Meet the Team!


Meet our cheerful crew o’ geeks, designers, toy fans and friendly weirdos.

Helen Galligan

Senior Account Manager, Partner Happiness

 

  • "Official" Role: Senior Account Manager, Partner Happiness
  • Code Name(s): SuperHelen, Crazy Cat Mom, Disney Princess
  • Super Powers: Coming up with crazy ideas (that often work!), can turn boring things into fun things
  • Vulnerabilities: cats, snacks
  • Past Toys: Incredible Schmoo plush, Mickey Mouse figurines, Glow Worm, sticker collections
  • Junk Foods: chocolate or almond croissants
  • Quotes: “Yes!”, “I love it”, “I would totally do that (insert just about anything here)”
  • Previous Jobs: all things toys and retail displays, with adventures at Disney, Nickelodeon and Spin Master, among others
  • "Education": moved to London, UK on whim, learned so much there. Also went to University for UX (user experience) both pre and post internet (very different).
  • Social Media: LinkedIn

Bryan Aguilera

Happy Production Manager

In west Philadelphia born and raised on the playground is where he spent most of his days…ok not exactly. Bryan Aguilera is a French Canadian designer/artist who has lived in Montreal, Toronto, and Paris. His early influences came from watching Disney classics and Saturday morning cartoons. The brainwashing took effect, and an insatiable yearning for toys and sugary cereal ensued. In his formative years, he developed a dependency for music and started a synth/guitar band with a buddy, but the fame and money tore the duo to smithereens. So he enrolled in art school and graduated from Industrial Design. Bryan’s personal artwork is influenced by fashion and street art, and has been described as being figurative and sketchy. Oh yes, and he enjoys conversing, stormy nights, and travel.

  • "Official" Role: Happy Production Manager
  • Code Name(s): Tabasco cat, Bry, B-boy, B
  • Super Powers: More of a Batman type he uses gadgets to solve mysteries and such; speedy sketching, yoga positioning, art trolling, going through fine details with a fine toothed comb, toy perfecting, sugary treat resistance
  • Vulnerabilities: Daylight, spellcheckers, toys, hammer frisbee throwing, feline gender identification
  • Past Toys: Ghostbusters, Transformers, the occasional Barbie, SNES 
  • Junk Foods: Pizza, chips, carni burgers; traditional Bolivian meals
  • Quotes: “Aye caramba!”
  • Previous Jobs: Senior Designer for Spin Master Toys, Product Designer for Mega Bloks, phone rep  
  • "Education": Industrial Design, Dawson College
  • Social Media: LinkedIn

Anthony Watts

Product Designer, Toys & Collectibles

Born in the 1900s, Anthony spent most of his time playing D&D and dismembering He-Man toys on his bedroom floor. Later he got good at drawing dragons, painting miniatures, doodling in class, and playing with toy soldiers. Now 40+ years later, nothing has changed.

  • "Official" Role: Designer
  • Code Name(s): TBD
  • Super Powers: Cold Resistance, +1 Charisma
  • Vulnerabilities: Miniatures, Paint, Kitties, Cheap Coffee, Dad Jokes, Vespas
  • Past Toys: Star Wars, Masters of the Universe, Lego, Dungeons & Dragons, Warhammer, dirt, sticks, rocks
  • Junk Foods: White Cheddar Smartfood, Doritos, Rosebuds, Nachos, 70s inspired desserts, leftovers
  • Quotes: "No problem"; "Word"; "I'll figure it out"
  • Previous Jobs: Popcorn Maker, Art Gallery Attendant, Weed Killer
  • "Education": Ontario College of Art, YouTube, People Smarter than Me
  • Social Media: If you are nice you can friend me on Facebook

Jon Yang

Director, Business Development & Marketing

Practically born with a SNES controller in one hand and a mouse and keyboard in the other Jonathan was practically raised by technology before iPad kids were even a thought. Growing up, Jonathan could tell you the plot of any game, comic, novel or show he enjoyed with relative ease. Now, not much has changed in the last 30 years other than Jonathan likes to travel now to try new food around the world.

  • "Official" Role: Director of Business Development and Marketing
  • Code Name(s): Yangtime, The Pho Connoisseur
  • Super Powers: A shallow encyclopedic knowledge of all things gaming, popculture, media and entertainment
  • Vulnerabilities: Hot Weather, The Sun, Summer, Humidity, Heat, a Broken A/C Unit
  • Past Toys: Gundams, D&D Figurines, LEGOs, Power Rangers, Transformers
  • Junk Foods: Sour Candies and Coffee
  • Quotes: "I think I've seen something like that before, give me a second" ; "I've played that yeah."; "This game was garbage.... I loved it."
  • Previous Jobs: Esports events guy, Tech marketing dude, product marketing boy wonder, and influencer "babysitter"
  • "Education": B.Com. in Finance and Marketing, UOIT
  • Social Media: LinkedIn

Shirley Yee

Co-Founder & Strategist

Shirley grew up in a small town in Northern Ontario, and her formative years were fairly typical: summers in Rangoon, luge lessons. Besides creating toys she also paints and writes. Some of it's actually good. (Note: but she didn't write this!)

