Our Mission


store-front-1The SDM Foundation is a non-profit 501(c)(3) private operating foundation that produces educational programs and services for non-technical people in order to facilitate easier access to information through advanced technology (such as the internet). In everyday language, this means helping beginners use email, the web, digital photography, online music and all of the other ways that people interact, learn and participate in society using computers.



Our Benefactor


SDM Foundation was created by Stuart D McIntosh in 2015 by a bequest upon his death. Mr. McIntosh was born in 1921 and raised in Glasgow, Scotland, where, after the death of both of his parents, he attended the University, received degrees in Chemistry and Library Science and began to make his way in the world.

Stuart’s early business focus was on making data munadjustednonraw_thumb_9ore accessible to the actual business user. He started this kind of work with printed forms and Kardex systems and eventually made his way to the hubs of early computing at Stanford and MIT in the 1960s. He was fond of saying that he did the same work all of his life, and only the tools changed over time. While he never wrote an email or looked up a website by himself, he was a voracious reader and followed technology trends, medical advances, and politics all his life.


Stuart wanted to be able to help people use technology to make their lives richer. He realized that the advantages of being able to use current technology were enormous, but that it was very difficult for people not already in the know to gain access. Even the specialized use of language is a barrier to using technology. He hoped that others could benefit from assistance focused on what they wanted to do, not on what the computer was able to do. His view was that the computer should work for the user, not the other way around. Stuart was always pushing to use technology to mechanize his ideas, and it could never quite catch up. While he died a man of means, he grew up with very little, and was generous in his assistance to others.


ArchiveSpace at MIT (A list of Stuart's documents being added to the archive)

McIntosh_MC-0719 (PDF list of documents held in MIT's archive)

Our Team

Kristin Thorp
Executive Director


Kristin moved to the Boston area from Minneapolis in 1984. Over the next three decades, her work with Stuart McIntosh focused on the ever-expanding world of online information, and how to make it more accessible to users. She and her husband raised their three children in Melrose, where they participated in schools, clubs and organizations. Kristin served for 11 years as an elected member of the Melrose School Committee. The SDM Foundation is her vision of the embodiment of Stuart's bequest.

Janet-HeadshotJanet Nevin
SDM Foundation Associate


Janet and her family have been Melrose residents since 1990.  She and her husband have been active volunteers in the community since their two sons started in the Melrose schools in the mid-1990s. Janet counts her involvement with The Bridge, Melrose Alliance Against Violence and several other organizations as among the most meaningful connections she has made in the City.  Additionally, she has worked in Melrose City Hall in the Health and Elections Departments.  Come and learn with us.

JD-HeadshotJosh Dick
SDM Foundation Associate


Josh is a Melrose resident who has studied digital media and design at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth.  He has a passion for technology and teaching people how it can make their day to day lives easier.  Josh has a strong interest in developing apps and games and is always looking for new technology to learn.  Josh enjoys making complex concepts simple to understand and technology accessible for people at any skill level.

Aaron Sansone
SDM Foundation Associate


Aaron’s family came to Melrose in 1972 and still lives here.  Raised in Melrose, he studied Information Systems Security at ITT Technical Institute.  Aaron has filled multiple IT support roles in the past, including working as an IT Specialist for the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and most recently as a Data Storage Engineer for Hitachi Data Systems. Aaron is passionate about technology, learning new things, and sharing his knowledge. In his spare time, he enjoys spending time with his family.

Sara Murray
SDM Foundation Associate


Sara moved to Melrose from Scotland in 2012. She has a background in engineering design and project management. Moving to the US gave her a chance to explore more creative avenues and she now writes, manages several websites, takes far too many photos and spends a lot of time on Instagram. She loves sharing her technical knowledge and helping others get the most out of their devices and apps. She is a mum to three, which keeps her more than busy when not working.

Michael Silva
SDM Foundation Associate


Michael currently resides in Groveland, MA. He is working towards his degree in computer science/ networking and security at Northern Essex Community College. In high school, Michael studied electronics/robotics and has a wide range of knowledge in the field of technology including robotics, website programming, circuit soldering. He enjoys problem solving and sharing this knowledge with others.

Collin Gray
SDM Foundation Associate



Beth-HeadshotBeth Lucien
Past Staff Member


Beth passed away in February 2019. She was a wonderful, happy, smart, hardworking addition to our staff. Her patient style was appreciated by so many of our clients. Beth continued learning every day, which made her a great role model, and she took on new challenges with incredible energy.

Beth was only with us for two years, but she will always hold a special place in our hearts.