Our Team

Harold Gottschalk   CEO, Co-Founder and Chairman

Harold Gottschalk

CEO, Co-Founder and Chairman

Harold has over the last 35 years developed software, run teams, participated in corporations, won awards, contributed in a local IPO, created startups, his latest CSIdentity Corp. Harold believes the creation of software has evolved and is now for mere mortals, creating SSF for others to participate in the digital workforce.

Peter Horton   Program Director

Peter Horton

Program Director

Peter moved to San Diego as wine tour guide from Santa Barbara in 2015. Peter completed the SoftStack Factory full time immersion program. Peter went from knowing nothing about coding, with hard work, sacrifice, learned to code. Peter now advances the curricula, leads projects and facilitators at SoftStack Factory. Peter is an example of what can be accomplished when you pour yourself into the coding process 100%.

Scott Holcombe   CTO, SSF Labs

Scott Holcombe


Scott's career has been centered on bringing great products to market for longer than he'd care to admit. From a start as an impressionable software engineer wringing performance out of high-volume transaction processing systems for the credit card industry, to designing and building an award winning mobile phone, Scott ultimately started his own company providing cloud-based record label royalty software which was subsequently acquired by Sony Music.

Steve Biafore   Analytics Advisor, Co-Founder

Steve Biafore

Analytics Advisor, Co-Founder

Steve has built analytic “big data” solutions for the past 25 years. The
powerful predictive models that stand at the core of these solutions have changed the way companies compete and the way industries operate. Steve is eager to help SSF apply analytic technology to change the way we learn–and to create new digital-economy career options for anyone with the energy and grit it takes to succeed.

Julia Gottschalk   Executive Assistant, Co-Founder

Julia Gottschalk

Executive Assistant, Co-Founder

Born in Germany, grew up in Brazil, studied English at a University in Atlanta, GA for 1 year. Graduated in Digital Journalism at UNESP, one of the best universities in Brazil. Now she is pursuing her Masters Degree in Media and Communication Sciences in the Technical University of Ilmenau, in Germany. "My new passion is learning about technology and how to apply that in the communication field".

Matthew Herron   Advisory Board Member

Matthew Herron

Advisory Board Member

Matt is a business litigation attorney who likes to win, hates to lose, and thinks that SoftStack Factory rules. He is deeply experienced in the fields of business litigation, partnership and business disputes, intellectual property and other property-related cases. He built his own firm that handles substantial cases against formidable adversaries represented by national law firms.



Danilo Carandang   Former Facilitator

Danilo Carandang

Former Facilitator

Danilo was born and raised in San Diego and prior to discovering the world of coding taught music to elementary students in an afterschool program. He completed SSF’s Fall cohort in January 2017 and continued learning while working on various freelancing projects. He is now applying his skills as a teacher and the new skills from the program to help others dive into code and learn how to create applications.

Jeanne Bridges   Community Relationships

Jeanne Bridges

Community Relationships

San Diego has always been Jeanne’s home base where she cultivates relationships with members of the community from all walks of life from CEO’s to professionals to recently-homeless veterans. Her vocational and entrepreneurial experience gives Jeanne a special affinity for, and ability to communicate with, the candidates which SoftStack Factory expects to move into the digital economy.

John Brown   Volunteer

John Brown


John an Eagle Scout, attended SSF beta course, was asked to join the SSF team. At SSF honed his skills on multiple software projects, assisted on our first official cohort in 2016. He is now looking to use his newly honed skills to teach others how to code apps and get a foothold in the coding industry.

Catherine Thiemann   Advisory Board Member

Catherine Thiemann

Advisory Board Member

Catherine Thiemann is a non-traditional homeschooling parent who believes that tomorrow’s career paths may not be well-served by today’s “high school to college to entry level job” model. She’s excited about SoftStack Factory’s apprenticeship learning opportunity, especially for young people whose families can’t afford the high cost of a college degree. She looks forward to helping young people of color access this great gateway into the STEM-based field of mobile application programming.

Ryn Corbeil   Co-Founder

Ryn Corbeil


Obtaining his degree in Computer Science from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, Ryn has been developing software for startups, established companies, and as a freelancer. He enjoys connecting with students, and seeing them reach the ‘aha’ moment. When not in front of a terminal, Ryn enjoys guitar, community theater, and reading.