CEO & Founder
The one quote that Rachael hangs by her desk says, “Be truthful, gentle, and fearless.” She wants to leave this earth known as a leader who empowers others to be better than her. Rachael is described by others as gritty, hungry to learn, humble and visionary -- but her passion is what truly defines and elevates her. Whether she's talking about how amazing the spoken-word artist she saw last week was or a new social enterprise she just heard about, she can't help but gush. She's one of the lucky ones to be born with fire, and she works daily to channel it for good.
Chief Snuggle Officer
A Tennessee native, you wouldn't have guessed! At just a few months, the adventurous puppy hopped on a bus and traveled cross country to New York City. She has since become fully accustomed to the city's hustle and bustle - most would think she was a native New Yorker. Maile's day starts with a healthy kibble breakfast digested on her walk to the 6 train at Bleecker street. She hops on the uptown 6 and heads up to her Catchafire office, where she begins her very busy day. As CSO Maile holds multiple roles. Her first priority (completely outside her job description) is to scan the garbage bins for any wastage. Once that's done, she'll do the rounds, wagging her tail, smiling and sniffing each employee. And if you're lucky, you'll even get a leg hump. Her main job is watching the door. She settles into her doggie bed or assumes a comfy position on the leather couch. Her job is tough, so we cut her slack when she dozes off…
"Wherever you go, go with all your heart.” After deepening her passion for service & community at Notre Dame, Catherine became a “Debit Diva” and earned her CPA license. Now, her enthusiasm for the power of business and social good has led her to a career set on making an impact. Believing there is always a reason to celebrate, she loves to explore new places, laugh with family & friends and carry gratitude in her pocket. If she isn’t running, swimming or biking, look for her at the nearest vegan restaurant.
A problem-solver by birth, Ella finds thrill in helping others find a way around, over and through obstacles they face. Ella’s adventurous spirit led her to teach 4th grade in rural Arkansas where she started an after school program for her students; then to New Haven and Baton Rouge where she managed Teach For America's program and teacher and leadership development; and back home to NYC, where she spends her days at Catchafire thinking strategically about scaling the impact of nonprofits. Ella strives to compete in women's amateur golf tournaments, one day we hope to see her win one!
After playing professional basketball overseas in Norway, Germany and Japan, Taj finally thought he’d find out what all the fuss was about the “real” working world. Besides his desires to be a screenwriter and start a band, he has always maintained an interest in how he could make the world a better place and that is what led him to Catchafire. He hopes to eventually become the tallest state senator in history.
Melissa is a Southerner by birth, New Englander by education and New Yorker by choice. She blames Frank Sinatra for wanting to be a part of it all and got her start in the Big Apple working for women’s magazines at Hearst and Condé Nast. All the while, she’s also kept one foot in the social good sector helping youth find service opportunities, setting up a staff volunteer initiative and supporting various women’s organizations. When she’s not generating content for Catchafire or writing, Melissa enjoys running, traveling, heading to museums and spending time with her two daughters in Brooklyn.
Lead Software Engineer
Jared likes coding, kitties, Dungeons and Dragons, helping the homeless, studying 1st century Christianity, philosophy, scaling startups, leading software teams and muay thai. This leaves him well positioned to write software and run our Tech Team, and not so well suited to write biographies like this one.
Senior Partnership Manager
Dana believes that there is no limit to the ways in which people can give back. This became clear to her in rural Malawi, where she spent a year and a half organizing community health workers and developing agricultural training programs for HIV and TB patients. As a Partnerships Manager with Catchafire, she is excited to help organizations find how to make the most of their limited resources, and to help professionals find the best way to give of their time and expertise. When Dana's not working, she's most likely brainstorming or biking somewhere new.
When it comes to the eternal struggle between order and chaos, Chris has trouble picking a side. He has 18 separately labelled bins for computer parts in his closet but loves playing sloppy punk rock guitar. A repeat Internet startup founder, Chris runs the Product team and has a secret ambition to make Catchafire the first site you check every day. He doesn’t own a smartphone because it would cut into his daydreaming time.
Scott likes to solve problems. A fascination with puzzles and brainteasers as a kid developed into a passion for finance and poker as an adult. A risk-taker at heart, at the height of his career he left his job as a hedge fund manager to try his hand at professional poker. Right now, he's trying to figure out how to make Catchafire a household name, something he thinks isn’t that far off.
Partnership Team Lead
As a child, Jason wanted to grow up to be an artist. He saw (and still sees) the world painted in bright colors and broad strokes. Today, he thinks creatively and optimistically about the world we can create with the right combination of individuals, organizations, and ideas.
Senior Account Manager
Ryan lives by the philosophy, Be yourself, everyone else is taken! She believes what makes you different is what makes you special and it is her mission to show the world how different Catchafire is. She has sat in every Catchafire seat, metaphorically and literally. When not playing musical chairs, Ryan loves Harry Potter, Arts and Crafts, and she has an awesome evil cackle.
Hayley got her start in the story biz writing and producing for an online magazine in Boulder, Colorado that covered anything from the life of a Belgian rockstar to elementary schools serving pink slime. She considers herself lucky because at Catchafire, it is her job to help tell stories about generosity, changemakers and do-gooders. She has the best time when she’s a few feet clear of her comfort zone and she won’t deny a fondness for everything that is Lady Gaga.
