Susana Pérez Castillejo, PhD
Susana is an Assistant Professor of Spanish Linguistics at the University of St. Thomas, in Saint Paul, MN. She has been teaching language and linguistics for over 15 years in face-to-face, online, and blended environments at different higher-ed and K-12 institutions. Her research focuses on sociophonetic variation, second language speech processing, and the integration of computer and mobile technology for language development and assessment. At Extempore, Susana provides pedagogical input and research-based guidance for our product development, and she shares her insights on the theory and practice of teaching speaking through our blog.
Stephen is the technical co-founder of Extempore. Stephen is an enthusiastic Executive Technologist, Entrepreneur, and Mobile Expert, and has been an integral part of growing three successful technology companies. He combines a deep understanding of modern technology and business practices to build great software products, strategies, and experiences. He holds a BS in Computer Science and an MBA from the University of Minnesota.
Co-Founder and CEO
Carlos Seoane is co-founder and CEO of Extempore. A lawyer by training, Carlos has been working with software products and companies all of his professional life. Before founding Extempore, Carlos held executive positions at Thomson Reuters, including leading eBillingHub, a software business that serves the billing needs of the largest law firms in the world, processing over $3B of legal work every year. Carlos is the son of two university professors and is married into academia: teaching and teachers have been a part of his life since he was born.
Don Querry is the Chief Technology Officer at Extempore. Since entering the Information Technology industry in 1999, Don has held many roles in fast-paced, high-volume environments including his most recent Software Architect role with the Electronic Billing Division of Thomson Reuters, whose software processes millions of highly confidential electronic bills annually. He possesses a very diverse technology skill set including Development, Architecture, Infrastructure, Security, and Cloud.
Megan O’Hara is the CFO of Extempore. Megan has been working in finance and accounting for +15 years. She has spent 10 years in various financial positions at Target Corporation and Lifetouch, Inc and started her career in public accounting as an assurance associate. Megan holds a master’s degree in finance from the University of Minnesota. Megan is also an adjunct college instructor, teaching accounting for the last 10 years.
Luis Torregrosa leads Extempore’s efforts in the EMEA market. For the last 20 years, Luis has held executive positions, leading both Product and Technology organizations. This long experience has helped him build an invaluable expertise around his professional passion: digital transformation, in the legal industry, in the classroom or anywhere else. Most recently, Luis managed the 300-strong global software development community serving emerging markets at Thomson Reuters.
Product Owner & Customer Success Manager
Sam has been in various sales roles over his 6-year career and discovered his passion for the tech industry in 2015 while working for the Minneapolis based startup SportsEngine, now part of NBC Sports. Sam is a leader by example and is known for going above and beyond for his clients, colleagues, and company. Sam was an integral part of the rapid growth of the East Region, developing and executing the go-to-market strategy leading to record months year over year. As an ex-college athlete, Sam enjoys spending his free time playing in three soccer leagues year-round, bowling (242 high game), softball, volleyball or anything that allows him to be active and social.
Marketing & Digital Experience Manager
Thomas specializes in combining market intelligence, data analytics, and automation to maximize marketing spend and to drive product adoption. As a graduate in both mathematical economics and Spanish linguistics, he understands the value language education brings. At Extempore, he oversees the day to day operations and long-term strategy of the marketing team to grow and support the growing number of Extempore users. Outside of the office, Thomas enjoys weightlifting, playing soccer, improving his golf game, and exploring new restaurants and breweries.
Business Development Representative
Patrick started at Extempore in June of 2019, right after his graduation from Hamline University. As a former ESL student, bridging the gap between languages and cultures is especially important to him. He’s been a part of the rapid growth that Extempore continues to undergo and loves learning new things in the ever-changing EdTech community. When he’s not at work, you can find Patrick spending time with his family, going on bike rides, and traveling.
