The energy in the room was an electrifying mix of adrenaline, euphoria, and celebration. The exhaustion would not hit until a few days later. For this moment in time, there was a feeling of teamwork, community, and a feeling of being part of something bigger than the sum of its parts.
We did it! We successfully completed a 3D Print-a-Thon that resulted in generating more than 250 prosthetic hands on a global scale that would be donated to the Robohand organization. They would, in turn, fit and distribute the hands worldwide to those in need. And we broke the Guinness World Record with a 3D Flash Print event at our Costa Mesa, Calif. facility, running over 261 3D printers simultaneously under one roof, all printing Robohand components.
While 2014 hadn’t ended yet on this Saturday evening in mid-December, it symbolized the end of a triumphant year, one in which thoughts became actions and goals turned into reality. It marked our second year, one where we quadrupled in size, exceeded our sales projections and touched everyone in our path with our impassioned spirit. We moved into a new larger 12,000 sq. ft. facility and introduced a new website.
It was a year of getting involved in 3D initiatives beyond our organization. In November, both Airwolf 3D and our customers participated in the White House 3D Printed Ornament Challenge, printing and submitting ornaments in the competition. Our customer, Robert Stemen, landed in the top 20 finalists, and members of Tustin High’s T-Tech Group also received recognition.
It was a year of educating teachers. In August the Airwolf 3D staff hosted Orange County teachers for a 3-day workshop, training the teachers in 3D design and 3D printer operation. In September, we attended the STEM Conference in San Diego, where CEO Eva Wolf co-presented, encouraging educators to use 3D printing to expand student skills.
It was a year of sharing the fun. In October, our staff got busy with the “Pimp My Pumpkin” project, in which they created 3D printed accessories to decorate pumpkins.
It was a year of accolades and celebration when in October Airwolf 3D was honored with the Orange County Tech Alliance 21st High Tech Innovation Award in the Enterprise and Device category for its HDx 3D Printer.
It was a year of product debuts as we introduced our industrial strength HD2x printer that prints in two colors or two materials. And then Wolfbite, the industry-changing 3D printing solution that fights two known industry issues, adhesion, and warpage.
It was the year of making someone’s day. That’s what happened when our Facebook fan Tim won our top-of-the-line HD2x desktop printer, which had just debuted, in our 2X2WIN Sweepstakes. We surpassed 10,000 Facebook likes along the way. Then our entire community congratulated Tim as we watched his printer travel from Costa Mesa, Calif. to his door in Hickory North Carolina.
It was a year of progression and talent. In June Mark Mathews, the former president and CEO of Toshiba America Business Solutions, Inc., was named the president of Airwolf 3D to run the business side of the company and oversee our rapid growth. We also almost quadrupled our staff in 2014, and the upbeat spirit is contagious, with positive energy traveling through the halls of our facility.
But mostly it was a year of gratitude. To our amazing staff, loyal customers, hard-working distributors, enthusiastic social media community, the teachers, our vendors, advisers, volunteers, champions and cheerleaders–everyone else whom we crossed paths with, big or small. You all contributed to making 2014 a stellar year for Airwolf 3D, and we thank each and every one of you.
We already have so much excitement in the works for 2015, kicking off with announcements at CES in Las Vegas on Jan. 6-9, so stay tuned!
Wishing you a happy and healthy New Year, from our family to yours…