Join our Team

We are looking to partner with potential hosts in all U.S. cities as we expand the Brainstormer service. If you think you would be an exceptional Brainstormer host, and like to have fun while you work, we'd love to hear from you! Learn more.

Write Questions

We require fun and entertaining trivia questions to add to our database. If you are a creative type and freelance writer of trivia questions please get in touch. Learn more

Meet the Crew

Since 1996, the team from Brainstormer has provided fun and dynamic entertainment in the form of trivia quizzes to bars, corporate clients, and other organized group activity. Find out more about the history of the Pub Quiz phenomenon here.

Liam McAtasney - Quizmaster

Liam McAtasney was born in Ireland and is the business owner, Quizmaster, and the guy who refills the water cooler at Brainstormer's San Francisco H.Q.

He has been at the forefront of the pub trivia business since 1996, when most people in the U.S. did not even know what a Pub Quiz was. Prior to that he worked stints that included newspaper delivery round and removing scratches from those old 33 rpm vinyl records.

During university days in Belfast (just a few years ago!), Liam and his roommates would venture out to the pub on (usually) damp Monday evenings to give it their best at the Four in Hand, occasionally winning a prize and the bragging rights.

Liam is actively involved in the day-to-day business of Brainstormer, although he yearns for a sandy beach, blue seas and a cold drink in his hand (all at the same time!).

Get in touch with Liam to host a pub quiz or corporate trivia party with a difference. We are also keen to hear from would-be quiz hosts, located anywhere in the U.S., who are interested in partnering with us to expand Brainstormer's quiz service. Click here for contact details.

Brainstormer’s motto: ‘Educating America, one bar at a time!’

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Rick Tosh - Host

Rick Tosh has always had a passion for music.

In the early 90s, Rick landed a job at WKSS-FM in Hartford for ‘Savage in the Morning.’ He has also worked as producer for the ‘Sebastian in the Morning’ on WCCC-FM in Hartford, as a Production Assistant on the ‘Chevy Chase Show,' and for movie Director Peter Bogdanovich on ‘This Thing Called Love.'

Rick lives and works in sunny Sausalito in the hospitality industry. He owns a party DJ company, is a regular host on QVC & The Shopping Channel, does voice over, print and TV commercial work. Rick is also an ordained minister AND can DJ your wedding. Mention 'Brainstormer' for a special rate!

That’s his life in a nutshell, so far.

Buy Rick a top shelf Anejo Tuesdays at Finnegan's (Novato), and Wednesdays (usually once a month) at Rogue Alehouse (San Francisco - North Beach).

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Dave Backman - Host

Dave has never met an obscure fact he didn't like.

After running College Bowl tournaments at his university and designing trivia nights for his alumni association, he moved to San Francisco and helped lead pub quiz teams to the league finals at two of Brainstormer's bars.

He now combines his three loves of trivia, beer, and the sound of his own voice by writing questions and hosting trivia most Wednesdays at Rogue Alehouse (San Francisco - North Beach).

Come hear the dulcet tones of the trivia host about whom one quiz regular recently said 'If I could hire him to read me stories at bedtime, I would!'
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Marina Barcelona - Host

Marina was born in Alaska but is a true Californian at heart. Growing up, her mom raised her on a steady diet of avocados, board games, and Sweatin’ to the Oldies.

After 5 years, two majors, two minors, a teaching credential, a masters, and a partridge in a pear tree, Marina finally left UC Davis to be a teacher in the Bay Area. Teaching high school has given her an extensive knowledge of Boy Bands, an overenthusiastic fondness for post-its, and a love/hate relationship with copy machines. Oh, and getting to travel to more than 30 countries during those summer breaks hasn’t been too shabby either!

When she’s not molding the minds of impressionable teenagers and beating people at Words With Friends, you can catch Marina quizzing it up Wednesdays at 8:00 p.m. at O'Neill's Irish Pub (San Mateo).

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Alex Hall - Host

Alex is a rabid baseball fan (seriously, don't let him bite you), and writes semi-professionally about his favorite team, the Oakland A's, on the website Athletics Nation. He also serves as the Scoutmaster for the Boy Scout troop in which he earned his Eagle rank as a youth. There is a 97% chance that he is taller than you are, and a 100% chance that he already knows this without you pointing it out to him.

