Caroline King is the Chief Executive Officer of Washington STEM. She leads Washington STEM’s program, policy, and partnerships efforts to advance equity, excellence, and innovation in STEM education.

Caroline has devoted her career to advancing strategies that allow young people to access economic opportunity, particularly through education. Caroline began her career as a teacher at a school focused on technology and social justice in Ecuador, where her students were the first in their families to attend high school. Caroline has watched her former students graduate from high school, pursue dreams in college and the workforce, and transform their lives and communities.

Since her time as a teacher, Caroline has gained almost 20 years of experience in the movement to close opportunity gaps through education. Caroline was a co-founder of Washington STEM in 2011, and for seven years she served as the Chief Policy and Strategy Officer, where she the led organization’s efforts to build public demand and strategic partnerships, advocate for smarter policies, and measure impact.

Prior to leading Washington STEM’s launch, Caroline served as Executive Director of Partnership for Learning, the nonprofit education arm of the CEO-led Washington Roundtable. Caroline was a founding member of the Public Education Leadership Project (PELP), the first-ever joint initiative of Harvard Business School and Harvard Graduate School of Education, designed to strengthen the leadership and management of large urban school systems. She has also consulted for foundations, schools, and nonprofits, including the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the New School Foundation, and Grantmakers for Education.

Caroline serves as a gubernatorial appointee to Washington State’s STEM Education Innovation Alliance and a Washington MESA board member. In 2012, the Puget Sound Business Journal recognized Caroline as a 40 Under 40 Honoree.

Caroline holds a Master of Education in Administration, Planning and Social Policy from the Harvard Graduate School of Education and a B.A. in Anthropology from the University of Notre Dame.

Outside of work, Caroline enjoys spending time with her husband Eric and two sons, Charlie and Russell. She loves hiking, cooking, and going to concerts.

Connect with Caroline at

Alex Johnston served as our Chief Development Officer for four years. She passed away on July 17, 2018.

Learn more about her work here.


Andy serves as Washington STEM’s Chief Program Officer, leading the organization’s efforts to develop and support innovative STEM learning experiences for all Washington students through close partnership with educators and industry and community partners.

A former elementary and middle grades teacher, science center administrator, and STEM education researcher, Andy brings a wealth of experience to Washington STEM. Andy joins us from the University of Washington’s College of Education faculty where he led a range of STEM education research and development efforts, including the design of curriculum, professional development systems, and partnerships with schools and informal learning organizations – all focused on equitable learning outcomes. Prior to his appointment at UW, Andy was Senior Program Officer at the Board on Science Education of the National Academy of Sciences in Washington, D.C. There Andy directed consensus studies to define best practices in STEM education and to inform federal STEM research and development investments.

Andy holds a Ph.D. from Michigan State University’s program in Curriculum, Teaching, and Educational Policy. He lives in Seattle with his wife and two children with whom he loves to camp, make messes in the workshop, swim in lakes, and ride motorcycles.

Connect with Andy at


Carlin serves as Senior Program Officer for Washington STEM, leading the organization’s early math initiative and contributing to overall programmatic strategy. He works to develop and support innovative early STEM learning experiences that start children on pathways to lives and careers that benefit them, their families, and their communities.

Carlin brings significant experience leading innovative research and development efforts in early and informal STEM learning. Throughout his career he has worked on projects that seek to increase opportunity for children and students growing up in underserved communities.

Recently, Carlin worked as a Program Director at SRI Education in Menlo Park, California, where he led and contributed to research and development efforts focused on early math, science, and literacy, including the summative and formative evaluation of the U.S. Department of Education’s Ready to Learn program. His work has been sponsored by The Corporation for Public Broadcasting, the National Science Foundation, The Jim Henson Company, and other clients. Prior to SRI, he worked at Education Development Center in Newton, Massachusetts as a researcher and project director.

Carlin holds an Ed.M. in Human Development from the Harvard Graduate School of Education and a self-designed BA from The Evergreen State College. He lives in Seattle with his wife and two children, with whom he loves seeking out new adventures, especially ones involving tasty things to eat. An avid runner, Carlin enjoys getting outside, especially on trails, in all kinds of weather.

Connect with Carlin at


Christina Khatri is the Development Operations Manager at Washington STEM. She is primarily responsible for supporting the Development team. Day-to-day activities include database management, research, and administrative support.

