Team 5401's Mentors
KeviN McKay founding mENTOR
Kevin is an American martial artist, actor, film producer and screenwriter...just kidding! He's a 2001 & 2005 graduate of Drexel University with a BS in Electrical & Computer Engineering and an MS in Electrical Engineering & Engineering Management. He's also a 2010 graduate of Temple University with a MBA and a Juris Doctorate. He currently works at Boeing as an Aerospace Systems Engineer and co-founded the team in 2014 with his good friend, and fellow Boeing employee, Andy Windhausen to help Bensalem students build Skynet.
Mentor Since: 2014 Why do you LOVE Team 5401? IDK it's what I do on Wednesdays. Is there a phrase/saying you are known for on the team? Play the game, not something like the game. I can't get through Build Season without...having a meltdown! Random fun fact: I can't tell time.
Andy Windhausen Founding Mentor
Being a mechanical engineer from UCF with a love for machining and design has served me well in coaching several FRC teams but I bleed FRO Blue. I have been the Mechanical Lead of 5401 since co-founding the team.
Mentor Since: 2015 with 5401; 2008 overall with FRC Why do you LOVE Team 5401? We are a family that also happens to build robots. Is there a phrase/saying you are known for on the team? Make parts, not pictures. I can't get through Build Season without...C8H10N4O2, a good CAD computer and good jokes Random fun fact: I live for the “ah-ha” moments when some finally understands a concept.
Virginia MCKay Lead Mentor
Virginia joined the team in 2015 as a way to spend quality time with her husband, Kevin. She's a 2006 graduate of Stony Brook University with a BS degree in Political Science & American History and currently works for Penn Mutual Life Insurance Company. In the robotics lab she can be found doing a wide variety of things from writing press releases and organizing team travel to teaching students to how to analyze Scouting Data.
Mentor Since: Halfway through Recycle Rush season Why do you LOVE Team 5401? I love it because of the positive, and in some cases life changing, impact it has on the students fortunate enough to be a part of the FRO family. Is there a phrase/saying you are known for on the team? Leadership isn't a title...it's action and example. I can't get through Build Season without...coffee and "bunker food" (oatmeal). Random fun fact: I was a celebrity batgirl for the New York Yankees during their 1993 season.
JOSH LUTHER CAD & DESIGN
I'm a biomedical engineer who has always enjoyed making things. I currently work as an engineer for Roechling Medical and at past jobs have designed and manufactured a variety of implants. I have 2 CO2 lasers in my garage, a small CNC lathe, a small CNC router, 2 3D printers, and various inspection robots in my basement. I'm always designing new machines as well.
Mentor Since: 2015 w/ 5401 - 2009 w/ FIRST Why do you LOVE Team 5401? I want a robotic owl! Is there a phrase/saying you are known for on the team? In my experience take the longest estimate and multiply it by 3 I can't get through Build Season without...Getting a call to make spare parts. Random fun fact: My favorite robot is Johnny 5.
STEVE ROSENBERG FABRICATION & INTEGRATION
Born and raised in the Heavy Duty Towing/Recovery field. I have Mechanical and Problem solving experience. I'm a DIY tinkerer.
Mentor Since: Recycle Rush as a Parent, Stronghold as a Mentor Why do you LOVE Team 5401? I enjoy helping and watching Students eyes light up when they understand and learn something they never thought they could. Is there a phrase/saying you are known for on the team? We need to Rosenberg it! I can't get through Build Season without...Pizza, of course! Random fun fact: I never went to college!
JIM HAWK FABRICATION & INTEGRATION
I’m an electrician by trade but I love engineering. I have lived in Bensalem for 50 years but I’ve traveled to 36 states including Puerto Rico but always came home. My son spent 4 years in robotics and I was lucky enough to work with him. He is on his way to Drexel but I will continue to work with the great students of Bensalem.
Mentor Since: 2015 Why do you LOVE Team 5401? Bensalem students are the best! Is there a phrase/saying you are known for on the team? N/A I can't get through Build Season without...Coffee! Random fun fact: I built LEGO robots in the mid seventies.
DAN "POP" WALKER FABRICATION
Mentor Since: Why do you LOVE Team 5401? Is there a phrase/saying you are known for on the team? I can't get through Build Season without... Random fun fact:
JIM WINWARD INTEGRATION & ELECTRICAL
Jim has a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from Drexel University and is employed by NSWCPD (Naval Surface Warfare Center Philadelphia Division) where he has over 30 years experience working with U.S. Navy shipboard machinery systems. He has been a mentor since the 2018-19 season, after being introduced to robotics when his son joined the team. He is a mentor for the electrical team which he started in the 2019-20 season.
Mentor Since: 2018- Deep Space Why do you LOVE Team 5401? I was impressed with the FIRST organization, the robotics competitions, and with what the Bensalem students accomplished. The students gained near real world experience in design, fabrication, software development, and assembly of a working robot. This experience will serve them well as they advance through college and enter the job market. Is there a phrase/saying you are known for on the team? No but I admire the spirit of "gracious professionalism" which is a guiding belief of the FIRST Robotics Competition. I can't get through Build Season without...Coffee for every meeting. Doughnuts on Saturday. Random fun fact: My wife volunteered me for the team at the first parents meeting (so she cannot complain when I am gone for 4 days per week during build season Ha Ha).