After spending most of his childhood reading World Book Encyclopedias and watching reruns of old sitcoms, Alex realized that his wealth of useless knowledge made him an ideal candidate to host pub quizzes.

He hosts weekly quizzes on Tuesdays at McGah's Pub & Pianos (Danville).

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Jennifer Lyons - Host

Jen was born and raised in Livermore, CA where she first was introduced to Brainstormer. Since she loves traveling, working-out, baking, photography and bars (for trivia, of course) she decided to be the smartest one in the room by hosting trivia — but only because she has the answer key.

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Brianna Sheehy - Host

Brianna's been so saturated with strawberries, it's coming out of her hair color. She's an exploratory type with a passion for food, drink, opera and international affairs, ... er politics.

She may have lived in California for most of her life, but as Gertrude Stein once said, America is her country, and Paris is her hometown. For the time being, San Francisco makes for easy accommodation between the two (Bri said that, not Gerty).

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Casey Schumacher - Host

Once Casey graduated from college in Atlanta she knew she wanted to be where the action is — San Francisco! After packing up her bags - and her dog - she ventured west wide-eyed and ready for anything. Upon finding that trivia in San Francisco was just as popular as it was back home, she decided she wanted to help generate the fun!

When she is not livening the bar scene or working her 9-5, Casey spends time with her miniature dachshund Ramen, who always is down for some shenanigans. From the beaches, to the bars, to the parks, you will find this adventurous duo everywhere … that dogs are not prohibited.

Come visit Casey, and, maybe Ramen, coming soon to Seattle!

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Kelly Beccaria - Host

Although she was born and raised in the Bay Area, Kelly still loves to visit her alma mater Cal Poly down in beautiful San Luis Obispo as often as possible. When she's not hosting trivia, she's planning trips and events with friends, being the captain of her dodgeball team 'Don't Stop Ballievin,' and trying to survive the torture that is Giants baseball and Niners football.

Quiz with Kelly Tuesdays at AISLE 5 (Oakland - Grand Ave.) and the MONTHLY quiz (last Monday of each month) at Bourbon Pub at Levi's Stadium (Santa Clara).

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Chris Sherwood - Host

A North Bay native, Chris has a love of trivia that dates back to his early childhood, and is particularly fond of geography, music, theater, and sports. After a detour to the snowy wastes of the upper midwest for college, he was called back to the Bay Area by the promise of milder weather and Giants baseball. An entertainer by nature, he’s put down his pencil and picked up a microphone to join the ranks of the Brainstormer hosts.

When Chris isn’t working as project manager for a local start-up, he can usually be found cooking, hiking, ranting about sports, jamming (badly) on a guitar, or hosting Tuesdays at The Flatiron (San Rafael), and Thursdays at The Dubliner (San Francisco - Noe Valley).

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Evan Poirson - Host

Evan originally hails from the Midwestern tundra (don't they all?), but has been living in California for the better part of 10 years. New to Brainstormer, but a high school Academic Challenge nerd, there's nothing he loves more than punishing his liver and his brain at once, with friends. In his free time, he can be found walking the city parks and listening to Stephen King audiobooks.

Even hosts the weekly quiz Mondays at Asiento (San Francisco - Inner Mission).

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Victoria Sepe - Host

Victoria is an East Coast transplant and has spent the last two years trying to figure out where to get a decent slice of pizza around San Francisco. Her talents include headstands, dog training, and sleeping on airplanes.

Victoria has been a case manager, production assistant, retail manager, and a costume character/performer at an amusement park. She has one of those vague liberal arts degrees that ends in ‘-ology’ and aspires to one day pay off all of her college loans. When she’s not working, Victoria can usually be found singing ‘Fergalicious’ at a local karaoke bar.

Much like everyone else who works for Brainstormer, she loves trivia and knowing the answers before everyone else. She highly recommends Brainstormer Trivia nights as a great place to bring your Tinder date, especially Tuesdays at Pacific Coast Brewing Company (Oakland).

