OUR TEAM

LIBBY FISCHER

CEO

A graduate of St. Louis University, Libby taught Spanish in the Mississippi Delta with Teach For America before joining Revolution Foods, where she supported school partnerships to provide healthy lunches to students. After a few too many cold winters, Libby returned South to join Whetstone Education as Director of Growth. She moved into the role of CEO in the fall of 2014 & is thrilled to be partnering with the country’s foremost thought leaders on instructional development. She was recognized as a Forbes 30 under 30 in Education in January 2016.

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CODY BRUMFIELD

CTO

Originally from New Orleans, Cody attended the George Washington University in Washington, DC before beginning his career as a policy analyst focused on college admissions, financial aid, and student data. Working to make sense of large government data-sets led Cody to the world of software and a career as an engineer. In 2013, after nearly 10 years in Washington (and as many trips home for Mardi Gras and Jazz Fest), he left DC to come home and join Whetstone. He lives in Mid-City.

LIZZIE MCDONALD

CUSTOMER SUCCESS MANAGER

As a graduate from Tulane University and a Venture for America fellow, Lizzie joined Whetstone in 2015 as the Customer Success and Marketing Manager. Lizzie was inspired by her experience with the Center for Public Service at Tulane, and start-ups in New Orleans, and decided she wasn’t quite ready to leave the Big Easy after graduation. She is super excited to be working at a company that prioritizes education in the city and beyond.

MARIA PLOTKINA

CUSTOMER SUCCESS MANAGER

Maria joined Whetstone in June 2016 as our second Customer Success Manager. Most recently, she served as a Talent Coordinator for one of our partners, FirstLine Schools in New Orleans. Maria graduated from the University of New Orleans with her MA in Arts Administration and has made her home in New Orleans ever since. Originally from Brooklyn, she is passionate about working in the intersection of education, culture, and community.

Spencer Nessel

Customer Success Manager

Originally from Jackson, MS, Spencer has spent the last four years working in New Orleans public schools as both an instructor and coach. Before coming to New Orleans, Spencer received a B.A. in English from Millsaps and taught abroad in China. He is a proud AmeriCorps alum and is passionate about partnering with schools to continue working towards a stronger and more equitable education system. 

LAUREN JOHNSON

DATA STRATEGY AND OPERATIONS MANAGER

With a Masters in Social Administration from the University of Chicago, Lauren has a passion for using data to improve processes for growing organizations. Previously, she was the Research & Evaluation Director at Urban Initiatives, a nonprofit organization that offers youth development programs to public school students. A New Orleans native, Lauren is excited to be back home, and continuing her work supporting the education industry.

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ALLIE RUST

CUSTOMER SUCCESS MANAGER

Allie studied Communication at the George Washington University before pursuing her interest in education and joining Teach for America – South Carolina. After the Corps she earned her MS in Educational Studies from Johns Hopkins University and made her way down to New Orleans. She joined the Whetstone team as our fourth Customer Success Manager in June 2017 and is excited to continue her passion for student success through building excellent school communities.

ARIEL WELLS

SOFTWARE Engineer

New to the field of education and the start-up world, Ariel is elated to be a part of the Whetstone Education team. A native of New Orleans, she is also thrilled to be back in her hometown.  She earned a BS in computer engineering from Jackson State University. Before joining Whetstone, Ariel spent five years as a software engineer in the defense industry.