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Director of Programs 


Kristen Kelley is the Director of Programs at LGBT Tech. She oversees programming and partnerships for PATHS and PowerOn. Kristen has a background in social services and grassroots community organizing. They graduated from Columbia College Chicago with a degree in Cultural Studies and Women and Gender Studies. After completing her undergraduate degree, Kristen lived in Barcelona, Spain teaching English as a Foreign Language. She has extensive experience in refugee solidarity work, volunteering for grassroots projects to support refugees living in camps and shelters across Greece, France, Turkey, Lebanon, and México. They have also worked as a Housing Advocate in Chicago, working with families and youth experiencing homelessness. She has continued doing immigrant solidarity work in both Chicago and México.

Samantha sygier cayax

Program Coordinator 

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Samantha is the Program Coordinator of the PATHS and PowerOn programs at LGBT Tech. Originally from Panajachel, Guatemala she was exposed to a melting pot of cultures and people. This immersive background guided her into her undergraduate degree in Sociology from Universidad de San Carlos de Guatemala. While studying her bachelor’s, she worked as an English teacher for kids, teens, and adults learning English as a foreign language, which eventually led her to her role as a Program Coordinator overseeing the Adults Program. She also held a college counseling position for Guatemalan youth and young adults wanting to study their undergraduate degrees abroad, where she provided test preparation, mentorship opportunities, language preparation and more. Samantha was also actively involved in community organization and student councils in her university, where she participated and invited fellow students to civic engagement and activism on topics such as gender disparities, LGBTQ+ rights, and indigenous movements.

Ellie Bessette

Director of Operations & Finance 


With a background in fundraising, Ellie leads the charge to grow programs like PowerOn, empowering LGBTQ+ individuals by providing hardware (computers, tablets, laptops and cell phones), technology education, and information about low cost broadband. Through regular communications with PowerOn partner centers and recycling partners, Ellie ensures that e-waste and donated technology are doing the most good for the LGBTQ+ individuals we serve. Ellie also manages the marketing and development operations for the program and oversees the application process for new LGBTQ+ centers to join PowerOn.

Christopher Wood

Executive Director



Christopher Wood is an entrepreneur in every sense of the word; author, speaker, co-founder of two non-profits, small business owner, and consultant around social media, PR and marketing.

Carlos Gutierrez

General Counsel



Mr. Gutierrez is an attorney with an extensive background in both business and legal affairs combined with an in-depth understanding of technology, telecommunications and long-term strategic planning.

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