What do CAs do?

Community Associates (CAs) are graduate students who enjoy being involved with the Rains community. Their goal is to help build a sense of community among Rains residents. CAs:

  • Plan educational, cultural, social, and recreational programs at the neighborhood and Rains-wide levels.

  • Offer information and advice to anyone who needs help finding services or information on Stanford Campus.

  • Create opportunities for residents to take an active role in the organization of events.

Each building in Rains is part of a neighborhood served by at least two CAs. We have a lot of information about Stanford and the surrounding communities. We're available when you have specific questions and when you just want to talk.

Who are the CAs?

Head CAs
Alexa Wnorowski anwnorow
Juan Arias jmarias
Neighborhood CAs
Buildings 201-206
Timon Ruban

David Mackanic


The Citadel
Buildings 207-209
Valerie Troutman

Alex Lin


The Orchard
Buildings 212-214
Julie Walker

Ash Little

The Plains of Rains
Buildings 215, 216
Michael Dubreuil

Sofia Shepard

The Beach House
Buildings 217, 218

Rina Friedberg

Buildings 220-226
Ruben Land

Hilary Noad

Buildings 227-229
Irene Li

Colleen Rhoades

Marc Zajac




Buildings 229-238
Rebecca Marton

Hyoung Kim

More Rains CAs
Treasurer John Taggart jtaggart
Webmaster Peyton Greenside pgreens

CA Bios

John Taggart

Welcome to Rains! My name's John, and I'll be your treasurer living in Beach House neighborhood. I’m originally from Atlanta, Georgia, but have lived in a variety of places around the US since. This will be my fourth year at Stanford, so if you’re new and have any questions about the place, don’t hesitate to ask. I’m in the department of Management Science & Engineering, working in energy economics and policy. In my free time (when there is any, and often when there isn't), you'll likely find me running the Dish, grilling outside for a potluck, playing ina pickup soccer game, or hiking up in the Santa Cruz mountains. I'm looking forward to seeing you at the awesome Rains events we've got in store for you this year, though if you have any suggestions for fun activities, just let me know!

Peyton Greenside

Hey everyone! My name is Peyton, and I'll be one of your CAs in Midtown. I'm a fourth year PhD student in Biomedical Informatics, which means I spend my time analyzing genomes to understand how disease arises. I grew up in North Carolina and then moved north and did my undergrad at Harvard in applied math. I also spent a year drinking tea and eating scones in England and a year working at a genomics research institute before coming to Stanford. Now I spend all of my free time going hiking, playing sports, and finding ways to travel to exciting places. Let me know if you have any fun ideas for events, and I look forward to getting to know you all this year!

Rebecca Marton

Hi everyone! My name is Rebecca and I’m excited to be one of the new CAs in Frontier this year. I’m a second year PhD student in the Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine program. I’m originally from the Greater Boston area (go pats!) and went to undergrad at the University of Notre Dame (go irish!). When I’m not doing fun things with Rains, I spend most of my time trying to recreate aspects of human brain development using stem cells to study diseases such as autism and schizophrenia. My other hobbies including baking things that are obscenely bad for you and then running to make up for it. I’m really looking forward to my first year as a CA, and am open to any and all ideas you might have for events this year!

Michael Dubreuil

Well hey there you! I'm Mike and I am a CA for the Plains of Rains! I am in my fourth year of my PhD in Cancer Biology in the School of Medicine. I grew up in the great state of New Hampshire. When I'm not studying oxidative stress in the lab, I like getting outdoors, listening to alternative rock, adventuring in San Francisco, traveling to new places, consuming edible things, as well as a number of other eclectic activities. I'm super excited to continue being your CA this year and would love to hear from you if you have any questions/comments/concerns/conundrums/compliments so don't hesitate to shoot me an email or talk to me in person!

Alex Lin

Hi! I'm Alex Lin, and I'm a slowterm (2nd year coterm) in mechanical engineering, focusing on mechatronics and manufacturing. This is going to be my sixth year here on campus, and I absolutely love this place! I'm originally from Westerly, Rhode Island, and love anything that has to do with the ocean. In my free time, I love meeting new people and building cool things, ranging from guitar capos to a Badonkadonk Land Cruiser (google it). Hit me up if you have any ideas for awesome things to do (or make), and get psyched for an awesome year!

