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Pete Michaud

Managing Director

Pete has previously worked as a software developer, architect, and consultant. He cofounded Connection Corps, an emotional intelligence education organization in Austin, Texas. After helping on several related projects including EA Global and EA Action, he joined CFAR as its managing director.

Anna Salamon

Executive Director and Cofounder

Anna has previously done machine learning research for NASA and applied mathematics research on the statistics of phage metagenomics. She holds a degree in mathematics from UC Santa Barbara.

Michael Smith

Curriculum Developer, Chief Financial Officer and Cofounder

Michael holds a joint Ph.D. in mathematics and science education from UC San Diego and San Diego State University. He has extensive experience with teaching and curriculum design in academics, martial arts, and now, rationality workshops. Read more…

Julia Galef

President and Cofounder

Julia is a writer, blogger, and public speaker focusing on science and rationality, and the co-host of the official podcast of the New York City Skeptics, “Rationally Speaking.” She holds a degree in statistics from Columbia University. (Julia’s homepage)

Kenzi Amodei

Director of Operations and Curriculum Developer

Kenzi has worked as a professional stage manager throughout the San Francisco Bay Area. She holds a BA in theatrical stage management from Stanford University and a BS in biology from the University of Oregon.

Dan Keys

Research Associate

Dan has conducted research on the psychology of judgment and decision making and published a paper on the science of human rationality. He holds a master’s degree in social psychology from Cornell University and a BA in mathematics and statistics from Swarthmore College.

Morgan Davis


Morgan makes CFAR run smoothly behind the scenes and is a good problem-solving human to email for general assistance. Her educational background is in psychology and neuroscience.

Duncan Sabien

Curriculum and Operations

Duncan is a writer, filmmaker, and educator, whose previous work included developing and teaching a special projects class for building rationality and agency in middle schoolers.

Jack Carroll


This Jack of all trades coordinates logistics, ensuring that CFAR’s workshops meet and exceed participants’ expectations. He draws on his background in psychology and event planning to do this.

Eliezer Yudkowsky

Curriculum Consultant

Eliezer has written extensively on rationality, including the most-reviewed Harry Potter fan fiction on the internet, Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality, and a sequence of articles on reasoning, biases, probability theory, and philosophy of science.

Andrew Critch

Cofounder and Curriculum Consultant

Andrew received his PhD in mathematics at UC Berkeley, specializing in the algebraic geometry of machine learning models. At Berkeley, he co-organized the first COGS causal inference symposium, and ran a highly-attended rationality seminar for math grad students. Read more…

Paul Christiano

SPARC Program Manager

Paul Christiano is a PhD student in computer science at UC Berkeley. His research on algorithms and cryptography has been presented at top conferences in theoretical computer science. In 2008 he was one of six students to represent the U.S. at the International Mathematics Olympiad. Read more…

Yan Zhang

Curriculum Consultant and SPARC Instructor

Yan is a Morrey Visiting Assistant Professor in mathematics at UC Berkeley and cofounder of Vivana.com. He was a member of the USA International Math Olympiad team and captain of Harvard’s ACM programming team. Read more…


Leah Libresco

Curriculum Consultant

Leah graduated from Yale University with a B.A. in political science and previously worked in Washington DC doing statistical analysis for a policy firm. Read more…

Cat Lavigne

Curriculum Consultant

Cat has started multiple businesses, including an art collective for women in Turkey and a comedy theater troupe in Taiwan. She has a particular interest in bridging between formal rationality and social cognition; she also works with Leverage Research.

Contact the CFAR Staff
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