Alexa Crenshaw

Crafty Content Copywriter & Editor

Houston, TX

I am a writer, editor, marketer, and a UofH graduate from Houston, Texas. My work ranges from copywriting and digital marketing for an array of industries to freelance journalism and blogging for Houston-area publications.

I can’t forget this one assignment I had in the second grade which was to draw a picture of who I wanted to be when I grow up. I drew a picture of me smiling and sitting at a desk with a winsome desk lamp, a typewriter, and papers stacked ceiling-high. I wanted to be a writer. I liked writing funny stories and how-tos back then. I mean I remember how-tos being the bulk of writing assignments given to second-grade kids, but that’s beside my point. I was a nerdy kid who liked learning new things and sharing that information.

If anything, my old love of how-tos and story-writing was seminal to what I do today. I enjoy learning what I need to know and turning that information into informative and enjoyable content. I’m also happy with a sky-high amount of projects to do under my sweet desk lamp.

My goal is to keep improving and learning from my peers (including the brains at Smack Happy) and to stay up-to-date in the marketing world, as it’s always evolving.

One fun fact:

I’ve been learning to make an array of pasta. It’s hard but exciting because it’s my favorite food.

Alexis Keenan

Vivacious Videographer

Oakland, CA

I am a videographer, editor and producer, based in Oakland, CA.

I have been a creator since I can remember, and stumbled into video production when searching for a path in college. After graduating I worked with a documentary producer as an assistant editor. Another producer in the same building recognized my hard work and invited me to work with him as well. While working with this producer I was a production assistant and production coordinator as well as assistant editor on a variety of productions for local big businesses. I decided I wanted to focus on editing and while I was gaining some ground through my work, I recognized the long path ahead and opted to “speed things up a bit”, I bought a camera and decided to start making my own material to edit. One day while at the chiropractor, my doctor asked if I would make a video for his office. I immediately jumped on the opportunity and created Alexis Keenan Video, a boutique production company that tells the stories of local businesses and individuals.

I have always been interested in many career opportunities and paths. What I found with creating video content is the ability to learn and be part of many different lifestyles and careers. I love discovering the behind the scene story about people and their work. Putting together all the information into a video that is both educational and inspiring is a lot of fun.

My goal is to improve my skills in all areas of production, but specifically post-production editing and graphics. I want to be a documentary editor and work on films that tell the story of environmental conservation and social justice through stories of local people.

One fun fact:

I have been practicing Aikido since 2016. I love the how the practice embodies the body, mind and spirit.

Anna Byun

Divine Designer & Coder

Chicago, IL

I am a web designer/developer and print designer, originally from NYC but currently based in Chicago.

When I graduated college with degree in Fine Arts I knew I wanted to work in a visual field, but didn’t know what to do beyond that. My first job was with the Marketing Communications department of a financial company, and after working closely with the agency they’d hired to manage their advertising, I realized that I wanted do what they were doing. I took some computer classes and began my career as a Graphic Designer. With time I found myself becoming increasingly fascinated with web design, and when I decided to look into coding I was hooked.

I feel really lucky to have a career that excites me, challenges me, and scratches both my creative and analytical/problem-solving itches.

My goal is to create designs that are functional, user-friendly, and that generate results – all wrapped up in a pretty package.

One fun fact:

I started running when I discovered a race that serves chocolate at all of the water stations – great motivation!

Brandon Sanders

Web Developer, WordPress Ninja

Charlotte, NC

I am a full-stack developer, originally from a small town called Hickory, NC. I’ve always had a drive to work with computers. I believe I applied to work at all of the computer shops in town when I was 18 years of age. Ultimately someone hired me and since that time, I’ve worked with a wide variety of seasoned professionals. I work best as a front-end developer using HTML, CSS/Less, Javascript/ES6. Most of my work involves using NodeJS and Visual Studio Code. I also spent years working with WordPress, Drupal and Joomla and many proprietary CMS platforms. I speak the LAMP language and can assist with back-end maintenance.

I enjoy the design aspect of all of this. Writing code all day is one thing, but being able to look at a beautiful design someone created and code that out in realtime and watch it come together is amazing and that’s why I love front-end development. Bringing a project to life means to see it flourish.

My goal is to continue evolving as a designer/developer, creating awesome applications and hopefully one day pass on my knowledge to someone else.