Christina has over nine years of experience working at nonprofits. Prior to joining Washington STEM, she worked in various administrative and philanthropic roles at The Trust for Public Land. Christina has a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Washington -Seattle in Sociology with an emphasis on Globalization and Social Change.

Christina is grateful to be working at an organization focused on increasing equity in Washington state and creating opportunities in STEM fields for Washington students. She completed her 200-hour Yoga Teaching Certificate in 2016 and is currently pursuing her 500-hour Yoga Teaching Certificate. She enjoys hiking, is an avid reader, and loves to learn new things.

Connect with Christina at


Danny serves as Communications and Digital Media Manager at Washington STEM. He’s responsible for management and creation of digital media for the organization, as well as contributing to the organization’s overall policy and communications strategy. Danny recently completed his Masters of Communication from the University of Washington, where he focused on the intersection of digital media, education, storytelling, and policy.

Danny brings a rich professional background of multimedia and communications experience to his work at Washington STEM. He has history of community involvement through after school educational opportunities and work-based service. It is a love of community, technology and education that has brought Danny to Washington STEM.

Prior to Washington STEM, Danny worked at Microsoft as a video engineer on the XBOX One’s streaming video service where he focused on creating effective strategies for content mastering and database management. He cites his five-and-a-half-year volunteer involvement with the Bureau of Fearless Ideas high school tutoring program as his deciding factor to enter the non-profit education world.

Connect with Danny at


Deidre oversees Washington STEM’s individual giving program as Donor Relations Officer. Deidre has long been a champion for educational equity and ensuring that all youth in our region have the opportunities to develop their full potential. In her 19 years working in the non-profit sector, she has seen the amazing talent that exists in our region, and what can happen with the right education, mentoring and exposure to different experiences. She has also seen the power of collaboration and the increased impact that occurs when we come together to find solutions to the opportunity gap, as well as our state’s economic needs. Washington STEM’s approach is highly effective, and she is excited to help the organization grow and increase its impact.

She has held development, program and leadership roles in education, early learning and youth development organizations. She holds relationships at the center of everything she does and loves connecting people to the issues and causes they care most deeply about. She values and fights for social justice, educational equity and a vibrant community that cares for all of its members.

Deidre holds a BA in history from Santa Clara University. She spends her spare time with her three daughters and husband in their community of West Seattle or camping and hiking in the beautiful mountains of the Pacific NW.

Connect with Diedre at


Gilda serves as Program Director at Washington STEM where she designs and implements innovative and scalable programs to advance STEM education in Washington state. Her work focuses on excellent, equitable, and engaging K-12 STEM learning, STEM career and college pathways, and STEM literacy for citizenship and life.

Prior to joining Washington STEM, Gilda worked for the Washington State Education Agency (Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction) where she served for 10 years as Program Supervisor for Sustainability and Science. In that role, Gilda led the development of learning standards, provided professional development for formal and informal educators, led statewide education policies, and developed environmental STEM curriculum adaptations. She began her career in education in California as a high school and middle school language arts teacher. Prior to her teaching career, Gilda held the position of environmental land use planner where she used early Geographic Information Systems (GIS) technology to analyze urban development impacts, piquing her interest in the intersection of science and technology. She holds a BA degree in physical geography and a MEd from the University of California Santa Barbara.

Gilda lives in South Seattle with her husband and extended family. When she’s not working to promote equity in STEM education, she spends her time along and in Lake Washington, backpacking in the Cascade Mountains, cross-country skiing, and practicing the four Rs (rethink, reduce, reuse, and recycle) in the pursuit of sustainable living.

Connect with Gilda at


Jayme Shoun serves as the Program Coordinator for Washington STEM. She works primarily with the Innovation team helping to coordinate meetings, work groups, and managing projects. She also supports the review, communication and administration of grants.

Prior to joining Washington STEM, Jayme worked as a senior constituent liaison for Congressman Jim McDermott, state-level campaign fundraising, and served as a student lobbyist at WSU-Vancouver. Jayme is a native Washingtonian, and has a unique perspective on post-secondary education as someone who returned to college mid-career. She brings experience working on education issues at the local, state and federal level and a passion for advocating for education opportunities for every student in Washington State.

Jayme holds a BA in Public Affairs from Washington State University. In her spare time, Jayme enjoys cooking, travel, hiking, musical theater, and the occasional 5k.

