• meet the national team

  • Michael Rosenfeld – Vice President of National Productions

  • Michael Rosenfeld is an award-winning producer, writer and television executive with extensive leadership experience in documentary production and new media. He has produced and written films covering a broad sweep of topics, from anthropology to history to volcanology. Prior to joining TPT as head of national production, Rosenfeld served as president of National Geographic Television and head of television and film at Tangled Bank Studios. In a career spanning network broadcast, cable, and public television, he has won or led teams that won hundreds of industry awards, including the Peabody and 40 News & Documentary Emmy Awards.
  • Fritz Bergmann – Senior Director of TPT National Productions

    As Senior Director of TPT National Productions, Fritz manages operations, planning and production. Before joining TPT National Productions, Bergmann served as Director of Institutional Relations at Minnesota Public Radio | American Public Media from 2001-2008. Prior to that, he spent 13 years in various leadership roles with the American Composers Forum.

Rita Karl – Managing Director, STEM Media and Education Department & Executive Producer, SciGirls

  • An accomplished leader of high-profile science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education initiatives in the U.S. and overseas, Rita current leads TPT’s multi-million dollar portfolio of STEM initiatives including the Emmy Award-winning SciGirls PBS television show and SciGirls CONNECT national outreach initiative. Ms. Karl is the Principal Investigator on several National Science Foundation grants, researching strategies that engage girls in non-traditional STEM fields and developing gender equitable and culturally responsive professional development for educators and programs for youth.Previously, Rita served as the Director of Education at the Challenger Center for Space Science Education managing the design, implementation and assessment of STEM education and outreach programs for an international network of learning centers in four countries located in schools, universities and museums. Prior to her work at Challenger Center, Ms. Karl was Director of the USAID project, Educational Technology in Schools, training over 2,500 educators and school administrators in inquiry-based teaching and learning using technology. The program won the “Best Project in USAID” award in 2004. At the NASA Johnson Space Center, Rita designed and led the NASA-award winning Aerospace Scholars program, now in its seventeenth year, encouraging gifted students, young women and minorities to consider careers in professional STEM fields by mentoring them with working engineers. Rita holds a Masters of Science Degree in Instructional Technology and a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Directing.

Kristin Pederson – Senior Director, STEM Project Development and Communications

Kristin’s work with Twin Cities PBS has had a distinct emphasis on science, health, gender equity and cultural competency. She has crafted and led educational engagement and communications initiatives for multiple award-winning projects, including SciGirls, DragonflyTV, The Forgetting: A Portrait of Alzheimer’s; The New Medicine, FAT: What No One Is Telling You, Depression: Out of the Shadows and Slavery by Another Name. Kristin fosters connections with diverse stakeholders, including content experts, researchers and educators, foundation and corporate sponsors, policymakers and other thought leaders, and collaborates with these partners to share STEM with children, families and educators nationwide.

Joan Freese – Senior Director of Educational and Interactive Media

  • Joan Freese is Senior Director of Educational and Interactive Media at Twin Cities PBS, where she focuses on projects for the K-8 audience, educators, and parents. Her work utilizes educational technology and media to provide learning experiences that promote equity for all learners. Joan is Executive Producer of the station’s Ready To Learn project, Hero Elementary, a broad and engaging initiative that features television, digital media, national outreach, and educational research focused on early science and literacy learning for K-2 children and their families. Joan is also Principle Investigator for SciGirls Code.Supported by the National Science Foundation’s STEM + Computing Partnerships Program, SciGirls Code is a pilot project that uses principles of connected learning with 16 partners nationwide to provide 160 girls and their educators with computational thinking and coding skills. Under Joan’s leadership, the SciGirls website, designed to engage tween girls in STEM, earned an Emmy Award for New Approaches in children’s programming and a Parents’ Choice Gold Award, which noted, “Unlike other sites in which the online games are the main focus, on this site, it is what kids do away from the computer that really matters — and what will keep them coming back for more.” Joan has written numerous non-fiction books for children. She holds a M.Ed. in Learning Technologies from the University of Minnesota.