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Kristina Taylor - Host

Born and raised in Oakland, but with an insatiable wanderlust, Kris has traveled the world and also lived in France, England, Spain and Hawaii. Thanks to her globetrotting travels, she can now answer trivia questions in 8 languages. However, when she realized that she couldn’t find a decent burrito in any of those locales, she decided to come back to the Bay Area.

Kris was a regular participant on the Bay Area Brainstormer trivia circuit until her group disbanded after being unable to reach an agreement on a team name after 4 years. Rather than find another way to entertain herself on Tuesday nights, she figured that hosting would be a good alternative to keep up her arsenal of random facts and have fun watching other teams bicker over which has the right answer.

Her favorite obscure trivia topics are European geography, 1980’s kids’ TV shows, muscular anatomy, 1960’s French cinema, and early Disney history.

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Doug Laidlaw - Host

Doug was born in the green area of the ‘Garden State,’ New Jersey, and never knew his home state was the brunt of jokes until moving to California in 2007. Prior to coming to the Bay Area, he lived in another green area but with just a tad more mountains; Switzerland.

In the land of cheese he worked for a global pharmaceutical company during the day, and played Rugby and worked concert security at night where his native English language made the locals always assume that he was with every touring band’s entourage.

His favorite activities are simply to be with his wife and kids. He has an eidetic memory for trivial items so he greatly enjoyed his time as a former Brainstormer contestant in his pre-fatherhood days. His mouth waters when he gets trivia questions on geography and sports questions, especially tennis.

Doug hosts the Sunday quiz at The Swingin' Door (San Mateo).

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Eamon Doyle - Host

Not to be confused with the R&B singer of the same first and last names, Eamon is a veteran of Jeopardy!, LearnedLeague, and both sides of the pub-quiz mic.

A professional dilettante, he's been a bookseller, record store clerk, musician, housekeeper, copyeditor, and author. A San Francisco native and Cal alumnus, he lives in Berkeley, where he rides his bike and tweets roughly equal quantities of cerebral jokes and filthy ones.

Eamon hosts Mondays at Nickies (San Francisco - Lower Haight), Tuesdays at SoMa StrEat Food Park (San Francisco - SOMA) and Wednesdays at Danny Coyle's (San Francisco – Lower Haight).

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Sarah Kezele - Host

Sarah is an Arizona native, but has long called San Francisco home. She loves sports, great stories, world travel, street tacos and telling bad jokes, typically for her own amusement. (Just laugh, please.)

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Alexis Wright - Host

Schoolteacher by day and trivia host by night, Alexis is thrilled to join the Brainstormer crew.

A fourth-generation Californian, she has lived in the Bay Area for more than ten years and now calls Alameda home. When she's not creating trivia playlists or rereading The Great Gatsby, she can often be found at the Coliseum watching the A's with her Red Sox-loving spouse.

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Caylee Shadrake - Host

Born in the Midwest, Caylee grew up in Chicago, IL and graduated from Bowling Green State University in Ohio with a degree in English Education and a passion for spreading knowledge!

Although she went to school to become a high school teacher, Caylee’s most recent jobs include working as a Ride Host at Cedar Point, and as a Standardized Patient for various medical colleges in Chicago. When she’s not working, Caylee spends most of her time listening to music, writing poems, watching Netflix, and doing bar trivia.

Caylee would prefer to spend most of her time traveling, riding roller coasters, going on adventures, and doing bar trivia. You can join her for a fun-filled round of trivia Tuesdays at Bar Nua (San Francisco - North Beach), Wednesdays at SPARK Social SF (San Francisco - Mission Bay), and Thursdays at Kennedy's (San Francisco - North Beach).

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Kady Song - Host

Kady is a self-proclaimed cat-lady, cupcake connoisseur, lover of education, world traveler, and napping champion. As a former educator, she has always had a soft-spot for anything that combines knowledge, fun, and competition. She originally started going to trivia while living in Sacramento, but quickly found the pastime to be ubiquitous - even hosting trivia while living in Seoul, South Korea!

When she's not hosting Brainstormer's trivia, Kady spends her time binge-watching Netflix shows and movies, drinking wine, and hanging out with her cats. Fun fact: Kady has memorized all of the U.S. Presidents in order. You can test her on that while she's quizzing you at Monaghan's (San Francisco - The Marina) Tuesdays, and Thursdays at The Tee Off (San Francisco - Outer Richmond).

