THE HOPPER TEAM

TEAM BIOS

KRISTIN LAWRENCE

CEO & FOUNDER

PhD in Planetary Geophysics | Former Stanford Professor | Force of Nature

Kristin taught Planetary Geophysics at Stanford University before moving to Boulder to found The Hopper. She completed her PhD at Scripps by cooking rocks from the moon in highly-specialized magnetometers. She likes to joke that she has literally held the Moon in her hands. Kristin is uber-passionate about science education, community, and philanthropy for the sciences. Her mission is to make science and discovery accessible to everyone. She would love to recreate her childhood basement for everyone so that they too could have access to lasers, dry ice and tools on a daily basis. On her day off, Kristin enjoys playing with all these tools to build as well as rebuild things around the house including life-size cardboard mazes and rockets for her kids. Kristin’s favorite scientific discovery is the relationship between electricity and magnetism. The magic of electric currents has inspired the name of her family dog: “Tesla.”

Leslie Newman

Co-Founder & Board Chair (On Sabbatical)

Media and HR Expert | Entrepreneur at Heart | The Ultimate Boulderite

Leslie is passionate about education, science and creating positive learning experience for families. She received her Communications BA from UC Berkeley. Leslie has worked in broadcast media, technology, and human resources as well as the non-profit sector. She thoroughly enjoys the collaborative process and making shared visions a reality. Leslie is a long term Boulder Resident and lives in town with her husband and two science-hungry children. On her day off, she enjoys hiking with her family and indulging in good wine. Leslie’s discovery is the successful mapping of the genome of the Bowhead Whale (the longest-living mammal) which has helped identify a number of genes that are linked to cancer resistance, DNA damage repair, and increased longevity. 

Leslie will be on sabbatical Fall 2018 – 2019 and scouting out future Hopper locations in Europe. 

Vanessa Schatz

Chief Operations Officer

International Communications Expert | Multi-Million Dollar Film Industry Marketer | Fearless Networker

Vanessa is an award-winning Communications Specialist and Strategist with 10+ years of international experience in private and public sector including Fortune 500 companies, government, higher education, and non-profit organizations. She grew up in Munich, Germany, and discovered her passion for implementing positive change while taking down the Berlin Wall with a sledgehammer as a young child. After many years of traveling and working in different nations around the globe, Boulder became her home base. When not busy climbing mountains with her Alaskan Malamute, Scone, Vanessa enjoys spending time with her global network of family and friends, learning new languages, playing her cello, and teaching at CU Boulder’s College of Media, Communication and Information. Her favorite discovery is meteorite research that reveals unsolved mysteries about our solar system and the origins of molecules necessary for life.

Jill Katzenberger

Creative Director

Museum Experience Expert | Acclaimed Aerial Acrobatic Performer | Creator of Magic

Jill spent the last 15 years in science education, teaching 8th grade science in the Denver Public School District and developing informal science programs at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science (DMNS). With a keen eye for blending education experiences with interactive learning environments, Jill played an instrumental role in conceptualizing, designing, and implementing new innovative program models in DMNS’s education wing. She earned her BS degree in Environmental Science from UC Santa Barbara and her Teaching Certification from CU Denver. When Jill is not discovering with her own tiny scientists, her toddler son and daughter, she is teaching aerial acrobatics for Aircat Aerial Arts and performing with world-renowned bands. Her favorite discovery is the Colorado’s Snowmass Ice Age fossil excavation that allowed Jill to bring a wide range of Ice Age critters to Denver for educational programming purposes.