One fun fact:

I went to Israel for 62 days and got to ride a camel. Who can say that?

Corina Pfeffer

Rockstar Coder and Designer

Boston, MA

I am a Web Designer and Developer, originally from Venezuela, currently based in Norton, MA.

I have a BS in Industrial Mathematics and initially worked on the management side of tech startups in Latin America. Almost 3 years ago, after becoming a mom, I started a lifestyle/mommy blog and realized that I wanted to learn to design and code so I could make it look the way I really wanted. I completed a Web Design course and with these newfound skills began freelancing, designing and developing mostly WordPress sites.

I love being able to combine my mathematician problem solving abilities with my visual side. It truly is the perfect balance, allowing me to be creative when designing in Adobe Photoshop or Illustrator and technically making these designs come to life with HTML, CSS, Less and PHP.

My goal is to make beautiful, functional, responsive websites and to go the extra mile ensuring that clients get the best solutions for their business to succeed.

One fun fact:

I’m a serious chocoholic. I need to have dark chocolate every single day!

Danielle Iera

Digital Diva & Project Manager

Pittsburgh, PA

In summation—I am a writer, a proud mama, closet nerd, refined yinzer, and big on brainstorming n’at. I enjoy every kind of conversation and consider everything in life to be “a good thing” until proven otherwise. Proud RMU Alumna (Go Colonials)! A good cupcake = everything.

My official journey with the interwebs began in 2007, while writing for a motorcycle lifestyle print and digital publication. I was very fortunate to work with a talented team of professionals who had vast experience in digital publishing, search engine optimization and marketing, and web design. My passion for digital marketing only grew from there. Over the past ten years, I’ve dabbled in everything from digital advertising to inbound marketing to ecommerce strategy in various industries, such as manufacturing, publishing, construction, and fashion. To backtrack a bit, my passion really started as a young girl who watched her father (a seasoned IT professional) leave the corporate world behind only to create a very successful (online) business from the ground up.

I love working with websites because there’s always something new to do or learn. You also meet the best people along the way.

My goal is to LAUGH every chance I get, and also kick ass.

One fun fact:

I am fluent in American Sign Language.

John Surratt

Positive Project Manager / Media Specialist

Portland, OR

I grew up in an amazing “little” college town called Missoula. Being from Montana, I was raised to appreciate the outdoors and all of it’s natural beauty we were blessed with. I love spending time playing/watching sports, hanging with animals, exploring the outdoors and date nights with my wifey.

After graduating from my hometown college with a degree in digital media, my fiancé and I decided to move to Portland, OR and start our new life together in a bigger market.

My love for all things tech must come from my dad, who worked for IBM when I was young. He grew up tearing things apart (everything from guns to televisions) and then putting them back together with his dad.

I started experimenting with Wordpress websites in college for my online portfolio. Then I moved on to other areas of the digital world for a while, and now I’m back!

I like to think of websites as a concert. There is so much work that goes into the backend/building of a website. Not a lot of people can see what is happening until the site is live. It’s the same with riggers and stagehands pre-concert. They are setting up the lights, the speakers, the rigging, the stage etc… No concert or website can happen without all the individual little tasks being accomplished leading up to the start.

I love working in the shadows and making all the little things work before the show starts!

My goal is to push myself mentally and learn from all of the creative minds we have here at Smack Happy.

One fun fact:

I have a serious obsession with professional sports.

Josslyn Van Estenburg

Office Manager Maven

Cleveland, OH

I enjoy helping people manage their offices in a variety of ways, which makes my days interesting and fun.

Several years ago I began to expand my income sources so that I’m not just doing one thing all the time. Right now my days are filled with office management, scheduling, pet care, social media management and several other activities.

Working with WordPress has been such a breeze. It’s so easy to update websites and keep them fresh and new.

My goal is to make sure everyone I encounter receives the attention they deserve. I love to do things right, I am always open to feedback and I’m extremely organized.

One fun fact:

I love to carve wood sculptures and make adorable little fairy houses.

Nicole Hanusek

Owner / Designer / Coder

San Francisco, CA

I’ve been designing and coding websites since 1998. Yep, that’s before the Internet was popular! I currently live in San Francisco, but I started out in Cleveland, OH. In college my major was illustration and one day I was working in the computer lab and my colleague was looking for jobs in our industry. I thought to myself, “I should probably do that too!” So I sent my resume to every place that offered graphic design positions in my area. I interviewed at a web consulting company, and the owner asked me why I wanted the job. I didn’t even know what the job was! He hired me anyway, and on the first day, the Art Director handed me a thick book and said, “here, learn HTML.” And so I did, and here we are. I’m hooked.

