The Cidi Labs Team

We're a small team with a huge passion for Instructional Design

Across our team, we’ve racked up over 100 total years – that’s people years – of experience in K-12, higher ed, instructional design, and Canvas. And our team – along with that experience – continues to grow.

Meet our newest team members!

We’re proud to use all that experience to bring innovative products and stellar support to Canvas course designers everywhere.

Mike Zackrison

The Boss

Mike Zackrison started Cidi Labs in partnership with Utah State University in 2016. He’s an  ed tech veteran with 20 years experience in product management, marketing, and start-up leadership. In some form or another he’s touched every major system schools use to deliver education. From the LMS (Canvas, Sakai) to the SIS (Banner, Kuali Student) and all the systems in between (CampusPipeline, SCT Luminis, uPortal, plus dozens of integrations), he’s helped forge the unified digital campuses of today. 

Right before Cidi Labs he was with Instructure from 2012 to 2015 where he led Canvas’ openness initiatives including growing the partner program to over 150 partners and the number of LTI integrations to over 200 (made available thru Eduappcenter). Working with so many start-ups in this role helped Mike decide that he wanted to start his own company. After a chance meeting with Utah State’s commercialization office and Kenneth Larsen he jumped at the opportunity to start Cidi Labs with them and become a Canvas partner.

Mike holds an MBA degree from Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management and BA degrees in German and Finance from the University of Utah. When not Edtech-ing, he enjoys traveling with his wife and two daughters, exploring the 40 miles of trails in the foothills above his home on foot or bike, and golfing. Two herding dogs ensure that he gets a walk each day too!

Kenneth Larsen

Lead Inventor and Instructional Designer

Kenneth is the genius behind DesignPLUS (formerly known as Kennethware), which he invented when he worked as a programmer/analyst with Utah State University’s (USU) Center for Innovative Design and Instruction (CIDI).

Kenneth blends a master’s degree in Instructional Technology and Learning Sciences from USU with 14 years of Internet development experience to empower teachers and designers to push the boundaries of online course development. 

Kenneth loves exploring the outdoors with his wife and 2 daughters and often spends downtime taking pictures, drawing, reading and scheming new features to add to DesignPLUS.

Jacoba Behunin

Sales and Customer Success, West Side

Jacoba joined the Cidi Labs team in 2017 as the resident extrovert of the group. She’s done a little bit of everything–face to face and online teaching, technology marketing, fundraising, and now has the best gig of her life selling software that makes teaching and learning more accessible. 

She has a Master’s Degree in American Studies from Utah State University, has been known to say “rad” in customer emails, loves jigsaw puzzles and books, and has recently begun teaching herself hand embroidery. 

Other facts: she’s a mom of two humans and two pigmy goats, and she’s afraid of the following things (in order): 1. Rabies, 2. Bats, 3. Squirrels, 4. Moose, 5. Birds of prey.

 

Jen Leckie

Sales and Customer Success, East Side

 Jen joined Cidi Labs in 2017, after working as a Customer Success Manager at Instructure.

While at Instructure, she supported early Canvas higher ed customers on the west coast and now gets the opportunity to work with amazing schools on the east coast. 

 Jen has been working for technology companies most of her career although transitioned to the ed tech space 6 years ago and hasn’t looked back. 

When not working, Jen loves to entertain and throw dinner parties, exercise, garden and spend time with her husband and 5 step sons!  

Chuck Crandall

Head of Software Development

Chuck Crandall has been working in web development for over 17 years, with 12 of those years working in education technology. Chuck graduated from Brigham Young University with a bachelor’s degree in Computer Engineering, and received an MBA from Arizona State University. 

He ran his own web development company for 8 years, and now enjoys his role as head of software development at Cidi Labs. 

Chuck is happily married with 5 children. If he had free time, he would spend it hiking, golfing, playing tennis, and skiing.

Michelle Muldowney-Stevens

Training and Support Manager

Michelle was Cidi Labs’ first full-time employee. She came to the company with many years of experience in higher ed administration and marketing.

