Position: Chief Engineer
Roles & responsibilities: I do a little bit of everything, from new product design and overseeing the manufacturing process, to working on new layups and even making bikes myself if we need some extra work done.
Where did you grow up? I grew up in Hiram, Ohio, a small town in the northeast part of the state, often referred to simply as “God’s Country”. For you Cyclone fans, I recently learned it was the birthplace of Jack Trice. After high school, I pursued an engineering degree from The Ohio State University, and during that time got a job as an intern at Rüster Sports. The rest, as they say, is history.
Sports as a child? Growing up I played a lot of baseball and basketball. At some point, I realized I was better suited to run long distances than short, so in high school I ran track and cross country and dabbled on the swim team. It was at that point that I also got into riding bikes and even did a few triathlons in the summer months. When I became a Buckeye, it was a no brainer to join the triathlon team. It was at that point that I really got into the sport and learned about slowtwitch.com.
Fondest memories of bikes? I have a couple vivid childhood memories from riding bikes. One is from when I was probably about 8 or 9, when my dad would go out for long runs I would sometimes ride along. On some of the big hills, I couldn’t make it up so my dad had to push. Another memory is from spring time when we were spreading mulch, I decided it would be a great idea to use the mulch pile as a ramp. Needless to say, this didn’t end up very well and I think I still have a scar on my knee.
On a bit of a brighter note, I can remember one year in high school I was injured during cross country season. Fortunately, I had just gotten my first road bike that summer. My coach would make me go out and ride, and during that time, I did my first ever workout on a bike. I think that was what really got me hooked.
What are you most excited about bikes today? I just loving helping people go fast. When a customer first gets on their bike and report back about how great it felt, that’s what makes it all worth it. Once in awhile, they let me out of the office and I get a chance to go to a demo event, and seeing the looks on peoples faces when they come back from a ride on the Dimond is just priceless.
If I had to do something else for a job, what would be it be? Realistically & without limits? For sure an astronaut. I actually considered applying when they opened up applications last year. But I think I needed a few more years of experience first. As I kid it was my dream to be the first man on Mars. I actually wrote a book about it.
Wish you had this skill? This is a tough one. But since I’m a true engineer I’d say better people skills.
Racing this year? This may be sacrilegious to some of you but I actually haven’t finalized my 2016 schedule yet. I do know that I’ll be making my Ironman debut at Chattanooga in September. Between now and then I’ll do some local half and olympic distance racing, potentially a 70.3, and maybe even try to win a few Cat 4 crits. Then next spring I’m hoping to tackle Rim2Rim2Rim with my college friend and my dad if I can convince him.