What I like most about building websites is that I get to be creative visually and solve problems. Growing up, I was a huge fan of math and science, so the coding part of the job scratches that logic and trouble-shooting itch. I get to partake in the artsy side and analytical side — the best of both worlds!

My goal is to help make everyone’s life easier. By building easy-to-use websites, I can help my clients, as well as their clients.

One fun fact:

I still love to paint and doodle on the side. Ask me about my artwork any time

Specialties: Design, Problem Solving, Running SHD

Nina Acayan

Visual Designer

Portland, OR

I’m a visual designer currently based in Portland, OR. My family immigrated from the Philippines to the Bay Area, CA where I lived for 20 years. Other activities that influence my design thinking is music (watching live shows, playing guitar), being outside (running, motorcycling), and spending time with friends and family.

I majored in graphic design at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco for 3 years until I landed my first designer job. I’ve always played around Photoshop and Illustrator, though it took me awhile to understand what graphic design is about. The constantly shifting field led me to explore other areas, until I decided to focus on and learn web design in 2014. I vaguely remembered doing some CSS and HTML during the peak of Myspace days in middle school, so I resurrected that interest and knowledge.

I enjoy the technical challenges that come with building a highly functional website, while making sure it doesn’t bore the hell out of the users; I like trying to understand the client’s needs and translating them into something visible and tangible. When I’m not building/designing for clients, I work on experimental web projects.

In my work I strive for efficient yet creative results. Technology can be complicated enough, so I find it’s critical to maintain visual and structural simplicity.

One fun fact:

I got my first tattoo on my knuckles at 18 years old after pulling out of the marines to make sure I never try to join again, and to force myself into a creative field. My mom found out about it a couple days later.

Ruben van Engelenburg

Programmer Extraordinaire and JavaScript Guru

Los Angeles, CA

My name is Ruben van Engelenburg and I’m a full-stack web developer working from Irvine, Orange County.

My web development adventure started back in college (mid 90’s) when I created my first website using basic HTML and JavaScript. In the late 90’s, I created my first webshop using Perl and JavaScript. Since the advent of PHP and ASP, a lot has changed. PHP and JavaScript are my weapons of choice for many web projects now and I’m on a continuous journey of learning new things, most of it related to web development.

Web development is continuously changing; new technologies, languages, frameworks and devices are added to the mix. This forces me to constantly learn new things, which is a lot of fun.

My goal is to always deliver beautiful and easy-to-use web applications that are easy to maintain.

One fun fact:

Willing to wait in line for hours to get that one special release of craft beer.

Viktor Angelopoulos

Web developer / WordPress fanatic

Athens, Greece

I’m a full-stack web developer from Athens, Greece. My office is also occupied by my boxer-amstaff mix, who has been my sidekick for over 12 years.

My father passed down his love of computers – he was an early adopter and used the Apple Macintosh II for his graphic design work. During my teenage years, I discovered the ever-growing World Wide Web and was fascinated by how websites worked. My curiosity inspired me to teach myself how to make my first one. A couple of books and many long hours of trial and error later, I had built my first website. After high school, while enrolled in Software Engineering, I found my passion for PHP development. As years passed and while working with clients, I learned about the front-end of things as well and was able to rediscover my creative side. I stumbled across WordPress when it was still a blogging tool and I stuck with it as it became a powerful Content Management System. I grew professionally alongside WordPress and now specialize in web development using the “engine” behind almost 30% of the websites online today.

I love turning ideas into reality. The whole process of creating a website that provides a proper experience for its audience is what motivates me to adhere to high-quality standards while being creative. My work keeps my interest because every project is different and I get to work with different teams and clients. I always feel I’ve learned something new after every website launch.

My goal is to create beautiful, functional websites that do justice to the ideas behind them. My life philosophy (of course, I’m Greek!) is to continuously evolve as a professional and as a person by welcoming challenges and devising innovative solutions.

One fun fact:

Although I’m left-handed, I operate my keyboard & mouse just like a right-handed person would. By the time I learned it could be switched around, it was too late because I had already adapted!