Board of Directors

Board of Directors

The AST is run by members who volunteer as a nominated, elected slate of officers. The current Board of Directors members are:

Executive Committee


Michael Larsen »

Vice President of Education

Justin Rohrman


Markus Gärtner »


Alessandra Moreira »

Executives at Large

Erik Davis »

Pete Walen »

For information on how members are elected to the Board of Directors, see our Election Proceedings page.

Who We Are


Michael Larsen is a Senior Tester located in San Francisco, California. Over the past seventeen years, he has been involved in software testing for products ranging from network routers and switches, virtual machines, capacitance touch devices, video games and distributed database applications that service the legal and entertainment industries.

In addition to being a member of the Board of directors for the Association for Software Testing, he is an active instructor of the Black Box Software Testing classes, is the co-founder and primary facilitator for the Americas chapter of Weekend Testing, a Black Belt in the Miagi-Do School of Software Testing, and the producer (and on-air personality at times) of Software Test Professionals “This Week in Software Testing” podcast along with fellow board member Matthew Heusser. Michael also contributed the chapter “Trading Money for Time” to the book How to Reduce the Cost of Software Testing and writes about testing topics for publications like The Testing Planet, ST&QA magazine, Techwell and others. Michael writes the TESTHEAD blog and can be found on Twitter.

Follow @mkltesthead


Vice-President of Education

Justin Rohrman is a consulting software tester with a day job. He has been performing software testing in various industries and capacities for close to 10 years now. Outside of his day job, Justin is an assistant or lead instructor for 3 of the four BBST courses offered by AST,  frequent facilitator for Weekend Testing Americas, miagi-do black belt, and a writer. He writes often for ITKnowledgeExchange, Stickyminds, and his own personal blog.

The successes he is most proud of are the ones the involve people and the software testing community.


Markus Gärtner works as a testing programmer, trainer, coach and consultant for it-agile GmbH, Hamburg. Markus is the author of ATDD by Example – A Practical Guide to Acceptance Test-Driven Development and contributes to the Softwerkskammer, the Germany Software Craftsmanship movement. He blogs in English frequently at


Alessandra Moreira is a tester from Sydney, Australia, currently living in Miami, FL. Ale has 14 years testing experience and enjoys helping and mentoring other testers grow and develop in the craft of testing. In line with that, in the beginning of 2013 Ale restarted the once extinct chapter of Weekend Testing in Australia/New Zealand, which she still organizes and facilitates once a month. Ale shares her experiences as a traditional tester that broke free from the mould on her blog (, at conferences and articles for testing magazines.

Before leaving Sydney, Australia Ale helped co-organize the Sydney Testers Meetup and regularly participated in the region’s premier peer-conferences: OZWST and KWST. In 2014 Ale served as a judge for the Software Testing World Cup (Americas) and spoke at Let’s Test Sweden. Her upcoming speaking engagements include CAST, Let’s Test Sydney, STPCon and Agile Testing Days.

Ale is highly involved in the testing community worldwide. By serving on the AST Board of Directors Ale will seek to continue her contribution to the community and will support opportunities that help improve the craft of testing and the dissemination of that knowledge, such as continuing to work on future versions of the AST Skills Book, and help bring the AST to a more international presence.


Executive at Large

Peter Walen has been in software development for over 25 years.  After working many years as a programmer, he moved to software testing and QA.  After dabbling in Project Management and Business Analysis, he returned to software testing, where he has been working since 1999.  He converted to Context Driven testing 2001, rejecting his former heresy and repenting since then. Part of this repentance has been to spread the word of what is Context Driven testing at workshops and conferences.

Pete describes himself as a Software Anthropologist and Tester, which encompasses the examination of how software and people relate and react to each other.  One area of deep interest and concern for him is how testers learn and are educated.  He took the inaugural on-line version of the BBST Instructor’s Course and was an Assistant Instructor for the first time this past spring.  Pete is an active participant with his local Tester Meetup (Grand Rapids Testers) and an active blogger on software testing.

Pete’s Blog

Pete’s LinkedIn Profile

Executive at Large

Erik Davis has over 16 years of experience in and around testing. The majority of his time has been in a variety of leadership positions ranging from team lead to senior manager leading teams of 2 to 65 people. In his current role, he has oversight of the team that educates 180+ testers as well as the team leading his company’s initial foray into automation. He also is responsible for identifying ways to bring in, engage, and retain testers. He blogs at and is on Twitter (@erikld).  He has been a member of AST since 2012 and has been a speaker at CAST 2013 and 2014, QA or the Highway 2014, Targeting Quality 2014 and 2015, and Let’s Test 2015.



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