ThoughtCo is a premier reference site with a 20+ year focus on expert-created education content. We are proud to be one of the top-10 information sites, as measured by comScore, a leading Internet measurement company. In 2018, ThoughtCo received a Communicator Award in the General Education category and a Davey Award in the Education category.
At ThoughtCo, we believe that great inspiration begins with a question, and we help 13 million users answer theirs every month. Whether yours is about science and math, humanities and religion, or architecture and the arts, our in-depth articles, written by literature writers, Ph.D.s, and experienced instructors, are designed to give you the answers and information you need in a clear, easy-to-navigate format. So whether you are asking for a class, that next conversation, or just because you want to know, ThoughtCo can help.
Let your curiosity lead the way. ThoughtCo, Lifelong Learning.
Our hundreds of writers have produced over 40,000 articles and have advanced degrees in their subject areas. Many of our literature writers, for example, have degrees in English or Classic Literature. Our language writers are not just native speakers of the language they write about — they’re also experienced instructors of that language.
Allen Grove, Ph.D., is a professor of English with 25 years of experience, and a college admissions expert who has been helping students with the college admissions process for over a decade. He has been writing for ThoughtCo and About.com Education since 2008.
For five years, Dr. Grove directed Alfred University's First-Year Experience Program to help students make the challenging transition from high school to college. He is the Chair of the English Department, regularly teaching first-year experience courses, first-year composition, and British Literature. He has published numerous peer-reviewed journal articles and has edited several British novels.
Dr. Grove earned a B.S. in Materials Science and Engineering from M.I.T. and, with some course work at Harvard and Wellesley, a B.S. in Literature from M.I.T. He then earned his master's and Ph.D. in English from the University of Pennsylvania.
Anne Marie Helmenstine, Ph.D., has extensive experience as a science writer. She has covered chemistry for ThoughtCo and About.com Education since 2001 and has taught chemistry, biology, astronomy, and physics at the high school, college, and graduate level. She has worked abstracting and indexing diverse scientific literature for the Department of Energy.
Dr. Helmenstine has bachelor of arts degrees in physics and mathematics with a minor in chemistry from Hastings College in Nebraska and a doctorate of philosophy in biomedical sciences from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville. In her doctoral work, Dr. Helmenstine developed ultra-sensitive chemical detection and medical diagnostic tests.
Jocelly Meiners, Ph.D., is a language educator who has taught Spanish and French at the college level since 2008. She has been writing for ThoughtCo since 2018.
Dr. Meiners is a lecturer in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese at the University of Texas at Austin, where she teaches introductory, intermediate, and accelerated Spanish language and writing courses. She currently specializes in courses for Heritage Spanish learners and co-directs the Texas Consortium for Heritage Spanish. Dr. Meiners has also served as a reader for the Advanced Placement (AP) Spanish Language and Culture exam.
Dr. Meiners earned a Ph.D. in Hispanic Linguistics and M.A. in French Linguistics from the University of Texas at Austin.
Robert Longley has covered U.S. government, citizenship and American history for ThoughtCo and About.com Education since 1997.
Robert is a retired urban planning professional with nearly 30 years of experience in the areas of land use planning, zoning code development and administration, and geographic information systems. He has worked as a liaison with federal agencies such as the Department of Housing and Urban Development, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the U.S. Census Bureau.
As liaison for two cities, Robert worked directly with the U.S. Census Bureau on completion of the 1980, 1990, and 2000 Decennial U.S. Censuses. In addition, he has worked as an election official in several local, state, and federal elections.
We take great pride in the quality of our content. We produce fact-based, unbiased, well-researched articles that acknowledge the validity of all viewpoints. ThoughtCo articles include a source list to support the writer’s claims and to enable readers to explore the topic further. Once an article is written, the ThoughtCo editorial staff reviews and edits it before publishing it to our library, then constantly updates it to ensure the highest quality. If you notice something in one of our articles that needs to be corrected, please send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know.
Our product reviews are independent and based on research and product testing — if you visit links within our content, we may receive commissions from your purchases, but we never receive any compensation or consideration for the content of our recommendations. Learn more about our review process here.
VP & General Manager
Molly is the Vice President and General Manager of ThoughtCo, and she has been with the company since 2013.
