The following dedicated professionals gave us their time and expertise to review some of the chapters in this book to help us be better.

Contributors Volume 2

Carl Frederick


Carl Frederick is a research analyst at the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction. In addition to managing the department’s research agenda and building tools to put data into the hands of decision makers, he is the chair of the Wisconsin Education Research Advisory Council and acts as a liaison between DPI and their external research partners. Prior to working at DPI, Carl earned his PhD in Sociology with a focus on educational inequality and civic outcomes of education at the University of Wisconsin and was a postdoctoral research fellow at Harvard Kennedy School’s Saguaro Seminar where he worked with Robert Putnam documenting growing class gaps among American youth for the book Our Kids.

Clare Waterman Irwin

Dr. Waterman Irwin is a veteran researcher and evaluator with Education Development Center, Inc. (EDC). She leads the Vermont Universal PreK Research Partnership and Early Childhood Workforce Development Research Alliance for REL Northeast & Islands at EDC. She is co-director of Partnership for Early Education Research (PEER) and has led several state contracts. She’s also the lead author of Survey Methods for Educators: Collaborative Survey Development and regularly publishes her findings in peer-reviewed journals.

Before joining EDC, she served as a research specialist for Providence Public School District. She is a heck of a research team leader, and her work regularly helps policymakers make decisions in more data and empirically driven ways. She’s got some serious quant chops, specializes in measurement, and manages to balance quantitative and qualitative methods with the kind of acumen and grace most of us can only aspire toward. Plus, she’s a distance runner, so you know this woman has what it takes to do the really hard stuff. Just sayin’.

Nick Maskell


For the past ten years or so, Nick has worked and studied in the fields of graphic design and digital illustration. In that time, he has both collaborated on, and led, various creative endeavors; ranging from corporate ad campaigns and logo design, to greeting cards and outdoor murals. As a full-time designer and lead illustrator for Susi Art LLC, a custom apparel shop in Braintree Massachusetts, Nick has tackled numerous corporate and small business design challenges. He also continues to take on illustration and design commissions through his website. In addition to designing both volumes of the EDDR book series and website elements, Nick has done freelance work for several of the authors, including designing elements for websites, reports, and presentations. Not only is this guy super talented, he’s kind of a dream to work with.

Contributors Volume 1

G. Matthew Snodgrass

With a Master’s in Statistics and a PhD in Public Policy and Management from Carnegie Mellon, G. Matthew Snodgrass is an analytic strategy consultant focused on driving value through economic and statistical modeling in the natural resource and energy sectors. Beyond pure quantitative analysis, he engages in risk assessment, risk management, and the development of negotiation positions for his clients. This guy knows his math and how to use it! Yowzah!

Andrew Laing

Blazing the trail as the very first Chief Data Officer for the State of Vermont, Andrew got his start in Engineering. Today, he enables the State of Vermont to realize the value of its rich data assets through enterprise information management, data governance, and operational intelligence. His specialties include systems thinking, business systems architecture, modeling, and engineering, GRC, MDM, DevOps, portfolio management, and being one of the kindest, most patient people you’ll probably ever meet.

Melissa Straw

Melissa Straw is the Director of Data Warehouse and Decision Support at Wisconsin’s Department of Public Instruction. With over seventeen years of experience managing and leading large-scale data warehouse and business intelligence projects, Melissa is an expert at delivering data products that improve decision making. She has spent the last seven years overseeing a team in charge of building and expanding the statewide WISEdash Data Dashboard and Data Warehouse solution. Schools and districts use WISEdash for improvement planning, early warning identification, in addition to snapshot and data quality reporting. The team is also tasked with meeting federal and state reporting requirements, as well as maintaining the public-facing dashboard. In addition, Melissa has focused expertise in implementing proven organizational data governance and data quality solutions.

Lindsey Brownson

Lindsey is a recent graduate of the Vermont College of Fine Arts MFA in Writing and Publishing program, where she practiced across genres but concentrated in creative non-fiction. Her final thesis project was a 108-page memoir in essays titled Why Are You So Emo. She was a fiction reader and a member of the copyediting staff for the 2018 edition of Hunger Mountain, VCFA’s annual literary journal. She also had the opportunity to intern at The Wendy Sherman Agency in NYC as a reader for in-process fiction manuscripts being prepared for publication. She considers it a privilege to have other writers hand their hard work to her with implicit trust, and couldn’t have been more excited to help with this project.