Our Mission

BreakLine has redesigned education to meet the needs of the 21st-century workforce. Our hands-on approach prepares BreakLiners to take their next step in the tech industry. You can read about our values here.

BreakLine participants find opportunities commensurate with their experience and potential and our partners access a new pipeline of exceptional talent. In the process, we are creating a world-class community of emerging leaders.

Our BreakLiners are outstanding. You can read their stories in our BreakLine Profiles in Service series. You can also see more about our work in the SF Chronicle, the Wall Street Journal, and on ABC News.

BreakLine Team | Bethany Coates

Bethany Coates

CEO & Founder

Before founding BreakLine, Bethany was an Assistant Dean at Stanford Graduate School of Business, where she led social impact education. Earlier in her career, she was a consultant at McKinsey & Co, a leading management consulting firm. She earned her BA from Princeton and her MBA from Stanford. She has served on the advisory boards of a number of nonprofits and social ventures, including Brilliant.org, PROMOTE, and Samaschool. In 2018, she was honored to receive the Secretary of Defense Medal for Outstanding Public Service on behalf of the BreakLine team.

Ranee Bhutani


Before joining BreakLine, Ranee was an Associate Director on the Global Innovation Programs team at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. She was responsible for managing the operations of Stanford Ignite, the school’s flagship program in innovation and entrepreneurship, and she led the expansion of the program in the United States, India, France, and England. Ranee received her MA(Hons) from the University of St. Andrews, Scotland.

Casey Deeds

Brand Experience

Casey joined BreakLine shortly after graduating from Stanford University where she majored in Product Design. She competed as a striker on the Stanford Varsity Field Hockey team all four years, claiming a conference champion title her senior season. While at Stanford, Casey worked for Stanford Academic Computing Services as a Lead Tech and managed a team of students responsible for campus technical support. She’s the proud daughter of a former Naval Aviator.

Lauren Faul


Lauren joins the BreakLine team after having worked largely in the Department of Defense arena for more than a decade. Covering ground on Capitol Hill, the Pentagon, non-profit sector, and as a government contractor, she consistently acted as a liaison between various and multiple entities to develop engagement plans that created partnerships and preserve missions. Lauren is a certified Life Coach and holds a Bachelor of Arts in Communications from Texas A&M University. She is a proud military brat and grateful wife of a BreakLine alum and Marine attack pilot.

Caroline Beaudoin

Customer Success & Sales

Caroline was a scholar athlete at Stanford University, majoring in Science, Technology, and Society. She captained the Varsity Women’s Field Hockey team to the program’s first ever conference championship in her senior year. While at Stanford, Caroline served as the Director of Technology and Communications for Stanford’s pre-professional club, Stanford Marketing. She is also the proud sister of an Army veteran.

Alexandra Downey

Storytelling & Marketing

Alexandra joins BreakLine with a diverse background, including working at startups, the UN, on Wall Street, and for social enterprises. The variety of her experiences lends itself to her curiosity and inquisitiveness about people and their histories. Alexandra is passionate about telling the incredible stories of the BreakLine community and the many possibilities they inspire, as well as connecting BreakLine to even more extraordinary human beings and partners. She earned an MBA from New York University Stern School of Business and a BA in English and History from Loyola College in Baltimore.

Zayn Knaub

Customer Success

Zayn joins BreakLine from MuleSoft, where he was a top-performing Senior Principal Customer Success Manager. He was responsible for partnering with MuleSoft’s strategic, high-tech customers in order to help them accomplish their digital transformation objectives. Zayn is also an alum from one of BreakLine’s first-ever programs. Prior to attending BreakLine, he was an active duty Intelligence Weapons Officer in the US Air Force. Zayn received his BS from the Air Force Academy in Geospatial Sciences and his MA in Diplomacy – International Terrorism from Norwich University.

Sophia Beaudoin


Sophia joined BreakLine full time after interning since her junior year of college. She graduated from Cornell University with a B.A. in Government and minors in English and Sustainability Sciences. She captained the Cornell Varsity Volleyball team as well as served in the Student Athlete Advisory Council. She is passionate about enabling underrepresented communities with access to opportunities in tech, and is the proud sister of Army and Air Force veterans.

