Meet the Language Garage Team

The Language Garage is a team of language lovers and linguists who have been creating ways to make language learning simple, fun and accessible to everyone for decades. We’ve spent our careers developing language courses, teaching, and training language teachers in different methods for large corporate trainers, smaller language schools, and publishing houses.

We’ve said goodbye to the corporate grind and have struck out on our own so that we can bring our expertise, experience, and passion directly to you.


Chris Warnasch, Founder and President

Chris Warnasch founded the Language Garage after over twenty years of working for big names in language instruction, such as Living Language/Random House and Berlitz. Chris has taught, he’s written and edited language courses, he’s been responsible for training and quality of instruction at large and medium sized language centers, and he’s been a language content developer for text, audio, online, and app. Chris has an M.Phil in Linguistics from CUNY’s Graduate Center, where he specialized in syntax. In his spare time, Chris studies languages. He also cooks, bikes, travels, meditates. And then he studies more languages.

About the Language Garage, Chris says “I’ve had the privilege of working with fantastic talent over the years: teachers, writers, editors, linguists and language lovers. When I decided to create the Language Garage my goals were pretty simple: do things the right way, don’t sell snake oil about how languages are learned, and work with the right people. I was lucky enough to already know most of those people, and to have already worked with them or been taught by them. These are top-notch people.”

Check out Chris’ LinkedIn profile here.


Sev Ulitsky, French Content and Instruction

Sev Ulitsky was born in New York City, and then at age two moved to France’s Loire Valley. His mother studied at the Sorbonne and became a German teacher, and his father spoke four languages fluently, so they encouraged a love of languages, culture, travel and the arts in their son. Sev has taught French online, in person, and as a private tutor. He has worked for Living Language/Random House, Rosetta Stone, and the Alliance Française of San Francisco.

About the Language Garage, Sev says “students now have an unmatched way of learning online. Everyone here is top-notch, fun, passionate, if not downright geeky about language learning. And we’re a small family who know and trust one another, who communicate ideas constantly. This gives us both a creative power and a confidence that is impossible to experience in most corporate environments. If we want to try something, we do. It’s that simple.” Check out Sev’s LinkedIn profile here.


Mamori Sugita Hughes, Japanese Content and Instruction

Mamori Sugita Hughes is a native of Tokyo. She has a Ph.D in linguistics from the City University of New York, and has been teaching Japanese and linguistics at Queens College in New York for 20 years. Mamori has authored Japanese textbooks published by Living Language/Random House, and she has also served on an advisory committee for language proficiency assessment at the U.S. Defense Language Institute.

Mamori has taught hundreds of students, and she has studied several languages herself, so she really understands the challenges and obstacles that language students face as they work to achieve their goals, whether they’re just starting out in a new language or working toward fluency.

About the Language Garage, Mamori says: “I’m excited to be part of the Language Garage, because I know that every student will get the expert attention and care that they need and deserve, and this is essential to mastery.”

When Mamori is not geeking out on languages, she enjoys spending her time dancing.


Nela Navarro, Spanish

Nela Navarro has been taught Spanish for major language training companies and for universities. She has trained teachers, developed specialized curricula in both Spanish and English, and she has translated, edited, and written for both major publishers and academic publications.

Check out Nela’s LinkedIn profile here.


Eric Riesenberg, Spanish

Eric Riesenberg has over twenty years of experience, both in teaching Spanish and in the Spanish-language publishing industry. He taught Spanish, as well as trained and supervised instructors for a global language training company, and then began a career in publishing for a major publishing house, where he was Editor, Publisher, and Director of International Sales in the United States and Latin America. Eric has lived in Colombia and in several places in the United States, including New York, California, and Hawai’i. He has two fur babies and enjoys golf, tennis, and flea markets.

About the Language Garage, Eric says, “Chris and I have worked together for different companies for years. The Language Garage pulls together many of the things that I’ve loved about my work with languages – solid instruction, relevant content, and the fun of learning another language.”

Check out Eric’s LinkedIn profile here.


Agustina Carrando, Spanish Content and Instruction Specialist

Agustina Carrando has a doctorate in linguistics and has been teaching Spanish for the last fifteen years, specializing in speakers who grew up with the language and want to practice their written skills or expand their professional audience. Originally from Argentina, Agustina loves meeting people from other countries and learning about different languages and cultures. In her free time, she watches Korean dramas and practices Indian classical dance.


Antonio Pisano, Italian Content and Instruction

Antonio Pisano is originally from Sardegna, Italy. He’s been teaching Italian since the 90’s, both in Italy and in the US. He’s taught in schools, colleges, and online, and has learned how to use each medium to inspire his students and entertain them while they learn.

Antonio is passionate about his work and his culture. He has been living in the US since 2007, but he travels to Italy several times a year.

Antonio lives with his wife and daughter, as well as a cat and a dog. Antonio loves languages and in addition to English and Italian, he speaks Spanish, Portuguese, and French. Antonio also has a lot of hobbies, including cooking, music, reading, cinema, and sports.


Libardo Mitchell, Spanish

Libardo Mitchell is a native of Colombia. He is very passionate about sharing his love for the Spanish language and the cultures where it is spoken. Libardo has a BA and MA in Spanish and Literature with an endorsement in education. He has been teaching all levels of Spanish for over twenty years. He has taught for Auburn High School, Washington State University, Walla Walla State College, and Portland Community College (PCC). During the 18 years of full time employment at PCC he has served as an instructor and department chair. His roles include teaching, curriculum development, faculty support, training and mentoring, and management of all aspects of the program to ensure excellence in the delivery of classes to PCC students. His students have consistently rated him as an outstanding, caring, creative, passionate, and helpful instructor.

Ygor Fuentes, Spanish

Ygor Fuentes was born in Maracaibo, Venezuela. He can’t believe that he has been a teacher of Philosophy (Wittgenstein-obsessed),  Classical Languages (Latin and Greek lover) and Spanish (faithful devotee of Jorge Luis Borges) for more than 17 years. He believes that teaching languages might be not only the most beautiful subject but also the most comprehensive. Different ways of thought, philosophy, politics, poetry, love, food, geography, everything is in Languages and their human diversity.

About The Language Garage, Ygor says: “I couldn’t be more happy and excited to have found such a professional, passionate and honestly devoted group of Language Teachers as the team here at the Language Garage. ¡Enhorabuena!


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