About Us

Brooke Danielsson, Ph.D.

Founder and Director

Brooke recieved her Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering from Virginia Commonwealth Univeristy in 2022. She is currently a Postdoctoral Scientist at Yale Univeristy School of Medicine in the department of Cell Biology. Brooke, a dyslexic herself, started EPIC in 2018 with the goal to bring more dyslexic students into STEM. For fun, she enjoys trying new restaurants with her husband and playing with her new baby boy and two puppies!

Jessanne Lichtenberg, M.S.

RVA Director

EPIC STEM Instructor and a Ph.D. Candidate in Biomedical Engineering at VCU. Jessanne's research is focused on investigating tumor metastasis using a microphysiological system to mimic the tumor microenvironment. In her free time, Jessanne enjoys cooking, baking, drawing, and playing board/card games!

Tracy Tarlton, B.S.

Social Media Manager

Tracy Tarlton has 20 years of sales and marketing experience. She holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration from Arizona State University.Throughout her diverse career she strives for excellence in customer service and professionalism. Tracy loves spending time with her family, biking, golfing,and snow skiing.

Jolene Cabe, B.A.


EPIC STEM Instructor and a Lab Manager in the Biomedical Engineering department at VCU. Jolene graduated from Randolph-Macon in December 2018 with a Bachelor’s of Arts degree in Biology. She also is a part-time bovine artificial insemination technician. For fun, Jolene likes to work on her family farm!

Daniel Sop, M.Sc.Eng.


EPIC STEM Instructor and a Ph.D. Student in Biomedical Engineering at VCU. Daniel strives to develop a pain measurement tool that could virtually eliminate pain-related misdiagnoses, opioid overuse or underuse, stigma and bilateral mistrust between physicians and their pain patients. In his free time, Daniel likes to fly planes and helicopters!

James Redden, B.S.


EPIC STEM Instructor and a Ph.D. Student in Biomedical Engineering at VCU. James researches the interactions between skeletal muscle and motor neurons to improve functional recovery after traumatic injuries. In his free time, James likes to work on robotics projects and learn new languages!

Austin Goulding, B.S.


EPIC STEM Instructor and a Ph.D. Student in Biomedical Engineering at VCU. Austin is working on making a model to study human meniscus aging and learn how these changes lead to injuries and other detrimental effects. A fun fact about Austin is that he is a huge reader! He usually go through 2-3 books a month!

James Danielsson, B.S.


EPIC STEM Instructor and a Software Engineer at Capital One. James is currently getting a Ph.D. in Mathmatics at VCU. In his freetime he enjoys playing video games, cooking for his wife, and hanging out with his baby boy and dogs!

Aamna Siddiqui


EPIC STEM Instructor and undergraduate Aamna Siddiqui is in her sophomore year, majoring in biomedical engineering with a pre-medical track. A fun fact about Aamna is that she enjoys spending her free time embroidering!

Sydnie Tran, BS


Sydnie is a STEM Instructor and PhD student in biomedical engineering at VCU. A fun fact about sydnie is that she has an 11-inch stuffed penguin named Bruce who likes salmon, pilates, and long walks on the beach.

Katie Tieu, B.S.

Former Co-Director

EPIC STEM Instructor and Ph.D. Candidate in Biomedical Engineering at VCU. Katie is fascinated by infectious diseases and studies how viruses take over genomes! For fun, Katie enjoys climbing trees, making prototypes for EPIC activities, and playing with her dogs Otto and Zeka!

Krista Gauthier, BA , MA


Krista has been a Mentor of EPIC since 2020. She is the Executive Director of the Sliding Doors STEM & Dyslexia Learning Center(SDSquared), a non-profit organization based in the DC area that provides one on one reading intervention and STEM enrichment to elementary aged students with dyslexia. The mission at Sliding Doors is to change the conversation about dyslexia education and in doing so create future STEM and business leaders by building confidence in children with dyslexia and equipping educators with what they need to help these children reach their full potential. Krista first conceived of SDSquared when, as a parent of a dyslexic child, she noticed that the access she was able to provide her daughter in both remediation and STEM enrichment was denied to so many. Krista has a BA (Boston College) and MA(Northeastern University) in English Literature and has done extensive work in the area of Educational Anthropology and Gender Studies in Education at the University of Colorado Boulder. In addition to her work as an educator and executive director, Krista enjoys running, reading, hiking, kayaking, and raising her two girls.

Lori Floyd-Miller, M.Ed.

VCU's Graduate Programs Coordinator

Lori is the Graduate Programs Coordinator for VCU’s College of Engineering and a major supporter of all things EPIC! Lori helped turn the idea of EPIC into a reality, and has been continuously encouraging EPIC’s mission of using multi-sensory learning and creativity to teach STEM!

Jenilee Stanley-Shanks, M.S, M.A.

VCU's Director of Government and Community Outreach

Jenilee is the Director of Government and Community Outreach at VCU. She has been a supporter of EPIC from the beginning and helped bring it to life! Thanks to Jenilee for promoting EPIC, recruiting volunteers, and for encouraging the diversity of learning!