Sergio Padilla


Sergio is a United States Air Force veteran and BreakLine alum. He served as a Personnel Officer for 7 years, including tours to Afghanistan & Honduras. People Operations is his passion, and he has since led recruiting & HR teams in education, retail, and hospitality. He is excited to further BreakLine’s efforts in connecting high performing veterans, women, and people of color to meaningful careers in tech. Sergio was born and raised in Guaynabo, Puerto Rico and now lives in Alaska where he & his wife, Courtney, who is active duty in the Air Force, take full advantage of the great outdoors.

Kaitlin Baker

Customer Success

Kaitlin joins BreakLine’s Customer Success team with a background in recruiting and marketing. She is humbled and driven by the opportunity to find dream roles for our candidates. She is motivated by the progress BreakLine has made in getting people from underrepresented communities into the tech sector and is committed to driving that progress further. She has seen the transformative power of the BreakLine model and is grateful for the opportunity to pay it forward. Her favorite thing about working with the BreakLine team is that everyone has an incredible sense of humor!

Kaitlin has been married to Joe, a former Navy pilot, BreakLine alum, and current Googler for almost ten years. They have three daughters and live and surf in Encinitas, CA.

Chelsea Conley

Talent Recruiting

Chelsea joins the BreakLine team with a background in sales, marketing, and business development. She graduated from Loyola University Chicago with a B.A in Communication, minors in Urban Studies and Marketing with a focus on inequality in urban development and media. After three years of matching her clients with their dream homes, she left Chicago real estate for Hawaii where she worked in business development and brand design. She is beyond excited to return to her matchmaker roots – matching BreakLiners with their dream careers! As the proud wife of a Navy Submarine Officer and BreakLiner, she has seen the powerful impact of the BreakLine community first hand and is thrilled to be a part of this mission.

Rachel Mitchell

Talent Recruiting & Strategic Partnerships

Rachel joins the BreakLine team with a passion to serve this community well! As a military spouse, she lived in Europe for 5 years and visited over 30 countries. Her work experience centers around customer service (mostly in retail banking). Rachel holds a B.A. in Business/Economics from Wheaton College and an MBA from Webster University. Rachel enjoys being active, in her free time she loves doing spin classes, skiing when she’s close to the mountains, and running with her dog Bella. She is happily married to a former Army Ranger and together they have the most beautiful daughter, Liberty Kay

Karina Roger

Customer Success

Karina joins the BreakLine team with a background in coaching, mentoring, and health. She is passionate about helping others achieve and succeed in their ultimate goals. She is very motivated by what BreakLine has to offer to those in underrepresented communities and is committed to helping BreakLiners transition into the tech sector. Prior to BreakLine, Karina worked as a health coach, guiding users to make healthy lifestyle change. She received her B.S. in Nutritional Sciences from Penn State and MPH from The George Washington University. Karina is originally from Puerto Rico and is happily married to an Air Force veteran. She loves to travel, explore the food scene, and spend time with her two four-legged children, Alfi and Oreo.

Diane Chan

Business Analyst

As a first generation Asian American, Diane is very passionate about diversity & inclusion. Before joining BreakLine, Diane served the American public in various roles in the federal government for over 13 years. She founded employee resource groups promoting DEI at the Social Security Administration and was the Chief Communications Officer for the Interagency Veterans Advisory Council, which served 70+ veteran groups across the federal government. Diane strongly believes in creating opportunities for others to grow and succeed – she is a BreakLine alum and couldn’t pass up the offer to join the BreakLine team.

Diane earned her BA in Psychology & Communications and MS in Communications Management from Simmons University. She and her husband enjoy hugs, cuddles, and no-mercy game nights with their two young daughters, Sam and Evie. Diane is also a proud sister of an Army Veteran, who became the first Asian-American female Commander of the American Legion Boston Chinatown Post 328 in 2015.

