Origins & Staff
Get to Know Us
Hacker Paradise was created in 2014 by a coder and an entrepreneur. Casey and Alexey wanted to build cool tech with like-minded peeps, while living somewhere extraordinary.
From their first location in Costa Rica, they hosted beach hackathons, grew the business and built a small community. These original trips gave birth to the world’s very first remote work and travel group.
They understood that a massive shift was underway, which would see people breaking free from the traditional life path of graduate –> work your butt off –> buy a house –> retire.
They saw energy and potential in gathering people together to live differently, travel differently, work differently. These entrepreneurial, non-conformist roots ground how we form our trips, our community and our ethos today.
The HP TEAM
Troubleshooting, rose-drinking, karaoke-singing, and all-round superheroes, our kick-ass support staff are destined to become your new BFFs.
Casey is one of our founders! He started Hacker Paradise in 2014 after working remotely in Costa Rica and discovering a need for more community. Before starting Hacker Paradise, he spent a number of years in the startup scenes in Philadelphia and Tokyo.
He is the founder of the Gopher Gala, Recess Labs, and always has a new project up his sleeve.
Spencer has a background in cognitive neuroscience. Before joining us, Spencer taught collegiate Korean, worked at Samsung HQ, and worked as a project manager at a healthcare tech company. He has lived abroad for 7+ years.
Spencer runs a Tinder consultancy for HP participants where a profile review costs you one glass of rosé.
Head of Program
Renata co-founded two businesses in Brazil and a social project focused on startups. Passionate about building communities and collaborative environments, she’s been working in this space for eight years before becoming Head of Program for Hacker Paradise.
She chases summer around the world on a quest to find the best ice cream.
Head of Tech
Dani Dirks is a software developer, avid adventurer, sunset chaser, and purveyor of mischief. Before joining Hacker Paradise, Dani was a full-stack developer and UX designer for an ecommerce company in Northern California.
In her free time she writes and performs her own music, is the queen of HP karaoke and is strongly addicted to iced coffee and hot yoga.
Head of Finance
Boris has a background in International Business Management. Before joining HP, he worked briefly for ASML, the largest supplier of lithography systems in the semiconductor industry and Outpost, one of the best co-working spaces in Bali.
He has lived/worked/studied on 3 continents and travelled to over 20 countries in the last 4 years.
Head of Marketing
Michaela, a South African native, joined HP after traveling the world for 2 years doing operations and branding within the work-while-travel space. Prior to this, she was an active Criminologist working for the Australian government.
When she’s not hunting out the best speakeasies in a destination, Michaela is likely eating aged cheese somewhere with a good view.
Head of Admissions
Sara, from Italy, joined Hacker Paradise as Trip Facilitator after spending four years in rainy Belgium running one of the most active coworking space in Europe. With a background in Sociology, she loves being surrounded by people and help them to connect and create meaningful relationships.
Tea drinker by day, she never refuses a beer at night.
Vanessa has lived on three continents, visited over 35 countries, and worked creating custom travel excursions and personally running rough-and-tumble overland trips (driving an actual bus, ya’ll).
She’s a daily do-er of yoga (the sweatier the better), bonafide pickle fan, and lover of all things beachy. If you want to catch some epic sunsets, Vanessa is the one to follow!
Will joined HP after working in a myriad of fields, including healthcare, romance fiction, journalism, hospitality, and film. His safe space is Google Sheets, but he’s always ready to make you smile.
He lives to dance and eat the local breads. If you ever need a sober buddy or want to bust out a spontaneous trek, Will is your guy!