Before joining Dotdash, Molly was an associate digital editor for Condé Nast Traveler, where she helped launch the magazine’s first proprietary website. Previously, she contributed to communications for education and nonprofit organizations, including The Immunization Partnership and the University of Missouri College of Education. Her work has also appeared in Self, Redbook, Women’s Wear Daily, and CNN.
She lives in New York City, grew up in the Chicago suburbs, and graduated from the University of Missouri School of Journalism.
Olivia Valdes is Associate Editor of ThoughtCo. She has been with the company since 2017.
Before joining Dotdash, Olivia worked in the manuscript editorial department at Yale University Press. She has also written for The Economist Careers Network and other education outlets.
Olivia holds a B.A. in American Studies from Yale University. She grew up in South Florida and lives in New York City.
Hildara Araya is Content Manager at ThoughtCo. She joined the editorial team in 2017, and previously wrote for About.com’s Spanish language Pregnancy and Childbirth site from 2011 to 2016.
A Costa Rica native, Hildara has more than 15 years of experience in journalism and bilingual communications, including magazine and online writing and editing for both national and international publications.
Hildara holds a B.S. in Journalism and a B.S. in Public Relations from the University of Costa Rica, as well as an M.S. in Journalism from Ohio University, where she studied as a Fulbright scholar. In addition, she is a certified prenatal educator. Hildara’s favorite book is Love in the Time of Cholera.
ThoughtCo is part of the Dotdash publishing family.
For more than 20 years, Dotdash brands have been helping people find answers, solve problems, and get inspired. We are one of the top-20 largest content publishers on the Internet according to comScore, a leading Internet measurement company, and reach more than 30% of the U.S. population every month. Our brands collectively have won more than 20 industry awards in the last year alone and, most recently, Dotdash was named Publisher of the Year by Digiday, a leading industry publication.
Here is an overview of our properties:
The Verywell family of brands, including Verywell Health, Verywell Fit, Verywell Family, and Verywell Mind, take a human approach to health and wellness content and are a welcome alternative to hyper-clinical health sites. More than 39 million people use Verywell sites each month to feel better and be healthier.
The Spruce family of brands, including The Spruce, The Spruce Eats, The Spruce Pets, and The Spruce Crafts combine inspiration with how-to advice to help users create homes they love. Collectively, The Spruce sites reach nearly 28 million people each month.
The Balance family of brands, including The Balance, The Balance Careers, and The Balance Small Business, deliver clear, practical, and straightforward personal financial advice to nearly 21 million people each month.
Investopedia helps investors understand financial concepts, improve investing skills, and learn how to manage their money. Investopedia reaches nearly 11 million people each month.
Lifewire provides helpful, actionable tech tips, advice, and answers, without confusing jargon. Lifewire helps nearly 10 million people each month get the most out of their technology.
TripSavvy delivers curated expert advice for family and vacation travelers. We help over eight million people each month have the best travel experiences.
Byrdie is dedicated to all things beauty, inside and out. From hair and makeup to health and wellness, Byrdie takes a fresh, no-nonsense approach to feeling and looking your best. Byrdie reaches nearly four million people each month.
MyDomaine makes an aspirational life achievable—and affordable—with curated home-design inspiration, quick and fresh recipes, and healthy relationship advice that awaken a life well lived. MyDomaine reaches 2.5 million people each month.
Brides inspires and guides our nearly 4M monthly users as they make decisions from pre-engagement through the honeymoon. Brides is committed to bringing you an inclusive look at the world of weddings, with every type of couple, every type of wedding, and every type of celebration.
ThoughtCo is one of the largest and most comprehensive learning, information, and education sites online. ThoughtCo helps 12.5 million people a month become lifelong learners.
Source: comScore, January 2019 US
Read about Dotdash and our family of brands in the news.
Chief Executive Officer
Neil Vogel is CEO of Dotdash, having assumed the role in April 2013.
Prior to joining Dotdash, Neil was the Founder and CEO of Recognition Media, a creator and producer of award shows and media properties for digital, creative, and advertising communities including the Webby Awards, The Telly Awards, and Internet Week New York and Europe.
Before starting Recognition Media, Neil was Chief Corporate Development Officer at Alloy Media + Marketing, a digital content and marketing services company focused on the teen and youth market. Neil also serves as a venture partner at FirstMark Capital.