Front-end Developer & Product Manager
From the high mountains of the Andes, Rolando brings seven years of practice in design and development to the Catchafire team. He started his career formally at the age of 14 and has worked for the iStore, the Peruvian Scientific Network, and Parachutes. When he isn't Catchafiring, he enjoys singing, hanging out with friends, taking long walks and biking.
After 20 years working at for-profit internet media companies, Joe decided to change gears and use his skills to improve people's lives. It was a "Back to the Future" moment, since two decades earlier Joe spent two-and-a-half years in the peace corps teaching science and math in Africa. When not coding for Catchafire or coding pro bono, Joe enjoys amateur astronomy, which is just a grown up way of saying he's a giddy kid dreaming about the stars.
With more than six years of experience in software development, Jose is our committed and enthusiastic Software Engineer from Peru. He also works as a teacher in the Department of Computer Science at a Peruvian University. He has worked in several projects involving very large databases and high performance web applications. Interested in world history and sociology (and also in Pokémon and Dragon Ball), he likes to work for social causes trying to satisfy his compromise to make the world a better place.
Passionate about learning, teaching, motorcycles and Brazilian music, Rafael spent the last decade writing software and teaching about it around Brazil. Before this, he spent his days volunteering in orphanages and with homeless groups. He found his dream job at Catchafire where everyday he gets to do what he loves while helping others.
Where others see stars, Chris sees supernovas. He believes we should share our energy, light - and yes - hot air with those around us. Chris has helped to organize communities in areas as remote as the countryside of Ethiopia and as urban as the concrete jungle of NYC. His passion for finding creative ways to serve the social good runs bone deep.
Talent Solutions Account Executive
Priyanka believes in the human spirit and everything it is capable of. Passionate about learning, Priyanka’s roles have ranged from engineer to wedding planner to financial analyst to girl scout troop leader. When she’s not listening to the compassion of the community and helping it to forge ahead at Catchafire, you will find her dancing in her living room, eating cookies, and laughing as much as possible.
Senior Partnership Manager
Bridget believes in using the power of business to “do good” and has worked for several mission driven businesses in the areas of fair trade, environmental services, and sustainable consumer products. When she is not thinking about how businesses can be more socially responsible, she can be found practicing yoga, making tables out of reclaimed wood, and reading DIY blogs.
Maybe it all started in the 4th grade when she began a “Clean Up Club” during recess to take care of the needs of the playground. Or maybe it was when she created a food drive to raise 12,000 pounds of food complete with corporate sponsorship. When Adrienne sees a problem and sets her mind to it, action is taken. When she’s not moving at full speed, Adrienne likes to practice Graham technique, write short stories, make the occasional pavlova, hop on a plane to a new destination or camp in the backwoods of the nearest mountain.
Senior Account Manager
As a Super Curious Individual (SCI), Denise has always been interested in learning “a little more” resulting in experiences spanning from museum curation to digital advertising. But alas, she’s found her home at Catchafire where she gets to learn from social mission organizations every day! When Denise is not roaming around Astoria or planning a nationwide hip hop dance competition, you’ll probably catch her having a mini dance party at her desk.
Talent & Operations Manager
In her past life, Jie worked as a radio programmer and social worker. Her passion for working with people and developing communities brought her to Catchafire where she upholds the belief that we shall be the change we want to see in the world. Outside of the office, you’ll find Jie with her nose deep in a history book or scaling a rock wall at her local gym.
A staunch believer that everybody’s a miracle waiting to happen, Vibha’s affair with entrepreneurship started when she was 14, selling arts & crafts she made as a hobby. She’s often nicknamed ‘sunshine’ for her undying enthusiasm and energy for ideas. Vibha’s passion for doing good comes from her instinct to immediately love and care for people. Just ask the nonprofits she talks to daily, or those fortunate enough to receive one of her many handmade cards!
James believes that a great business has the power to change the world for the better. As a recent JMU graduate, he thought that Catchafire would be the perfect place to combine his business savvy and philanthropic ideals. A man constantly on the move he loves baseball, running, writing music and practicing guitar and piano.
Senior Software Engineer
Hailing from the UK, Dan is a passionate software developer who has worked on sites for the British National Health Service, Channel 4 Television and high street brands in the UK. Currently based in Finland, Dan enjoys learning human as well as computer languages and speaks fluent Finnish and Russian. His other interests include history, psychology, linguistics, green technology and Celtic and Nordic folk music and mythology.
Emily believes that everyone has the power to help change the world. Whether on a medical mission trip in the Dominican Republic or helping out in her hometown of Madison, CT, she has always been passionate about giving back, hence why she is working at Catchafire. When she’s not trying to save the world, Emily likes to travel, hang with friends and family and hit the ski slopes during the winter.
- Joshua Mailman, Social Venture Network
- Carol Koh Evans, XO Group Inc.
- Joanne Wilson, Gotham Gal Ventures
- Alexander Stein, Boswell Group
- Scott Heiferman, Meetup.com
- Scott Schwaitzberg, Google.org
- Justin Kazmark, Kickstarter
- Ross Goldstein, DFJ Gotham and Director at New York Cares
- Anton Krucky, TissueGenesis
- Tom Cohen, PTC Advisors
- Houman Nikbakht, Pacific Sourcing Group
- Tim O'Shea, Promontory Financial Group
- Kelly Dane, KPMG