Bill Walter became a hardware mentor in 2013 because his friend knew Christine and asked him if he would like to join the team. His response to this: “Why not, building robots sounds like fun!” He is an electrical design engineer and his favorite part about his job is designing new things. He has a B.S. in electrical engineering from the University of Illinois, and a M.S. from Northeastern University in the same field. He has 11 patents. He was nominated for the Woodie Flowers Award in 2017. His hobbies include flying gliders, driving motorcycles, snowboarding, doing electronic “stuff”, and building robots. For volunteer work, Bill was the president for his Glider Club. His favorite fictional robot is ButterBot from Rick and Morty.
Awards Team Lead Mentor/MassFIRST Lead Mentor
Maureen Kilcommins became an Andromeda One mentor in 2014, and is now the Assistant Coach and MassFIRST Lead. She joined because because she was impressed with the programs and the benefits it brought to the school and the district as a whole. She works as a nonprofit consultant, and her favorite part of her job is helping organizations trying to do charitable things without a lot of resources. She received a B.A. in communication with a minor in English from Stonehill College. Her hobbies include reading and volunteering, which she accomplishes through her time spent as a member of the ASEF board and a FIRST volunteer. She has two children, Ryan and Katie, both of whom are on the team. Her favorite fictional robot is Rosy from The Jetsons.
Christine Miska is Andromeda One’s founder and started Ayer-Shirley’s FRC journey in 2013 because she wanted her kids to have a program at the school. She is an engineering director at BAE Systems and her favorite part is designing and delivering products that protect war fighters. She graduated from WPI with a B.S. in electrical engineering and an M.S. from Syracuse University in electrical engineering. Her honors include the Massachusetts High Tech Women to Watch Award in 2008. She volunteers with the ASRHS Music Boosters and the Ayer Shirley Education Foundation. Her children are Alana and Jake, both of whom have been nominated for the FRC Dean’s List Award for Andromeda One. Her life motto is “Let’s build something amazing!”
Mike Audette became a FIRST hardware mentor in 2017 because he wanted to introduce his daughter, Grace, to the world of robotics. He is an electrical engineer in ASIC (Application Specific Integrated Circuits) design and enjoys when he completes a project with no bugs. He graduated from University of New Hampshire with a B.S. in electrical engineering. His hobbies include Revolutionary War reenacting, beer brewing, and woodworking. He also volunteers for the Make a Wish Foundation and for his church. His children David and Grace are both in the robotics program. His favorite sci-fi movie is Firefly.
Finance and Corporate Outreach Lead Mentor
Pamela Clemence became a mentor for travel and community events in 2016 because she has an interest in STEM and her husband and daughter, Randy and Abigail, were on the team. She received a B.A. in communications from UMass Amherst. She works at a CPA firm as IT support and in accounting. Pamela’s favorite parts of her job are helping people and solving problems with math. She has two children, Abigail and Annabelle, both on the team. In her free time, she loves to go to museums and solve puzzles. Her life motto is “Life goes on with or without us, so you better go with it.”
CAD Mentor/Hardware Mentor
Patrick Doyle became a FIRST mentor in 2012 when Mr. LaPointe asked him to become a parent mentor for the Page Hilltop FLL teams. He is now a software mentor on Andromeda One, the founding coach and mentor for the FTC team and the rest is history! Patrick works at iRobot as a software engineer, where he received the STEM Star award, and he loves everything about his job. He received a B.S. in electrical engineering from MIT, and received a M.S. in electrical engineering from Northeastern University. In his spare time, he is a major and the head of an organization of secret agent animals. For volunteer work, he attends numerous robotics functions, mentors the ASRMS FTC team, plays piano at his church every other week, and tries his best to give high school students a hard time. If he could live anywhere, he would live in the Tri-State Area, and his all-time favorite quote is unsurprisingly, “Where’s Perry?”
Pete Gravelle is one of the Hardware mentors on Andromeda One. He has an electrician’s license and is an automation systems engineer for Schneider Electric, one of the team’s sponsors. He is very experienced with electromechanical systems. One of the things he enjoys the most about FIRST robotics and the robotics community is the enthusiasm the students show and how engaged they get with building, coding, etc. “No matter what, students stay engaged at every meeting,” he says. Pete is an avid dirt-biker and sportsman hunter. He participates and volunteers with Boy Scouts and enjoys archery.