Brandon Self

Customer Success

Brandon joins the BreakLine family with a background in sales and financial planning. He graduated from the United States Military Academy, where he competed on the school’s competitive powerlifting team and graduated with a B.S. in American Legal Studies. He was commissioned as an Ordnance officer and served for five years in the Army. Brandon is most passionate about helping create more opportunities for our diverse and high-performing participants to help them achieve generationally changing careers. In his free time, Brandon enjoys working out, fishing, and watching any sport that is in season. Brandon resides in Colorado Springs with his wife, also a veteran, their three-year old daughter, Addy, and their German Shepherd, Elsa.

Natalie Reynolds


Natalie joins Team BreakLine with the hope that she’ll be able to impact lives in the way that BreakLine impacted her own. Before joining the team, she worked in the fitness industry and in IT recruiting. She’s passionate about the opportunity to make a positive impact on DEI in the tech industry and helping individuals from underrepresented communities achieve their career goals.

Natalie graduated with a B.S. in Communication Studies from Texas Christian University where she also enjoyed cheering on the Frogs as a member of the dance team. Outside of work, Natalie is passionate about fitness, exploring outdoors, and finding the best restaurants in the area (she’s a huge foodie). Natalie currently lives in Denver with her husband, an Air Force veteran and proud BreakLine alum, and their three fur-babies, Duke, Dutch, and Teddy.

Sam Hill

Customer Success

Sam joins the BreakLine team with a background in sales, marketing, and customer success. In her most recent role, she had the opportunity to work on the national D&I council and helped to kickstart a regional D&I council, where she found her true passion for DEI. She’s very excited to be a part of the Customer Success team at BreakLine and driven by the mission of helping underrepresented communities pivot to careers in technology. Sam has a BA in Business Management from Simmons University and currently lives in Boston, MA with her husband and their dog, Dexter.

Shari Schussel


Shari joins Team BreakLine after 15 years in educational counseling and program development both in public and startup spaces. She is passionate about supporting the BreakLine community to tear down barriers that have prevented top performers from making an impact in tech. She was the first in her family to attend college and earned her Masters in Educational Counseling and BA in psychology at Azusa Pacific University. Shari and her family love outdoor adventures. She is also a proud sister of an AirForce vet.

Brianna Taylor

Customer Success

Brianna joins the BreakLine team after seven years working as an Occupational Therapist in a variety of healthcare settings. She earned her Master’s degree from Thomas Jefferson University and is excited to bring her experience to the BreakLine team. Prior to becoming an Occupational Therapist, she competed as a Division I gymnast at Kent State University where she helped lead the team to their first ever NCAA Women’s Gymnastics Championship. She loves traveling, being outdoors, and reading. She is also the proud wife of an Army veteran.

Sam Combs


Sam joins BreakLine from Coursera, where he was a top-performing Enterprise Account Executive. He was responsible for building new partnerships with State and Local governments to help support innovative approaches to workforce development. Prior to Coursera, Sam was an active duty Intelligence Officer in the US Air Force where he served within Special Operations Command and the Defense Intelligence Agency. Sam received his B.A. from the University of Washington’s Jackson School of International Studies.

Kelly Maxwell

Customer Success

Kelly joins Team BreakLine with a passion to serve underrepresented communities by connecting them to opportunities in the tech sector. Kelly has a background in recruiting, account management, and customer success. Prior to BreakLine, Kelly worked as a Talent Acquisition Specialist that focused on recruiting diverse candidates. He received his B.S. in Marketing from Spring Arbor University and his M.B.A with a concentration on leadership, from Bethel University. In his free time, Kelly enjoys supporting his Detroit sports teams, playing basketball, video games, and working out. Kelly resides in Indianapolis, Indiana, with his wife, Katheryn, two daughters, Kelly and Kya, and two chihuahuas, Tutu and Gigi.

Ann Ernst

Program Operations

Ann joins the BreakLine team from a background in mechanical design and reliability engineering at Northrop Grumman. She comes to BreakLine motivated to make an impact on diversity and representation in the tech industry. She has previous experience chairing the Pathways Professional Development committee at NGC and is highly passionate about resource accessibility and community-driven career development. Ann graduated from Loyola University Maryland with a BS in Mechanical & Materials Engineering. She was also a Captain on the varsity women’s volleyball team and led them to their first conference appearance. She loves staying active, creating art, traveling, and giving back to her communities.

