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Leaping into the Unknown: Skyler Holobach

POSTED IN 3D Printing + Art + Craft + Leadership

"Using my skills to give back to others has always been near and dear to my heart. "-Skyler Holobach

Skyler Holobach defies the odds. She gives life to materials. It is through this creation that she gives back to others.

During non-pandemic times, Skyler works for an email service provider in Atlanta, Georgia combating spammers on the behalf of humanity. Generosity and service are pillars of Skyler's constitution and clearly evident during the 800+ hours a year she spends hand crocheting blankets, hats, and scarves for homeless individuals.

It comes as no surprise when the coronavirus pandemic hit, she dove head first into learning new skills and disciplines in order to help those in need. She knew the PPE shortage was drastic and urgent, she also knew that her 3D printer could only go so fast. So she poured herself into learning a timeless technique: casting. This is a process where liquid material is poured into a mold, which contains a hollow cavity of a desired shape, and then it solidifies. In Skyler's case the mold was a face shield, one that could protect frontline workers from a deadly virus.

Immersing herself in the unknown, she read, researched, and educated herself on the casting process. She stayed up late and got up early, relentlessly working to master this new material. She turned her apartment into an emergency workshop, and on shear conviction and willpower, pushed forward to help her community. Assuming the mantel of responsibility, she selflessly put her own wedding on hold to cast face shields for frontline workers. Only six weeks into learning this new skill, she cast her two thousandth shield.

For many this would have been more than enough, but Skyler didn't stop there. “I realized there was no way I was going to have the impact I wanted to have if I had to do everything on my own.” Great leaders are often great teammates, and she found her team in a community of like-minded individuals and fellow makers called Atlanta Beats COVID. It was through their teamwork that they scaled up her efforts, assembling another 16,000 cast face shields.

With the help of the community, operations and distribution were finally running smoothly. She could now have a very tiny, socially distanced wedding. On her wedding day, she wore a truly special face shield that a new friend from Atlanta Beats COVID made for her.

In the midst of a global crisis, Skyler jumped into the unknown and did the impossible. In her selfless actions we find the blueprint for how generosity, courage, hard work, and collaboration can exponentially change circumstances for the better for our global community.

To learn more about Skyler:

Visit Atlanta Beats Covid or donate to help her continue her work through Decatur Makers.

Skyler Holobach's silicone mold for face shields.
Frontline Workers wearing cast shields produced by Holobach.
Skyler celebrating her 2,000th cast shield.
Holobach in a crown shield made for her wedding day.
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