Manufacturing Program Associate
Hometown: Pittsburgh, PA
What makes you the best person for your role?
I believe my ability to communicate effectively across a wide range of technical disciplines makes me uniquely suited for connecting new and mature startups with the world of manufacturing. It started with getting my master’s in Engineering Science & Mechanics from Penn State where I prototyped biodiesel reactors that used microwaves and ultrasound simultaneously. I then gained professional engineering experience working in the nuclear industry for Westinghouse Electric Company, before seizing the chance to be the founding General Manager of TechShop Pittsburgh. At TechShop, I got the opportunity to learn to run a small business, work in an incredibly diverse startup environment, and weave TechShop into the Pittsburgh community through partnerships with dozens of local businesses and nonprofits. After TechShop I successfully prototyped, crowdfunded, manufactured, and distributed my own product to over 55 countries across the globe.
This winding career has given me a unique ability to understand the needs and challenges of startups and small businesses trying to do something for the first time and manufacturers trying to grow their business and stay competitive in the shifting global landscape.
What is your favorite thing about working with startups?
I love helping companies avoid the mistakes I made, I love empowering startups to make things locally, and I love helping ideas become reality.
What do you love about living and working in Pittsburgh?
First and foremost, I love that my whole family is here, but I also love the tight-knit, interconnected, collaborative community here. The pride people have in this region and how that inspires people to help others succeed.
Where can we find you outside of work?
Tinkering on new products/projects at Protohaven; backpacking, camping, or some other outdoor adventure; family dinner; reading/listening to a book; learning something new; or traveling to a new city/country!