FIGURE 3. Announcer Jen Schwartz.
On Friday morning, founder Brian
Schwartz, his wife Jen, and their
younger daughter Zoe posed in the
arena in Cleveland with CRCA
partner Dave Miller and his girlfriend
Erin Grondin (Figure 1).
Meet the Mecha Minds
Brian (Figure 2) is 29 years old
and has been involved in designing,
building, and competing with
fighting robots for the past decade.
He still competes, but now favors
organizing Mecha-Mayhem which is
one of the best Insect class fighting
robot events in the country.
When not tending to CRCA,
Brian works as an engineer for
Automated Manufacturing Solutions
FIGURE 6. Fourteen month old toddler
bot Zoe Schwartz eating pizza at the
34 SERVO 01.2013
FIGURE 4. Handyman Dave Miller
cleaning the arena after the demo bots
destroyed all the junk electronics.
(AMS) in Chicago.
As the CRCA founder, he
provides oversight of all CRCA
events, coordinates logistical
support with the iHobby event
organizers, arranges transportation
for the arena, transportation and
lodging for Team CRCA, engineers
systems in support of the arena,
and designs and manufactures
He and his wife Jen enjoyed a
long courtship and tied the knot
two years ago. They have two
daughters: eight year old Adrianna
(who couldn’t make it to Mecha-Mayhem because of school) and 14
month old toddler bot Zoe.
Jen is also 29 years old and is
employed as a social worker in the
FIGURE 5. Handywoman Erin Grondin
working the brackets during the
Chicago area. At Mecha-Mayhem,
you’ll find Jen making supply and
food runs during the arena set-up,
and in a headset during the event
working the crowd and providing
live commentary of the matches for
the audience (Figure 3).
Dave Miller is the 26 year old
head of applications and tech
support for ShopWare Incorporated
— the MasterCam reseller for Illinois
and Wisconsin. Dave built his first
robot at age 17 and is the CRCA
handyman responsible for ensuring
registered robots meet safety
requirements, the arena is clean and
operable, and for the design and
manufacturing of the Mecha-Mayhem trophies. Dave spends a
lot of time in the arena taking
FIGURE 7. Mecha-Mayhem 2012 layout at the iHobby Expo in Cleveland, OH.