She holds a Master’s degree in Learning Technologies & Instructional Design from Utah State University where she had the honor of working alongside Kenneth. Michelle was a military brat turned military spouse and calls many places home including New York, Hawaii, and Germany. 

Her family lives in Utah’s beautiful Cache Valley where they enjoy collecting all the animals – including many chickens and a few mustangs – that they couldn’t move around the world while connected to the military.

Jennifer Malkovich

Operations

Jennifer’s experience in the ed tech industry dates back to the early days of WebCT, one of the original learning management system companies, where she developed a passion for building tools that enhance teaching and learning.  From there, she had the opportunity to work for a variety of companies, all of which serve to enhance some aspect of the educational experience – from college admissions through student retention and even career services – with technology.  She earned an M.S. in Educational Technology in a fully online program which enabled her to truly understand the student experience.

She is a Boston native (though you won’t ever hear her say “pahk ya cah”), loves to travel, ski, practice yoga, and spend time with her family.

Matt Coombs

Vice PResident of Business Development

Matt has spent his career marrying technology with learning by overseeing strategic education software projects, partnerships and institutional improvements. Matthew has provided leadership both inside of education institutions and as part of organizations supporting and providing services to K20 institutions throughout the world.

Matt is dedicated to providing, for all students, regardless of situation or background, the opportunity to succeed in academic endeavors. He has contributed to the building of a student academic performance platform, an open source Student SIS, the most prolific higher education portal in use today and a community-wide adaptive virtual desktop environment for students.

Prior to joining Cidi Labs, Matthew was COO of eLumen, CTO of Hartnell College, Director of IS at Delta College, and Strategic Architect/Snr. Product Manager at Ellucian. He has also been active in multiple open source projects, such as Kuali, Etudes, Drupal and Sakai.

Matt holds an M.S. in Instructional Technology from Utah State University and was raised by his wife and 5 children. When not talking to an institution, you can find Matt being walked on the beach by his dog or nearly drowning in the nearby pacific ocean attached to a boogie, surf or paddle board.

Ethan Finlay

Developer

Ethan was the first in a wave of new developers to join the Cidi Labs team this past year.

While getting his Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science from the University of Central Florida, he worked on a team of developers there known as the Techrangers. It was there that he got introduced to the world of ed tech and was able to work directly on amazing products such as UDOIT. He was overjoyed to be able to take that experience to the next level by joining Cidi Labs.

In his off-time, Ethan loves to hang out with his cat and play online games with his friends.

Scott Cooper

Developer

Scott holds a bachelor’s degree in Computer Science from Brigham Young University Hawaii. He has been working as a developer for the past 5 years and enjoys working on many projects varying from virtual reality to backend development, learning technologies to implement in his new career at Cidi Labs.

Alongside his wife of 6 years, he spends his free time fixing up his 1930’s home, gardening, mining bitcoin, and training his two rambunctious Australian Shepherd puppies.

Jorge Peraza

Developer

Jorge is a Software Engineer with 18 years of experience, during which he has worked on several projects for Fortune 500 companies.  He likes to develop user-oriented solutions and work on the optimal consumption of resources.  Among the technologies he develops with are PHP, React, and NodeJS. He also has experience in Cloud services.

As a motorcycle lover, on weekends he does not miss the opportunity to take a ride and enjoy his favorite hobby.

Abby Harris

Marketing & Sales Support

 Abby comes to us from the partnership team at Instructure, where she happily worked for 4 1/2 years. While at Instructure, she managed and oversaw 150+ partners, working with them to create dynamic event and marketing opportunities. She loved working with partners and developed a love for the EdTech industry!

Each year, she worked alongside Instructure’s Events Team in creating the much-anticipated annual user event, InstructureCon where she managed and directed the popular “partner hall.”

Abby recently moved to New York City (go figure), where she now calls home. Running in Central Park is her new favorite thing to do, and she secretly wants to steal every dog she sees. She loves people and is an inveterate people watcher. She is a recently converted Yankee fan, much to the dismay of her father, a diehard Red Sox fan. A fun fact, she is a triplet!