CAD Lead Mentor
Earl Hasz is the Andromeda One CAD Lead on Andromeda One. Earl is a Technical Sales Director at Dassault Systèmes SOLIDWORKS Corp, the company that makes the SolidWorks CAD tool used by our team. Earl has a BS in Mechanical Engineering with a specialty in Computer Science from the University of Colorado Boulder. He is the father of Andromeda One member Ethan Hasz. In addition to volunteering as a mentor for FRC 4905, Earl rides in the Pan-Mass Challenge, and enjoys brewing craft beer and roots for the Denver Broncos.
Public Outreach Mentor
Brendan Marshall became a FIRST mentor after he graduated from the team in 2017 for the 2018 season as a social media and public outreach mentor. He rejoined the team because he wanted to continue helping out the team with social media and outreach, which was his role when he was a student. He aspires to be a computer scientist or a website designer. He enjoys gaming, coding, and anything having to do with technology in his free time, and his favorite fictional robot is WALL-E.
Vincent Piucci joined Andromeda One in 2015 as a hardware mentor. He joined because Walter is his nephew and Christine asked him to join as a mentor. He stayed because he likes working with kids and seeing what they can do. Vincent is self-employed and, as such, has many different titles and jobs such as product developer and consultant. What he loves most about his job is finding new ways to do things and working with other people. He has approximately 30 patents. He went to school at the University of Rhode Island. His hobbies include riding and taking care of horses, and playing golf. His favorite fictional robot is Robby the Robot. If he could live on any other planet, it would be Mars.
Food Coordinator Lead Mentor
Jason Salter became an Andromeda One mentor in 2016 as a food mentor so his son, Owen, could join in eighth grade. He was awarded a B.Comm. in commerce and organizational theory from the University of Otago and a M.S. in economics from Boston University. He works as a solutions architect for State Street Corp, where he designs blockchain solutions, and his favorite part of his job is having his mind blown by his fellow engineers. Jason’s hobbies include hiking, reading, travelling, and he especially enjoys when he can combine all three. He volunteers as the Troop 2 Ayer Boy Scout Committee Chair, and the Ayer Shirley Education Foundation co-treasurer. He has two children, Owen and Keziah, who are both on the robotics team. His favorite fictional robot is Marvin the Paranoid Android from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.
Software Co-Lead Mentor
Bill Schilp joined Andromeda One in 2014 as a software mentor. He joined because, in his words, he had “nothing better to do” and he likes to teach. He is a lead software developer at Ansys. His favorite parts of his job are getting paid and being challenged. He has a B.S. and an M.S. in Computer Engineering and a PhD in Computer Science from the University of South Florida. He has approximately 5 patents. His hobbies include scuba diving, hiking, and playing the clarinet and saxophone. He volunteers at the Nashoba Valley Concert Band. Bill has two kids, Will and Jillian, whom have both participated on the Andromeda One team. His favorite Science Fiction movie is Spaceballs. If he could have any job in the world, it would be his current job, because he doesn’t want to do anything else.
Scouting Lead Mentor
Tammy Valliere joined Andromeda One in 2016. She joined because her sons, Bryce and Seth, joined the team. She works as an office manager at Bodylines Pilates where she processes emails, manages client accounts and does financials. She went to Fitchburg State University and has a B.S in computer science and a math minor. Outside of work and robotics, her hobbies include yard work, golf and going to the beach. Her favorite quote is “live each day to the fullest.”
Jim Vangilder joined Andromeda One in 2016 as a hardware mentor. He joined the team because he loves engineering and working with kids. He is the Director of Thermal Analytics at Schneider Electric, and loves the science and math involved with his job. He has a B.S in mechanical engineering from the University of Maine and an M.S in mechanical engineering from Duke University. He also has several awards for his research, with over thirty patents and over fifty publications. His hobbies include, running, biking, dirt biking and scuba diving. He has two children, Caleb and Sydney. His favorite fictional robot is WALL-E and his favorite science fiction movie(s) is the Star Wars series.