Current Mentors

Team 1138 is thankful for having a vast network of mentors and moderators specializing in all areas of science and technology.  Here are just a few of the people who fulfill First’s mission of gracious professionalism and guide us on our path to success and achievement of our mission.

Team Moderator:

  • Tommy Smeltzer
    Tommy Smeltzer became Team 1138’s program director after six years as a volunteer mentor and team dad. His career has included a wide range job titles including recording engineer, scenic carpenter, actor, producer, director and business owner- often all at the same time! He has a passion for a structured approach to creative thinking and genuinely feels that supporting STEM education is a patriotic value that all Americans should embrace.


  • Stacy Smeltzer 
    Stacy has been our team parent for four years, having worked with the middle school for three years prior. With degrees in Journalism and Public Relations, she has spent her career in the entertainment industry. With more than 20 years as a Sr. Producer in advertising, Stacy switched to the legal side of network production working for Warner Bros. Television, and currently, HBO. She’s worked on development and current programming for shows including “The Middle,” “Mike & Molly” and “VEEP” among others.
  • Rudy Montalvo
    Rudy has a degree in Chemistry. He is an Engineering Consultant for Medtronic Diabetes and holds multiple patents. He has worked in Medical Device Development for 33 years with emphasis on chemical sensor development. He works for his own engineering consulting corporation. Rudy has been a Boy Scout leader, an AYSOsoccer coach and AYSO soccer referee.
  • Laurene Abato Earwood
    Laurene has been involved in FIRST / robotics since 2004, providing funding & mentoring for several SoCal teams through Xerox. She volunteers at local and national events as a referee and judge and is a board member for the Bonita Campbell Endowment for Women in Science and Engineering at CSUN. Laurene has worked at Xerox for the past 28 years and currently manages the Customization Program Delivery and Fulfillment team. She has a MS in Electrical Engineering and a BS in Biochemical Sciences.
  • Ray Mitchell
  • Steve Fusselman
  • Scott Morgan
  • Patrice Galliath
  • Dane Stone
  • Pauline Breeden
  • Matt Feder
  • Harry Hosaka
  • Collin Lane
  • Steven Paqueo
  • Brandon Sezgin
  • Jeremias Agosto
  • Stephen Stein