Don Slater (cs.cmu.edu/~djslater) was a secondary school teacher in Western Pennsylvania when the first personal computers were introduced into his building. Don became a computer science teacher, when he realized he wanted to help others discover the cool things that they might be able to build with computers, as he had. Don taught and served as the technology director at Sewickley Academy, a private school in the Pittsburgh area. In 1998, he began teaching introductory programming part time at Carnegie Mellon. In 2000, he was invited to become a full time member of the Computer Science Department as a Lecturer.
Don joined the Alice Team in the fall of 2005 as he introduced Alice (alice.org) into his Introductory Programming course. Wanda Dann happened to be on sabbatical at Carnegie Mellon that fall. and she became a valuable advisor as they explored the using Alice in his course. With Wanda and Steve Cooper, Don has since presented at teacher training workshops around the country, as well as at various conferences, including NECC, SIGCSE, IMICT, and ISECON.
Don is a consultant for the College Board in Advanced Placement Computer Science. He has served as a reader and leader at the yearly Advanced Placement Computer Science Exam grading since 1991. He has written articles for the College Board and led teacher workshops throughout the east, and now directs the Advanced Placement Teacher Workshop held each summer at Carnegie Mellon.
Don is a native of Western Pennsylvania, growing up in Oil City, PA. Unlike many who grew up in the 70's with the obligatory guitar accessory, Don did not give it up at the beginning of the disco craze, but continues to enjoy playing his guitar whenever he has the opportunity.
Videography: Amanda Long and Michael Pisano.