Max Ray-Riek is the Director of 6-12 Professional Development at Illustrative Mathematics and worked as a writer on the high school curriculum. Before coming to Illustrative Mathematics, Max worked for The Math Forum, focusing on fostering problem solving and making student thinking the center of math class. He is the lead author of Powerful Problem Solving: Activities for Sense Making with the Math Practices. Max is a former secondary mathematics teacher (and before that, preschool teacher) who finds the art and discipline of valuing each student’s ideas, and supporting all students to see themselves as people who can listen, connect, and act mathematically, to be the hardest, most rewarding, and most important work in the world. Max lives in Philadelphia with his wife, with whom he fosters puppies who will grow up to be trained to be service dogs.