Alexis Polanco Jr

Alexis Polanco Jr (AJ), Principal at Always Joven LLC & UXD Program Coordinator at Rutgers University

AJ Polanco is a Senior UX Architect with 9 years of professional experience. He was worked at the world’s second largest telecommunication company (Verizon), and the world’s largest private non-profit educational testing organization (ETS). His focus is in omni-channel marketing, ecommerce, and new product development.

As the current UXD Program Coordinator, he is focused on making students marketable as they look to transition into- or grow in the field of User Experience.

Course: UXD Practicum

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Christie Nelson

Dr. Christie Nelson, Assistant Research Professor at CCICADA & Curriculum Coordinator at Rutgers University


Christie Nelson is an Assistant Research Professor at CCICADA (Command, Control, and Interoperability Center for Advanced Data Analysis), a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Center of Excellence, and MBS. She has a Ph.D. in Operations Research, and has completed a three year Postdoc at CCICADA.  A sampling of research topics Christie has worked on include resource allocation for the US Coast Guard, machine learning for the DHS Domestic Nuclear Detection Office, experimental designs focusing on walk-through metal detectors for large stadium venues, a data quality study for the US Coast Guard, usability for mobile phone applications for NJ’s Dept. of Health and Senior Services, developing metrics for the DHS Office of SAFETY Act, and cybersecurity information sharing for the US Coast Guard. She has mentored many DIMACS REU (Research Experience for Undergraduates) students and graduate students, and is the MBS Externship Coordinator. She is also the concentration coordinator for the MBS Analytics and Cybersecurity concentrations. 

David Ogunrinde

David Ogunrinde, Principal at Inkroots

David is a designer and brand strategist with over 15 years of experience in the industry, serving in every role from intern to creative director. Now he’s running Inkroots - a NY-based brand and design consultancy, that specializes in deepening brand engagement through thoughtfully designed brand experiences. There, David’s relentless focus on human-centered design helps clients like Johnson & Johnson, NJ Department of Labor, and The Newark School of the Arts, craft experiences that feel real, relevant, and memorable. 

In addition to serving clients, David also contributes to the advancement of the industry by teaching design and serving as a member of the Rutgers Design Thinking Advisory Board. When not teaching or designing beautiful things, David can be found conspiring with his wife Carla on new ways to color outside the lines, do inspired work, make an impact, and enjoy lives that matter.

Courses: Intro to User Experience Design, Visual Design for UXD, UXD Practicum

Hank Strub

Dr. Hank Strub, User Experience Researcher at JP Morgan Chase​

Dr. Strub is a Senior User Experience (UX) Research and Interaction Design (ID) Professional, with over fifteen years of experience. He has been with JP Morgan Chase for four years, leading user research (focus on Credit Card studies) and continually upgrading and overseeing a fully digital usability lab that he planned; after a ten month contracting gig at ETS in Princeton. Before that, Dr. Strub was a Senior Usability Engineer at Siemens. Projects included enhancing usability with Siemen’s CT imaging machines, user testing on the web site, and an information communication system for the New York subway system, along with a research study exploring how a virtual aquarium could motivate people to walk more. Previous experience spans consumer electronics including wearable video (5 patents), mobile communications technology, photography, eLearning (1 patent), healthcare including both pharma and imaging, and anything involving a process that should be designed for end-users.

Course: Usability Evaluation

Henken Bean

Henken Bean, Art Director, UX at Comcast

Henken Bean is a User Experience Designer and Information Architect with 10 years of experience in the industry. Most recently, she is focused on the intersection of Self-Service and Customer Experience at Comcast. Providing customers and employees with powerful tools to manage their accounts with ease. She is experienced in cross-platform product design for Television, mobile, and web. She uses prototyping as an integral part of her design process: to help refine, sell, and collaborate with her stakeholders and business partners.

Course: Intro to User Experience Design

whitney quesenbery Kathleen Cashman, Professor, President of Cashman Consulting LLC

Kathleen B. Cashman is the president of Cashman Consulting LLC, a management advisory and coaching / leadership development firm.  They specialize in the areas of Leadership and Communication. With over 25 years of experience, Kathleen herself has carved a niche working with Senior Leaders and their teams in all areas of growth. She has developed her Brand “Conversations with Kathleen” to reflect the myriad of discussions that can occur when seeking solutions. Kathleen has a successful partnership with FORTUNE Management, a leading advisory and coaching organization to Dentists where she coaches all aspects of the Dentist Industry and helps develop the office teams in New Jersey.  An Professor within the Management of Business and Science program, responsible for the core Business course – Leadership and Communication, Kathleen teaches, and advises all students as their Business coach to the degree.

Kathleen has an extensive track record as a highly effective facilitator and trainer. She works with organizations and helps to develop the key initiatives to leverage talent – both retention and attraction strategies and serves as a corporate coach. She routinely works with business people to help them gain greater confidence and professionalism, as well as build their abilities in relevant skill areas. Prior to becoming a consultant, Kathleen worked with a variety of corporations where she served in both line and staff functions.

Kel Smith

Kel Smith, Principal at Anikto LLC

Kel Smith is a design and technology advocate who removes barriers separating people from the things they fundamentally need. His areas of concentration include health literacy, food justice, affordable housing and digital accessibility. He is the author of the book Digital Outcasts: Moving Technology Forward Without Leaving People Behind, which explores the historical influence that people with disabilities have on design innovation. Kel has delivered over 100 presentations in seven countries, including talks at Google, SXSW and the Royal National Institute of the Blind, and he has been interviewed on CBC Radio's "The Current," The Globe & Mail Canada, The Austin Chronicle and the BBC Ouch! Network among others. In addition to advising Fortune 500 companies, Kel is a volunteer mentor for young entrepreneurs in Kenya and Sierra Leone and serves on the Inglis Foundation Board of Directors.