Juan Arias

It’s a beautiful day in the neighborhood! My name is Juan and I’m one of your head CAs. I am currently a second year PhD student in Developmental and Psychological Sciences in the School of Education. I was born in Colombia and grew up in Missouri (go Tigers!) before doing my undergrad in Neuroscience at Colorado College (go Tigers!). I spent a year in Scotland canoeing Lochs, heckling golfers, and getting a master’s degree at the University of St Andrews before arriving in this beautiful place. When I’m not reading, crunching numbers, or reading (or crunching numbers), you can find me throwing a frisbee, playing volleyball, cooking, rock climbing, salsa dancing, or exploring the urban and natural beauty that is California. I am always down to do those things with new friends, so never hesitate to contact me with ideas, questions, or just to vent. I’m so excited to be a CA and one of your Rains neighbors; it’s gonna be great!

Valerie Troutman

Hi -- I'm Valerie -- a 4th year PhD student (mechanical engineering) and also a 4th year Rains resident! My home state of Minnesota will always have my heart, but California has become a wonderful 'home away from home' for me. I'm excited to continue to build that sentiment within our Rains community and for all to feel a sense of belonging. Outside of classes and research, I enjoy volunteering for a local dog rescue organization and having as many game nights as possible.

Hyoung Sung Kim

"To be is to do" - I. Kant "To do is to be" - F. Nietzsche "Doo bee doo bee do" - F. Sinatra "Toby is doodoo" - M. Scott


Hey! My name is CJ and I'll be one of the CAs for Beach House this year. I'm a second year PhD student in Religious Studies working on mystics and philosophers in the medieval Islamic world. I grew up in Washington, DC, spent my undergrad years at Yale, then hopped over the pond to work on my MPhil at Cambridge. You'll generally find me in one of the Rains music rooms - feel free to pop in and jam! I've been playing guitar for about 12 years now, and am more than happy to hash out some jazz standards, rip through some Racer X tunes, or crank out anything from the back catalogues of T-Swift or Kanye West. I look forward to meeting you all!

Hilary Noad

Hello, everyone! Welcome to Rains. My name is Hilary and I'll be one of the CAs for Midtown this year. I'm from Ontario (the province, not the city), born and raised about an hour down the lake from Toronto. If you get me talking about Canada, you might hear an accent. I did my undergrad in the Arts & Science program at McMaster University then came to Stanford to work towards a PhD in Applied Physics where I'm now in my 6th year. When I'm not wrangling low-temperature physics experiments, I might be on an epic urban hike, tuning my harp, or tending to my vegetable garden. Looking forward to meeting you!

Ruben Land

Hello Rains! I'm a second year PhD student in the Neurosciences program, and one of the Midtown CAs this year. I was born in London, and lived for many years on the east coast (NY/PA) before coming to Stanford. Outside of lab I enjoy ultimate frisbee, hiking, podcasts, exploring SF, spikeball, cooking, dancing, and more! Super pumped to meet everyone, and to hear what kind of things you're into so we can get some awesome events going this year. Let me know if you ever have any questions or concerns about graduate life at Stanford, or if you just want to have a chat- feel free to reach out any time!

Ash Little

Hi everyone! My name's Ash and I'm a second year MBA student at the Graduate School of Business. I'm originally from Sydney, Australia, but spent most of my childhood growing up in Hong Kong, Singapore and the Middle East. Before coming to Stanford I spent four years working in management consulting and the media and entertainment industry. I enjoy most kinds of sport, a good glass of wine, and discovering new corners of the world. Let me know if you have any ideas for events which involve any of those three! I'm really looking forward to getting to know you all this year.

Alexa Wnorowski

Welcome to Rains! My name is Alexa and I'm super excited to be one of your CAs this year. I'm a second year PhD student in bioengineering, researching stem cell-derived heart muscle cells as a disease model and a platform for drug testing. I'm originally from New Jersey and I went to Cornell University for undergrad. As much as I love home and my undergrad, I definitely don't miss the cold winters! In my free time, I like to dance, bake, run, read, and eat oreos and ice cream and pizza. I'm so excited to meet you all and am looking forward to a year full of fun events!