Michael has held multiple sales roles for the last 5 years, lastly at SportsEngine, an NBC Sports Company. Michael was an important part of leading the Southern California team and strategically developing the San Diego Territory. A native Spanish speaker, he was also in charge of all Spanish Relationships. Michael now spends most of his time off coaching soccer and helping the youth community in Saint Paul and Minneapolis.
Grant Castner received a bachelor's degree in Asian Studies and Chinese from St. Mary's College of Maryland in 2015, and a Master of Arts in Teaching degree from Towson University in 2018. As Extempore's Community Manager, Grant oversees Extempore social media and content creation, while also contributing to product development, training, and the marketing team. Grant also teaches high-school level Chinese in Minnesota, incorporating Extempore into many aspects of his classes. In his spare time, Grant enjoys traveling with his fiancée Camry, attending baseball games, and doing crossword puzzles.
Britany is a sales professional who excels at building relationships through open and honest communication. She prides herself on her ability to authentically uncover the intricacies of her client’s business in order to collaboratively create the best possible solution for their needs. Britany was prized for specializing in high-value partnerships at SportsEngine, Inc. in Minneapolis. Viewed as a leader on the sales floor, she solely worked with the most respected organizations to increase efficiencies internally and give their members the best experience possible. Outside of work you can find her enjoying anything and everything that keeps her active, working on home projects and planning the next trip(s) on her National Park Tour.
Sales Operation Manager
Sean has been working in technology sales throughout his whole career, most of those years spent at SportsEngine, an NBC Sports Company. Sean specializes in data management along with creating and curating outreach strategies that help time management for his teams. Having the privilege of attending an immersion school through his upbringing, he wants to continue pushing the importance of multi-language upbringing and exposure to new cultures. Sean spends most of his time exploring the outdoors: you can likelyfindhim on the river or in a field with his dog.
Customer Success Representative
Abbai has worked in various customer success roles over the years, most recently at Ecolab Inc. After moving to America from Ethiopia at the age of 12, Abbai was put through the ESL program in the Saint Paul Public Schools (SPPS) where he developed his English. His experience in the ESL program showed him the importance of learning a new language and allowed him to form lasting relationships. Abbai has a finance degree from Hamline University where he played 4 years of collegiate soccer and led the school to its first playoff appearance in a decade. After graduating from Hamline, Abbai spent a few years playing professional soccer in Europe (Sweden & Denmark). In his spare time, Abbai continues to enjoy playing soccer with his friends and former college teammates. He’s a role model in the Ethiopian community where he spends his time coaching youth soccer through the Future Starts program. He enjoys spending time with his family, friends and girlfriend. He’s also developed a new passion for the game of golf, where he absolutely struggles but is determined to get better.
Director of Implementation
Jessica brings 14 years of experience working in public education in Texas, most recently as Director of World Languages in Richardson ISD. As Extempore's Director of Implementation, she partners with district and school leadership to ensure a seamless adoption and onboarding process. When she’s not working, you can find Jessica volunteering around Dallas, at a concert, or at the park with her dog, Lola.
Holly holds a bachelor’s in K-12 ESL education from the University of Northwestern - St. Paul, as well as a master’s in TESOL from Grand Canyon University. As a former ESL teacher, she understands how challenging it can be to find high quality tools to support language acquisition. She looks forward to sharing Extempore as an all in one solution for promoting language proficiency. When she’s not on the clock, she enjoys studying Spanish, walking her dog, or taking care of her houseplants.
Engineering Team Leader
Ana has a deep understanding of developing high performing edtech solutions. As the team leader she's a hard worker that's committed to meeting even the toughest of deadlines. When not in front of keyboard, she enjoys spending time with her two rambunctious kids and husband.
Dana joined the Extempore team 4 years ago as an Android developer with a degree in Computer science and engineering looking to make the switch to web oriented technologies. She started learning Angular and working on Extempore's web student portal, later developing the mobile applications for it where her previous work knowledge was very helpful. She's a passionate team player which was critical for her to take over the job as a lead developer on the student portal team.