Neil received a B.S. in Finance from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania.
Chief Financial Officer & Head of Strategy
Tim is the Chief Financial Officer of Dotdash and joined the company in January 2015. Prior to joining About.com, Tim was CFO of Axial, an online professional network that helps entrepreneurs and small businesses access capital.
Tim spent more than a decade with American Express where he was a Senior Vice President of Finance and Operations at Vente Privee USA, an e-commerce joint venture between American Express and Vente-Privee Europe. Tim spent the majority of his time at American Express as a Vice President in the Corporate Development Group where he sourced, executed and monitored equity investments and M&A transactions supporting all of Amex’s global business lines.
Tim started his career in middle market investment banking at Ladenburg Thalmann and prior to that in private equity at Wade Capital. Tim graduated from the University of Virginia with a Bachelor of Science degree in Commerce and lives in New York City with his wife and twin daughters.
Chief Operating Officer
Alex Ellerson is the Chief Operating Officer for Dotdash.
Before joining Dotdash, Alex served as the General Counsel & Chief Operating Officer at Howcast, a leading producer of high-quality, low-cost, online how-to videos. Prior to joining Howcast, Alex was the Head of Entertainment and Premium Content Partnerships for Google Video and YouTube, and earlier, a General Manager and Senior Director of Business Development at Yahoo! (working on both Yahoo’s Media and Entertainment and Search teams).
He was also the COO & General Counsel for CMJ (host of the annual CMJ Music Marathon conference), an Associate at the law firm of Cravath, Swaine & Moore, and a law clerk to The Honorable Amalya L. Kearse (U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit).
Alex holds a JD from Columbia University School of Law and a Bachelor of Arts degree from Swarthmore College. He is also a member of the Planning Committee of the New York Chapter of The Copyright Society of the USA.
President of Advertising & Partnerships
Andrew Gorenstein is President of Advertising & Partnerships for Dotdash and joined the company in December 2016. Before joining Dotdash, Andrew held executive roles as the President of Media & Advertising and Chief Revenue Officer for Gawker Media, where he led the revenue team and created an award-winning product suite to sell across their multiple vertical brands. Prior to Gawker Media, Andrew held sales leadership roles at Condé Nast and Forbes.
Andrew has worked aggressively to accelerate, and ultimately redefine and align the relationship between advertisers, brands and publishers. In 2013, Andrew was named one of AdAge’s 40 under 40.
Andrew received his Bachelor’s degree in History from Boston University.
President Dotdash Finance
Dr. Jon Roberts oversees the finance media properties at Dotdash (Investopedia and The Balance). He has been with Dotdash since 2013 and previously held roles as Chief Innovation Officer and Head of Data Science, where he derived insights from more than 20 years of Internet data across thousands of topics. Prior to joining Dotdash, Jon spent 10 years as a theoretical physicist focused on making dark matter predictions for the hadron collider at CERN, and cosmic ray predictions for the AMS detector on the space station. He also worked on the Pierre Auger telescope in Argentina.
Dr. Roberts received his Ph.D at the University of Southampton and his M.A. from the University of Oxford.
Chief Technology Officer
Nabil Ahmad is the Chief Technology Officer for Dotdash. Before joining the company in 2013, Nabil worked at Barnes & Noble serving as the head of technology for BarnesAndNoble.com. A career long engineer, Nabil’s experience includes consulting during the dotcom boom, working at healthcare services and media companies, and being the first employee and head of technology at Kwiry Inc., a venture-backed mobile startup.
Nabil received his B.A. in Molecular Cell Biology, with emphasis in Cell Developmental Biology, from the University of California at Berkeley.
Vice President, Communications
Meredith Worsham is Vice President of Communications for Dotdash. Meredith has been with the company for nearly ten years, working her way up from Account Coordinator to now Vice President, where she oversees media relations, strategy development, internal and external communications and special events for one of the fastest-growing digital media companies and its vertical brands.
Previously, Meredith held various public relations roles at MSL, a leading PR Agency in New York, and worked on health accounts including Sanofi Aventis, Allergan and Phillips Healthcare.
Meredith holds a BA in Communications with a minor in History from Elon University in North Carolina.
