A man who needs no introduction. (See what we did there). Aman Gupta, President of FAN EXPO HQ lives, breathes and oversees everything at this fan-charged mothership. Seeing as he has no interest in wasting time here is what you need-to-know: his hero is Superman, he may be related to the person who invented the number zero, he will never go white water rafting, January should be eliminated as a month, if Fred Flinstone was real they would be best friends, and finally, his favourite quote is, “Get to the point”!
Hmm. This might’ve been longer than he would want.
Andrew Moyes, Vice President is a busy man. Across all of our many many huge shows, he has the ability to make it appear as if he’s in several places at once. Usually to everyone’s shock though he actually isn’t. But, he notes, it’s a superhero power he very much wishes he had. Maybe one of his clones can take a vacation on the beach for some much-needed sun and fun.
VICE PRESIDENT, COMMERCIAL OPERATIONS
Edlira Nurka, Vice President, Commercial Operations has many titles but there is one she goes by often here at FAN EXPO HQ; the “Problem Solver”. Every day presents a new challenge and she deftly adapts and finds a solution. But everyone needs a break so when the work is done she unwinds with some episodes of Friends, hangs with family, and daydreams of Julia Roberts playing her in a movie about her life. So what’s the one problem she cannot fix? Drivers who drive slow in the fast lane. Us too, Edlira. Us too.
KATHRYN EVES-MAHARAJ (SHE/HER)
DIRECTOR OF MARKETING
During the day, Kathryn Eves-Maharaj spends her time directing FAN EXPO’s many branding initiatives. However, her secret identity is that she is... Wonder Woman. With style and countless pairs of shoes, Kathryn is capable of lassoing together ambitious projects with focus and vision. On her off hours, she takes flight in the skies, traveling to new cities. But like all great heroes, she has an arch-nemesis: exclamation marks. Nevertheless, nothing will stand in the way of her destiny of being a wonderful mom to her newborn child and leading the charge for new creative opportunities.
BETTY WAYPA (SHE/HER)
DIRECTOR OF CONTENT
Betty has been in the Fandom world ever since she saw Linda Carter as Wonder-Woman. It was the first time Betty saw a superhero that wasn’t a man & she loved it. Betty hates when people say ‘like’ or ‘um’ too often. Like, she really hates it. When she isn’t working, you can bet that she’ll be whipping up new dishes in the kitchen, relaxing at a winery or watching sports. No matter what she’s doing, she’ll absolutely be staying on solid land – Betty is afraid of the water & hates all kinds of boats. She’s best known at FAN EXPO for being the Show Mom because she just wants to make sure everyone is taking care of themselves and of each other.
GILBERT ESTEPHAN (HE/HIM)
Some call Gilbert (pronounced / Jill-bear), as “Status Quo Challenger”, a “Change-Maker”, a “Community Builder” kind of guy – and yes, he is all those things. Driven by his passion to bring smiles on faces, and committed to create & transform events into dynamic, epic platforms where fans, retailers, artists and brands come together to discover, celebrate and belong! He is a hybrid-mutant nerd, fascinated by the artistic expression of creators, makers, tech-innovators and geeks out at the art of cosplay. A jetsetter who regularly explores faraway lands and enjoys cool family hangouts. That family, if ever portrayed on film, would feature Taylor Lautner playing Gilbert. Sounds like a fun film tbh.
JANIE POPE (SHE/HER)
Janie’s first experience in Fandom was watching Star Wars and Jurassic Park as a kid. It’s a good thing her little brother introduced her to those worlds or she might not be the fan we know today. Janie has way more stuffed animals than she thinks any adult should, mainly from Disney and Universal. She says that plush of the Minions, Porgs (from Star Wars), Grogu and a variety of Pixar characters are just too cute to resist so she must have them. If you ever meet Janie, please just know that she is not actually related to the Pope, despite her last name. She gets that a lot.
KATIE LOOMIS (SHE/HER)
The Proclaimers may be willing to walk 500 miles, but Katie will never again drive 1600 miles alone. You can usually find her spending time with family & friends, being an aunt to the “coolest kid on the planet”, walking her dog or planning her next adventure. You’ll also find her watching British crime dramas. They’re her go-to viewing content right now. Knowing that, we think it’s easy to deduce which fictional character she’d be best friends with: Sherlock Holmes. Holmes wasn’t her first taste of fandom though. Her first experience was watching hockey as a kid; something that she hasn’t stopped doing since then.