Outside of work, Dana wants to spend her time with her friends and family, going out or entertaining at home. She also is a pet lover and she loves spending time with her Siamese kitten.
A former journalist, Hristijan joined the development team of Extempore after a brief internship, focusing mostly on the user-facing part of the application.
He prides himself in being a self-taught programmer who enjoys continuous skill growth and exceeding expectations when it comes to creating new features.
Although switching the newsroom and the field for a tech job may not sound very dynamic, he still finds it very challenging and feels right at home in the industry.
When not coding new solutions for Extempore, you may find him strolling around Skopje on his retro bicycle, or driving his convertible to a camping weekend in the mountains - wherever there's adventure he follows, even though living with a Siamese cat and a tarantula can be an adventure by itself.
Quality Assurance Engineer
Ivana is a QA software tester with a solid understanding of quality processes and procedures and experience in writing test plans and test cases. As she says, testing gave her a chance to make things right, so she can share her ideas through the process of implementation of the project, helping find bugs before they are found by our customer.
Ivana is very passionate in her role as QA. She is eager to keep improving her skills, and make sure we delivery high quality products.
Senior Project Manager
Kiril brings with him more than 13 years of experience in the IT industry. He initially started as a Java developer then switched to Project Management 5-6 years ago. He is a highly motivated IT professional, with eagerness to learn and become the best at what he does.
Nikola joined the Extempore team 5 years ago with a degree in Software Engineering and a background in education having previously worked as an IT/Programming Languages teacher at the high school level which made him a perfect match for assisting in the development of our app. In his time working as an educator he was instrumental in the success of his school at the D3Mobile 3D modeling competition organized by the Metrology World League as well as in other local and international IT competitions. He prides himself on his ability to create a low-anxiety and positive classroom environment and is universally beloved by his students to this day. Outside of work, Nikola spends most of his time exploring the outdoors, is an avid motorsports fan and very passionate about cars and motorcycles.
Quality Assurance Engineer
3+ years experienced QA Tester armed with an ISTQB and A4Q certification and highly skilled in examining & maintaining new software products for systems/mobile applications, diagnosing defects, and assisting to resolve bugs before the product launch. Proficient in performing manual/automated testing, writing functional test scripts, creating & executing test cases while complying with the company's policies & procedures.
Peter Lake is Group Business Development Director for JS Group a company that provides engagement solutions and learning resources to the UK Higher Education sector. He is also non-executive Chairman of two information businesses, Mondaq and Governance Publishing. Prior to these roles, Peter worked for Thomson Reuters as a SVP heading up their European and Asian legal information businesses.
Kim Massana is President and CEO of Neota Logic, Americas. Previously he was the Global Head of Customer Experience at Thomson Reuters and before that, president of Innovative Interfaces. Kim has had various executive positions in his career, including President of Elite and a number of roles at Equifax both in Spain and in the UK, including heading the Decision Solutions Unit, and Sales for the Credit Bureau Solutions.
Joe is the COO of Iridium Technology LLC—A firm that specializes in Business intelligence for Law firms. Joe has two masters degrees—an MBA and an MA in Education Management—and extensive experience in technology. Prior to Joining Iridium, Joe was the Managing Director of Minisoft Inc. a software company specializing in revenue management for law firms.Joe lives in Chandler, Arizona with his wife and two kids. He is an amateur photographer and loves swimming and hiking.
Chad Johnson is a Managing Partner at Cherry Tree & Associates, where he leads their education practice and spends a considerable amount of time working with high growth technology companies on M&A engagements. Chad has been an investment banker since 2006, and prior to that led the language technology company Ultralingua, and did corporate development and strategy at PLATO Learning (now Edmentum). Chad's mother was an elementary school teacher, and in his personal life he has continued to invest in education companies including Early Learning Labs where he served on the Board of Directors prior to its sale to Renaissance Learning in 2019.