The Team

Christy Christopher

Columbia Gorge STEM Hub Director

Christy is a native of Hood River who taught high school math for 7 years and founded an educationally-focused toy store before returning to the Gorge. She is especially motivated to make sure all students feel that STEM careers are an option for them: as a top high school math and science student, she avoided STEM professions because the only engineers she knew were men. Christy hopes to break down those stereotypes for today's students, including her son.

Christy holds a B.S. from Cornell University, a M.A. in Education from Stanford University, and an MBA from Boston University.

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Julie Cucuel

STEM Hub Coordinator

Julie is originally from Arizona and Colorado, spending the past 20+ years teaching students, facilitating STEM Programs, or leading educators in rural communities as an instructional leader. She is passionate about supporting teachers in STEM education and collaborating with community partners to bring STEM experiences to every student. She understands the challenges rural educators face, but believes that through collaboration and connection, we can achieve our goals together. 

Julie holds an A.A.S in Early Childhood Education, a B.A. in Elementary Education and a M.A. in Educational Leadership from Northern Arizona University.

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Nicole Tolmie

Regional Hub Assistant - Operations

Nicole is a local of the Pacific Northwest and the first in her immediate family to earn a bachelor’s degree. She is also a scholarship recipient and strongly believes in the value of education. Nicole has served as the operations manager for a small startup company, a freelance writer and editor, and a college writing and English tutor for several local community colleges. Nicole is excited to use her skillsets to help increase access to educational services for students.


Nicole holds a B.A. in Cultural Anthropology from Washington State University Vancouver (WSUV). She will support both the STEM Hub and Early Learning Hub in operations.