General Counsel & Corporate Secretary
Jeff Hartwig is the General Counsel & Corporate Secretary for Dotdash.
Before joining Dotdash, Jeff spent six years at Dow Jones & Company, Inc. where he served as counsel to the digital and print production groups of The Wall Street Journal. Prior to joining Dow Jones, Jeff was an associate attorney at the law firm Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, providing legal counsel to emerging businesses on their financing, intellectual property and general corporate matters.
Jeff holds a JD from the University of Pittsburgh School of Law and a Bachelor of Arts degree in French from San Francisco State University. He is also a member of IAB’s Legal Affairs Council.
Senior Vice President, Site Hosting & Operations
Rob Brathwaite is Senior Vice President of Operations at Dotdash. He also oversees IAC Publishing global shared services team.
Starting at the company in 1996, he is the longest tenured team member. Robert has been instrumental to bringing about change at Dotdash over the past two decades.
Robert holds both a B.S.c and M.S.c in Information Systems and Management from New York University.
Chief Product Officer
Adam McClean is the Chief Product Officer at Dotdash and joined the company in 2014. Prior to joining the company, he was the Director of Product at Waybetter, Inc. Previously, he held roles at Barnes and Noble and Condé Nast Publications. Adam brings more than a decade of experience in start-ups, e-commerce, and premium publishing to Dotdash.
Adam received a B.A. in Communications from DePauw University.
Senior Vice President, Marketing
Tre Jones is the SVP for Marketing at Dotdash. He leads a team of engineers and marketers at Dotdash dedicated to growing our consumer audience through continuous improvement of our content and product.
Prior to Dotdash, Tre was VP of search marketing at Everyday Health. Tre holds a Masters of Business Administration from the NYU Stern School of Business and has a bachelors from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Vice President, People
Colleen Gangl is the VP, People of Dotdash, joining the company in 2018.
Colleen brings over 15 years of experience in her field across multiple industries including retail, technology and digital media. At Dotdash she is responsible for all areas of the People function including talent acquisition, talent development, business partnering and people operations. She is dedicated to partnering with her colleagues to cultivate a working environment that allows team members to do their best work.
Colleen received her Masters in Human Resource Management from Rutgers University and has a BA in Art History from the University of Delaware.
SVP, Programmatic Revenue
Sara Badler is SVP Programmatic Revenue at Dotdash and joined the company in February 2018.
Before joining Dotdash, Sara was head of Programmatic Advertising at The New York Times, where she managed a programmatic team globally, focusing on revenue working with direct clients, partners and exchanges.
Sara started her career in Shanghai, China, where she worked in in Ad Tech at JOININ Tech for more than three years specifically focused on programmatic TV. From there, she went on to manage programmatic at Forbes Media and Hearst Corporation. Sara’s focus has always been in Ad Tech both on the publishing side and technology side. She also worked at Turn where she led inventory partnerships across the east coast.
Sara holds a B.A. in American and Women’s Studies from Dickinson College.
Senior Vice President, Growth & Content Strategy
Brandon Millard is the Senior Vice President of Growth for Dotdash and joined the company in April 2015.
Brandon oversees a team of content strategists, growth analysts, editors, illustrators, and photographers dedicated to improving publishing processes and content quality. Prior to Dotdash, Brandon was the Director of Search Strategy for Ayima, a digital marketing agency, where he led enterprise consulting relationships with large publishers and e-commerce platforms. Brandon has worked in digital marketing and growth for the past 15 years as a startup founder, an in-house leader, and a consultant.
Brandon received a B.S. in Business from Wake Forest University.
SVP of Commerce
Tory Brangham is Senior Vice President of Commerce at Dotdash, having assumed the role in May 2017.
Previously, Tory worked as a Director of Merchandising at Quidsi/Amazon as well as Managing Director of iVillage/iVillage UK. Tory brings over two decades of experience in ecommerce and editorial content. During her tenure at Amazon, Tory oversaw a variety of businesses including children’s apparel, toys, and pets. The clothing/soft goods category, launched from scratch, grew to over $30MM in revenue in just two years.
Tory initially joined Dotdash as General Manager of The Spruce, overseeing the development and launch of the site, which is now one of the largest home and food sites on the Internet.
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