Rina Friedberg

Hey Rains! My name is Rina and I'm one of your CAs in Beach House this year. I'm originally from Boston (so if you're a Red Sox fan I like you already) and before coming to Stanford I did my undergraduate in math at UChicago. I'm now a second year PhD student in statistics, and when I find time to pretend I'm not, you can find me hiking, running, baking, and planning my next adventure abroad. I love trying new things and meeting new people, so don't hesitate to shoot me an email or come say hi. Can't wait to meet you all!

Timon Ruban

Hi and welcome, dearest Rains resident. Congratulations on choosing the most fun of all Stanford grad housing options! (just wait and see how all your friends will gravitate towards this place) My name is Timon and I’m a 2nd year master’s student in Electrical Engineering, but more importantly, I’ll be your CA in Playground this year. I grew up in Munich, studied in Zurich and love to go (hitch-)hiking in distant places like Ecuador, Hawaii, Iceland or Jordan. I also like to solve riddles, socialise, go surfing and play beach volleyball, soccer, basketball, spikeball and flunkyball (ordered neither by skill nor preference). Hit me up if you want to go explore Stanford and the Bay Area or if you just want to eat a donut paid for by Rains. Alternatively, feel free to do your very own rendition of Hakuna Matata when you see me walking by and chances are I’ll join you halfway. Or just say hi, that always makes me happy, too. Also read David’s bio, it’s probably much funnier than mine. Over and out.

Colleen Rhoades

Hi everyone! My name is Colleen Rhoades, and I am a 4th year PhD student in Bioengineering. I'm looking forward to planning awesome events for Hilgard and Rains as a whole this year! I grew up in Chicago, but I'm now completely spoiled from living in the Bay area. For my research, I study how the retina works (hint: it's not like a camera). In my free time, I love to play all sorts of sports and cook food from around the world. Let me know if you need help with anything!

Sofia Shepard

Hi, Rains! I am a 2nd year Management Science & Engineering master's student with special interests in supply chain and hardware product management. Though I've become a die-hard Card fan rather quickly, my heart truly belongs to SEC football in the Fall. You can find me doing a Gator chomp and wearing my alma mater's beautifully obnoxious orange and blue between Stanford sporting events. When I'm not hanging out at Huang, I love to explore San Francisco, breweries, wineries, and hiking trails, or look for events that I can wear costumes or onesies to. I'm looking forward to meeting all my Plains people!

David Mackanic

Hey! I'm a new CA! My name is David and I run most days. Mountains and trails are my favorite getaways. I study chemical engineering and was born in May. Sometimes I put my handstands on display Tell me if you have a fun event or game to play I’ve already called party city and put supplies on layaway Come hang out with me and Timon, he’s bae

Marc Zajac

Hi Rains! My name is Marc, and I will be one of the CAs for Hilgard. I'm a second year PhD student in Materials Science and Engineering, studying the physics of phase-change materials. I'm from Sacramento, but I've also lived in North Carolina and West Virginia. I did my undergrad at Berkeley, which means I've had many a sleepless night trying to figure out who to cheer for at the Big Game. When I'm not SLACing, I'm running, swimming, reading, and attempting to make more beer than I drink. I can't wait to meet everyone, and I am very excited to be your CA!

Julie Walker

Hi everyone! My name is Julie, and I'm a CA for the Orchard. I'm a third year PhD student in Mechanical Engineering. I'm from New Jersey originally, and I went to Rice University for undergrad. Besides building robots, I love doing yoga, running (slowly), playing soccer, and growing things in my garden plot. I also spend a lot of my time exploring San Francisco, going on hikes, and taking trips to wine country. Looking forward to getting to know you all!

Irene Li

Hi Rains! I'm excited to be a CA in Hilgard, and am a first-year PhD student in Cancer Biology. I hail from the frozen tundra of Michigan and spent my undergrad years at Michigan State University (Go Green!!). My hobbies include painting, gardening, hiking in all climates, and playing the piano/ukulele. Looking forward to meeting everyone!