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Lia Seth - Host

Lia is a Bay Area native who briefly left the Peninsula to study Politics at Scripps College. She returned with a pretty framed degree and a lot of event planning experience. Although her post-grad career started in event coordination, she discovered a love for the microphone and now spends her days leading employee development sessions and her evenings as a karaoke regular. After three years of doing trivia leagues on a team, moving into hosting seemed like a good step!

Lia has a deep love for mid-2000's pop punk, 49ers football, and grey sweaters. When she's not hosting trivia, you can find her baking lemon-lime bars, leading/wrangling her teenage Girl Scout troop, designing cross-stitch patterns, or running an Instagram account for her two dogs.

Lia has a deep love for mid-2000's pop punk, 49ers football, and grey sweaters. When she's not hosting trivia, you can find her baking lemon-lime bars, leading/wrangling her teenage Girl Scout troop, designing cross-stitch patterns, or running an Instagram account for her two dogs.

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Taylor Rawley - Host

Taylor Rawley hosts trivia to make up for the fact that he has never won a round in his life!

An opera singer by day and trivia host by night, Taylor is finishing up his studies in vocal performance at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music.

Born and raised in Houston, TX, Taylor finished up his bachelor’s degree at Carnegie Mellon University in the Midwestern/East Coast/Deep South/Mid-Atlantic mashup that is Pittsburgh, PA.

When not hosting trivia, he can be seen performing with local opera companies including Pocket Opera, Island City Opera, Lamplighters Theatre, and the San Francisco Conservatory of Music Opera Theatre. He also puts his charming microphone skills to use on a bus as a San Francisco city tour guide.

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Nick Sandoval - Host

Nick has called the Bay Area his home since 2000 and works as a K-9 handler during the day. He also works part time at Levi's Stadium.

Nick's an avid San Francisco Giants and 49ers fan, and enjoys spending his free time with his family (6 brothers, 1 sister), his dog, listening to music, eating anything and everything, and playing recreational softball.

Nick hosts the quiz Mondays at San Pedro Square Market (San Jose - Downtown), and Thursdays at Golden State Brewery (Santa Clara).

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Anthony Youhas - Host

Anthony is a local boy made good! He grew up as an award-winning polymath alpha-nerd in the Santa Cruz Mountains before attending Stanford and finding his true calling: sitting in cubicles and making computers do his bidding. He's been part of all sorts of exciting dot-coms which no longer exist! Ask him about working at ‘essentially Skype, but a decade too early’ sometime!

When he's not frowning sternly at technology, feverishly typing into the void, or making the trivia rounds, Anthony plays Rock Band with his close compatriots - MTV put him and his fake band with their fake guitars on a very non-fake plane to Atlantic City, to jam out on stage - and is maniacally attempting to visit every county in the United States before he dies. Thank goodness for rental car companies doling out free unlimited miles, eh?

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Christian Sherwood - Host

Christian Sherwood is a traveled actor, having appeared in such films as ‘Noah and The Normal Heart.’

Most recently from New York, he's lived in over five states. He did most of his growing up in New Mexico, and studied theater and languages at Hunter College in NYC. He has a love of art, humor and, of course, trivia. He lives in San Francisco with his charming wife, Christina.

Come by and play trivia at Bar Basic (San Francisco - SoMa).

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Masha Geller - Host

Masha is another recent East Coast transplant, still trying to figure out what all this green, leafy, nature-ish stuff around the Bay Area is all about. No, she’s not related to either Uri Geller the spoon-bender, or Andrew Geller the shoe designer.

She majored in musical theater but grew too tall to play anything other than the windmill in Don Quixote, so advertising by day and pub trivia by night seemed like logical things to do. Loves Airedale Terriers, her slow cooker, and New York bagels.

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Kyra Geithman - Host

A Colorado native, Kyra accepted a job in the Bay Area after graduating from Arizona State and predictably fell in love with San Francisco.

