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Kate Meredith

President and Director of Education

Kate Meredith has guided GLAS Education since its founding in 2018. With the assistance of plenty of volunteers, intrepid students and some grants, Kate created GLAS, Geneva Lake Astrophysics and STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math), as an independent nonprofit devoted to making science education accessible to all students, regardless of abilities. Kate has taken a leadership role in advancing sonification, a process of turning visual information into an organized series of sounds and tones to enable blind and visually limited (BVL) researchers access and analyze data. In May 2023, Kate and GLAS Education were credited by a United Nations report for contributions to the research of sonification as a space science tool. She is also cited as a project coordinator with the Space Telescope Science Institute in developing Astronify, a software designed to sonify astronomical data. Kate was recognized by the Geneva Lake branch of the American Association of University Women for her leadership in astronomy education and was awarded the National Federation for the Blind Bolotin Award in 2020.

Adam McCulloch

Education and Outreach Manager

Adam studied physics at Carthage College where he developed a strong interest in astronomy education and outreach. He also works part time for the Horwitz-DeRemer Planetarium in Waukesha, WI, and at Yerkes Observatory, where he operates the famous 40-inch refractor telescope. Adam puts his astronomy experience to good use at GLAS, leading night sky telescope expeditions during star parties. Adam manages GLAS’s Dark Skies program, which encourages local communities to adopt best practices for maintaining dark night-time skies in Walworth County. He is also involved with the LENSS (Lakeshore Environmental and Night Sky Sensor) project, which uses sensors to measure the darkness of night skies around Geneva Lake. Adam joined the Yerkes Education Outreach staff in 2017 where he was an operator of Yerkes’ 24-inch telescope, and, when Yerkes closed, linked up with GLAS Education. Look for Adam at star parties, summer classes, special events and collecting data from night sky monitors around the lake.

Man in dark shirt stands with arms crossed, smiling at the camera.
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Chris Kirby

Project Manager

GLAS was very fortunate the day Chris walked in and offered his services. Over time, his responsibilities have grown in significance and importance. Having grown up in the warm climes of South Africa, Chris claimed that he joined GLAS as a distraction from the frigid Wisconsin winters. His distraction has immensely benefited GLAS. With an MBA, Chris brings business experience. Being a project manager by training and experience, Chris brought a new perspective and structure to LENSS and has given shape and direction to the GLAS Geneva Lake water quality project. And he speaks engineering! Chris has proven himself to be a natural teacher, using the important elements of GLAS’s project and design experiences to engage students in building the technology that makes those projects work.

Christy Albrecht

Business Manager

When Christy joined the GLAS Education Staff, it was more a homecoming than a hire. Christy, daughter of Yerkes astronomer Kyle Cudworth, grew up on the grounds of Yerkes Observatory. She graduated from the University of Wisconsin–Madison in May 2018 and was about to become Kate Meredith’s first full-time hire for Yerkes Education Outreach when the observatory closed in October 2018. Life next took her on an adventure that included relocating to Chicago, marriage, and a year in California. Family and friends were thrilled to welcome her back to the area in June 2020. She barely unpacked before she was planning star parties and writing grants for GLAS. Christy took on office manager’s responsibilities, and later took a seat as Treasurer of the GLAS Board of Directors, helping GLAS step confidently into the future. She now works primarily from home with the job title of “Mom,” caring for her daughters, Ruth & Jane.

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Chris Schultz

Communications Manager

Chris spent nine years as a reporter at the Lake Geneva Regional News and has more than forty years of journalistic experience with daily and weekly newspapers around the Midwest. He creates much of the text that appears on GLAS websites and social media posts. Although not an astronomer, he will be at almost every star party or public event with his notepad and camera recording events and promoting GLAS outreach efforts. He helps with everything from star parties to web page creation and cleaning and organizing the GLAS office. His consistency and good humor has elevated him from “habitual volunteer” to staff member.

Olivia Smithmier-Bohn

Education Contractor

Olivia discovered her love of astronomy when she worked on astronomy accessibility projects in seventh grade. After studying theology and philosophy in college, Olivia worked as a key member of a team developing a successful summer program used each year at St. Ambrose Academy in Madison, Wisconsin. She also tutored students with special needs. She used those skills in assisting GLAS with its Plug Plate Project, which attempts to explain cosmological distances, red shift, field of view and depth of field to persons who are blind or visually impaired. At GLAS Education, Olivia designs focus groups and develops supplementary materials for GLAS products. She is visually impaired and is eager to bring astronomy accessibility to everyone. In her free time, Olivia enjoys baking bread, gardening, and embroidery.
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