COLE D'AUIZRIO FABRICATION & INTEGRATION
Cole started as a Fightin' Robotic Owls mentor in the '19-'20 school year. He is a Bensalem High School graduate who earned a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering in April 2019. He hopes his positive attitude can help to inspire team members to find their passions and achieve in ways that they never believed was possible.
Mentor Since: 2019 Why do you LOVE Team 5401? This is the activity I wish had been available to me and my friends when we came through Bensalem! Is there a phrase/saying you are known for on the team? N/A I can't get through Build Season without...N/A Random fun fact: I can lick my elbow!
SHEILA "SHAY" GARCIA OPERATIONS & OUTREACH
Shay is a professional problem solver with a demonstrated history of working in the computer software industry. She currently works as a Senior Digital Content Coordinator in the R&D department at Xenial a Global Payments Company. She works with brilliant developers to create digital solutions for quick service restaurants.
Mentor Since: 2019 Why do you LOVE Team 5401? It's a place where my kid can be 100% himself!! Is there a phrase/saying you are known for on the team? "Cheese and Crackers" I can't get through Build Season without... Lot's of coffee and snacks! Random fun fact: I was hooked on Robotics after the first competition I went to!
JARED HELLER DESIGN & INTEGRATION
Jared Heller has been a member of the FIRST community since first doing FLL in middle school back in 2008. He has competed in events in both New York and Indiana, and has done everything from programming to operator to electrical. Jared got his degree in Industrial Engineering from Purdue and now works as a Continuous Improvement Analyst at Express Scripts.
Mentor Since: 2019 Why do you LOVE Team 5401? Is there a phrase/saying you are known for on the team? I love the way the students take responsibility and embrace the mission behind FIRST for themselves and the community I can't get through Build Season without...Sleep. Random fun fact: Once worked for a start-up in Israel.
KATHY SEIDMAN SAFETY
Kathy Seidman has 20 years experience with Dow as a process engineer. Over her career she has worked in manufacturing and research for multiple business units. This is Kathy's first year with Team 5401. She is excited to leverage her unique experience combined with Dow's excellent safety culture to raise the Fightin' Owls's outstanding safety values to the next level.
Mentor Since: 2019 Why do you LOVE Team 5401? I love the spirit that this team has! Not only are they world champions, but they have been very engaged in spreading the love of robotics in the community. I've seen this first hand with my daughter and she can't wait to join the team when she gets into high school. My family started watching "Battle Bots" a decade ago and I never thought I'd actually get to be part of a robotics team, so this is super exciting. Go FRO! Is there a phrase/saying you are known for on the team? N/A I can't get through Build Season without...N/A Random fun fact: My favorite pastime is playing video games! I've logged countless hours on my PS4 (and PS3) and have even taken vacation days just to play the latest releases.
TARRA DONNELLY OPERATIONS & OUTREACH
Tarra Donnelly is one of the newest mentors on the team. She is a 2002 Bensalem graduate. She’s a proud mom to 3 boys (one of which is a current member on the team). She enjoys spending time with her family and catching up on her DVR whenever she gets a moment to herself, which is very rare.
Mentor Since: 2019 Why do you LOVE Team 5401? I love this team because it consists of genuinely great kids and I love the energy and commitment they bring. Is there a phrase/saying you are known for on the team? "What'd you do now!?" I can't get through Build Season without...Starbucks. Specifically an iced venti peppermint white chocolate mocha with an extra shot of each and whip. Random fun fact: She has a drill bit stuck in her elbow and her family calls her Tarra Andretti.
RALPH DOUGLASS EVENT COORDINATOR
I am Ralph G. Douglass and have been active in the Bensalem Twp. School Dist. since 1973 having been elected to the School Board. Also President of Just for the Kids Education Foundation. Background in Electronic Engineering at PECA, a Design and Manufacturing Co. as President and Founder and years in Cable TV.
Mentor Since: 2018 Why do you LOVE Team 5401? The TEAM's commitment to achieving their goals and making the total effort. Is there a phrase/saying you are known for on the team? My name is Douglass - Douglass with two "S" I can't get through Build Season without...Not being involved with the build as Bensalem Event Coordinator Random fun fact: N/A
TOBY Z. MCKAY SHOP DOG
I am a firm believer that dogs make the world a happier & better place. I come to the robotics lab as often as my humans will let me, and as often as the students will tolerate me, to make everyone's day just a little better.
Mentor Since: 2019 Why do you LOVE Team 5401? They give the best head scratches & belly rubs. Also- they have a firm no cats allowed policy. Is there a phrase/saying you are known for on the team? "Arf! Arf! Bork!!" I can't get through Build Season without...barking my little head off, annoying everyone in the lab. Random fun fact: I love to eat Safety Glasses!