Speakers

2021 Speakers

Nick Galotti

Founder, Southern New England Advocacy Conference
Mentor, FRC 1735

Nick Galotti has been a member of FIRST since 1997. He started as a student on the Technonuts in Berlin, CT. When he went to college at WPI he joined Gompei and the HERD. In 2006 he founded the Green Reapers and has grown the team to be successful team they are today. Outside of robotics Nick is a web developer and works at MathWorks working on their website. Nick also supports the Berlin Fair in Connecticut by developing their website and also writing the software that is used to manage all the exhibits at the fair.

Steve Hyer

Founder, FIRST National Advocacy Conference
Steve Hyer founded the FIRST National Advocacy Conference in 2013.  He has served as a mentor to Hall of Fame Teams FRC 27 and FRC 1816.  He has judged FLL, FRC, and currently serves as a Judge Advisor for FRC.  Steve graduated from the University of Michigan and is currently the Secretary of the Clarkston Community Schools Board of Education and the Vice President of the Michigan Association of School Boards.  Steve is President and Founder of a website application development company, IGD Solutions Corporation.  Steve is very passionate about Advocacy and has led over 40 advocacy trips to Washington, DC for school board members, parents, administrators, and students over the last 20 years.

Danillo Sena

State Representative – 37th Middlesex District
As State Representative for the 37th Middlesex district, Danillo “Dan” Sena is the first Brazilian immigrant to be elected to a state legislature in America. Before his election, Dan served as Senator Jamie Eldridge’s District Director for 6 years. Now, Dan is in the Massachusetts House of Representatives and has already sponsored a number of bills, including the MA STEM Grant Bill, to further important issues. In the House, Dan is also a member of the Massachusetts Black and Latino Legislative Caucus.

Dan arrived in Acton at age 14 is an alumni of Acton-Boxborough Regional High School, Middlesex Community College, and UMass Amherst. Dan is a member of the Joint Committee on Consumer Protection and Professional Licensure, the Joint Committee on Education, and the Joint Committee on Public Safety and Homeland Security.

Tracy Novick

School Committee Member, Worcester Public Schools
Field Director, Massachusetts Association of School Committees
Tracy Novick is the Field Director for School Finance, Social Media, and Advocacy for the Massachusetts Association of School Committees. She is a certified Massachusetts school business administration. She lives with her family in Worcester, where she serves on the Worcester School Committee.

Dan Green

Regional Director and Executive Director – Illinois
Chief State Advocate, FIRST
Dan has been with FIRST for 26 years.   He is a retired engineer and manager from Motorola.  He started as an FRC mentor, and went on to mentor in all of the FIRST programs.  He currently is the FRC Regional Director, FIRST Illinois Robotics Executive Director, and Chief State Advocate for the state of Illinois.

Daphne Frownfelte

Regional Director – Pennsylvania
Chief State Advocate, FIRST
Daphne has been involved with FIRST for several years as an operational representative, working closely in Western PA with our FIRST Tech Challenge Program Delivery Partner.  She has mentored FIRST Tech Challenge and FIRST Robotics Competition teams, and has been a volunteer at the FIRST Championship in St. Louis for many years.  Daphne’s role as Regional Director is to support the Program Delivery Partners in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and Delaware, as well as direct the Greater Pittsburgh Regional FIRST Robotics Competition Event in the Western & Central Pennsylvania Region.  Daphne’s role as Chief State Advocate is to further develop relationships with key state government members, policy leaders, and staff who help us to continue the mission of FIRST.

Carolyn Arthurs

Chief State Advocate, FIRST
A native of New Orleans, Louisiana, with a background in event planning and management, Carolyn Arthurs joined the FIRST family over twenty years ago as a sub-contractor hired to manage events across the county.  After thirteen years on the road running FIRST Robotics Competition events, Carolyn learned of the need for local support in her home state and officially became the Regional Director of the FIRST Robotics Competition in Louisiana and Mississippi in 2013.  She received the Governor’s Technology Award for Leadership in STEM in 2015 and became a driving force for advocacy in her Region.  In addition to her role as Regional Director, Carolyn continues to organize the structure and message of FIRST legislative efforts through her role as one of FIRST’s Chief State Advocates.

