Hoffman Hall (basement)
University of Southern California

Puzzle Constructors

Erik Agard Erik lived in LA in 2015-16 and is itching to return.
Alex Boisvert Alex Boisvert has been constructing crosswords since 2006. He once won tickets to a Phish concert by calling into a radio station and answering a trivia question correctly.
Jayne Boisvert Jayne Ritchie Boisvert, Ph.D., is professor emerita in French from Russell Sage College, Troy, NY. She is the author of a 2018 work, Pilgrimage to Paris: The Cheapo Snob's Guide to the City and the Americans Who Lived There.
Anna Gundlach Anna is a lifelong puzzle nerd from Olympia, WA, with puzzles created for the LA Times, American Values Club, Queer Qrosswords, and more. Like an annoyingly large number of people under 40, she also DJs occasionally.
Tyler Hinman Tyler earns his living at Lumosity, programming games that make your brain work more gooder. He then flushes away the resulting income on escape rooms and beer. Occasionally his brain excretes a thought he deems worthy of posting on Twitter at @thatpuzzleguy.
Jeremy Horwitz San Franciscan Jeremy Horwitz is a cryptographer by day and a pub-quiz host by some nights. His love of trivia — especially pop culture — is probably pretty clear from most of his crosswords. He has written puzzles for many of the usual suspects (e.g., Fireball Crosswords and The New York Times) and some less-usual suspects (e.g., wineries and coffee mugs).
Todd McClary Todd is a game designer for the Denver-based escape room company Puzzah! He has authored several books of puzzles and his crosswords currently appear on the Crosswords with Friends app. Todd blogs about his search for solutions at tmcaylifeasapuzzle.wordpress.com.
Andrea Carla Michaels Andrea is a company and product namer in San Francisco. A former Stand-up comic and TV sitcom writer, she now confines most of her wordplay to crosswords and Scrabble.
Brendan Emmett Quigley Brendan has been writing puzzles since 1996. In short, he’s old. When not crosswordin’ he plays an old Smith Corona in the Boston Typewriter Orchestra.
Erin Rhode Erin got involved in puzzle construction via the MIT Mystery Hunt, meaning she usually prefers to write puzzles with no instructions that may or may not involve her dressing up as a bee and singing a bunch of motown. But crosswords are fun too. Her first NY Times puzzle was published in 2015 and she also writes puzzles for the AVCX.
Ben Tausig Ben is editor of the weekly AVCX puzzle, which is on the internet at avxwords.com. The AVCX, which used to run in The Onion before going independent in 2012, emphasizes fair pay for constructors, equitable representation, and fun puzzles.
Patti Varol Patti Varol is the puzzle editor of Crosswords Club, a monthly crossword collection, and Daily POP, a PuzzleNation crossword app. She is also the assistant editor for the L.A. Times Crossword and a puzzle constructor for Marbles: Bend Your Brain.


Game Constructors

Dave Shukan Dave is a puzzle and boardgame designer who practices intellectual property law whenever he gets a chance, though his colleagues and clients might (more accurately) tell you he's got that precisely backwards. He lives in Pasadena with his wife, Rebecca, and her cat, Loki. Many of his puzzles, of various sorts, can be found at puzzles.shukan.net.
John “Doppler” Schiff John is a serial hobbyist who has been creating and solving puzzles and word games for more than two decades, but has only recently tried to tame the ferocious crossword. Despite a severe mauling by a cryptic crossword in 2006, John has bounced back to see his first crosswords published by The Los Angeles Times in 2009.


Organizing Team

Alex Boisvert,
puzzle wrangler
Alex Boisvert has been constructing crosswords since 2006. He once won tickets to a Phish concert by calling into a radio station and answering a trivia question correctly.
Elissa Grossman,
director
When not organizing Crosswords LA, Elissa moonlights as a professor at the University of Southern California’s Marshall School of Business (and mommy to Daniel). Her job at the tournament is to run around all headless chicken and take credit for the great work done by everyone else.
Dave Grossman,
mis chief
Dave's background includes a PhD from Harvard, teaching physics at Princeton, managing robotics and AI at IBM, becoming an IEEE Fellow, cofounding an internet company, and writing computer programs in 15 languages. His recent hobby has been writing software to simulate LA traffic. He designed software to administer these crossword competitions and to partially automate the scoring.
Daniel Grossman,
assistant director
Daniel is in his eighth year as Crosswords LA’s second-in-command (and his eighth year as the director’s director). His primary role is to show up and ask, “When will this be over?”


Test Solvers

Past test solvers: Erik Agard, Brian Cimmet, Jon Delfin, Sam Donaldson, Joon Pahk, Amy Reynaldo, and Michael Sharp.

Tournament Constructors

Past constructors for Crosswords LA: Patrick Blindauer, Alex Boisvert, Johanna Fenimore, Susan Gelfand, Elizabeth C. Gorski, Jeffrey Harris, Tyler Hinman, Donna Levin, Aimee Lucido, Andrea Carla Michaels, Pete Muller, David Quarfoot, Merl Reagle, Brendan Emmett Quigley, David Steinberg, Karen Tracey, Byron Walden, and Zoe Wheeler.


If you have questions, send them to info@CrosswordsLA.com





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