Our Mentors

By endlessly providing time, resources, and energy, Quixilver mentors enable FIRST Team 604 to build outstanding robots, phenomenal outreach programs, and excellent leadership skills. They routinely astound and assist team members with mechanical, electrical, programming, and machining expertise. Thank you, mentors of FIRST Team 604, for your most impressive work. We greatly appreciate your support!

Active Mentors

Mrs. Arrington

Endlessly handling paperwork since the teams inception, Mrs. Arrington is Team 604’s most esteemed founding mentor. She spends boundless hours supervising team Quixilver not only during build season but the off-season as well. Her winning nomination for the Woodie Flowers Award can be read here.

Mrs. Best

Unquestionably the most present volunteer and “best” chaperone in town. Housing a mill, lathe, and robotics family, her tolerance for tech-geeks is stunning. Her overwhelming kindness has developed Team 604 into the fine students we are today. Her winning nomination for the Woodie Flowers Award can be read here.

Mr. Best

This engineering expert’s kinks and quirks help make team Quixilver the “best”. Any problem ranging from programming to mechanical design, this quaint mentor is always there to lend a helping hand. Located in his homely tool-filled garage, milling sessions take place for mechanically inclined members while in his after-school free time he supports student led programming workshops for those hoping to excel in their code skills. His winning nomination for the Woodie Flowers Award can be read here.

Eugene Fang

Eugene is an alumnus of Quixilver and was Co-President and Silicon Valley Regional Dean’s List Finalist in 2010. With a Ph.D. in Robotics from Carnegie Mellon University and 20+ years of FIRST experience, Eugene now returns to provide mentorship in the areas of programming, controls, mechanical design, and game strategy. He is also involved with the FIRST community as an administrator and developer of The Blue Alliance.

James Best

Co-President of Quixilver in 2010, James Best, the talented son of Mr. and Mrs. Best, now offers us his expertise in mechanical and electrical engineering. James went to Harvey Mudd – and earned their first FIRST scholarship. He has always mentored 604 with design and manufacturing, even from a distance. He earned Ph.D at Carnegie Mellon University in Electrical and Computer Engineering and has returned to the bay area for his job.

Novia Wong

While on the team, Novia served as the Vice President, chairman’s presenter, team manager, and as the PR lead. Now, she lends the team her talents by assisting as a mentor while enrolled in an Informatics PhD program at University of California, Irvine.

Other Mentors

Mr. Arrington

We are sad to report that our long-time mentor Mr. Larry Arrington passed on Sept 12, 2019 after a long battle with cancer. Mr. and Mrs. Arrington were married for 44 years and were such at team! It is because of Mr. and Mrs. Arrington’s generosity that we have a robotics team at Leland. Mr. Arrington was the mentor how did it all. He had a long proud career working at Lockheed Martin for 41+ years before he retired. He was a superb mechanical engineer! He was a chauffeur at traveling tournaments – and did whatever was needed to help the team. So many alumni remember his lessons on the importance of tolerances and benefited from his mechanical insights during our design reviews. This rock solid mentor kept the team in check and focused on the goals that make Team 604 as unique as its students. The 604 alumni have great stories about Mr. Arrington and it is so sad that the new students won’t have the honor of interacting with such an outstanding role model. Mr. Arrington’s picture will be put on every robot we make!

Michael Smith

An alumnus from 2014, Michael studies computer science at UCSD. He mentors us remotely in areas of programming, control systems, and electronics. Michael also regularly gives intro to programming workshops to local FRC teams.

Mr. Mori

Being involved in FIRST ever since 1999, Mr. Mori has been lending his mechanical expertise to Team 604 ever since helping re-start the team in 2005. He has taught us how to think outside of the box, which has become a crucial skill during crunch time. His winning nomination for the Woodie Flowers Award can be read here.

Henrique Chan

Henrique Chan is also a past president of 604. He earned his BS from Cal Poly SLO in mechanical engineering– where he was also on the Formula SAE team. He is currently at Maxar Technologies as a mechanical engineer who does structural analysis. At the same time he mentored 604, he was also mentoring the Space Cookies, FRC 1868.

Kunal Mehta

Kunal won Dean’s List at the 2012 Silicon Valley Regional. He has always made an effort to be available for mentoring in all areas – electrical, mechanical, and programming, along with being a mentor and resource to new students. He earned his BS degree from San Jose State University in Journalism and works at Wikipedia as a senior site reliability engineer. He is also a contributor to THE BLUE ALLIANCE.

Matthew Coniglio

Matthew earned his BA degree from Cal Poly Pomona in Business Administration, Technology, and Operations Management and has a minor in Computer Information Systems. He is now working for DHL as an operations supervisor. He is one of the best drivers and best drive coaches the team has ever had – as well as an expert in electrical and mechanical.