Over the past few months, we’ve engaged with a number of new clients, including the State of Connecticut to improve how preschool development services are provided to children (from birth through age five) and families and the Air Force to modernize a twenty-something-year-old aviation resource management system.
To support these new projects, we’ve grown our design, product, engineering, and transformation teams. Since launching two years ago, we’ve been working incredibly hard to recruit and cultivate an amazing group of people. With that said, we’re excited to introduce you to our newest team members!
Marvo Dolor, Engagement Manager
Marvo is drawn to solving complex, multi-faceted government problems. At Skylight, she works with our clients to plan and execute service delivery, procurement, and transformation initiatives using agile project management techniques. Prior to joining us, Marvo served as a member of the U.S. Digital Service at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), where she held multiple leadership positions in support of major initiatives, such as the successful redesign of VA.gov and the modernization of the benefits appeals process.
"I believe technology can do more than entertain and amaze us — it can also be a force for good in people's lives. That's why it was an honor to do a tour of duty with the U.S. Digital Service."
Abby Raskin, Product Manager
Abby is passionate about modernizing complex legacy systems with a policy angle. As an expert in product management, she works closely with our clients to translate their goals into valuable, high-quality solutions. Throughout her career, Abby has worked on entrenched civic and government problems as a product manager at the U.S. Digital Service at VA and Edovo (an education platform for incarcerated people).
"I'm really proud of the technically-complex, user-research-driven project that I worked on to help the VA track and distribute new appeal requests sent by veterans under the then-recently-passed Appeals Improvement and Modernization Act."
Chris Given, Data Engineer
Chris loves untangling complex data and system problems. At Skylight, he helps our clients turn unwieldy datasets into useful and accessible resources — for everyone. Prior to Skylight, Chris worked at the U.S. Digital Service at VA and the District of Columbia, where he worked on the city’s open data policy.
"Veterans described the VA appeals process as a 'black hole,' where their disability compensation claim could sit for years without any updates from the VA. I led a team to develop an Appeals Status tool that provided veterans with plain-language updates. It contributed to a 40% reduction in call center volumes, but more importantly a veteran said of the new tool, 'It gives me hope.'"
Ashley Treni, UX Designer
Ashley is passionate about better serving people and communities through great design. At Skylight, she works with our clients to solve their toughest challenges using human-centered design techniques. Before Skylight, Ashley co-founded JustFix.nyc, a data-driven nonprofit that supports tenants and advocates fighting displacement.
"Building JustFix.nyc was a rewarding and exciting adventure because we brought human-centered design to New York City's housing justice community. As the design lead, I worked with tenants and organizers across the city to co-design tools to fight for housing equality."
Victoria Suwardiman, UX Researcher
Originally a software engineer, Victoria brings her technical prowess to the field of UX research. As part of Skylight, she uses a range of qualitative and quantitative research techniques to help our clients pinpoint opportunities to improve user journeys. Prior to joining us, she held engineering and research roles at Abila (a platform for nonprofits) and Pearson, respectively.
"I was tasked with better understanding the freshman college student writing experience, including the pain points associated with transitioning from high school-level writing standards to college-level writing standards. We conducted a longitudinal diary study that uncovered opportunities along the writing journey that we were able to turn into helpful student tools."
Gabriel Ramirez, Full Stack Engineer
Gabriel is passionate about coaching, mentoring, and technical excellence. At Skylight, he works closely with our clients to engineer high-quality systems that make the continuous delivery of value possible. Gabriel also teaches government teams on how to make more effective use of modern engineering practices and technologies through pair programming. Prior to Skylight, he worked for Pivotal (a services and software company) and 18F.
"I really enjoyed my experience developing back-office systems for U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services to process visa applications. Even though our software wasn't highly visible, I saw first-hand how well-designed software can improve both the lives of people coming to this country and the civil servants handling their cases."
Mitchell Sipus, Service Designer
Mitchell has knack for turning high-friction problems into delightful user experiences. As part of Skylight, he works with our clients to determine how Skylight can help them solve their toughest digital challenges. Prior to joining us, Mitchell co-founded TulcoLabs, an applied artificial intelligence lab as part of a billion-dollar-private-equity portfolio. Mitchell previously served as a Presidential Innovation Fellow and developed Africa’s first data-driven conflict reconstruction strategy in Mogadishu, Somalia.
"Creating the digital map for Mogadishu will always be my most meaningful project because we didn't just create a map, we created a database for businesses and projects to measure problems and redistribute resources."
Lara Kohl, UX Designer
Lara is drawn to solving tough civic and government problems through research and design. At Skylight, she relies on her 15 years of experience in the field of UX to help our clients solve the right problems and design the right products. Prior to Skylight, Lara worked at the U.S. Digital Service at VA, where she served as the UX lead over the Appeals Modernization initiative, and taught as a professor at NYU, SUNY, and Pratt Institute.
"I was at an EdTech startup focused on getting students interested in STEM with a field science app. As part of my research, we took students into the field (beach, forest) and it was amazing to watch how students' mindsets changed about where they live. I remember one student saying ‘I've been to this park a million times but I never saw the birds.’"
Colin Craig, Full Stack Engineer
Colin has an aptitude for working in a multitude of technical environments. As part of our team, he engineers high-quality systems using modern practices and technologies such as APIs, test automation, and clean code. Prior to Skylight, Colin worked at 18F, where he provided technical leadership on products such as login.gov, analytics.usa.gov, and everykidinapark.gov.
"At 18F, I worked on the FBI Crime Data Explorer. This was one of the first open-source projects for the FBI, and involved exposing multiple crime statistics datasets to the public in a useable way."
Laura Vlassarev, UX Designer
Laura loves to solve complex problems by empathizing with and understanding the needs of users. At Skylight, she uses her unique combination of skills in UX research and design to accelerate the delivery of useful and usable products. Prior to Skylight, she held research and design roles at Aetna, Pearson, and HomeAdvisor.
"I led foundational research efforts to understand how higher education students are using print and digital materials to learn and gained deep insight into why students prefer print materials to digital. Focusing on learners' needs helped us hone in on an innovative solution for digital courseware and reading experiences."
P.S. We’re always looking to hire great people who are passionate about driving better public outcomes through design, technology, and procurement. If this sounds like you, please get in touch.