CHELSEA MANGOLD (SHE/HER)
It’s time to meet Mike Mangold, the world champion Red Bull Air Racing Pilot. Wait. No, sorry. He’s Chelsea’s uncle. It’s pretty cool to be related to someone famous! What’s not cool is E.T. - Chelsea is terrified of that alien movie & will never watch it again. Chelsea grew up watching Disney movies as a kid & she’s been a fan ever since. She loves spending time with her family, with her dog, and traveling the world as often as she can. What Chelsea doesn’t love is when people don’t return her calls. Just call her back! It’s not that hard. Plus, then you can hear all about her love for tacos, shoes, & Schitt’s Creek.
MELISSA "MISSY" MORRIS (SHE/HER)
Star Wars action figures vs. Barbie Dolls. Who would win? If you asked Missy and her brother when they were kids, they'd say Barbies would always reign triumphant. Playing with all sorts of toys as a child launched Missy into the world of Fandom and she has never left. Speaking of leaving, Missy is currently building a camper setup in the back of her truck because she loves to travel explore. This makes total sense as she’s distantly related to American pioneer and frontiersman Daniel Boone.
JACKIE BRUCE (SHE/HER)
Jackie is a Star Wars fan through and through. From dressing up as Darth Vader in Kindergarten to searching far and wide for a Hot Toys Princess Leia (Hoth), she spends her days dreaming of being in a galaxy far, far away. Jackie truly believes that seeing Luke Skywalker in his prime return in The Mandalorian was one of the most emotional moments of her entire life. That being said, Luke is actually not the character she would be best friends with. That honor goes to Han Solo. Jackie relates to his desire to do the right thing, but without always making the wisest of decisions.
MEGAN ALGUIRE (SHE/HER)
Megan has been a nerd for her entire life. She was thrilled to receive action figures of the Biker Mice from Mars as a kid, and not much has changed since then. Most people would say they have too many shoes, but not Megan. She has this down to a science: 45% are impractical, 35% are somewhat practical, and only 20% of her shoes are actually practical. If someone were to play her in a movie, she thinks it would be Megan Fox. Not for the similarity in appearance, but just for the name. Megan’s gotta stick together.
PARTNERSHIPS DIRECTOR (US)
When Liam Fleming is not busy being the Partnerships Director US, he’s a man who has many questions about this thing called life. For instance, he asked on one particularly frigid Sunday, “Why ride an e-scooter with one wheel and not two”? Then, in the early hours of dawn on a Wednesday, he said under his breath: “ Does February truly exist? Also, why do people get on the subway before other people have gotten off”? Perhaps, Liam, some questions aren’t meant to be answered. Fortunately, his curiosity is an asset to FAN EXPO HQ.
CLAUDIA WIESE (SHE/HER)
MANAGER, EXHIBITOR & SPONSORSHIP RELATIONS
Claudia’s earliest adventure into Fandom was waiting in line for the 4th Harry Potter book release at Chapters. Since then, you can catch her watching True Detective (Season 1), Grand Budapest Hotel, or daydreaming about being best friends with Deb Morgan from Dexter. If someone from the Fandom world were going to play Claudia in a movie about her life, it would have to be Jennifer Lawrence. That’s for sure. If you’re the type of person to wear socks & sandals while watching TikTok, it’s generally best to steer clear of Claudia. Just a fair warning. If you like yoga, hiking or veggies & humus however, you and Claudia will get along just fine.
Mark is a family man, through and through. He’s raising two respectful sons with his loving wife and would even bring them if he were ever stranded on a desert island. Not sure how they’d feel about that though. Mark’s earliest memory of Fandom was breaking things as a child while pretending to be Lou Ferrigno’s The Incredible Hulk. He’s grown up since then – now he would much rather be Iron Man. Saving the day with no ‘real’ powers, making cool stuff, and having a natural sense of what’s right and what’s wrong sounds great to him.