  • "Official" Role: Co-Founder & Strategist
  • Code Name(s): Master of Elective Operations, Ms. Happy Worker, SuperMommy
  • Super Powers: Able to make anything & everything better; Is Never Wrong; Internet surfing record holder; Master case packer; Child wrangler
  • Vulnerabilities: Caffeine and sugar, Sleep, Want it all attitude
  • Past Toys: Etch a Sketch, Barbie-look-alikes, Smurfs, Lego
  • Junk Foods: Slurpees, potato chips, cheesecake, swedish berries, homemade desserts, and any junk food that Kris has bought for himself
  • Quotes: "What if we do it this way?"; "Where's the magic 8-ball?"; "I'm going to Google that."
  • Previous Jobs: Web developer, spud researcher (potato geneticist), Ice cream server at Denise's Dairy Delights
  • "Education": B. Sc. in Biology, McGill University
  • Social Media: LinkedIn

Kris Schantz

Co-Founder & Catalyst

Kris was born and raised in Calgary, and as he grew up, he never grew out of his toys. Over the years Kris played trumpet, piano and drums... and even went to band camp. Several times. He enjoys hiking, except when he gets marooned on mountain peaks overnight. A learner and a sharer, Kris is intrigued by pretty much everything. He's shared his love for toy design and toy making on panels at San Diego Comic-Con and New York Comic Con. And beyond his own fun adventures in creative entrepreneurship, Kris enjoys supporting passionate young entrepreneurs.

  • "Official" Role: Co-Founder & Catalyst
  • Code Name(s): Mr. Happy Worker, Perfectionist-in-Chief, Bonne Chance/Schantz
  • Super Powers: Constant curiosity; Is Always Right; Bad pun making; Super tasks juggler; Crazy ideas generator; Problem zapper; Just-in-time timeliness; Idealistic optimism; Honorary Asian
  • Vulnerabilities: Junk food, Bad movies, Video gaming addiction, Pizza, Random acts of kindness
  • Past Toys: Lego, He-Man, G.I. Joe, various board games, Atari, Apple ][, NES, PCs
  • Junk Foods: Gummi bears, gummi worms, gummi coke bottles, gummi fish, gummi berries, chocolate bars (all), jalapeno chips, jello, homemade chocolate chip cookies, ice cream floats, chocolate cake, and, well, you get the picture
  • Quotes: "If it's easy to do, it's not worth doing"; "You can do it!"; "That's not a problem."
  • Previous Jobs: Web product manager, mad science guy (chemistry research assistant), pizza dough maker, farm hand, paperboy, lemonade stand proprietor
  • "Education": B. Sc. in Biochemistry, McGill University
  • Social Media: LinkedIn Twitter

And a Big Thanks to Our Advisors, Alumni & Supporters...

It Takes a Community to Raise a Creative Company.

Happy Worker is the sum of many wonderful souls. We simply wouldn’t exist, let alone be who we are today, without the collective ideas, passion, talents, hard work, and generosity of time and spirit of all those who’ve collaborated or helped us on our way.
 

Alumni, Contributors, Advisors + Past Interns
Carter Lee, Johnny Canuck
Julia Babici, Babs
Bliss Man, B
Adam Dunn
Derek Dresser
Bryan Aguilera - Tabasco Cat
Anna Birjevaia - Anna Nirvana-Banana
Christelle Broux - Crafty Christelle
Connie Choi – Go Woon
Stefan Erkeling - The New German
Aliza Gold-Ruvolo - Meow Meow-liza
Jake Grundy - Big Head
Chris Johnson - The Toy Man
Gregory Klotz - Froggy Panda
Scott Koza - Sketchbook Scott
Sabrina Leung - Pikablech
Halley Louie - Mr. Roboto
Robin Merry - Bubs(y)
Karla Ordorica
Deena Pagliarello - Deena Colada
Heidi Peckover - Happy Heidi
Ashley Ramnarain - Shlee
Marcelo Vieira - Psycho Coder
Evan Vincent - Kid Vincent
Greg Wong - The Original Greg
Stephanie Young - Steph-the-Sneak
Roxanne Ziman - Rockin' Roxanne
Rod Thacker
Jason Herod

Supporters, Artists, Collaborators, Family + Friends
We started creating a giant list of supporters and talented collaborators, along with our family and friends – everyone who’s helped in ways big and small. Then realized there were so many people it was impossible.
So for now a cheerful collective shout out to everyone who’s lent us a hand or an ear along the way – a very big n’ happy THANK YOU!

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