Mission

Our Mission

At our core, we are dedicated to revolutionizing entertainment through innovative gaming experiences. We strive to create an environment where fun and gaming excitement intersect, all while fostering a culture of respect and support for our valued team members. Our mission is to continuously push the boundaries of innovation, delivering exceptional entertainment that captivates, while prioritizing the well-being and creativity of our team at every step.

Meet the Team

P. Joseph Johnson

Founder/CEO
Chairman, Board of Directors

PJ founded IntrepidVX in 2021, with the intention of creating a revolutionary method of interpreting and interacting with data in a creative and interactive landscape.  Mr. Johnson completed his most recent degree, an advanced Masters in Science in Building Leadership and Office Administration from the University of Brockport.  Previous to that, he has worked with companies in the field of Technology such as Entropy as a data market analyst and information consultant. PJ enjoys spending time with his wife and two sons, snowboarding, and traveling.

Dr. David Schwartz

Lead Academic Consultant
Member, Board of Directors

Dr. Schwartz currently serves as the Director of the School of Interactive Games and Media within the Golisano College of Computing and Information Sciences at the Rochester Institute of Technology. His journey in the academic realm of game design and development began in 2001 when he established the Game Design Initiative at Cornell University. Transitioning to the Rochester Institute of Technology in 2007, Dr. Schwartz played an instrumental role in the founding department, later evolving into the renowned School of Interactive Games and Media in 2011. Following his tenure recognition in 2011, he assumed the position of Director for IGM in 2015.

Presently, his research endeavors revolve around cybersecurity games, geogames, and physically-based animation, reflecting his continuous dedication to innovative and diverse areas within the gaming landscape.

Chris Lyons

Lead Illustrator/Design Director
Member, Board of Directors

Born into an environment steeped in artistry and creative wonder, Chris Lyons was raised in a home where art and music danced together, fostering his passion for the visual arts. Influenced by his upbringing, he pursued studies in communication design and illustration at the University of Buffalo, graduating with a B.F.A. in Illustration and Design.

Commencing his professional journey, Lyons kickstarted his career by interning with the legendary graphic designer Milton Glaser in New York City. This experience served as a launchpad for his freelance illustration career, collaborating with esteemed clients including The United States Postal Service, Pentagram, Trader Joe’s, The Smithsonian, Sports Illustrated, and The New York Times.

Aside from his illustrious career, Chris Lyons contributes his expertise as an adjunct professor in the College of Art & Design at the Rochester Institute of Technology, sharing his wealth of experience and knowledge with budding artists. During his leisure hours, Lyons immerses himself in activities that invigorate his spirit—shoveling snow, biking, and engaging in competitive pick-up basketball games.

Residing in Rochester, NY, Chris shares his life with his wife Anne and their two intriguing cats, Indy and Skinny. This vibrant setting serves as the backdrop for his ongoing creative pursuits and a life intertwined with art and imagination.

Bailey Russo

Lead Architect,
Director of Technology

Bailey, an alum of Rochester Institute of Technology, emerged in 2021 equipped with a degree in Game Development, marking the beginning of a dynamic journey in the gaming realm. With a burgeoning professional background in game development, Bailey is on the verge of a significant milestone, preparing to launch the game “Farmers of the Dead” on the Steam platform in early 2022.

Currently, Bailey applies expertise as a lead Programmer Analyst at Churchville-Chili School District, harnessing skills honed from prior roles. Notably, Bailey held positions as a software engineer at Passero Associates, served as a research assistant, and contributed as a NY Virtual Reality Engineer, enriching a diverse portfolio of experience.

Beyond the screens and programming, Bailey finds joy in the simple pleasures of life. Whether spending quality time with a significant other, hiking amidst nature’s beauty, or delighting in the companionship of a beloved dog, Bailey embraces a balanced and fulfilling life beyond the world of code and development.

Keith Hall

Tech Operations & Security Consultant
Member, Board of Directors

Keith is a forward-thinking visionary with a track record of leadership across public and private sectors. His expertise spans engineering, operations, research, and business development, demonstrating a consistent history of success. Recognized as a committed and ethical strategist, Keith is acclaimed for driving competitive excellence and optimizing organizational efficiency. Renowned for his creative prowess, he possesses a wide technical acumen, exceptional communication skills, and an innate ability to foster high-performance teams.