SALES & EXHIBITOR RELATIONS MANAGER
From being a vendor at the very first FAN EXPO HQ to becoming Sales and Exhibitor Relations Manager, George Zotti aka G-man has seen it all… maybe too much. So it’s no surprise that if he was a superhero he would want the powers of the Vision or Martian Manhunter because, well, they seemingly have every power. When he’s not being an all-powerful God (get it? G-man?) you can find him solving problems on the fly and making sure everyone has a good show.
ALEX WER (HE/HIM)
Introducing the award-winning pumpkin artist, The Pumpkin Geek. When Alex isn’t winning awards for his jaw-dropping pumpkin carvings, he’s writing and recording music in his studio. Did we mention that he once got offered a recording contract with Capitol Records in 1993? He’s also managed to master the art of becoming Spider-Man… he’s jumped off his roof many times and never been hurt. In his off time, you can find Alex watching Friends, Modern Family, This is Us or any of Emily Blunt’s projects (he loves everything she does).
RICHARD CAPOBIANCO (HE/HIM)
We advise not doing a TikTok dance in front of Richard. He’s not gonna like that. You can ask him about his interview with Todd McFarlane though. He managed to successfully get through an interview on stage without prepping anything in advance. Richard says it’s his greatest achievement. He got hooked on fandom when he was only six years old and met Jerry Robinson (creator of The Joker). He’s been in the fandom world (and collecting Comic Sketches) ever since. Speaking of comics, if Richard could have anything in the world that he doesn’t already have, it would be an Action Comics #1. Someone get this man his comic!
JESSICA PETRUCCI (SHE/HER)
CELEBRITY RELATIONS MANAGER
Ever since Jessica joined the FAN EXPO team after MEGACON Orlando 2016, she’s been part of our fandom world. While she may not quite get what an Influencer is (...who are you and why are you famous...), she’s been killing it as the Celebrity Operations Manager. When she isn’t working, you can always find Jess outdoors somewhere. She’s often known to be biking, hiking, swimming, walking or cottaging. With all that exercise, she would surely need a ton of shoes, right? Good thing that’s easily the item she has the most of. Fun fact: Jess's fave movie is Selena (but only because she had a crush on the guitarist who turned into her husband) and she would count all reality TV shows as her favourite show. That does count, right?
CHRISTINA ANGEL (SHE/HER)
CELEBRITY OPERATIONS MANAGER
If someone played Christina in a movie, she thinks it would be Meryl Streep as Miranda Priestly from The Devil Wears Prada (although they look nothing alike and she has zero fashion sense… but still). She really believes that she’s a descendant of Eleanor of Aquitaine which is something she can explain only if you ask. Her biggest achievement used to be getting a PhD in Medieval Literature, but that changed after she got virtual queue reservations for Spider-Man: WEB Slingers while literally riding Big Thunder Mountain at Disneyland. Even the Cast Members she talked to said that it was some “next-level Disney”.
TALENT & CONTENT BOOKING COORDINATOR
Maya Angelou once said, "You will face many defeats in life, but never let yourself be defeated". Katie Telford, Talent & Content Booking Coordinator, most likely told herself this very thing when she was stuck on a 16-hour Greyhound bus ride. Working with stars and numerous personality types has given Katie a sense of Buddhist-like patience. But like all of us, she has a breaking point--and that is a messy house. And hey, who can blame her? After a long day, seeing junk strewn all over your once clean and precious living space… sigh. But Katie is unstoppable so good luck, loose clothes.
STACEY BARRY (SHE/HER)
CELEBRITY OPERATIONS COORDINATOR
Introducing… Stacey! Her favourite movie could be classified into one category: anything from the 90’s. That also explains her fave TV series, which is Seinfeld (1989-1998). Stacey says she’s distantly related to Charles Darwin. That’s a good ice breaker if you ever meet her one day. Her earliest experience in Fandom was having lightsaber fights on her breaks at work back in 2003. Stacey would want Nicole Kidman to play her in a movie and would love to be best friends with Mulan (Ming-Na Wen is probably the closest she can get). When she isn’t working, you can find Stacey skiing, kayaking, hiking or at a not-so-tiring activity like movie nights.
