About the Center


Michael Preston, PhD

Executive Director

Michael Preston brings more than 20 years of experience leading innovation in educational technology at both local and national levels. His work has focused on using technology to improve teaching and learning, drive student agency and interest, and create models for systemic change in both K-12 and university contexts. Most … 

Lori Takeuchi, PhD

Deputy Director & Head of Research

Lori Takeuchi conducts research on how children use media across the various settings of their lives and the implications these tools hold for their learning and development. Prior to her current role as Deputy Director & Head of Research, Lori served as the Center’s Acting Executive Director (2017–2019), Director of … 

Catherine Jhee

Director of Web and Strategic Communications

Ms. Jhee is Director of Web and Strategic Communications at the Joan Ganz Cooney Center, where she leads its digital media and publication efforts. She is a writer, editor, and interactive producer with more than 10 years of experience creating and distributing educational and documentary content for organizations including POV … 

Lili Toutounas

Senior Manager of Administration

Ms. Toutounas oversees administration for the Cooney Center as the Senior Manager of Administration, overseeing meetings, board relations, and database management, as well as providing administrative support to Michael H. Levine. Prior to her work at the Cooney Center, she managed administrative services at the Japan Society for four years. Lili has … 

Kiley Sobel, PhD

Research Scientist

Kiley Sobel, PhD is a Research Scientist at the Joan Ganz Cooney Center at Sesame Workshop. As a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow, she completed her PhD in Human Centered Design & Engineering at the University of Washington in 2018. Her dissertation research investigated the role of interactive technology …