Course: Intro to User Experience Design

Lars Sorensen

Lars Sorensen, Head of Student Computing for the Department of Computer Science

Lars is the head of Student Computing for the Department of Computer Science at Rutgers University.  He does research on Computer Science Education topics and manages the CAVE, a collaborative instructional computer lab he built for the Rutgers Computer Science Department in 2010.  He is a founding member of CSERG, the Computer Science Education Research Group at Rutgers University, where research and outreach efforts work to improve Computer Science education at the high school, undergraduate and graduate levels.  In 2013, Lars organized and ran CSUGS, the Computer Science Unofficial Gaming Seminar, where talented undergrads came together to learn video game design and rapid prototyping in order to create their own video games. This led to the creation of COGS, the Creation of Games Society at Rutgers University.

Lars is a member of the Central New Jersey CSTA chapter, where he acts as Rutgers University's CSTA Liaison.  He is also one of the organizers of the Computer Science Outreach group's annual High School (and Middle School) Computer Science teacher conference.  Lars also works with the Computer Science Cognition group and RUBIC, Rutgers University Brain Imaging Center on several research projects as well.  This semester (Spring 2018) he is teaching Python Methodologies (16:137:552) at the Graduate School of New Brunswick and the Computer Science Honor's Seminar (01:198:195) for the Department of Computer Science.

Lars Sorensen holds degrees in Computer Science and Psychology and is currently working towards his PhD in Educational Psychology with a research focus on Epistemic Cognition as well as Gaming and Education. He enjoys reading books and comics when he should be studying, playing video games and watching movies (It's part of his research!), playing basketball, riding his bike, and watching too much football, hockey and NCAA basketball.

Lindy Ryan

Lindy Ryan, Data Analysis and Visual Analytics Professor

Lindy Ryan teaches data analysis and business communication at Montclair State University and visual analytics at Rutgers University. She is an active researcher at the Rutgers Discovery Informatics Institute and was previously associate faculty at the School of Applied Leadership at City U. Prior to joining academia, Ryan led research and analyst activities in data discovery and visual analytics for Radiant Advisors, an advisory firm in the data science industry. She remains a respected analyst in the data visualization community.

Lisa Woodley

Lisa Woodley, Vice President of Customer Experience, FSI Business Consulting, NTT DATA Americas​

Lisa Woodley has been leading customer experience, branding, and marketing strategies for Fortune 500 companies for more than 23 years. Her work is based on the idea that, in the most successful interactions, form serves function. Copy and design are transparent. Only the emotional connection and desired actions are seen. In her current role as Director, Experience Design - Strategy at NTT Data, Lisa applies her deep understanding of branding and marketing to the design of the employee experience. By viewing the employee as a customer, and approaching the employee experience from a branding and marketing perspective, Lisa has successfully developed targeted and highly effective employee engagement and change management campaigns for clients such as DuPont, PwC, Merck, Pfizer, and GSK.

Course: Intro to User Experience Design

Matthew Sills

Dr. Matthew Sills, Student Advisor, Concentration Coordinator, and Professor

Dr. Matthew Sills is currently Professor of Professional Practice in the Professional Science Master’s program at Rutgers University. In this position, he teaches in the Drug Discovery & Development concentration, advises students in the Life Science concentrations (including Personal Care Science) and develops curricula for programs in the Life Sciences. Dr. Sills has 27 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry, having worked at Ciba-Geigy/Novartis, Pharmacopeia, AD-4 Pharma and Merck. During his career, Dr. Sills gained experience in the areas of lead discovery, lead optimization, and preclinical development having worked on projects in the inflammation, cardiovascular disease, oncology and neuroscience therapeutic areas.

Ronnie Battista

Ronnie Battista, Slalom Consulting

Ronnie Battista is a senior executive with over 25 years experience visioning and delivering creative and profitable cross-channel interactive experiences with bottom line impact. Early in his career as a Business Analyst, his project experiences highlighted a gap between what Business and IT groups were asking for and what customers and employees actually needed or wanted. It was at this critical junction of Business, IT and real human beings that Ronnie found his calling in User Experience Design.

Course: Intro to User Experience Design

Tobias Komischke

Dr. Tobias Komischke, Director of User Experience at Honeywell

User-centered design professional with more than 20 years of industry experience. Has lead projects and teams to create user interfaces of superior usability and compelling appeal in various industries. Acknowledged evangelist for user-centered design strategy, methods and processes. Frequent speaker at conferences and author for technical journals, magazines and blogs. Reviewer for international journals and conferences.

Specialties: Human Factors Engineering, System Analysis, User-Centered Design, Interaction Design, Usability Evaluation & Testing, UX Evangelism, UX Selling, UX Strategy.

Courses: Intro to User Experience Design, Usability Evaluation

whitney quesenbery

Whitney Quesenbery, Co-Director, Center for Civic Design​

Whitney combines a fascination with people and an obsession to communicate clearly with her goal of bringing user research insights to designing products where people matter." She's written three books on the subject - Storytelling for User Experience and A Web for Everyone (Rosenfeld Media) and Global UX (MKP/Elsevier) - to help practitioners keep users in mind throughout the creative process. She has worked with organizations like the National Cancer Institute, eBay, IEEE, Amtrak, and The Open University helping them develop usable and accessible web sites and applications.

She's also passionate about improving the way government communicates with citizens. She is the co-director of the Center for Civic Design, which works with election officials on usability and design of ballots, voter guides, and other election materials. She and Dana Chisnell teach the first course on Election Design for the University of Minnesota Certificate in Election Administration.

Course: Contextual Inquiry