Sydney Ashland, Founder

Sydney Ashland has worked as an energetic counselor with children for over seventeen years. During this time she developed, in collaboration with Pam Simon, a child development theory based on elemental laws. Her work has been highly effective with children suffering from the effects of ADHD, ADD, and sensory integration issues. Principal author of two books, Parenting High Energy Kids and Mind Your Minecraft, Eat Your Vegetables!

Pam Simon, Founder

Pam Simon, MSW has a bachelor’s degree in speech pathology and audiology from the University of Iowa and a master’s degree in social work from Gallaudet University. She is fluent in American Sign Language and has specialized in communication disorders with both children and adults. Pam mentors young girls in the sciences and is a Microsoft Educator and FabFem role model. Having worked with autism and sensory integration issues, Pam helped develop the theory F2W is based on to aid in her continuing work with children. Coauthor of two books, Parenting High Energy Kids and Mind Your Minecraft, Eat Your Vegetables!

Max Fickas, Chief Gaming Officer

Max is an avid hiker and expert in Google-fu and all things technological. He is an advocate and patient role model for our Widgetarians. As a part-time college student at the University of Oregon, Max has also received Cybercamp Certification in 3-D modeling, Game Design, Game Modding, Photoshop, and more. Max is our information systems lead and Coauthor of Mind Your Minecraft, Eat Your Vegetables!






Brooklyn Ortega, Program Assistant

Brooklyn Ortega, an education major at the University of Oregon, loves our Widgetarians! She brings a solid grasp of common core curriculum that she uses when helping with homework or when helping develop currriculum for our program. A female gamer role model, she engages with the kids playing everything from Stardew Valley to the latest Steam game. Brooklyn connects with the girls in our program in a special way as she models 3-D prints or helps create VR worlds.  Her organization, patience and cheerfulness are felt by all.


Blake Bryant, Tech Staff

Blake is a junior at South Eugene High School. He started with Fidgets2Widgets as a Widgetarian, then became a Widgeteer and now staff! He loves computers and building them.

Tenaya Jacobson, Communications Manager

Tenaya’s background in book publishing and writing means she’s a communicator. She facilitates communication between Fidgets2Widgets and Widgetarian families through our social media and website, as well as any other way you can think of getting into contact with us. She joined us in Portland and fell in love with the Widgetarians and their individual stories. Now she enjoys finding ways to tell the story of Fidgets2Widgets to anyone who will listen.

Advisory Board Members

Stephen Fickas, PhD                        Uuniversity of Oregon Computer Science, Professor & Consultant
Jean Nesta-Berry, MSW
Paula Prober, MS, MEd                    Psychotherapist, Specializing in Gifted Youth & Adults
Jay Stuart                                        General Manager, Educational Facilities—Sodexo, Inc.
Hannah & Julian Farrand, PhD