Jeroen Frans
Founder, Executive Director, Virtual World Technology Specialist,

SL: Frans Charming

Jeroen is Internationally known as Frans, which is fitting because it is also his last name. He is one of the three Founders of the Vesuvius Group, LLC, and functions as a Virtual World Technology Specialist and Developer.

Jeroen is a creative spirit and futurist always looking forward to how innovative technology can be used and enhanced. This drives him to try his hand in many technologies, and his early adoption has resulted in a wide skill set in programing, 3D & web design, machinamatography, animation, etc. In short you can say he is a generalist or a Jack-of-all-trades.

His friends like to call him an International Metaverse Superstar, because he seems to be everywhere, and known widely in the Metaverse.

Joshua Stortz
Founder, Executive Producer

SL: Amulius Lioncourt

Josh is responsible for The Vesuvius Group’s project building and management of virtual world spaces within Second Life and other online platforms. His background in education, science, and math and four years of building experience make him one of the premier builders within SL. In addition to working for Vesuvius, he has developed interactive science exhibits for the Exploratorium, built a unique paleontological dig simulation for Global Kids’ I Dig Tanzania project on the Teen Grid, and assists nonprofits with their building needs in SL in the Nonprofit Commons. Josh also sells exquisitely detailed handcrafted weapons in Darkwood and Caledon, historical themed communities within Second Life.

Joyce Bettencourt
Founder, Executive Creative Director

SL: Rhiannon Chatnoir

Joyce Bettencourt is an artist, content creator & evangelist of online social media. She believes in the power of social media to raise social awareness, foster community, and spark creative collaboration through media like blogging, podcasting, video/machinima & virtual worlds, and has used mashups of all of these to create provocative art installations.

Joyce is the Web 2.0 specialist for Global Kids, which runs online digital media initiatives to prepare urban youth in becoming global citizens and community leaders. They have a presence in the online virtual world Second Life, where they use Teen Second Life as a tool for education, game development and issue advocacy, and partner with outside organizations such as the Field Museum, UNICEF, and the U.S. Holocaust Museum to bring their work to teens. She also developed and is chief editor of their widely read youth media-focused blog

Her prior professional experience is as a visual artist and designer who has been involved in everything from corporate branding campaigns to collaborative street art performances. Her artwork has been shown in the United States, Australia and online through virtual exhibitions.

Katherine Mancuso
Project Manager, Research Specialist

SL: Muse Carmona

Katherine is an academic specializing in digital media, online education, community building, and digital accessibility. She attends Georgia Tech’s master’s program in digital media. An experienced writer and researcher, she has five years of research experience on the anthropology of the Internet, human-centered computing, and disability culture.

She is the community liaison for GimpGirl, an online organization supporting women with disabilities. She works at the Center for Assistive Technology and Environmental Access developing online initiatives for science education. Currently writing her thesis on best practices for accessible classroom design for science education in virtual worlds, she is a strong advocate for virtual world accessibility and universal design and building technology capacity for PWDs.

As an artist, she has worked in video, photography, dance, music, theatre, and new media. She has also worked in arts support roles such as museum education, museum special events, technical theatre & video production, and technology solutions for arts organizations. As a technology professional, she has worked in a number of non-profits and educational settings. Her key technical expertise includes online community management, web content management, technical support, and media production.