Presently, Keith holds the role of Founder/CEO at AssuredTek, Inc., a pioneering venture dedicated to addressing privacy threats through the deployment of cutting-edge cyber and wireless technology solutions. Leveraging state-of-the-art technology and scenario-driven platforms, AssuredTek stands at the forefront of safeguarding against evolving cyber challenges.

Previously, Keith served as the CEO and Chairman of the Board at Globecomm Systems Inc., a prominent global telecommunications company. His academic credentials include a BS in Electrical Engineering and an MBA in Business Management, underpinning his diverse expertise in both technical and business domains. Keith’s dynamic leadership and innovation continue to make a significant impact in the tech industry.

Alexia Georgiou​

Director of Operations

Alexia, a proud graduate of the Rochester Institute of Technology with a BFA in Graphic Design, has carved an illustrious path as an award-winning Art Director. Over the past decade, she has honed her skills, becoming a versatile professional adept at building platforms and elevating national brands to new heights. Her expertise spans a myriad of creative dimensions, showcasing a remarkable talent for multidisciplinary art direction and visual design.

Fueled by a passion for diverse and multi-dimensional projects, Alexia thrives in the realms of creative strategy, concept-driven design, digital art, branding, motion graphics, and video production. Her unique skill set transcends various media genres, intertwining storytelling with a rich blend of cultural, historical, and contemporary aesthetics to craft compelling and empathetic creative campaigns.

Beyond her design prowess, Alexia possesses a keen ability to grasp emerging technologies and effectively market digital-native brands—often known as “disruptors”—to audiences unfamiliar with them. Her portfolio encompasses a diverse array of clients across B2B and B2C sectors, spanning startups, non-profits, and national entities in a wide spectrum of industries, including telecommunications, e-commerce, higher education, cultural institutions, entertainment, banking, and the cryptocurrency domain.

Alex Stevens

Chief Game Design Officer

Alex, a Software Engineer, embarked on his professional journey after graduating from Rochester Institute of Technology in 2019, armed with a degree in Game Development. Beginning his career in the realm of software, Alex dedicated his early years to crafting internal software at Dick’s Sporting Goods Corporate in Pittsburgh, PA. However, driven by a strong passion for Game Development, he transitioned his focus and is currently engaged in developing Flutter Game Applications at Gambyt.

Beyond the realm of coding and development, Alex finds solace and joy in the simple pleasures of life. Whether strolling with his canine companions, indulging in gaming sessions with friends, or venturing into the great outdoors, Alex embraces a well-rounded life outside the confines of software and technology.

Samson Rapp​

Senior Technical Artist

Samson is a graduate of Nazareth College, earning a Degree in Studio Art with a specialized focus on Concept Art in 2020. With a rich tapestry of experiences, he has contributed to various projects in art and literature, lending his editing expertise to both visual and written works across print magazines. His journey in the artistic realm began early, having attended the New York State School of the Arts and later assuming the presidency of the Nazareth College D&D club for a two-year term.

A seasoned creator, Samson has passionately engaged in drawing, painting, storyboarding, writing, design, and the craft of storytelling since his formative years in grade school. His creative inspiration is drawn from an eclectic mix of sources, including classic texts, paintings, the profound insights of mythologist Joseph Campbell, and the captivating world of popular sci-fi and fantasy entertainment.

Beyond his creative pursuits, Samson finds joy and inspiration in the realms of films, video games, tabletop games, and the invigorating adventure of biking. His home life is shared with his girlfriend, Rachel, and their cherished rabbit, Chips

Owen Zacharias​

Technology Advisor

Owen Zacharias is a dedicated technology advocate, passionate about fostering a culture of innovation in cloud computing. His expertise centers on enhancing the security, availability, and performance of large-scale distributed systems, with a proven track record in steering complex products through critical scaling phases.

As a technical advisor, Owen leverages his extensive experience to provide strategic guidance and insights. He excels in facilitating responsible and effective cloud adoption strategies, drawing from his deep knowledge and numerous AWS Professional & Specialty certifications.

Owen holds a Master of Science in Electrical & Computer Engineering from the University of Rochester, underpinning his technical acumen with a solid academic background.

