Staff

Along with six former con-chairs, there are other experienced pros and some newbies joining the staff for JemCon 2015: Freedom in Philadelphia.

Here's a breakdown and a bit of background information on all the hard working individuals who, through a combined effort, bring to you this truly outrageous event in your Jem calendar!

Please note, all links detailed below lead off-site (externally hosted) and open in a new browser window.

Name Staff Position


Chair (messageboard ID = Synthguy)

Damon V. D'Amore has an AA in Social Sciences with a concentration in History. He was born just outside of Philadelphia in 1991, after Jem's original run. He has been a fan of Jem since the late 2000s, when he caught it on Cable while skipping school, which might make him the subject of a 'Be a Superstar' segment. He fell in love with the music first, but the story kept him hooked. He has connected with many wonderful people through JemCon and he believes that many people here really keep the spirit of Jem alive - not just the glamor, glitter fashion and fame, but also the life lessons about ourselves, and more importantly, each other.


Mother JemCon / JemCon Founder (messageboard ID = elaineofspain)

Elizabeth Pemberton is from Van Wert, OH, and lives in Minneapolis, MN, where she hosted the first JemCon in 2005. Liz remembers seeing a few episodes of the cartoon when it first aired, but she was in high school and didn't have time for much TV. She didn't get her first Jem doll until 2003, but has made up for that with not only a large Jem collection, but also extensive chunks of the Darci, Maxie, and Creata doll lines, 1980's knockoff fashions of all kinds, and stupefying numbers of That Other Doll. Liz works at a music store, doing nerdy data and computer stuff. She also holds a job as the first soprano soloist and section leader at the Episcopal cathedral in Minneapolis, plays saxophone and recorder, reads voraciously, and spoils her cats. At JemCon, she can most frequently be seen lecturing about shoes. The JemCon community never ceases to amaze her, and she is deeply honoured to be part of it, and to be on staff for 2015!


Art Coordinator (messageboard ID = gypsyallie)

Allie hails from Brooklyn, NY. She has always enjoyed Jem, but experienced a true Jem Renaissance when the show began airing on The Hub. Her favourite episode is "Island of Deception." Allie never had Jem dolls as a child, and always favored the cartoon aesthetic of the characters. This led her to get her first Jem doll (Stormer) and begin repainting and sewing cartoon-accurate custom fashions. Allie also enjoys painting and drawing, and loves all the inspiration from creative people in the Jem community. You can see her work at: www.dearstormer.etsy.com and www.dearstormer.tumblr.com. She loves the Misfits best, and Stormer is her true-blue favourite.


Registration Coordinator (messageboard ID = unConventionalKimber)

Ankur Malhotra grew up in Toronto, Canada, watching the show as a small child, but his memories of it were hazy until he re-discovered the show in his early 20s. However, Ankur grew up singing songs such as "Congratulations to Me" and "All's Right With the World" and it wasn't until he got back into the show that he realized these were Jem songs. Ankur claims that hearing Jem and all of her high notes as a child was a gateway for him to become a lifelong Mariah Carey fan. An avid traveller and photographer, Ankur has enjoyed visiting all of JemCon's varied locations. Ankur's favourite part of JemCon is always the masquerade and karaoke, where he gets to sing in costume/character (with his unique twists on cosplaying), and is looking forward to doing that for the sixth time at JemCon 2015.


Web Designer, Developer and Advisor (messageboard ID = Bob)

Affectionately known as "Bob" by friends and family, Bob has been a dedicated fan of Jem since the age of 7. She started collecting Jem merchandise seriously in 2002 after the discovery of the internet and the realisation that Jem extended beyond the run of season 1 episodes originaly aired in the UK. As webmaster of: www.jemthingsandstuff.co.uk, Bob enjoys being creative and artistic. She credits Jem with sparking her interest in webdesign, which lead to a career move early in 2008. Bob now works as web technician for a Specialist Technology College, while running Focus on Function Web Design, the JemCon mini-website service, and developing web administration tools, such as Fast Edit and Fast Apps, in her spare time. In 2004 Bob made 10 full-sized Holograms and Misfits costumes for her friends to wear on her birthday "Jem Night." She is looking forward to continuing this creative streak and making more costumes for her twin sister Jacki and herself to wear at JemCon 2015!


