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ShopBot hires new director of education

ShopBot Tools hired Randy Johnson, former editor-in-chief of American Woodworker magazine, as its director of education.

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A newly created position, Johnson’s role will be to provide educators with practical advice and information to the communities of ShopBot’s and is an online community where people with ideas for custom products connect with digital fabricators. is a new educational initiative that was launched in January and will serve a similar function by connecting teachers with resources. Johnson says he’s looking forward to working with CNC and digital fabrication issues as applied to schools.

“I will be working with schools and small businesses to help them adapt digital technologies and develop CNC-based projects and develop curriculums to help them adapt the technologies in their classrooms. I’ll be traveling quite extensively to meet with teachers and educational leaders around the country,” Johnson says.

ShopBot CEO Ted Hall says the CNC manufacturer picked Johnson because of his enthusiasm for digital fabrication and interest in using it to enhance woodworking education.

“Randy has been creating industry-leading articles on CNC and digital fabrication, his background and interests are in education and he’s always made an effort to reach out to schools so he’s kind of a natural for us,” says Hall.

Hall adds that Johnson has also been involved with organizing and contributing content to the new program so that it reaches beyond existing ShopBot customers.

“We’ve had educational supports on our website for a long time. We’ve offered training and we’ve worked with schools, but it’s all been exclusively ShopBot-oriented and we felt like we could make a contribution to the community by essentially creating a website that offers digital fabrication resources to teachers and educators.”

Contact: ShopBot Tools Inc., 3333 Industrial Dr., Durham, NC 27704. Tel: 888-680-4466.

This article originally appeared in the February 2013 issue.

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