Ryan Madson

Director of Experience & Innovation

International Kidz Magazine Editor | Co-Founder of Fractal Tribe | Master of Spectacles

Ryan grew up in Boulder Colorado and earned his Bachelor’s degree in Music Business and Technology from CU Denver. He has co-founded a community run record label and booking agency, a by-kids-for-kids media company, and a software company for the Internet of Things. He wrote and directed an award-winning and internationally traveling circus show and produced a music album for the band, CASSANDRA, that the HuffPost called, “the power-ballad soundtrack for the resistance.” As a board member of the community and circus group, Fractal Tribe, he’s learned quite a few things about wrangling and nurturing a passionate group of artists and engineers. On a day off, Ryan likes to stroll down to the farmer’s market, pick up some local food, and play with fellow acrobats in the grass. A cold plunge in the creek and a homemade-dinner with friends would cap off the evening. Ryan is delighted by the pure pursuit of curiosity that lead scientists to ask why the Apatosaurus had such a long tail. It turns out, it was likely used as a bull whip to crack the sound barrier in a deafening mating call!

Leo Borasio

Communications & Web Master

Storytelling and Design Wizard | Cross-disciplinary Guru | Multi-talented Musician

Leo is a 2018 CU Boulder graduate with a B.A. in Anthropology and a B.S. in Advertising–including the Outstanding Graduate Award (for the highest student GPA). His interest in science budded from an archeology field school where he researched the Ancestral Puebloans at Cowboy Wash on the Ute Mountain Ute reservation and Cuyumungue on the Pojoaque Pueblo. Leo also loves music and can play multiple instruments, but his primary is the Alto Saxophone. As an alumni of the Golden Buffalo Marching Band and Buff Basketball Band Leo continues to cheer on the Buffs and the band at every game. On a day off, Leo likes to explore the mountains, whether hiking, mountain biking, or off-roading. Leo’s favorite discovery is water on Mars, harboring valuable secrets about the planet’s past and its future potential for accommodating human colonies.

BOARD

Martha Lanaghen

Martha is the Executive Director of MakerBolder.com, a Boulder-based non-profit that produces interactive science content and events, including STEAM Fest which attracts over 4,500 people to the Rocky Mountain region every year. She has empowered youth and adults around the globe to pursue higher education, authored eight text books focused on preparing young adults for success in the workplace, and is the founder of The Sparrow Group, a successful international consulting agency. Martha has lived in Boulder for nearly 30 years. A science discovery she’s watching includes the CRISPR discovery and ongoing research.  CRISPRs are a new genome editing tool that is already changing the way we think about genetics and disease.

Sumanth Channabasappa

Sumanth is a technologist, entrepreneur and investor who loves to work on globally impactful innovations that deliver market-based returns. His experiences include leadership & contributions to mobile, broadband, internet technologies, network security,  voice over IP, the Internet of Things (IoT) etc. He is currently contributing to healthcare (e.g., via the Center for Medical Interoperability), smart cities (he is a co-founder of the CO Smart Cities Alliance), and solutions for the blind and visually impaired. He is the founder and a co-organizer of XRoads, an investor in Vibrant Veggies that makes flavored Sauerkraut products, and an advisor and investor via 3 Lines Venture Fund. He also helps growth-stage and large companies with innovation, strategy, business models, lean execution etc., as a Founding Director of The CORE. His mentorship and advisory affiliations include: Blackstone Entrepreneurs Network, Rockies Venture Club, Open Labs, 10.10.10 etc. In his free time, he enjoys dreaming, snowboarding, having cool conversations, hiking with dogs, and playing tennis. Sumanth’s favorite discoveries are the Theory of Relativity by Einstein and algorithms by Ada Lovelace, both of which showcased our limitations and our potential at the same time!

Kelly Cavill

Kelly is currently VP of Sales and Marketing at Astronaut Foods, which is part of American Outdoor Products, a Boulder based family business since 1951. Astronaut Ice Cream is sold in over 300 science and space museums worldwide. Recently, Kelly has applied her management and leadership skills at a software marketing company and a sales lead startup. Previously, she worked in the film industry as a development executive at Lions Gate Films and New Line Cinema in Los Angeles. As a parent of two young children, and married to a climate scientist, Kelly is passionate about science education and provides project management leadership, enthusiasm and dedication to the Science Galaxy team. In her free time she enjoys spending time with her kids, hiking, yoga, creative projects, road trips of exploration and dinner with friends. Her favorite scientific discovery is the discovery of DNA by Friedrich Miescher in 1869.