When she's not working her regular day job, she enjoys escaping into the outdoors, passionately watching sports, riding MUNI aimlessly, binging Rick and Morty, or wrangling her friends up for karaoke.

You can play trivia with Kyra Tuesdays at HQ/Martin Mack's (San Francisco - Upper Haight), and Wednesdays at Patriot House Pub (San Francisco - Fi-Di).

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Casey Sclar - Host

A Bay Area native, Casey moved back to the area after graduating from UC San Diego. He is a diehard sports fan and he roots for all of the correct Bay Area sports teams (Giants, 49ers, Warriors). He is also an avid board game enthusiast and is always down to strain a friendship with a nice, competitive game of Settlers of Catan.

His desire to become a quiz host sprang from his friends clearly getting really tired of him constantly telling them obscure, useless facts about all sorts of random topics. Other claims to fame of Casey's include being pretty good at Mario Kart, having witnessed the world's hot dog eating championship, and knowing way more about Taylor Swift than any straight male should.

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Stacey Hooker - Host

Stacey was born in Oakland, and raised in Alameda and Oakland.

She's always looking for a new brunch spot... obviously with bottomless mimosas. Currently, she's finishing up a Medical Assisting program and working full time at an East Bay vineyard. Stacey loves trivia, especially when it comes to anything Disney. She will dominate anyone in 'Disney Scene It'!

And, Stacey would like everyone to know that her last name really is "Hooker," however, her middle name is not "isa" *rolls eyes*. Kuddos if anyone comes up with something original ;)

Stacey hosts the quizzes Tuesdays at Handles Gastro Pub (Pleasanton), and Thursdays at Federation Brewing (Oakland - Jack London Square).

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Sami Najm - Host

Sami has grown up in the Bay Area since 1995 and wouldn’t want to live anywhere else. The west coast is definitely the best coast!

After attending Brainstormer Trivia events all around the Bay Area, Sami finally took the next step and became a quizmaster to share his passion for trivia. Other than hosting trivia, Sami enjoys traveling as much as possible and always discovering new places he hasn’t been. He also enjoys hanging with friends, and of course, playing trivia.

Feel free to introduce yourself to Sami and make a new friend at the Wednesday quiz at Enso Bar (San Jose - downtown).

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Rachel Joseph - Host

Rachel was born in Houston, Texas during halftime of the SuperBowl. She's lived all over, but spent a plurality of her life in Chicago, Illinois.

She's only been in the Bay Area since 2016, but already loves succulents and Februaries so much more than she ever did before.

Rachel studied Bioengineering in both undergrad and grad school, and is currently working as an R&D Engineer at an exoskeleton company. In her free time, she enjoys talking to her family, her friends, and strangers on the bus. She hopes to one day become Alex Trebek or the Pope.

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Bob Deeken - Host

Bob Deeken started playing Brainstormer quizzes in San Francisco's North Beach neighborhood (too many years ago to count). In Seattle, he's hosted weekly quizzes at Pyramid Alehouse, Elephant & Castle and at numerous corporate and private events (for Google, Microsoft, and many others).

He has also produced radio commercials for Fox Sports affiliate 1380 KRKO in Everett, and worked as a DJ at Seattle's 103.7 The Mountain (may it rest in peace).

You can find Bob Wednesdays at Pyramid Alehouse (Seattle).

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Aaron Barry - Host

Aaron is a Las Vegas native who spends his days getting stuck in deep dives on the Internet, acting on stages, and drinking beer. He started playing trivia on a whim while hoping to put some use to all his otherwise useless knowledge and to try and impress girls - did not work. He loves the NBA, romantic comedies, and lists.

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Marjorie Berman - Host

Marjorie was born and raised in a suburb of Boston, MA. She moved to New York City to study childhood education at NYU and has lived in Brooklyn since 2011.

An avid fan of all things pop culture, Marjorie has participated in the many different kinds of trivia that NYC has to offer. When she's not hosting Brainstormer trivia, Marjorie is working hard as a third grade special ed teacher. You can also often find her perusing Netflix, buying a sandwich, listening to Beyoncé, or at the closest wine shop.

Marjorie hosts Brainstormer Sundays at Rosamunde Sausage Grill (Brooklyn, NY).