Trevor Searns​

Software Developer

Fresh out of Rochester Institute of Technology’s Game Design and Development program, Trevor stands as a recent graduate eager to make a mark in the field. His professional journey commenced with a role as a Web Designer at Haley Marketing Group, where he honed his skills in crafting stunning websites and compelling advertisements for clients.

Beyond his digital design expertise, Trevor boasts a distinguished background as a sailing instructor, equipped with a plethora of certifications including the USCG Captain and IYT Yacht-Master titles. In his typical routine, Trevor dedicates his summers to the waters, channeling his passion for sailing. The rest of the year finds him behind his desk, immersed in the worlds of web design and game development.

During his leisure moments, Trevor cherishes time with friends engaging in games, Dungeons & Dragons sessions, volleyball matches, and thrilling airsoft adventures. His life is a harmonious blend of creativity, outdoor pursuits, and camaraderie, reflecting a diverse and vibrant lifestyle.

Tom Davis​

Video Game Sound Designer​

Tom Davis, a seasoned educator and accomplished musician, holds music degrees from Ithaca College and The Eastman School of Music. With over four decades of teaching experience spanning various levels, including the university, Tom’s commitment to education is unwavering.

Currently, he imparts his wisdom as an instructor for Composing for Film and Composing for Video Games, also serving as an audio mentor at the Magic Spells Studio within the hallowed halls of the Rochester Institute of Technology. Tom’s remarkable contributions extend to the world of film, where he has left an indelible mark. Notably, his score for “Soap Film,” directed by Ihab Mardini, has earned a place of honor on permanent display at the Exploratorium in San Francisco. His composition for “River,” directed by Stephanie Maxwell, was honored with the Best Soundtrack award at the Firenze Film Corti Festival in Florence, Italy.

Tom’s journey in music is steeped in a rich lineage of learning and mentorship. His trumpet mastery was honed under the guidance of Herb Mueller and Vincent DiMartino, while his compositional talents were cultivated by luminaries such as Bill Dobbins, Rayburn Wright, John LaBarbera, Steve Brown, Samuel Adler, Robert Morris, and Dana Wilson.

For the majority of his illustrious career, Tom served as the director of bands and music department chair in the Canandaigua City School district, making an indelible impact on countless students. As a musician, he has shared the stage with esteemed artists like Tom Harrell, Bill Dobbins, Slam Stewart, and Slide Hampton. Tom’s compositional prowess is well-documented, with over 150 jazz and concert band compositions published by renowned entities such as Educational Programs Publications (EPP), Heritage Jazz Works, Kendor Music, Warner Brothers, Alfred, and Valley Jazz Collective.

His creative spirit extends to commissioned original compositions for various public and private clients, a testament to his artistry and versatility. Tom remains an active conductor and clinician, passionately sharing his knowledge and talents with audiences across the United States.

Randy Saffer​

Narrative Designer

Randy is an accomplished scholar, having earned his BA in Mathematics from SUNY Geneseo and an MS in Mathematics from SUNY Brockport. In his pursuit of knowledge, he also obtained an Advanced Master’s Degree in Leadership Certification from the University of Rochester, further enhancing his expertise.

Randy’s fervor for games in all their forms is palpable. With a multifaceted passion for gaming, he has delved into the realms of video game and board game design, showcasing a creative spirit that knows no bounds. Beyond the confines of his intellectual pursuits, Randy finds solace and exhilaration in sports like volleyball and hockey. Moreover, he holds a pilot’s license and relishes the opportunity to take to the skies, flying propeller planes during his cherished moments of leisure.

Nicole Stark

Software Developer

Nicole’s journey into the world of programming began during her pursuit of a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration at the University of Michigan. Fuelled by a newfound passion, she complemented her studies with a minor in Computer Science, eventually earning her bachelor’s degree. Post-graduation, Nicole embarked on a career as a Business Analyst, all while continuing her education, this time aiming for a Master’s in Computer and Information Science. During this academic journey, she took a bold leap into the realm of engineering and never looked back.

