The Blair Robot Project

The Official Website of FRC Team 449

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Mentors

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Edgard Bertaut

Year Joined: 2006
Team(s): 449
Organization: ATI
Fun Fact: I work on facilitating deliverables at work too.
Favorite Memory: 8 students in our house working on the robot for days at a time during Snowmageddon.

John Davis

Year Joined: 2013
Team(s): 449, 6484 (Junior FLL)
Organization: Montgomery County Public Schools
Fun Fact: Graduated from T.S. Wootton High School (before MCPS created a Math, Science & Computer Science Magnet at Montgomery Blair) and came back to teach science & engineering after a 24-year career in the United States Air Force
Favorite Memory: Watching pit crews and operators learn how to get the most out of our robot (Totedile, aka Two-Chainz) to become an alliance captain during a regional competition at UMD.

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Steve van Albert

Year Joined: 2007
Team(s): 449
Organization: Walter Reed Army Institute of Research
Fun Fact: I’ve often used the facilities at Blair to make things I need for my work
Favorite Memory: Receiving the Engineering Award in Trenton for the 2008 robot – Edward Scissorlift

Noemi Kedei

Year Joined: 2010
Team(s): 449
Organization: National Cancer Institute
Fun Fact: I was advised by my family to become a doctor instead of an engineer or a teacher (those times in Hungary) but finally I found my niche in doing cancer research and being a mentor for the team.
Favorite Memory: Listening to students talk for four hours, non-stop, about their excitement for the following year on the car ride home from a district event.

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Gordon Franken

Year Joined: 2012
Team(s): 449
Organization: Intelligent Automation, Inc.
Fun Fact: I am a FIRST alum from Team 694 in New York City. I participated 2001 through 2004.
Favorite Memory: Receiving a Blair Robot Project coffee travel mug as a mentor thank gift in my first year as a mentor – I still use it every day at work!

Will Rabinovich

Year Joined: 2008
Team(s): 449
Organization: U.S. Naval Research Laboratory
Fun Fact: The FRC vision targets use retroreflectors. Much of my work involves aiming lasers at retros. It gets confusing some times. 
Favorite Memory: Watching newbie freshman grow into senior team leaders, and sometimes mentors. 

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Steve Chang

Year Joined: 2013
Team(s): 449
Organization: Department of Defense
Fun Fact: My other hobby is training for marathons.
Favorite Memory: Drove through the snow with a mini-van full of kids to get to the FIRST competition at Pittsburgh on time.

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Eli Barnett

Year Joined: 2007
Team(s): 449, 4464, 5830
Organization: Temple University
Fun Fact: I (still!) learn more from FIRST than I do from college.
Favorite Memory: Sneaking out of the building well after midnight after one particularly-chaotic last-minute scramble to finish the robot in 2010

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Sharon Goodall

Year Joined: 2009
Team(s): 449
Organization:
Fun Fact: In 2009, weekend build session had a tray of brownies – ritual!
Favorite Memory: Team fun @ first trip to North Carolina (even with the drama of alliance selection) – the team had FUN together

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Patrick McGlade

Year Joined: 2013
Team(s): 449
Organization: US Navy
Fun Fact: I also help coach Blair lacrosse.
Favorite Memory: My first “away” trip to Raleigh, NC: awesome game (Aerial Assist), fired up crowd, really good robot, really great kids.

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Judy Ehrenstein

Year Joined: 2014
Team(s): 449
Organization: Montgomery County Public Libraries
Fun Fact: Spirit wear? Have glue gun, will travel!
Favorite Memory: Nothing beats seeing gyms full of kids who might otherwise never be the stars in that setting.

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Philip Temkin

Year Joined: 2015
Team(s): 449
Organization: Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory
Fun Fact: I graduated from Northwood HS.
Favorite Memory: Seeing the team’s hard work and enthusiasm at the 2016 Greater Washington event and witnessing our bot breaking through the field boundary.

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Marc Lichtman

Year Joined: 2016
Team(s): 449
Organization: DoD Research Lab
Fun Fact: I yo-yo.
Favorite Memory: Watching our robot do amazing in the first match of the first FIRST event I went to.

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Leela Patnaik

Year Joined: 2011
Team(s): 449
Organization:
Fun Fact:
Favorite Memory: Enjoyed driving to Pittsburgh and North Carolina. Love the happy faces when the students enjoy the food.

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Daniel Pedersen

Year Joined: 2015
Team(s): 449
Organization:
Fun Fact: Never jumped out of an airplane or off a tower.
Favorite Memory: Watching the excitement in the auditorium when the challenge is announced.

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Geri Reinhart

Year Joined: 2016
Team(s): 449
Organization: Lassiter & Associates, LLC
Fun Fact: I’ve always wanted to teach, but never before found the right opportunity. Also, through my work, I’ve met Eartha Kitt, Quincy Jones, Melissa Etheridge and Sigourney Weaver. (Ok, so they were relatively quick encounters, but none the less exciting!)
Favorite Memory: There are so many: watching team members dance the Macarena, seeing Ryan in a tiara, videotaping the Great Bot Escape, and watching the team compete in the 2016 FIRST Chesapeake District Championship at the University of Maryland.

 

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Robbi Das

Year Joined: 2014
Team(s): 449
Organization: Permitting, Inspections, and Enforcement | Prince George’s County, MD
Fun Fact: I am an electrical engineer.
Favorite Memory: For the greater DC event, I used lamps as supplements for the PVC tubing to hold up the banner.

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James Peachey

Year Joined: 2016
Team(s): 449
Organization:
Fun Fact:
Favorite Memory:

 

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Karin Koslow

Year Joined: 2016
Team(s): 449
Organization: Parent Fan Club of 449
Fun Fact: When our daughter was born she didn’t wait for trained professionals to help with the delivery….it was just me and her Dad who literally brought her into this world!
Favorite Memory: Witnessing the unharnessed joy and excitement when the students’ hard work pays off by the robot doing what it is supposed to do!

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Vineet Luthra

Year Joined: 2016
Team(s): 449
Organization: Privatin Consulting, LLC
Fun Fact: I am a Physics major but don’t risk your grade by asking me for homework help.
Favorite Memory: Experiencing the passion, drive, thinking, and leadership of the team members each time I have attended their meetings.

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Aaron Szabo

Year Joined: 2012 as a student, 2016 as a mentor
Team(s): 449
Organization: University of Maryland, College Park
Fun Fact: I’m a computer science/linguistics major but I still do mechanics on the team.
Favorite Memory: Crashing in Urjita’s basement during a snow storm and walking in the storm in shorts at 2 am.

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Yoni Pedersen

Year Joined: 2014
Team(s): 449
Organization: University of Maryland, College Park
Fun Fact:  I was dressed up as Inigo Montoya from the Princess Bride at the 2016 competition.
Favorite Memory: I went outside at 2 am during the 2016 blizzard and watched Szabo walk through two feet of snow in shorts during snowmageddon.