Dan Arpoika

Backend Developer

Dan joins BreakLine from Elegant Seagulls, where he was the lead backend developer. His primary responsibility was to work with clients to design, build, and maintain a future proofed technical solution that aligned with their business requirements. One of those projects includes the current BreakLine web application. Greatly inspired by BreakLine’s mission, he is eager to bring his experience to the team and improve the existing technical infrastructure to enable the team to work more efficiently and create even more opportunities for others.

Dan graduated with a B.S. in Computer Science from Northern Michigan University. In his free time, he enjoys off-roading and working on vehicles. Dan currently lives in Clarkston, MI with his fiancé, Matteson, and both enjoy the outdoors.

Selam Adhanom

Talent Recruiting

Selam joins BreakLine with 6 years of experience in Talent Acquisition. She is passionate about connecting people with opportunities and changing the trajectory of their lives through new careers. Selam’s family migrated to the United States when she was 7 years old from Eritrea (Northeast Africa). She attended Indiana University (Go Hoosier’s!) for undergrad where she met her husband Jeremiah. She lives in Indiana with her 3 kids and loves the outdoors, working out, and traveling.

Yaro Phillips


Yaro joins BreakLine from the Medical Sales industry where he skillfully resolved product and customer related issues to improve the customer service experience. As a student-athlete, Yaro earned his B.A. in Sports Communication from The University of Southern Mississippi and his M.A. with a concentration in Sport Psychology from Argosy University. In his free time, Yaro enjoys supporting New Orleans sports teams (Who Dat!), coaching his sons’ soccer teams, playing video games and producing music. Yaro lives in Henderson, Nevada with his wife, Emily and three sons, Kiran, Kruz, and Kingston.

Mike Ratliff

Customer Success

Mike joins BreakLine following 20 years of service with the Air Force as a linguist, innovator, and leader in the Intelligence Community. Prior to the Air Force, Mike came from a small town and family-run cattle ranch in Colorado, where he learned to appreciate the value of hard work, integrity, and community; qualities he embraced in the military and now carries on to BreakLine. Mike is passionate about helping people who are stuck connect their passion to purpose. He is married to a Navy veteran and has three daughters.

Brandon Finstad


Brandon joins BreakLine as a US Air Force veteran with 15 years of experience as a combat rescue officer (CRO), pararescueman (PJ), and TACP/JTAC. Brandon received his BS from Saint Mary’s College of California in Business Administration. He is passionate about helping veterans and people from under-selected backgrounds pivot into professional careers. Brandon was the first in his family to go to college and has a diverse professional background from commercial real estate and residential home construction to military medicine. He enjoys spending time outdoors in Utah where he resides with his wife, two girls, and goofy golden retriever, Waylon.

Natalia Peddycoart


Natalia joins Team BreakLine with experience working in nonprofits, local government, and higher education. Her most recent work at San Diego State University focused on career development for professionals ranging in experience level. Natalia is driven by BreakLine’s belief that excellence is transferable and that companies should reflect our diverse society. She is a first-generation college student and she holds an MS in Social Work (Administration and Policy) from UT Austin and a BA in Psychology from the University of San Diego. She lives in San Diego with her husband and dog where she enjoys camping, traveling, and DIY projects.

Mack Gladney

Customer Success

Mack joined BreakLine after 4 years in the web hosting industry. During that time she managed a book of business totaling over $11M in ARR while partnering with a portfolio of strategic customers and identifying tactics, strategies, and best practices needed to achieve needs and goals. Motivated by the drive to help create major shifts in generational wealth, she uses her super-power, communications, to continually facilitate and champion the success of BreakLiners in top-tier tech roles.

Kelly Morris


Kelly joins BreakLine with experience working in the Defense and Intelligence Communities. Prior to her work in the federal government, Kelly was an executive recruiter for high-growth tech companies. A BreakLine alum, she is passionate about helping others pursue what drives them and is looking forward to connecting more partner companies with BreakLine’s incredibly talented community. Kelly recently moved to the Bay Area after spending 8 years living in Washington DC, but she’s a midwesterner at heart! She’s excited to explore the running trails in Northern California, while finding other ways to volunteer and give back to her new community!

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