*cues Sailor Moon music* Writing leads by moonlight, reading emails by daylight. Never running from a Star Wars fight, she is the one named Ansley Newland! To no one’s surprise, great content is key to our treasured Programming Coordinator. So when she isn’t busy at FAN EXPO HQ, she’s sewing, baking, keeping plants alive, and has a vast book pile. Upon further reflection, she’s never not busy so be like BB-8 and roll away from her private quarters.
BRUCE MACINTOSH (HE/HIM)
We can round up Bruce with some numbers. Number of vintage comics? 10,000. Tube radios? 100. Pages of original comic art? 700. Years running a successful comic con? 10. Number of Batman ring finger tattoos? 1. 2 if you count his wife’s. Numbers aside, Bruce is a serious collector who started collecting sports trading cards because he’s ran out of room for anything else. He says if that gets out of hand, stamps might be next. If you’re a fan of great Scottish poets, you’ll geek out that Bruce is distantly related to Robert Burns.
BRITTANY RIVERA (SHE/HER)
When Brittany was in middle school, she used to tell people that she was related to Mariano Rivera (famous pitcher for the New York Yankees). Is that true? Next question. Will Brittany watch any TikToks she’s sent but won’t download the app? Also, next question. Brittany’s earliest experience in fandom was collecting all the figures from the animated Disney movies and re-enacting her favourite scenes. When she’s not working, you can find Brittany trying new foods, watching hockey or posting on her verified Twitter (BTW, getting verified is her greatest achievement to date).
CHRIS CARRUTHERS (HE/HIM)
JUNIOR CONTENT COORDINATOR
Now introducing, The SilverNoble. At least, that’s what Chris Carruthers’ friends call him. Breaking your leg at 6 years old may seem like the end of the world, but it was actually the start of a whole new realm for Chris. His mom’s friend let him borrow a PS1 with Spyro & Crash Bandicoot while he recovered, and he’s been hooked on Fandom ever since. Chris has always wanted a library/office in his house that has a secret entrance hidden away. It’s the perfect place to store his ever-growing collection of books, video games, & more. Chris was the Valedictorian of his college, climbed Mt. Sulphur in Banff in the dark (which he will never do again), and is best known on the team for playing Dungeons & Dragons.
TAJSHEN CAMPBELL (SHE/HER)
EVENT CONTENT COORDINATOR
Tajshen was always going to be in the Fandom world. She never stood a chance since her mom took her to see Batman (1989) when she was literally one week old. She has three different answers when you ask for her favourite movie. The usual answer: The Godfather: Part 2. The real answer: Clue. The Fandom answer: Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope. She thinks they’re all excellent movies (and we agree). She has always wanted a quality lightsaber and collects anything that looks like it would be in Indiana Jones’ office. She can’t prove this, but her grandfather always told her that she was related to Mary Todd. What she can prove is that you should never trust gas station coffee. Ask her about it sometime.
JENNIFER NORMOYLE (SHE/HER)
EVENT CONTENT COORDINATOR
Jennifer is the ultimate Disney fan. From first visiting the Parks at 5-years-old and still going to this day, to dreaming of the Nightmare Before Christmas Tsums series, and adding to her toy collection from all-things Disney (including Star Wars and, yes, more Nightmare Before Christmas), Jennifer has always been the biggest Disney enthusiast. When she’s not living and breathing Disney, you can find Jennifer working through her over 40 TV shows. A self-proclaimed TV junkie, she literally has an app dedicated to tracking every show she watches. She’s also a huge fan of Howl's Moving Castle. Between the characters, the stories, and Sophie's transformation, what's not to love?
COMIC RELATIONS COORDINATOR
Kevin Boyd, Comic Relations Coordinator and ultimate Spidey fan is a web (pun intended) of industry sources in the world of comics. Since the age of 12, Kevin has been wall-crawling through comic book conventions to feed his endless curiosity. Now for FAN EXPO HQ, he swings around from city to city, on the hunt for awesome comics and… pancakes with bacon. So yes he does have complicated feelings about Spider-Pig.
CONSTANCE EZA (SHE/HER)
Sometimes fate (and an awesome Grandma) introduces you to your life loves. Take, for example, Constance Eza, Comics Coordinator. At the tender age of six, she went to a comic con with her grandma who thought comics would be a good way to get her to read. Constance chanced upon an issue of X-Factor and as the legend goes… she never looked back. Moving forward, she’d be bespoken the name Convention Squirrel, become a doctor (vascular neurologist), and join the FAN EXPO HQ team as the resident go-to comic expert.
