.
She attended Hartford Art School and the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, graduating in Graphic Design & Letterform with a Business minor. She is currently a Senior Creative Technologist at Mad*Pow in Boston, managing a group of brilliant developers.
Ace Peckham is a nonprofit administrator by day, a coder by night. After taking an intro course with GDI, she fell head over heels in love with web development, and started spending her free time learning as much as possible. She loves the open community of coding in general, and GDI in particular. When she’s not on the computer, she’s probably cooking a delicious vegan meal or reading a good book.
Nhori Lopchan Tamang
Leise St. Clair
Leise (lie-zuh) grew up in Cupertino, California and made her first website when cross-browser compatibility just meant Netscape and Internet Explorer. She studied graphic design at RISD before entering the roguish landscape of freelance graphic design work, and wasn't formally introduced to programming until taking a Girl Develop It class on Java. She went on to learn Ruby on Rails and full-stack web development at Launch Academy, and is jazzed to now be part of the GDI learning cycle. Beyond coding and making things look pretty, Leise enjoys trivia nights, beekeeping, and showing pictures of her cats to random people.