The Company

Located in San Francisco, California, humangear was founded in 2007 with a mission to develop "real gear for real humans."

At humangear, we spend a lot of time with people -- listening to their feedback, watching them use products, trying to understand their needs, and getting a deep appreciation for the experience at hand. We also spend a lot of time getting our hands dirty. We think if a picture is worth a thousand words, a prototype is worth many thousand pictures.

humangear is passionate about creating remarkable and responsible products that, at least in some small way, make the world a better place.

 

The Humans at the Company

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Chris Miksovsky, Chief Executive Human
Hi, I'm Chris. I'm the Chief Executive Human here at humangear. When I'm not coming up with clever titles for myself, I like to spend time designing humangear's products. I have a Masters in Engineering - Product Design from Stanford and worked for several years at IDEO before starting humangear in 2007.

Our design process starts with me looking up and out my desk window, putting a hand lightly to my chin, and thinking: "What if? What if the world had a better travel tube? What if we could revolutionize the portable utensil category? What if I had an even catchier title?" Then after a short while a brilliant idea pops into my head, I scribble it onto a napkin, and tell our amazing team to call me when it's on the shelf. When that method doesn't work, we spend countless hours obsessing over every millimeter of a product. We strive to make products that are simple, useful, considered, and hopefully even a bit delightful. Basically we try to give a damn about the things we make. I feel lucky to be at humangear and hope they never fire me.

I'm also a firm believer that there's more to life than work. In my free time I like to mountain bike, motorbike, go backpacking, and torture anyone nearby with my guitar playing. My favorite candy bar is a Reese's peanut butter cup. I wish they sold them in three packs called "Threese's." Call me when it's on the shelf.

 

 

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Katrin Ward, Head of Administration and Accounting
Hi, I'm Katrin. I handle humangear's administration and accounting--meaning that on any given day I may be working on our website, coordinating shipments with our warehouse, preparing documents for our CPA, or replenishing our coffee funds drawer. I drink a lot of coffee. I started working for humangear in 2011 when I moved to San Francisco to earn a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing. I'm not the first person to love balance sheets and literature, although I wouldn't call my file cabinet "my providence" like T.S. Eliot did. In addition to my work at humangear and writing short stories, I have another profession--I'm one of humangear's hand models. You can see my hands in action on the GoTote and GoBites webpages.

My husband and I live in Lower Nob Hill with our cat, Marlowe. I can often be spotted on the N Muni line with my thermos (did I say I drink a lot of coffee) and a book. I collect vinyl rock n' roll albums from the 1970s and Teddy Ruxpin books from my childhood--yes, that eerie but lovable talking bear still has a hold on me.

 

Jordan Hurder, Head of Operations and Sales
Hi, I'm Jordan. I handle humangear's sales and operations--stuff like keeping products in stock, figuring out how to better serve our retail and distribution partners, and making sure the office doesn't burn down. I usually have my face buried in a spreadsheet or ten, occasionally taking a break to name new coffee drinks ("Americarbo" = espresso shot + carbonated water). I live across the bay from San Francisco with my wife Justine and my bratty Siberian husky Neko (my coworkers are tired of me showing them photos of Neko on a daily basis). In my spare time, Justine and I run a small publishing company called "Chance Press," where we print and bind books by hand. I can also be found playing in a rock n' roll band or wandering around with Neko in the jaw-droppingly gorgeous Bay Area scenery (current favorite spot: Pine Mountain in Marin County).

I'm into my second decade in the outdoor/travel goods industry, which means I haven't worn a tie to work since, well, ever. I joined humangear in 2012, enticed by the strict "NO TIES" policy and the fact that Charles Bukowski's birthday is a company holiday. I really like it here, so I don't think the wrist cuff shackling me to my desk is necessary.

 

 

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Scott Cook, Design Engineer
Hi, I’m Scott.  I’m a design engineer at humangear, meaning I’m tasked with turning our CEH’s napkin scribbles into real-life products.  With one hand on a glue gun, the other firmly clamped in a vice, I’m working tirelessly to bring you fine people the best damn travel/outdoor/storage products out there.  Need a ‘tubb for your next Coinstar payday?  Gotcha.  How about a ‘toob for your foot cream? No judgments here.  Does your dog want to destroy a FlexiBowl?!  They love those things!

My tinkering career came from humble beginnings, with such inventions as an automatic soup cooler (stirs AND blows,) a humane mousetrap (turns out they can chew through plastic,) and a heated ice cream scooper (someone beat me to it…). After the crushing of my childhood dreams, I joined the adults and got a degree in Mechanical Engineering.  I’ve helped make telescopes, infrared cameras, high-impact helmets, even ice cream machines (OK, I guess some childhood dreams live on).

Once I figured out how to release my hand from that stupid vice, I made a nice life for myself outside of humangear.  My partner and I have settled down in our beloved town of Oakland, where we keep busy strolling Lake Merritt and hunting down the best tacos. 

Olivia Hoedt, Customer Service
Hi, I’m Olivia. I manage humangear’s customer service inquiries, which means I’m your go-to girl if you need a replacement spoon for your GoBites Trio; if you’re curious on whether or not you can put peanut butter in your GoToob+ (yes, yes you can); or if you just want to give a shoutout to your favorite brand about how much you love our products. I like connecting with customers from all over the world to answer any and all inquiries, and I can often be found in our shipping room sending out warranty replacements. My favorite humangear product is the capCAP+ as I, too, have often found myself driving and drinking out of my wide-mouth Nalgene water bottle when traffic comes to an abrupt stop, spilling the entire 32 ounces of water in my lap (but not anymore, thanks capCAP+).

When I’m not chatting with our customers, I’m fantasizing about the next time I can travel to Italy and find the perfect bowl of Cacio e Pepe. Spoiler alert: every bowl of Cacio e Pepe is perfect. If the Cacio e Pepe search gets boring, I’ll switch to my other favorite—Nutella gelato. I’m technically a 5th generation San Franciscan currently living in Cow Hollow where I like to spend my time smothering my dog with love, hiking up on Skyline, cooking for my family, and drinking a spicy margarita on the rocks.