Tom “That anime guy” Croom, understands the importance of a good ol’ shonen origin story so here’s one: As a little boy, Luke Skywalker was his hero but as he grew older it became Mark Hamil. Somewhere along the way, he realized he could trace his family tree to Thomas Jefferson and discovered a constant diet of anime amongst many other things. Now he’s a part of FAN EXPO HQ and is the guy we all call because we figure he knows the answer to everything. Quite the hero’s journey, indeed.
Dominick Trascritti, Gaming Coordinator has organized game days and conventions since 2004 and playing DnD and other games since 1978. Related: one of his ancestors was involved in the French Revolution so one could argue he comes from a long line of strategists—without the life or death consequences, of course. When he’s not being a 3LIT3 gaming expert he spends time with his three wonderful daughters.
Walter Kruger, our Gaming Coordinator, is a fun guy who enjoys the simple things in life. Namely, desiring to be best friends with R2D2, unable to live without RPGs, and raising two wonderful smart and kind kids. However, do not be fooled! He has a secret identity! Here’s a hint: “With Great Power comes Great Responsibility”!
VALERIE CISNEROS (SHE/HER)
CREATIVE & BRAND MANAGER
What's one item Valerie has always wanted? Her response: "Michelle Pfeiffer's Catwoman suit in Tim Burton's Batman Returns." When she isn’t daydreaming about being Selina Kyle's alter ego, Valerie is binge watching movies and TV, including rewatching her fave shows like Friends, Alias, and RuPaul's Drag Race. Know the quote from her photo above? If so, shantay, you stay. If not, sashay away. As a Florida girl, you can catch Valerie being out in the sun - kayaking in the springs, going to the beach, or even just hanging out by a pool. If she can’t be outdoors, you can find her dominating at a round of Mario Kart or Super Smash Bros. She’s been playing since she was a child and will absolutely win every round.
STELLA SIMEONOVA (SHE/HER)
Has anyone else here won an Anime-themed game show and walked away with a $700 Anime shopping spree, or is it just Stella? That shouldn’t come as a surprise – those who know Stella know that she used to wake up at 6 AM to watch Sailor Moon reruns on TV as a kid. She also grew up reading The Golden Compass, which has evolved into Stella collecting every different edition of the His Dark Materials series that she can find. She now has way too many books - including duplicates of books that she already owned - but she has no regrets. When she isn’t reading or winning contests, you can find Stella trying to prove that her Bulgarian heritage would somehow make her related to Nina Dobrev or Stanislav Ianevski.
LAURA MAYES (SHE/HER)
CUSTOMER SERVICE MANAGER
Hear ye, hear ye for Laura Mayes, Customer Service Manager and Queen of the FAN EXPO HQ Service Desk, Mother of Travel and The Supreme Conqueror of Pasta with loads of Parmigiano Reggiano! What can we say about Laura that hasn’t already been said in this extremely long title? She dislikes people who don’t have manners and is currently exploring the ability to bring people back from the dead. So, it’s probably in your best interest not to irk her or prepare to suffer her WRATH… and a room-filling smile.
ASHLEY BAKER (SHE/HER)
CUSTOMER SERVICE COORDINATOR
Fun fact: did you know that Ashley Baker, Customer Service Coordinator is also a vampire slayer? This fact became particularly obvious to the FAN EXPO HQ staff when Ashley would note her annoyance with people who chew (*hiss*) loudly and lack common decency. In addition, she really loves eating brunch (which is obviously when the sun is out). Now, let us not forget she is wonderful, kind, and enjoys spending time with friends but if you are a vampire… it’s probably best to stay away.
SYREETA MURPHY (SHE/HER)
CUSTOMER SERVICE COORDINATOR
You can always find Syreeta on TikTok. She may not be posting her own videos, but she’s constantly watching the newest trending videos. That being said, she absolutely does not understand the TikTok egg-peeling challenge. If she’s not on TikTok, she’s binge-watching TV shows. That explains why she would bring a Smart TV to a desert island if she could only bring one item. What is she watching, you might ask? Golden Girls never disappoints. You simply can’t go wrong with a good St. Olaf or Shady Pines story. Star power runs in her family, as Syreeta is actually related to Dwayne Wiggins from the hit 90's music group Tony Toni Tone.
