Douglas O’Roark, Executive Director
In addition to serving as the Executive Director of MC2, Doug leads the NSF sponsored AIM-TRU research project at DePaul’s STEM Center which seeks to improve math teaching across CPS. Previously he led the Secondary Math component of the UChicago Urban Teacher Education Program and was the first teacher hired at Payton College Prep. He was awarded the Radio Shack National Teacher Award, the MAA’s Sliffe Award for Distinguished Math Teaching, and the ICTM Rine Secondary Math Teaching Award. Both the City of Chicago Math League and Payton Prep have awards named in his honor. He lives in Chicago’s South Loop neighborhood with his wife, a mental health researcher at UIC, and his two children who are/were CPS students.
Sara Rezvi, Program Director
Sara is currently a doctoral student candidate at UIC in math curriculum and instruction. She teaches teachers how to teach mathematics from an experiential and social-justice orientation and has taught mathematics in grades 7 through 12 in New York City, Mexico, and Chicago. She is proud to be a part of Math Circles of Chicago and is always seeking to bring the joy of a really good proof to anyone who meets her. In her spare time, she enjoys walking her very silly German Shepherd dog, Jedi, and is an avid reader of science-fiction books.
Michelle Harton, Program Associate
Michelle taught for 13 years at Morgan Park High School in CPS. Michelle has a bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering from Tennessee State University (TSU), a master’s degree in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and a Master’s Degree from Northwestern University in Education and Social Policy. For many years, she worked as a research engineer at Motorola. Michelle started teaching in Math Circles in 2018 and in her retirement continues to expand her role. In addition to her love of math, she enjoys reading, traveling, going to the movies and playing the viola and piano. She is married and has two adult children.
Maddie Collins, Communications and Data Assistant
Maddie moved to Chicago to pursue her M.P.P. at the Harris School of Public Policy after serving as an AmeriCorps member in New Orleans, LA for two years. She graduated from the University of Buffalo in 2016 with a dual-degree in Media Studies and Sociology. In addition to her work at Math Circles, Maddie also teaches piano, guitar, ukulele, clarinet, and voice lessons in the evenings. She is also a proud member of the Lakeside Pride Marching Band and Pops Ensemble.
Katherine DeLisle, Bridgeport and Lane Tech Site Coordinator
Katie DeLisle is a mathematics teacher at Lane Tech College Prep High School. She recently graduated from Carthage College in Kenosha, Wisconsin with a degree in Mathematics and Secondary Education. She was also a 4-year member of the Cross Country and Track & Field team at Carthage. She enjoys reading, running, and eating lots of pizza in her free time!
Mauro Castro-Montes, Payton Site Coordinator
Mauro Castro Montes is from Mexico, and grew up in Rockford, Illinois. He graduated from Aurora University with a History degree and Secondary Education certificate. Currently, Castro Montes is a high school teacher at Walter Payton College Prep where he teaches Exploring Computer Science, and AP Computer Science A. His passion is helping students discover and learn at a deeper level about the digital world we take for granted everyday. Mauro’s goal is to have students leave my class with tools, and knowledge, that they can use to positively impact their communities. Outside of school, he likes to spend time with his family, and puppy Nancy Drew – as well as watch tons of soccer!
Barbara Manjarraz, Back of the Yards Site Coordinator
Barbara has been a math teacher at Back of the Yards College Prep since the school opened in 2013, teaching a variety of International Baccalaureate courses. Barbara graduated from St. Olaf College in Minnesota with a bachelors in mathematics. Outside of math, she loves coaching badminton, spending time with her two children at soccer and baseball games, traveling, and spending any spare moment in Minnesota with her family!
Lauren Phillips, Morgan Park Site Coordinator
Lauren has been a math teacher at Morgan Park High School since 2010, teaching a variety of courses and loving every journey she takes with students in the world of mathematics. Lauren graduated from the University of Illinois Urbana Champaign in 2010 with a B.S. in Psychology, and then in 2012 graduated from Northwestern University with a MS.Ed in Secondary Mathematics. Outside of math, she loves boating, movies, traveling, and cooking!
Bill Schmit, Pilsen Site Coordinator
Bill teaches math at Lindblom Math & Science Academy. He is a lifelong Southsider, and graduated from the University of Chicago with a double major in Mathematics and Chemistry, as well as a Masters in Teaching. In his spare time, Bill likes to cook, bike around the city, and play a variety of instruments, to the delight of his wife and chagrin of his neighbors.
Mat Wimberly, UChicago YSP Site Coordinator
Mat is currently the Business Coordinator for the Math Department at the University of Chicago. He moved to Chicago in 2016 after completing his B.S. at The University of Alabama and recently completed his M.S. Degree at Drexel University. In his spare time he likes to see plays at Steppenwolf, play Ultimate Frisbee as part of the CMSA league, and spend time with friends exploring the city. He joined the MC2 program in Fall of 2021.