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Brett Aresco - Host

Brett is a Connecticut native who has been described as ‘a hooker with a heart of gold.’ He has many interests, including James Bond movies, the Green Bay Packers, beer, and trivia involving all of those things.

He holds a degree in Theater Studies and English from Duke University, where he created the first ever on-campus pub quiz at the school’s only full bar. He now resides in Brooklyn with his girlfriend and a Bose Wave Radio with CD player.

When not hosting Brainstormer trivia in New York City, including for our corporate events, Brett makes his living as a working actor in theater, film, TV, and commercials. He can be seen and heard on your television, radio, or computer, hopefully more and more each day.

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Matt Drury - Host

Matt hails from northern New Jersey, and is sometimes even proud of it. He's been a pop culture aficionado and trivia fan since early childhood, and has been able to use these skills as a contestant on ‘Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?’ and ‘Jeopardy!’

He studied Political Science, History and Cinema Studies at Rutgers University, where he helped organize concerts, lectures and film screenings for the campus student centers. After several years working as a political operative in Washington, DC and on campaigns around the country, he has lived in the New York City area since 2004.

Matt works for the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation. Whenever possible, he’s out enjoying the best that New York has to offer.

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Rob Sable - Host

Rob is a New York native who's been playing pub trivia for several years. He's played competitively in San Francisco in Brainstormer's leagues and has played just for fun in NYC.

When he's not in a pub either reading questions or answering them, you can find him playing way too many video games, or maybe just catching up on several shows via Netflix. Or if the timing is right, the Food and Wine Festival in Walt Disney World.

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Maggie McGonagle - Host

Maggie was born and raised in a suburb right outside of Boston, MA and moved to New York City after graduating from UMass Amherst. There she studied finance and economics and was a regular at the campus bar's trivia nights. Outside of work Maggie loves going to concerts, trying out new restaurants and seeing what the city has to offer.

Maggie hosts the Tuesday quiz at Gramercy Ale House (Manhattan, NY).

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Stephanie Wu - Co-Host

Stephanie is a recent transplant to San Francisco from Southern California. In her free time she loves to explore the city, hike the local parks, and watch trashy reality television. She’s a pretty competitive person, and is always down for a challenge in pool, poker, trivia, whatever! If she’s not out and about, she can be found organizing her room or trying new baking projects with her friends.

Stephanie loves meeting new people, so stop by and say ‘hi!’ Tuesdays, where she co-hosts the weekly trivia at Martin Macks (San Francisco – Haight Street).

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Joanna Arellano - Co-Host

Joanna was born and raised in the Bay Area. In her free time she enjoys working out at the gym, going on hikes, playing boardgames ('Catchphrase' is her favorite), binge-watching shows on Netflix, going to the movies (especially horrors and comedies) and riding indoor go-karts.

Joanna co-hosts Brainstormer's corporate events in San Francisco and around the Bay Area.

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LaLa Rubio - Co-Host

Born and raised in San Jose, Esmeralda - she goes by the name of LaLa - enjoys trivia as she finds it both educational and entertaining.

When she's not working her day job at a local shipping company, she likes to travel as much as she can. LaLa is our awesome co-host at the Bay Area's busiest trivia night Mondays at San Pedro Square Market Bar (San Jose - Downtown). Come early to get a seat!

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Stephanie Kong - Co-Host

Stephanie Kong was born in China, raised in Seattle, and moved all around the west coast for the past few years. She’s currently majoring in communications in San Francisco.

Stephanie loves exploring new things, meeting new people, hanging out with her friends and doing fun stuff such as hiking/camping/going for movies/ice skating. She's a part-time tour guide as well. Her biggest passion is dance (jazz, modern, contemporary and hip hop), and she has been dancing since she was 4.

Stephanie wants to travel around the world after her graduation!

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Sharon Soong - Co-Host

Sharon is a Los Angeles transplant living in San Francisco.

When she’s not working full time as a University Recruiter, she likes to try new restaurants and work out fads, and expressing herself through music, dance and yoga.

Sharon loves traveling, and is trying to fill up her recently renewed passport. Come say ‘hi’ and play trivia Wednesdays at Rogue Alehouse (San Francisco - North Beach).

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