MEAGHAN POLAND (SHE/HER)
DIGITAL MARKETING MANAGER
If you think you’re the biggest Seinfeld fan, think again. Meaghan has that title for sure. She grew up watching the show every single day, and even years later, she will still put it on whenever she can. So what if she’s seen every episode a million times over, it’s STILL funny. When she isn’t watching Seinfeld, Meaghan is hoping to one day be BFF’s with Hilary Banks from Fresh Prince of Bel Air or buying more shoes than she could possibly count. When Hollywood inevitably makes a movie about her life, Maya Rudolph is the number one pick to play Meaghan on screen.
AFSHIN QAMAR (SHE/HER)
DIGITAL MARKETING COORDINATOR
If there’s anything in this world that Afshin is certain of, it’s that Tobey Maguire is epic. Speaking of heroes, if she could have any superpower, she would want to time travel like The Flash or Doctor Strange… or maybe even Harry Potter with the Time-Turner. Did we mention Afshin is a huge Harry Potter fan? It was her first experience with fandom and she hasn’t looked back. Be warned - just like Harry with Dumbledore in Order of the Phoenix, she hates being ghosted. If you did ghost her, you can make it up to Afshin by watching Titanic or Takeshi’s Castle with her.
WING KIU NG (SHE/HER)
DIGITAL MARKETING SPECIALIST
Most people stop after getting 2 dogs. Not Wing. She & her mother are raising 6 dogs together. Raising that many dogs would be so much easier if she could read their minds – that’s her ideal superpower. Wing’s favourite movie is Doctor Strange and by no mere coincidence, her perfect best friend from fandom would be Stephen Strange himself. Him or Wanda Maximoff. Either works. Sushi is Wing’s go-to meal. If she had to only eat one meal for the rest of her life, it would be sushi. No question about it. While she may not have anything specific on her wish list right now, she thinks she could always use more clothes (though she might already have too many).
EMILY FAUSTINO (SHE/HER)
Emily grew up watching the original Star Wars movies on repeat every Christmas and has been hooked on Fandom culture ever since. She even streams on Twitch playing games like Star Wars: The Old Republic. The Force must really be with her. If only she could use The Force on the bus, which always seems to leave before she gets on. If she had any superpower in the entire world, she would choose time freezing, specifically to keep the bus waiting for her. Oh, did we mention that Emily’s ideal best friend is Pennywise the Dancing Clown? Not exactly Star Wars related, but probably as loyal as Chewbacca.
TAYNER MURDOCK (HE/HIM)
CONTENT CREATOR & COPYWRITER
A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away… Tayner was making nerdy content for his (embarrassing) YouTube channel. That lead him to where he is now: still making nerdy content 15 years later. From animating Disney toys to modelling his own Ant Man helmet, he never runs out of ideas to make his friends & family go “are you really going to post that?” He is forever on the hunt for a VHS copy of Disney’s Cars and Revenge of the Sith (both harder to find than you’d expect) and has never passed up a chance to re-watch The Clone Wars. If he has one goal in life, it’s to be friends with Owen Wilson.
CAROLINE CURRIE (SHE/HER)
Caroline Currie has been blessed with the powers of (analytics) mind control and social time(line) travel. So of course she is a bit too good at her job which has made her the kind-spirited ‘Hermione’ of the FAN EXPO HQ team. It’s also not a surprise then that she believes Ron Weasley would be her best friend IRL. The only possible drawback to this combo would be if he has the patience to go on another of her epic quests of self-discovery and SHOES!
QUINN KING (SHE/HER)
It’s not every day that someone from the FAN EXPO HQ team can say they slow danced with (a statue of) Spider-Man. But Quinn King proudly can. You see, Quinn understands the finer things in life are fun such as hiking, camping, skiing, playing video games, gardening, hanging out with her three cats, and... phew we’re out of breath. She’s a real deal super-woman with only one kryptonite: the high pitched sound cutlery makes when it scrapes against the plate.
