Innovative People

Ron Laswick

Ron Laswick I would love the opportunity to try to help you solve your challenges!

I have been fascinated with Inventions since a very young age. I developed hobbies in these fields and I taught myself the world of science, physics, electricity and electronics, well in advance of any learning I received in schools. When I was in grade 10, or so, I designed and made a working prototype of the world's first "talking" calculator for the blind. I sent the details to CNIB here in Canada, only to find out that a Swiss company had already beat me to it. That turned me off of Inventing for quite some time. Through this, I learned about Patents. My next attempt at inventing was at the age of 24, where I made a set of noise cancellation headphones for noisy environment hearing protection. I submitted the concept to a firm called The Canadian Innovation Centre for a paid evaluation. They indicated that it probably wouldn't work and there was a very small market potential for it. It turns out that it has been marketed successfully for many years someone else. Another turn off. This happened many times throughout the years. I then found work in the consumer small appliance repair business for ten years. Next job was at O-Two Medical Technologies, where I started as a field service technician, moved up to Quality Assurance, then into Product Development where I created all the initial prototypes and product development for all the products they still sell today. Approximately $30-$40 M in sales since 1992, many patents issued and I won a Manning Innovation Award for one of these. Finally, I headed up their Research and Development department. I did not have an Engineering certificate through all this. I ran out of opportunities at that firm, and as I had many inventions that I wanted to pursue, I found an Angel Investor to fund a start-up. It was a big decision for me, as I had been employed at this one firm for 24 years…but I had to try. Things started off OK, but we had trouble finding a specialized Engineering firm to design the prototypes. We got “Bamboozled” by two engineering companies, and after two and a half years, the Investor pulled the plug. He did not have any prior experience in the product development world, and was of the mindset, that all one needed to do is hire an engineer, do the drawings, make a prototype…and then sell, sell, sell it! That would be nice…..but sometimes things go amuck. Just near the end of this period, we did find a great company to work with that produced two functional prototypes, but by then, it was too late. After this endeavour, I found work in the field of pneumatic air tool repair. I could not get back into Product Development, Engineering or into any medical company due to my lack of required degrees and formal education. (Now we won’t bring up the fact that Edison only had three months of official schooling....but 1,093 Patents were awarded to him over his lifetime. Intelligence, creativity and vision aren't things taught, nor learned in a school.) I worked there for almost two years, and was laid off recently due to the economy here.
So, here I am again, seeking work. At the moment, I am looking for technician or repair type jobs. I really need to be in the field of product development though; it is the only thing I am really happy working at. It’s exciting. So, bottom line is that I am either giving up on product development and Inventing and seeking a job in a repair field, or I try to find another Angel Investor to move some of my other many inventions forward.