People

MathHappens is founded by Phil and Lauren Siegel. The current board includes Phil and Lauren as well as their sons, Matt Siegel and Alex Siegel. Jennifer June coordinates projects in California, and Elizabeth Lay coordinates the Math in Texas History Program. Elizabeth Wrightsman is currently pursuing a Phd in Mathematics Education and is particularly interested in non- western and informal/untold history of Mathematics. Michelle Tat is a founding employee and continues to work in all aspects of the MathHappens Foundation.
We like math. We think it's fun, interesting and worthwhile. We want to share this with anybody and everybody who is interested.

Philip Siegel

Phil is co-founder of MathHappens and serves on the board. He is also co-founder of TritiumPartners in Austin, TX. Phil took degrees in both math and chemistry as an undergraduate at University of Chicago. Phil attributes his success in his business career to his facility with numbers and understanding of mathematics.

Lauren Siegel

Lauren is co-Founder and acting Director of MathHappens. She has an undergraduate math degree from University of Chicago. She later completed the UTeach Credential Program at University of Texas at Austin. She served as Head of Math at Ace Academy for five years. Lauren is principal co-author of the article: Teaching Algebra Concepts by Modeling Telescope Optics, and has recently returned to UTeach as part of the mentor team for the UTeach Maker Program.

Matt Siegel

Matt serves on the board of MathHappens. He studied Chemical Engineering at Washington University at St. Louis and recently completed a Professional Master’s degree in Mineral Exploration at Colorado School of Mines.

Alex Siegel

Alex is also a boardmember for MathHappens. He is a graduate of the University of California at Berkeley and is currently residing and working in Northern California.

Jennifer June

MathHappens is growing! Jennifer has joined the MathHappens team to support and build our California partnerships. Jennifer obtained her B.S. from University of California at Riverside, where she studied anthropology, sociology and psychology. Jennifer received her MPH in Behavioral Sciences, and her MSW in Planning and Mental Health, both from UC Berkeley.

Josephine Sheng

As Director of Operations and Community Engagement Josephine Sheng is a MathHappens Foundation veteran. She began as an intern in 2018 and has been involved in every aspect of our museum work including managing Museum Day Programs, traveling for conference presentations, and mentoring the internship staff. She is currently working with libraries to integrate math into their scholastic offerings which include take home kits, activities and book selections. As the intern coordinator, Josephine works primarily with undergraduates to not only ensure that they are prepared and supported in their work, but also that they have a range of experiences that can enhance their professional credentials. Josephine graduated from the University of Texas where she studied Biochemistry and Spanish and completed the UTeach teacher preparation course in the college of Natural Sciences.
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Paola Garcia

Paola Garcia is MathHappens Director of Education and Special Projects. She graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics in Spring 2017. While obtaining her teaching certification in 2018-2019, Paola worked as an intern for MathHappens. After 2 years of teaching middle school mathematics Paola has rejoined the MathHappens Foundation and is working on various projects primarily focused on supporting education programs through creation and dissemination of teaching resources as well as providing professional development. Paola is also co-editor of the “Math Ad” Program. In her spare time, she enjoys creating crafts using a Cricut, playing video games, and baking.

Elizabeth Lay

Elizabeth Lay leads our Math in Texas History program. A sixth-generation Texan with extensive experience in education and education design, she is working to develop hands-on learning experiences exploring the role of math and early mathematical technology in the unique story of Texas. Previously, Elizabeth was an instructional designer, operations director for a healthcare startup and assistant director and teacher with Austin Gifted. In her spare time, she enjoys directing live theater, and is an eight-time Best of Fest winner in Austin’s annual FronteraFest theater competition. She holds a bachelor’s degree in history from Grinnell College.

Elizabeth Wrightsman

Elizabeth Wrightsman is currently working on Special Projects for MathHappens Foundation. She graduated from Texas State University with a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics. While working to complete her degree, Elizabeth had the opportunity to tutor various levels of mathematics at Austin Community College, where she discovered her love of teaching and sharing mathematics with the community. Currently, she is working on her PhD in Mathematics Education at Texas State University where she is employed as a Graduate Research Assistant. Elizabeth’s primary research interest is equity in mathematics education and investigating ways to make math more accessible to all. Elizabeth enjoys filling her free time with yoga, video games and geocaching.