MAYA ENRIQUEZ (SHE/HER)
It’s Morbin’ Time. Sorry. Maya just really loved all the Morbius memes that led to multi-billion dollar corporation Sony unsuccessfully releasing Morbius again. Speaking of movies, Maya loves The Iron Giant. The reason isn't only because "BIG ROBOT COOL", but also for its great animation and story. We asked Maya what the one item she’s always wanted is and she said, “the power of the sun, in the palm of my hand.” Get it? Doc Ock? No? Okay. It’s a clever answer, though it’s not quite a pun – which most of us are used to from her. Just ask anyone. Maya loves telling everyone at FAN EXPO HQ a pun at least once (a day).
DUSTI TRAMONTANO (SHE/HER)
By far, Dusti is the most humblest. She’s the number one at the top of the FAN EXPO humble list. When she isn’t watching Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping, Whiplash, Avatar or even yes, Hotel Transylvania 3, you can find Dusti out living her best life. From seeing the Jonas Brothers in concert to flying cross country to watch Just for Laughs, you never really know where Dusti will be. She brings the fun with her everywhere she goes, so you can always count on a good time if she’s around. A little tip: don’t ask her about the Roomba - she may have spent too much money on the little robotic friend than she should have. To get back on her good side, just mention Adam Driver. She loves him so much that she recently got a giant Kylo Ren tattoo on her arm.
JASMINE CURL (SHE/HER)
If you’re thinking Jasmine’s name sounds familiar, you're right. Being named after the iconic Disney princess from Aladdin, she was destined to be in the Disney fandom. For as long as she can remember, Jasmine has always wanted an animation cel from Disney's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1938). Maybe she’d settle for a Snow White Pop! Vinyl. She used to live near the Funko HQ, so she has quite the collection now. Jasmine’s greatest achievement is graduating from the University of Hawaii at Manoa during a pandemic. Her worst achievement? Jumping off the Maunawili Falls on Oahu, Hawaii. She will never do that again. When Jasmine isn’t working, you can always catch her hanging out at local theme parks.
BECCA FLYNN (SHE/HER)
Becca is best known on the FAN EXPO team for how much she loves horror & Halloween. For proof, let’s throw some rapid-fire facts at you. Favourite movie? Evil Dead 2. Item she’s always wanted? Replica of Leatherface’s mask. Item she’d bring on a desert island? The book You’ve Got Red On You – the story behind the making of Shaun of the Dead. When she isn’t thinking about Horror (which isn’t often), you can find Becca looking at social media accounts for people’s pets or scouting out the newest Pop! Vinyl to add to her ever-growing collection.
KARLI IRVINE (SHE/HER)
It's time to meet Karli. You could also say you met Troian Bellisario, since everyone seems to think they look alike. While she may not resemble Leslie Knope from Parks and Recreation appearance-wise, Karli swears they are twin flames. They’re both planners, coordinators and over-celebrators for any birthday, accomplishment or moment worth commemorating. She was also told once that she’s the distant relative of Colonel Irvine, who helped name Calgary. Is it actually true? Karli can’t confirm, but it’s a good story. If you want to get on Karli’s good side, add to her never-ending collection by sending her a post card from your next adventure (with a very detailed story of your travels).
DARRYL DEMERS (HE/HIM)
Darryl Demers, Designer is a man who believes in speed and efficiency. Since 2015, when he started working at FAN EXPO HQ, Darryl has made it his mission to defeat all who stand in the way (literally) because they’re walking slow. Unsurprisingly, he has dreams of flying so hopefully he’s one step closer to avoiding all those molasses-inclined foot steppers. Let us all grant his wish that he gets his pet dragon, Toothless sooner rather than later.
MARK BUCHANAN (HE/HIM)
Mark Buchanan, Graphic Designer discovered his inner fandom at one of the most pivotal moments in geek culture. Yes, we are talking about the opening night of Star Wars: Episode I Phantom Menace. So as you can imagine, if he decided to stick around after THAT he’s in it for the long haul. And sure enough, Mark’s resolve is the stuff of legends which is why only Idris Elba could accurately portray his life. Also probably why omnipotence is his go-to superpower choice. Did we mention he is also raising a lovely daughter?
