Explorations In Math

Joe Sullivan

Meet: Joe Sullivan

Meet Joe Sullivan, Explorations in Math volunteer and budding volunteer leader. Joe has served as a volunteer and crew chief at MathFest, and a game-play and auction volunteer at our fundraiser, Make a Move for Math. Joe’s experience as an EIM volunteer has led him to take on an even more impactful volunteer role in the advancement of the math movement, helping lead volunteers at Math + Science Nights Out. We really enjoy his enthusiasm and his generous donation of time with our organization.

About Joe:


Day job: Operations and Logistics Manager for ImagiCorps, a brand marketing company.

Hobbies, interests: I have many more interests than extra time. I enjoy running—I ran my first marathon in 2011. Also travelling, hot yoga, cooking, reading, live music and spending time outdoors.

Volunteers with Explorations in Math because: Nothing is quite as impactful to the future as educating our young people. Explorations in Math realizes this and contributes to our schools and families to improve the quality of math education. The focus on improving the “math culture” impresses me with the goal of seeing the day when no child says they are “just not a math person!!”

Memorable moment volunteering w/ us: That’s easy … When the doors opened to the gymnasium for my first Math Fest!! It was like they were storming into an amusement park on the first day of summer vacation. So many excited little faces. I had many really wonderful interactions with the kids as well as the parents and fellow volunteers.

What keeps you coming back?: Also a very easy question. I am just constantly impressed with the passion and professionalism of the EIM staff. Their commitment to the mission of changing the way children feel about math is always evident. In addition, everyone I’ve worked with has been incredibly gracious, appreciative and positive. I know they appreciate their volunteers greatly, but I appreciate them allowing me to be part of their success.


Meet: Angela Bertrand & Sudha Raman

Meet Angela Bertrand and Sudha Raman, two members of the HandsOn Leadership team from Seattle Works who volunteered from April to November to help deliver our biggest Seattle-side MathFest ever. Volunteer Matt Padberg led the team early on, before taking a job in Chicago in August.

About Sudha:

Age: 26

Day job: Aspiring graduate student and avid investor. When Sudha’s not  volunteering, she’s reading or watching financial news and trading in the Queen Anne area home she shares with her husband, Karthik.

About Angela:

Age: 24

Day job: Office manager at a local Learning Center.


Meet: Matt Padberg

Please Note: Since this profile was published, Matt has moved to Chicago. He continues to support Explorations in Math as a donor. Thanks Matt!
Day job: Geologist with Kennedy/Jenks Consultants, Federal Way
Volunteers with Explorations in Math because:  I like the work that Explorations in Math is doing in schools.  It seems like there’s a great network and experienced staff working at EIM, which is a very positive thing, especially in schools and communities.
Memorable moment:  Math Adventure Night at Somerset Elementary School (May 2010).  After things got started, it was quite fun and the students really got into it. It definitely exemplified Explorations in Math’s mission to make math fun.  I also really enjoyed the Snowball Math event at Pacific Science Center, part of their Polar Science Weekend.
What do you gain from volunteering: It’s great to be able to teach kids something and see them having fun while they are learning.  Learning is supposed to be fun.  I also enjoy working with the Explorations in Math staff.  Everyone I’ve met has been very friendly and really made the volunteering experience easy.
What keeps you coming back: Too often, failure at math is accepted by parents, teachers, and society at large.  If someone says, ‘I just can’t do math,’ it’s much more acceptable than someone saying, ‘I just can’t read. ’  However, in the increasingly complex world we live in, math continues to play a bigger and bigger role in most jobs, especially in the tech industry.  I think helping kids learn it is a great way to help prepare them for the challenges they will face and to give back to the community.  Of course it helps that Explorations in Math does that by making it fun for both the volunteers and the students.