Senior Advisor (messageboard ID = garth_j)

Garth Jensen (aka Jumbo Jem) lives near Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Garth has been a devoted Jem fan since his childhood. He had an original Jem/Jerrica doll, and has recently begin to collect some of the new dolls from the Integrity line as well. Garth is always keeping himself busy with multiple hobbies and projects, including a love of all things Wonder Woman and Madonna, plus he's a die-hard over-the-air television fan. He's also a renowned remixer, known especially for his Mariah Carey remixes, but rose to new remixing heights with his Jem remix compilation CD "Mix/Mash" which was distributed to all attendees and supporting members of JemCon 2014. When in costume, Garth loves to perform as Jem, though his friends will be the first to tell you that he is a Jerrica since he is always wanting to do the right thing... and that makes him a superstar! Check out his websites: tvgarth.blogspot.com and frothypoptreats.blogspot.com


Treasurer (messageboard ID = bluehairedgoddess)

Maria O'Connell aka bluehairedgoddess makes her home in Phippsburg, Maine. Some of her favourite pastimes include crafts of all kinds, expanding her several collections and of course doll customization. Maria's life-long love of Jem began when the cartoon originally aired. She soon acquired her 1st Edition Jem and Aja dolls. Christmas of that year brought many more Jem surprises, further allowing her to expand her imagination. Due to Jem, Maria also adopted a love of music that would lead to a stint in a local band. Her passion for Jem was reignited in 2001 with the discovery of Jem on the web and eBay where the "frenzy" began. Currently, Maria boasts 60+ dolls including 7 original childhood dolls. Her goal is to own all of the produced fashions and dolls to display them. JemCon has quickly become a second home for Maria. Here she has met many amazing friends. Maria hopes to use her creativity and unique personality to bring added excitement and a fresh perspective to an already rich community.


Guest Liason (messageboard ID = forgethead)

Mitzy (aka Ilana aka Minx) resides in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Mitzy has been a Jem fan since the show originally aired in the 80s, and enjoyed playing with the dolls in her childhood. Mitzy has made it her goal to collect all of the Integrity dolls, though something that's missing in her life is Glitter and Gold Rio. A renowned burlesque performer, Mitzy was recently inducted into the Canadian Burlesque Hall of Fame. Jem was actually an inspiration for Mitzy to get into Burlesque, as it was the concerts she gave for her grandparents that inspired her to want to perform even more. Mitzy is also a fierce cosplayer and can't wait to share her love of dressing up with everybody at JemCon. Since 2008, Mitzy has attended every single JemCon and feels it was her destiny to show everybody a Truly Outrageous time in Toronto as the Chair for 2014. Mitzy is also a diehard Stingers devotee. She would do anything for Riot, except that.


Display Liaison (messageboard ID = actionman81)

Omar lives in Houston TX (seen in The World Hunger Shindig and The Jazz Player), and has been a fan of Jem since he rediscovered it in 2008. He grew up watching Jem, and his childhood memories revolved around season 2 and 3, as he got into the show during 1987. He is one of the few people who don't remember the Holograms not having Raya as part of the group. Perhaps this was the initial spark or impetus for his mad crush, or rather obsession, with her. Jem's dual identity fit into the superhero theme that dominated his childhood games, and Jem easily took a place right next to Superman and Wonder Woman, for him. He teaches ESL and has a Masters in Curriculum & Instruction, as well as a CELTA degree for ESL teaching.

Rather than collect the Hasbro or Integrity dolls, Omar makes his own, animated series accurate, 1:6 scale dolls and action figures of as many Jem characters as possible, from fan favorites like the Holograms, Misfits and Stingers, to one-episode characters, like Luis Geraldo, Angus Bean and Cisco (Aztec Enchantment, Island of Deception, Danse Time), and many, many others. He, along with his family, created and built the only 1:6 scale wooden Synergy computer model playset. He also expresses his love of Jem in custom Youtube videos and in his fanfic saga Jericho.