Today, Nicole finds herself deeply immersed in the field of Web Development at Gambyt, always eager to seize new learning opportunities. Beyond the lines of code, her life is a vibrant tapestry of diverse hobbies, including globetrotting, painting, immersing herself in video games, devouring Fantasy literature, and enjoying quality TV shows. Her home is a lively sanctuary shared with her significant other and a multitude of beloved pets, ensuring there’s never a dull moment in her world.

Eric Warrington

Software Engineer

Eric is an established software engineer who specializes in front-end web technologies, particularly Angular 10+ and React Native. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science from RIT. In his spare time, he enjoys making video games, playing volleyball, and immersing himself in the captivating worlds crafted by Brandon Sanderson.

Gilda Lyons​

Game Composer​

Gilda, a multifaceted artist and composer, seamlessly weaves together an eclectic tapestry of musical elements. Her compositions draw inspiration from a diverse array of styles, including renaissance, neo-baroque, spectral, folk, agitprop Music Theater, and extended vocalism. The resulting works resonate with an unyielding emotional authenticity and a captivating melodic beauty.

As a passionate advocate for contemporary music, Gilda has played an instrumental role in the creation, premiere, and development of numerous new vocal compositions by a multitude of composers. Her collaboration with Laura Strickling for the Grammy-nominated release “Songs of Lament and Praise” on Yarlung, described by Opera News as “quietly devastating,” stands as a testament to her artistic depth. Her vocal performance alongside Laura Ward on Naxos was praised by Opera News for its “winning delivery, full of character.”

Notable critics have highlighted Gilda’s vocal prowess and performance, with David Shengold of Opera, UK, commending her “clear soprano,” particularly in Daron Hagen’s “Shining Brow” performed with the Buffalo Philharmonic/Falletta for Naxos.

Her dedication extends beyond her artistic endeavors, currently holding the position of Co-Chair of Composition at the Wintergreen Music Academy and serving as Assistant Professor of Composition at The Hartt School. Gilda’s leadership extends to her role as Executive Director of the Richard P. Garmany Chamber Music Series and as the Founding Director of The Phoenix Concerts in NYC. She also contributes to the Board of Advisors of Composers Now, the Steven R. Gerber Trust, and Sparks & Wiry Cries.

Gilda’s musical works find publication through esteemed channels such as Schott, E.C. Schirmer, and Burning Sled Media, showcasing her far-reaching impact on the world of contemporary music and composition.

Ross Stevens

Strategic Technology Consultant

With a diverse background spanning 15 years in the tech and telecom industries followed by 17 years dedicated to technology education and coaching, Ross brings a unique blend of strategic acumen and mentorship to the gaming and esports arena. His journey into esports began with a passion for video games, tabletop games, and RPGs, which eventually evolved into a professional calling. As an experienced esports coach, Ross has left an indelible mark on the competitive gaming landscape, with multiple nationally ranked teams under his guidance.  Currently serving as the Coordinator of E-sports for one of New York State’s largest school districts, Ross is at the forefront of cultivating talent and fostering growth. Beyond the realm of esports, Ross is a multifaceted individual with a wide array of interests. An avid investor in both stock and crypto markets, he navigates the complexities of finance with the same precision he applies to coaching. Additionally, Ross holds a 4th-degree black belt in Jujitsu, and enjoys spending time with his family and pets.

Doug Russo

Creative Director
Member, Board of Directors

Doug Russo currently serves as the Career & Technical Education – Curriculum and Instructional Specialist at Orleans Niagara BOCES. In this role, Doug plays a pivotal part in supporting CTE educators to enhance their skills and refine their programs for an optimal learning experience. His dedication to education spans over the last seven years, during which he passionately taught 11th and 12th-grade students from regional school districts, focusing on the Graphic Arts industry.

Prior to his career in teaching, Doug held significant positions, notably as President and shareholder of Graphic Inks, Inc and Belledessa’s Restaurants, Inc. His academic journey commenced at the Rochester Institute of Technology, where he earned a B.S. degree in Print Media and Sciences. Continuing his academic pursuits, Doug obtained his Ms.Ed. from SUNY Buffalo State College and further expanded his expertise by achieving a Certificate of Advanced Studies in School Administration from the University of Brockport.

Doug Russo’s diverse background in industry leadership and education has equipped him with a wealth of knowledge and experience, allowing him to make a substantial impact in the field of Career & Technical Education.