2020 Speakers

Nick Galotti

Founder, Southern New England Advocacy Conference
Mentor, FRC 1735

Nick Galotti has been a member of FIRST since 1997. He started as a student on the Technonuts in Berlin, CT. When he went to college at WPI he joined Gompei and the HERD. In 2006 he founded the Green Reapers and has grown the team to be successful team they are today. Outside of robotics Nick is a web developer and works at MathWorks working on their website. Nick also supports the Berlin Fair in Connecticut by developing their website and also writing the software that is used to manage all the exhibits at the fair.

Steve Hyer

Founder, FIRST National Advocacy Conference
Steve Hyer founded the FIRST National Advocacy Conference in 2013.  He has served as a mentor to Hall of Fame Teams FRC 27 and FRC 1816.  He has judged FLL, FRC, and currently serves as a Judge Advisor for FRC.  Steve graduated from the University of Michigan and is currently the Secretary of the Clarkston Community Schools Board of Education and the Vice President of the Michigan Association of School Boards.  Steve is President and Founder of a website application development company, IGD Solutions Corporation.  Steve is very passionate about Advocacy and has led over 40 advocacy trips to Washington, DC for school board members, parents, administrators, and students over the last 20 years.

Tim Murray

President and CEO, Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce
Lieutenant Governor of Massachusetts – 2007-2013

Tracy Novick

School Committee Member, Worcester Public Schools
Field Director, Massachusetts Association of School Committees
Tracy Novick is the Field Director for School Finance, Social Media, and Advocacy for the Massachusetts Association of School Committees. She is a certified Massachusetts school business administration. She lives with her family in Worcester, where she serves on the Worcester School Committee.

Timothy Oakes

Board of Education, Berlin Public Schools
Mentor, FRC 155
Tim is a nine-year member of the Berlin Board of Education in Connecticut, the only nonpartisan Board of Education in the state. A graduate of the University of Connecticut, Tim spends his days as a Network Engineer with Whittlesey Technology in Hartford CT, providing network architecture and network security consulting services to clients from New Hampshire to Florida. Tim mentors the Berlin’s FIRST 155 team, the Technonuts, focusing on the value of Data Analytics using Tableau during competitions. Tim is also a former avid curler.

2019 Speakers

Nick Galotti

Founder, Southern New England Advocacy Conference
Mentor, FRC 1735

Nick Galotti has been a member of FIRST since 1997. He started as a student on the Technonuts in Berlin, CT. When he went to college at WPI he joined Gompei and the HERD. In 2006 he founded the Green Reapers and has grown the team to be successful team they are today. Outside of robotics Nick is a web developer and works at MathWorks working on their website. Nick also supports the Berlin Fair in Connecticut by developing their website and also writing the software that is used to manage all the exhibits at the fair.

Steve Hyer

Founder, FIRST National Advocacy Conference
Steve Hyer founded the FIRST National Advocacy Conference in 2013.  He has served as a mentor to Hall of Fame Team FRC 27.  He has judged FLL, FRC, and currently serves as a Judge Advisor for FRC.  Steve graduated from the University of Michigan and is currently the Secretary of the Clarkston Community Schools Board of Education and he serves on the Michigan Association of School Boards Board of Directors.  Steve is President and Founder of a website application development company, IGD Solutions Corporation.  Steve is very passionate about Advocacy and has led over 35 advocacy trips to Washington, DC for school board members, parents, administrators, and students over the last 15 years.

Don Bossi

President, FIRST
Starting his career as a research scientist, first at MIT Lincoln Laboratory and then at United Technologies Research Center (UTRC), Bossi was part of an advanced project at UTRC that was acquired by JDS Uniphase (JDSU). Bossi’s role grew within JDSU, and he subsequently served as president of JDSU’s Active Components and Transmission Products groups. In 2005, he joined Technology Ventures Partners (TVP). In addition to being a General Partner with this venture firm, Bossi served as CEO of two portfolio companies, namely, Aegis Lightwave and Inlet Technologies, positioning the latter for a beneficial acquisition by Cisco.

Daniel Donahue

State Representative – 16th Worcester District
Representative Dan Donahue is the State Representative of the 16th Worcester District. Rep. Donahue attended the College of the Holy Cross (also in his district) and was employed as an aide to Worcester Mayor, Joe Petty, after college. First elected during a special election in 2013 and re-elected to his first full term in 2014, Representative Donahue is committed to improving the quality of life for residents of Worcester.