Connect with Jayme at

Jenée serves as the Impact Director at Washington STEM and is and adjunct for the University of Washington College of Education’s Leadership in Higher Education program. She develops, analyzes, and applies cross-sector, longitudinal data and research on systems changes and student outcomes to help drive Washington STEM’s business plan and strategic initiatives. Jenée has her PhD in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies from UW and has led research studies on policy changes for secondary to postsecondary transitions for underserved students, regional collective impact network leadership, and regionalized supply-demand gaps for education-to-workforce pathways across Washington state.

Connect with Jenée at


Jesse Gilliam serves as Washington STEM’s Director of Communications and Policy. He’s responsible for internal and external communications strategy and implementation and he also leads Washington STEM’s policy and advocacy efforts.

Jesse brings 15 years of nonprofit and government experience to his work at Washington STEM. The thread that connects all of his work is a commitment to advance social justice. Jesse believes access to quality education is key to increasing equity in our communities.

Jesse most recently served as a legislative aide to Seattle City Councilmember Sally J. Clark, where he focused on human services, income inequality, and communications. Previously, he worked at Big Brothers Big Sisters of Puget Sound as the Director of Advocacy and Community Engagement. He’s undertaken policy, community engagement, and communications roles at Seattle’s Lifelong AIDS Alliance and Advocates for Youth in Washington, D.C. While in college, he founded the Day of Silence, the nation’s largest youth lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender awareness event.

Jesse holds a master’s degree in Public Policy and Women’s Studies from the George Washington University and a bachelor’s degree in Economics and Women’s Studies from the University of Virginia. Jesse has served on the board of several organizations which support the LGBT community, including the Point Foundation and Ingersoll Gender Center. He lives in West Seattle with his wife, Jamie, and two extremely furry dogs.

Connect with Jesse at


Jill Nelson is the Finance and Grants Manager of Washington STEM. An experienced administrative professional, Jill supports the organization’s finance and grantmaking efforts by providing a keen eye for detail, organizational efficiency, and strong communication skills.

Jill brings over 14 years’ experience in the legal and nonprofit sectors. She spent eight years leading office operations as the senior paralegal and personal assistant to a shareholder at Datsopoulos, MacDonald & Lind, P.C. in Montana. Jill also served as board secretary for the Montana chapter of A Special Wish Foundation, an event organizer for Camp Mak-A-Dream, and as vice president of the Russell School PTA.

As a parent of a Washington public school student, Jill brings a passion and commitment to education in Washington and advancing STEM excellence for all students. Although a native Oregonian, Jill has also had the privilege of calling both Montana and Washington her home. She loves the beauty of the Pacific Northwest and enjoys experiencing it first hand while running and hiking. More than anything, she enjoys spending time with her husband and two children.

Connect with Jill at


Matt Cronin is the Corporate Partnerships Manager at Washington STEM. He is responsible for developing, managing, and implementing corporate partnerships that generate revenue and increase visibility for Washington STEM. He generates new leads and plays a key business development role on a four-person team.

Matt brings 10 years of experience from both the private and non-profit sectors to his role at Washington STEM. His passion for connecting young people to opportunity and businesses to nonprofits has led him to Washington STEM.

Prior to this role, Matt was a Project Manager at Pyramid Communications, a full-service strategic communications and public affairs firm. As a Project Manager, he was responsible for building long-term client relationships; coordinating cross-functional teams; and managing budgets, timelines, scopes, and contracts. Previously, he worked at The Trust for Public Land, where he wrote grants and donor communications.

Matt was born and raised in Port Townsend, Washington and received a Bachelor’s of Science in Communications from Southern Oregon University in Ashland, Oregon. On the weekends, Matt can be found at the Ballard Farmer’s Market with his wife, Emma, and their yellow lab named Griffey.

Connect with Matt Cronin at


Matt Poth brings 11 years of accounting and finance experience to Washington STEM. He started his career in public accounting at Falco Sult & Company where he performed tax and accounting services for companies and individuals from a variety of industries. It was during this time that he became a Certified Public Accountant in 2010. From there he moved on to the Corporate Consolidations group at PACCAR, Inc. where he assisted in a variety of accounting and financial analysis functions. The last four plus years of Matt’s career were spent at NetMotion Software, Inc. He held various titles there with the final role of Accounting Manager. He enjoyed working for a smaller, non-public company because it allowed him to see a wider depth of accounting and finance work. Gaining experience in the software sector was a new and unique challenge to Matt, especially in terms of software revenue recognition, banking compliance, and private equity relations.

