FIRST ® Appoints Staff to Manage Robotics Programs in Growing Regions

  FIRST ® Appoints Staff to Manage Robotics Programs in Growing Regions

FIRST Appoints New Personnel in Louisiana, New Hampshire, Vermont, Virginia,
Washington D.C., and Alberta, Canada to Grow and Manage Robotics Programs

Business Wire

MANCHESTER, N.H. -- February 7, 2013

FIRST^® (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology), a
not-for-profit organization founded by inventor Dean Kamen to inspire young
people’s interest and participation in science and technology, today announced
new personnel appointments for its Field Operations in the U.S. and Canada.
The new regional personnel will assist in the local growth of all four
robotics programs that make up the FIRST Progression of Programs designed for
K-12 in Louisiana, New Hampshire, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, D.C and
Alberta, Canada.

"Our Regional Directors and Assistant Regional Directors will promote the
passion and inspiration for science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM)
exploration among the youth in their communities," said Roseann Stevens, Vice
President of Field Operations, FIRST. “The FIRST Field Staff is a city, state
or region’s direct link to the mission of FIRST and the catalyst for parents,
schools, Mentors, and the business community to bring the advantages of FIRST
to their areas. They see to it that ‘rookie’ and ‘veteran’ teams alike on area
robotics teams gain the skills and confidence from a real-world, hands-on,
problem-solving technical challenge working side-by-side with professional
engineering Mentors. These professionals help to seed the ideas to an exciting
education and career path that students may not have considered or thought

The role of a Regional Director at FIRST includes coordinating local robotics
events and activities as well as developing new regional corporate
partnerships and engineering Mentors and Coaches — with the goal of creating
and maintaining robust, Volunteer-driven, and self-sustaining FIRST robotics
programs in each region.

FIRST holds local and regional robotics competitions for K-12, including the
FIRST ^® Robotics Competition (FRC^®) for high school students, the FIRST ^®
Tech Challenge (FTC^®) for middle school and high-school students, the FIRST
^®LEGO^® League (FLL^®) for middle school students, and the Junior FIRST ^® 
LEGO^® League (Jr.FLL^®) for K-3. Currently, FIRST participation in the US
includes over 300,000 students in K-12.

New FIRST appointments include:

  *Carolyn Arthurs, Regional Director, Louisiana – Carolyn has been involved
    with FIRST since 2001 when she served as a Regional Event Manager. Her
    wealth of experience in special events management has included jazz
    festivals and park openings.
  *Mark Critz, Regional Director, New Hampshire and Vermont - Mark has been
    affiliated with FIRST for more than two years as the Project Manager for
    the FIRST Green e-watt saver program. He spent 33 years at the Ford Motor
    Company and Visteon Corporation in Engineering and Production Operations.
  *Carol Edelman, Assistant Regional Director and Director, Program
    Development, VirginiaFIRST – Carol has been involved with all facets of
    FIRST for over 12 years. She has served as a key Volunteer and a FIRST
    team Mentor for many years.
  *Suparna Mukherjee – Regional Director, Washington, D.C. – Suparna has a
    strong background in engineering project management, system integration,
    and planetary robots. She has served as the FIRST^® Tech Challenge (FTC^®)
    Affiliate Partner in Los Angeles since 2008.
  *Blair Gallant, Regional Director, Alberta, Canada – Blair has been an
    entrepreneur since the age of 12, founding a series of Canadian chain
    stores and a land development company. After his retirement from the
    retail industry, he started the AO Shirley non-profit for FIRST.

About FIRST^®
Accomplished inventor Dean Kamen founded FIRST^®  (For Inspiration and
Recognition of Science and Technology) in 1989 to inspire an appreciation of
science and technology in young people. Based in Manchester, N.H., FIRST
designs accessible, innovative programs to build self-confidence, knowledge,
and life skills while motivating young people to pursue opportunities in
science, technology, and engineering. Over 200 of the Fortune 500 companies
support FIRST. FIRST offers more than $16 million in college scholarships, and
hosts the FIRST^® Robotics Competition (FRC^® ) for students in Grades 9-12;
FIRST^® Tech Challenge (FTC^® ) for Grades 7-12; FIRST^® LEGO^® League (FLL^®
) for Grades 4-8; and Junior FIRST^® LEGO^® League (Jr.FLL^®) for Grades K-3.
Gracious Professionalism^® is a way of doing things that encourages
high-quality work, emphasizes the value of others, and respects individuals
and the community. To learn more about FIRST, go to

FIRST and the FIRST logoare registered trademarks of the United States
Foundation For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (FIRST). 
LEGO^® is a registered trademark of The LEGO Group.


Cheryl Walsh, 603-206-2460
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