Meet a Member: Mark Dristy

Aug 30, 2017 by The . Topics include , , , , , , , , , ,

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A little bit of intrigue and an inclination towards community led Mark Dristy to Meet Mark!

1:    How did you come to be a member of

I moved to the CSRA about 3 years ago and was looking for like-minded tech people to work with on renewable energy enabling storage and distribution systems.  I was hoping to start a business around the idea.  I heard about incubator, maker and co-work space through some Meetups they were hosting and I figured that would be a great place to network and find such people.

2:    Describe the moment you decided what you wanted to do when you grew up?

There wasn’t a moment.  I was always a motor-head kid who liked machines, powersports and fixing things myself.  Probably around my mid-teens I figured out becoming a mechanical engineer might make sense.  I also considered pilot, police officer, physician, and forest ranger.

3:    What do you do in your current work?

I am currently the Chief Operations Officer of P4R75 Inc., incubated company which develops and builds educational robot kits and learning curriculums designed to help kids advance along STEM career paths.  (STEM = Science, Technology, Engineering, Math.)  I am working to help increase product quality and production efficiency, as well as to help build the business in general.

4:    What is an expertise you have that you would like to share with others?

Business Development, robust product design and development, Computer Aided Design, and social justice issues are four of them.

5:    What are you tinkering with at the moment?

Being new to P4R75, I am spending quite a bit of time lately learning the fabrication and production techniques that go into building the company’s robots.  I am also brushing up on and advancing my coding skills since the robots are essentially programmed in C++.

6:    What are you interested in learning?

All the various programming languages that go into Full-Stack Web Development.  Also, I also started learning to fly airplanes over ten years ago and would like to pick up where I left off and get my pilot’s license.

7:    What is your favorite sci-fi movie?

Hmmm, that’s tough one.  ‘I, Robot’ and ‘Avatar’ are two that come to mind that I liked a lot.

8:    If you have not lived all of your life in Augusta, where else have you lived?

Before I lived near Augusta I lived in Florida, New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Pennsylvania – in that order.

9:    If you could see one thing happen in Augusta in the next 5 – 10 years, what would it be?

I would like to see the downtown physically revitalized, helped along by a growing, vibrant electro-mechanical and software tech community, as well as artistic and sustainability communities.

10: Core Values are: Risk Boldly, Honor Your Commitments, Be Worthy of Trust, Give More Than You Take, and Share Solutions. Which core value do you best exemplify and why?

Well, I’d like to think all of them but if I had to choose one right now I’d pick “Share Solutions.”  As much as I want to succeed personally, I really just want to see good ideas succeed in general, whether they are advanced by me or others.  So, to that end, I am very happy to share any support, knowledge, skills, insights or experiences to anyone who is trying to create a great product or service.

If you are interested in membership with, please contact Ivy Brown at for a tour. You can also join on website, here.

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Located in a historic 1802 Schoolhouse, our space is divided into two wings. One for learning and prototyping, and one for coworking and business incubation. Our membership comes from a wide variety of backgrounds that all consider themselves some measure of hacker, maker, and doer. I am an architect. We have entrepreneurs, business people, teachers, engineers, designers, artists, and Jacks and Jill’s of all trades, and of course many software and hardware developers.

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