MIND TRUST

Hopper Team

TEAM BIOS

KRISTIN LAWRENCE

CEO AND FOUNDER

PhD in Planetary Geophysics | Former Stanford Professor | Force of Nature

Kristin taught Planetary Geophysics at Stanford University before moving to Boulder to found The Hopper. She completed her PhD at Scripps by cooking rocks from the moon in highly-specialized magnetometers. She likes to joke that she has literally held the Moon in her hands. Kristin is uber-passionate about science education, community, and philanthropy for the sciences. Her mission is to make science and discovery accessible to everyone. She would love to recreate her childhood basement for everyone so that they too could have access to lasers, dry ice and tools on a daily basis. On her day off, Kristin enjoys playing with all these tools to build as well as rebuild things around the house including life-size cardboard mazes and rockets for her kids. Kristin’s favorite scientific discovery is the relationship between electricity and magnetism. The magic of electric currents has inspired the name of her family dog: “Tesla.”

Leslie Newman

Co-Founder & Board Chair

Media and HR Expert | Entrepreneur at Heart | The Ultimate Boulderite

Leslie is passionate about education, science and creating positive learning experience for families. She received her Communications BA from UC Berkeley. Leslie has worked in broadcast media, technology, and human resources as well as the non-profit sector. She thoroughly enjoys the collaborative process and making shared visions a reality. Leslie is a long term Boulder Resident and lives in town with her husband and two science-hungry children. On her day off, she enjoys hiking with her family and indulging in good wine. Leslie’s discovery is the successful mapping of the genome of the Bowhead Whale (the longest-living mammal) which has helped identify a number of genes that are linked to cancer resistance, DNA damage repair, and increased longevity.

Vanessa Schatz

Chief Operations Officer

International Communications Expert | Multi-Million Dollar Film Industry Marketer | Fearless Networker

Vanessa is an award-winning Communications Specialist with 10+ years of international experience in private and public sector including Fortune 500 companies, government, higher education, and non-profit organizations. She grew up in Munich, Germany, and discovered her passion for implementing positive change while taking down the Berlin Wall with a sledgehammer as a young child. After many years of traveling and working in different nations around the globe, Boulder became her home base where she earned her BA and MA in Communications. When not busy climbing mountains with her Alaskan Malamute, Scone, Vanessa enjoys spending time with her family, long walks with friends, and teaching at CU Boulder’s College of Media, Communication and Information. Her favorite discovery is meteorite research that is revealing unsolved mysteries about our solar system and the origins of molecules necessary for life.

Jill Katzenberger

Creative Director

Museum Experience Expert | Acclaimed Aerial Acrobatic Performer | Creator of Magic

Jill spent the last 15 years in science education, teaching 8th grade science in the Denver Public School District and developing informal science programs at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science (DMNS). With a keen eye for blending education experiences with interactive learning environments, Jill played an instrumental role in conceptualizing, designing, and implementing new innovative program models in DMNS’s education wing. She earned her BS degree in Environmental Science from UC Santa Barbara and her Teaching Certification from CU Denver. When Jill is not discovering with her own tiny scientists, her toddler son and daughter, she is teaching aerial acrobatics for Aircat Aerial Arts and performing with world-renowned bands. Her favorite discovery is the Colorado’s Snowmass Ice Age fossil excavation that allowed Jill to bring a wide range of Ice Age critters to Denver for educational programming purposes.

Ryan Madson

Director of Experience & Innovation

International Kidz Magazine Editor | Co-Founder of Fractal Tribe | Master of Spectacles

Ryan grew up in Boulder Colorado and earned his Bachelor’s degree in Music Business and Technology from CU Denver. He has co-founded a community run record label and booking agency, a by-kids-for-kids media company, and a software company for the Internet of Things. He wrote and directed an award-winning and internationally traveling circus show and produced a music album for the band, CASSANDRA, that the HuffPost called, “the power-ballad soundtrack for the resistance.” As a board member of the community and circus group, Fractal Tribe, he’s learned quite a few things about wrangling and nurturing a passionate group of artists and engineers. On a day off, Ryan likes to stroll down to the farmer’s market, pick up some local food, and play with fellow acrobats in the grass. A cold plunge in the creek and a homemade-dinner with friends would cap off the evening. Ryan is delighted by the pure pursuit of curiosity that lead scientists to ask why the Apatosaurus had such a long tail. It turns out, it was likely used as a bull whip to crack the sound barrier in a deafening mating call!