Matt is from the Snoqualmie Valley and a graduate of Mount Si High School. He continued his education at Gonzaga University while studying in the sciences and business administration while earning a bachelor’s degree in Accounting. It was here where he was exposed to the non-profit world having participated in the VITA program and some volunteer work at Crosswalk. Matt has enjoyed most sports throughout his life, especially baseball and golf. Getting outside with family and friends is what he enjoys most.

Matt is a proud parent of one boy (2) and one girl (3 months) and he loves seeing them grow and learn new things on a daily basis. In Matt’s words, “They certainly keep my wife and I on our toes.”

Matt could not be happier joining Washington STEM. Being part of a team that pushes for all children to have the ability for a STEM education makes him feel very proud. He looks forward to leveraging his past experience to help assist the mission of Washington STEM.

Connect with Matt Poth at


Megan Nadan serves as Washington STEM’s Special Events Manager. She is primarily responsible for the logistics of all organization events. Working in close coordination with Washington STEM team members and partners, she supports the growth and effectiveness of the organization through the planning, support, and execution of various events.

Megan received a BFA in Graphic Design from Central Washington University. While working in Columbus, Ohio as a designer she found a passion for children’s advocacy through her work with This work inspired her to return to school for a second Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from The George Washington University, in Washington D.C. Megan recently worked as Convention and Board Support for Washington State PTA, which involved helping to support a variety of events and multi-stage projects and serving as the staff liaison on volunteer committees.

A northwest native, Megan grew up in Olympia and graduated from River Ridge High School. She is an avid baker, and she and her husband Jay love to travel and spend time outdoors whenever possible.

Connect with Megan at


Nicole Arriaga is the Accounting and Administrative Specialist at Washington STEM. She works closely with the Finance Team and is primarily responsible for supporting the accounting functions for Washington STEM and the Washington State Opportunity Scholarship program

Prior to joining Washington STEM, Nicole has always had a desire to make a positive impact through nonprofit experiences. She was involved with not-for-profit organizations during high school and college, and completed an internship with the Gage Academy of Art. Nicole was granted a Bachelor’s Degree in Science at Western Washington University. She has also earned a post-Baccalaureate Graduate Certificate in Accounting from the University of Washington Foster Business School and has passed all of the CPA exams.

Since she is originally from Hawaii, Nicole enjoys exploring and participating in outdoor activities – especially kayaking and hiking. She also has an avid yoga practice, loves to cook, and is learning how to play the violin.

Connect with Nicole Arriaga at


Nicole Pettigrew is the Executive Assistant to the CEO and Office Manager at Washington STEM. She directly supports CEO Caroline King and manages office operations. She comes to us as the former business manager of a charter school and understands the value of equitable and quality STEM education for all students.

Nicole has a long career in office management and business operations working for companies such as State Farm, Russell Investments and Kinzer Partners. She is also a truly passionate youth advocate having served on the board of Atlantic Street Center and is currently a Dependency CASA with King County Superior Court. What a great combination for the work we do here at Washington STEM!

Nicole is a graduate of the University of Washington with a degree in interdisciplinary arts and sciences. Born and raised in the beautiful Pacific Northwest, Nicole loves sports and especially her Seattle teams…Go Hawks! You will always find her rooting on her teams surrounded by a large circle of family and friends.

Connect with Nicole Pettigrew at


Tana Peterman is a program officer with Washington STEM. As part of our engineering education initiative she leads the Engineering Fellows project, a partnership with Washington MESA.

Prior to joining Washington STEM, Tana taught middle school science in South Texas and Seattle. More recently, she earned her M. Ed. in Learning Sciences and Human Development at the University of Washington, while working at the Institute for Science and Math Education. At the Institute, she collaborated with a team of researchers, local district leaders, and science teachers to adapt curricula for equity-focused implementation of the Next Generation Science Standards. As part of that work she gained valuable experience working at the intersection of research and practice, serving as a partner in planning and implementing professional development, supporting teachers in classrooms, and informing educational research based on widely-felt problems of instructional practice. During her time at UW she also earned her Certificate in Teacher Leadership, further fueling her passion for empowering teachers to be effective leaders and change agents in equity-focused STEM education.

In her free time, Tana enjoys taking her dogs on local adventures and playing Ultimate with her husband in the vibrant Seattle Ultimate community. During most of the year, she also finds herself digging in her garden. Since moving to Washington in 2010 her favorite local vacation spot is Olympic National Park, where she and her husband have gone on several backpacking adventures.

Connect with Tana at