Public Relations / Social Media Liason (messageboard ID = OperaPhantomess)

Opera Phantomess is new to the Jem world, but she has become exceptionally passionate about the series and doll line rather quickly. She hails from Long Island, New York along with her insane group of friends. The name "Opera Phantomess" was inspired by one of her favorite novels and Broadway productions over eight years ago, "The Phantom of the Opera", and ever since then, it has become her signature stage name and what her friends come to know her by. She is a "Jack of all Trades" when it comes to the arts, from drawing and painting, to singing and acting; if she has yet to do it, she probably will at some point. She is a proud member of ZEN Productions, a local Long Island, New York production company whom is best known for its shadowcasting performances of The Rocky Horror Picture Show and Repo! The Genetic Opera; you can see her often as Magenta or Columbia in Rocky and Blind Mag in Repo!. She is a classically trained singer who can also belt, and she dares not utilize microphones much out of fear of hurting ears and ruining sound systems. She enjoys cosplaying as Jerrica/Jem with Synergy and eventually Danse being thrown into the mix and does not plan on stopping anytime soon. Her favorite Jem character is Jerrica as she can relate to her struggle with maintaining a dual life quite well and she is constantly singing along to Jem and the Holograms songs in her car, never missing a note, not even the high C in Glitter N' Gold.


Senior Advisor (messageboard ID = shevonabmx)

Shevona is from MI and is a full-time stay at home mom of two. She has loved Jem since she was a little girl. This passion for Jem has led her to collect the entire produced line and over 50 custom fashions and dolls. She was honoured to be featured in the Jem Fan section of the DVD release. Shevona's favourite episode is "Mid Summer's Night Madness" and her favourite character is Jerrica. She loves to make OOAK Jem dolls, fashions and accessories. For more info on Shevona's work, check out her website: www.beyondjem.com


Event Coordinator (messageboard ID = DerbyJustice)

Szilvia has watched Jem since day one of its airing, admiring the show's positive reinforcement and wanting to reach for the stars, since, with hard work and determination you can always do it! Jem also taught Szilvia what a good positive family life is supposed to be like, and that helped her become a better person. Szilvia has volunteered under various positions for Horror, Sci-Fi, Fantasy, and Gaming conventions as Den Mom, Security, Chief of Security, Registration, Merchandising and Sales. She has also taken on the role of Referee/Non Skating Official for the Garden State Rollergirls with her husband Daryl. In addition to Garden State, Szilvia has helped several other Roller Derby teams all over the USA and internationally with coaching, bout production, merchandising, PR, advertising and solicitation. In December 2014, Szilvia will be assisting in the production of the Roller Derby World Cup in Dallas, TX. Szilvia is married, lives with 5 cats and works as a dog groomer. She also enjoys cosplay, skiing, and long bicycle rides. Most of all, Szilvia likes being involved with great things that unite people under a common fun goal!


Cosplay Coordinator / Videographer / Fashion Coordinator (messageboard ID = Tivia)

Tivia is a longtime fan and avid collector of all things related to Jem. She has a background in media and creative arts and has used her skills in these areas to direct stage productions, children's theater and has even done some animation voiceover work herself. She loves to make custom creations and credits the Jem series as having an early influence on her and inspiring her creative nature. Tivia identifies with the duality of the Jem/Jerrica characters and loves the "secret identity" element of the show. She also loves all the music and has enjoyed being present for some great musical moments at Jemcon including Britta Phillips hitting the high note on "Music is Magic" and watching Anne Bryant in the process of creating "a new Jem song". The wonderful friendships she has made through Jem Con are part of what keep her actively involved and she is enthusiastic about being part of this year's staff.


Graphic Artist (messageboard ID = Milky Mixer)

TJ is a fan of all things 80s and has been making art since he was old enough to hold a crayon. He has been a Jem fan since the beginning, when Jem was aired in 10 minute episodes on Super Sundays. The wild colors, mysterious makeup, and rockin' adventure storylines made a vivid impression on him. So much so, that Jem has been influencing his artwork in one way or another ever since. His favourite characters are Stormer and Kimber, the good bad girl and the bad good girl. TJ's favourite episodes are "The Bands Break Up", "In Search of the Stolen Album" and "Adventure In China." Be sure to visit TJ's outrageous website: www.milkymixer.jemcon.org