Leo Borasio

Communication &
Web master

Storytelling and Design Wizard | Cross-disciplinary Guru | Multi-talented Musician

Leo is a 2018 CU Boulder graduate with a B.A. in Anthropology and a B.S. in Advertising–including the Outstanding Graduate Award (for the highest student GPA). His interest in science budded from an archeology field school where he researched the Ancestral Puebloans at Cowboy Wash on the Ute Mountain Ute reservation and Cuyumungue on the Pojoaque Pueblo. Leo also loves music and can play multiple instruments, but his primary is the Alto Saxophone. As an alumni of the Golden Buffalo Marching Band and Buff Basketball Band Leo continues to cheer on the Buffs and the band at every game. On a day off, Leo likes to explore the mountains, whether hiking, mountain biking, or off-roading. Leo’s favorite discovery is water on Mars, harboring valuable secrets about the planet’s past and its future potential for accommodating human colonies.

BOARD

Martha Lanaghen

Martha is the Executive Director of MakerBolder.com, a Boulder-based non-profit that produces interactive science content and events, including STEAM Fest which attracts over 4,500 people to the Rocky Mountain region every year. She has empowered youth and adults around the globe to pursue higher education, authored eight text books focused on preparing young adults for success in the workplace, and is the founder of The Sparrow Group, a successful international consulting agency. Martha has lived in Boulder for nearly 30 years. A science discovery she’s watching includes the CRISPR discovery and ongoing research.  CRISPRs are a new genome editing tool that is already changing the way we think about genetics and disease.

Sumanth Channabasappa

Sumanth is a technologist, entrepreneur and investor who loves to work on globally impactful innovations that deliver market-based returns. His experiences include leadership & contributions to mobile, broadband, internet technologies, network security,  voice over IP, the Internet of Things (IoT) etc. He is currently contributing to healthcare (e.g., via the Center for Medical Interoperability), smart cities (he is a co-founder of the CO Smart Cities Alliance), and solutions for the blind and visually impaired. He is the founder and a co-organizer of XRoads, an investor in Vibrant Veggies that makes flavored Sauerkraut products, and an advisor and investor via 3 Lines Venture Fund. He also helps growth-stage and large companies with innovation, strategy, business models, lean execution etc., as a Founding Director of The CORE. His mentorship and advisory affiliations include: Blackstone Entrepreneurs Network, Rockies Venture Club, Open Labs, 10.10.10 etc. In his free time, he enjoys dreaming, snowboarding, having cool conversations, hiking with dogs, and playing tennis. Sumanth’s favorite discoveries are the Theory of Relativity by Einstein and algorithms by Ada Lovelace, both of which showcased our limitations and our potential at the same time!

Kelly Cavill

Kelly is currently VP of Sales and Marketing at Astronaut Foods, which is part of American Outdoor Products, a Boulder based family business since 1951. Astronaut Ice Cream is sold in over 300 science and space museums worldwide. Recently, Kelly has applied her management and leadership skills at a software marketing company and a sales lead startup. Previously, she worked in the film industry as a development executive at Lions Gate Films and New Line Cinema in Los Angeles. As a parent of two young children, and married to a climate scientist, Kelly is passionate about science education and provides project management leadership, enthusiasm and dedication to the Science Galaxy team. In her free time she enjoys spending time with her kids, hiking, yoga, creative projects, road trips of exploration and dinner with friends. Her favorite scientific discovery is the discovery of DNA by Friedrich Miescher in 1869.

MIND TRUST

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