ALLEN SIA (HE/HIM)
By royal decree of Allen, everyone shall get free Krispy Kreme donuts every Tuesday of every month forever! That is, unless you’re one of those people who changes lanes without signaling. Allen can’t stand that. In the movie about his life, Allen wants to poach Marvel’s newest star: Simu Liu. In the movie, he can finally live his dreams of being best friends with Teen Titan’s Beast Boy. There’s never a dull moment with him, so imagine the adventures! By the way, we can’t believe you haven’t figured out the celeb Allen’s related to. Hint: she sings Chandelier. Get it? No? Look at Allen’s last name!
SENIOR OPERATIONS COORDINATOR
Once upon a time, Toni Chin, Sr. Operations Coordinator was busy doing her job and being a superstar at it. She was answering emails on time and recalling memories of being a Summer Camp director when something stopped her in her tracks. Someone had emailed a “Thank you” for a job well done for another awesome birthday party game she had created--- but something was off. She inspected the email closer until she found it: the [REDACTED] individual had spelled her name as “Tony” instead of Toni. And that’s how she became The Riddler.
SENIOR OPERATIONS COORDINATOR
Aarti Patel believes in punctuality. You see when you have to monitor the day-to-day of huge events you don’t have the luxury of being slow or the patience for people who suddenly stop to check their phone. No, every day is go-go-go. So what does she make time for, you ask? Well, she loves painting and cooking new recipes. She also moonlights as The Diamond Lady at the office. But under that luxurious exterior, there is one thing she desires: being friends with Brooke from One Tree Hill.
NICOLE ZUMSTEG (SHE/HER)
EVENT OPERATIONS COORDINATOR
Please do not ever wear Disney merch in Universal or Universal merch in Disney. Nicole cannot stand that. If you’re not one of those people, you’re more than welcome to join her as she rewatches the entire MCU in order again. As a Marvel pro, Nicole can confirm that MCU timeline order > MCU release order. When she isn’t working, you can find Nicole reading & tanning at the beach or pool. You won’t, however, find her waiting three hours for Rise of the Resistance at Hollywood Studios. Never again. Her greatest achievement is graduating with a dual degree from UCF in four years with Cumma Sum Laude status. She’s also quite proud of being a Harry Potter nerd: she’s a Potterhead and Hufflepuff for life!
BREANNE RUSKOWSKY (SHE/HER)
You can sum up Breanne with two words: Books & Mugs. If she isn’t reading, she’s looking for more books to read. If she isn’t doing that, she’s finding new mugs to add to her ever-growing collection. She firmly believes that there is always a different mug for every mood and situation. Breanne’s favourite movie is Jurassic Park (although she does enjoy Jurassic Park 2: The Lost World. And Jurassic Park 3. and Jurassic World. Oh, and also Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom.) On an emotional level, Breanne is sure she’s related to Alan from the Jurassic Park franchise.
KAYLA SMITH (SHE/HER)
Grab your dancing shoes, a reliable fanny pack, & a copy of Singing in the Rain: it’s time to meet Kayla. If you’re a fan of glitter & Minnie Mouse, we think you two would get along. When Kayla isn’t helping put on amazing FAN EXPO shows, you can find her hiking, going to concerts, and collecting Broadway Playbills. You’ll never find her skydiving again though. Kayla’s perfect evening would include watching Below Deck and eating a loaded baked potato. Her earliest experience with Fandom was going to all of the Jets home games with her Grandfather. She’s been a football fan ever since.
SAM KATZ (HE/HIM)
Sam loves when people get a cat and accidentally become one of those crazy cat people. Maybe because he is one of those people. He loves to play with his cat and has even taught her how to play fetch. Take that, dogs. When he isn’t working, Sam loves heading to the beach every Sunday, which he says is the main perk of living in Florida. We’re totally not jealous. If he had any superpower, he would want to have any power that helps him beat traffic and long flights. He’s thinking maybe teleportation or flying. As a self-proclaimed tech nerd, Sam has way too many random cables that may never be used again. But you never know. His go-to karaoke song is Love On Top by Beyoncé and he promises that it’s a real crowd pleaser if you ever get to see him perform it live.