Representative Donahue currently serves as Vice Chair on the House Committee on Redistricting and also serves on the following committees: the Joint Committee on Health Care Financing, Joint Committee on Transportation, House Committee on Bonding, as well as the House Committee on Capital Expenditures and State Assets.

Charles Rothenberger

Senior Lobbyist, Rome Smith & Lutz Government Relations
Charles Rothenberger is a Senior Lobbyist with Rome Smith & Lutz, where his practice focuses on education, energy, the environment, and housing.  Prior to joining the firm, he spent ten years developing policy and litigating environmental, energy, and land development use issues. He has lobbied extensively before the CT General Assembly, state agencies, municipal boards and commissions.

Charles is a 2001 honors graduate of the University Of Connecticut School Of Law, where he edited the Connecticut Journal of International Law. He has a master’s degree in public policy from Trinity College and a bachelor’s in history from the University of Connecticut. He has been admitted to the Connecticut, New York and Massachusetts bars and served as a law clerk to the Hon. Thomas G. West and the Hon. Joseph H. Pellegrino at the Connecticut Appellate Court.

Tracy Novick

Field Director, Massachusetts Association of School Committees
Tracy O’Connell Novick is a Field Director with the Massachusetts Association of School Committees. A former member of the Worcester School Committee, she manages social media for MASC; she also focuses particularly on school finance policy, currently studying to be certified as a school business official. Tracy is a former Massachusetts public school teacher, who resides with her family in Worcester, where her children attend the Worcester Public Schools.


2018 Speakers

Steve Hyer

Founder, FIRST National Advocacy Conference
Steve Hyer founded the FIRST National Advocacy Conference in 2013.  He has served as a mentor to Hall of Fame Team FRC 27.  He has judged FLL, FRC, and currently serves as a Judge Advisor for FRC.  Steve graduated from the University of Michigan and is currently the Secretary of the Clarkston Community Schools Board of Education and he serves on the Michigan Association of School Boards Board of Directors.  Steve is President and Founder of a website application development company, IGD Solutions Corporation.  Steve is very passionate about Advocacy and has led over 35 advocacy trips to Washington, DC for school board members, parents, administrators, and students over the last 15 years.

Daniel Donahue

State Representative – 16th Worcester District
Representative Dan Donahue is the State Representative of the 16th Worcester District. Rep. Donahue attended the College of the Holy Cross (also in his district) and was employed as an aide to Worcester Mayor, Joe Petty, after college. First elected during a special election in 2013 and re-elected to his first full term in 2014, Representative Donahue is committed to improving the quality of life for residents of Worcester.

Representative Donahue currently serves as Vice Chair on the House Committee on Redistricting and also serves on the
following committees: the Joint Committee on Health Care Financing, Joint Committee on Transportation, House Committee on Bonding, as well as the House Committee on Capital Expenditures and State Assets.

Charles Rothenberger

Senior Lobbyist, Rome Smith & Lutz Government Relations
Charles Rothenberger is a Senior Lobbyist with Rome Smith & Lutz, where his practice focuses on education, energy, the environment, and housing.  Prior to joining the firm, he spent ten years developing policy and litigating environmental, energy, and land development use issues. He has lobbied extensively before the CT General Assembly, state agencies, municipal boards and commissions.

Charles is a 2001 honors graduate of the University Of Connecticut School Of Law, where he edited the Connecticut Journal of International Law. He has a master’s degree in public policy from Trinity College and a bachelor’s in history from the University of Connecticut. He has been admitted to the Connecticut, New York and Massachusetts bars and served as a law clerk to the Hon. Thomas G. West and the Hon. Joseph H. Pellegrino at the Connecticut Appellate Court.

Tracy Novick

Field Director, Massachusetts Association of School Committees
Tracy O’Connell Novick is a Field Director with the Massachusetts Association of School Committees. A former member of the Worcester School Committee, she manages social media for MASC; she also focuses particularly on school finance policy, currently studying to be certified as a school business official. Tracy is a former Massachusetts public school teacher, who resides with her family in Worcester, where her children attend the Worcester Public Schools.