Ron is responsible for developing and maintaining key strategic relationships with Digital City Mechanics and acts as liaison between the ‘creative/product’ development side of the business and the ‘client management, sales and marketing’ side of the business. Ron’s experience in developing relationships and maintaining close political ties will be leveraged in each city and region the partnership enters – as the need for close client management will be extreme given the disruptive nature of our approach. Ron is both a serial entrepreneur and civic leader in the Cleveland/NEO greater community.
In 1989, Ron evolved his first company, Copfer & Associates as a software development entity, and achieved early success as one of the first interactive software developers creating floppy-disk brochures; computer based training (CBT) applications and CD-ROM electronic catalogs. In 1992, Copfer & Associates became one of the first commercial customers of FreeNet, at that time the world’s only Internet access provider via CWRU.
In 1993, Ron and his team beta tested the first Mosaic browser for Marc Andreessen and other students at the University of Illinois for the World Wide Web—and shortly thereafter built the first commercial website between Chicago and New York. These events soon led to requests from customers for website design and development and the future direction of his career was established. In 1998 Ron co-founded Cobra Training Systems, a 25 person computer-based, eLearning systems start-up in Columbus, Ohio, that pioneered interactive, end-user training courses for SAP R3 software.
Both a pioneer and a veteran of the new economy, Ron has spearheaded the design and sales of electronic catalogs, on-line configuration, knowledge, digital asset and document management systems as well as eLearning and search engine optimization techniques. In June of 2000, Copfer & Associates was renamed as Fathom Interactive Solutions, Inc. Fathom IT was involved in the design, development and integration of on-line information systems that connect people, processes and technology.
In 2005, Ron and his shareholders spun-off FathomSEO which became the 12th largest eMarketing firm in the world according to Advertising Age—offering all forms of advanced on-line marketing services. In October of 2007 FathomSEO was sold to the private equity group; PromiseOne.
In 2008 Ron was hired by the Revenue Group of Beachwood, Ohio as Chief Technology Officer to assist this 200+ employee operation in a successful technology upgrade and to help turn-around their call center operation SalesLoft.
In 2010, Ron re-joined the operations of Visual Evidence-E-Discovery that he co-founded in 1987 to expand their market channels and refine software systems to expand into the legal/corporate electronic document discovery (EDD) industry. Also in 2010, Ron began collaborating with Marc Canter on the Digital City project.
Ron was co-founder of OneCleveland/OneCommunity, an executive board member of NORTECH, past chairman of the North East Ohio Software Association (NEOSA) and now sits on the board of the Cleveland Film Commission, TiME (The Institute for the Integration of Management and Engineering) at Case Western Reserve University, the Cleveland Institute of Art and the Cleveland School of the Arts.
Byron K. Dillard
Byron Dillard brings over fifteen years of leading large scale Programs as a Senior Program Manager for Information Management and Technology projects. Byron has made contributions of his skills and expertise in both operational and senior executive roles within a number of industries: Energy, Telecommunications, Homeland Security and Government Relations. Byron also has a great depth of experience within the Federal market place. As a Government Relations specialist for one of America’s largest energy trade association, Byron served as the senior marketing liaison to the Federal government, responsible for assisting member companies with overcoming issues affecting their marketing and operational initiatives and promoting the industry’s state of the art technologies. Byron’s advocacy assignment included the following Federal agencies: Department of Energy, General Services Administration, Department of Transportation, Defense Fuels Logistics Agency, Department of Labor and United States Postal Service.
Byron served as a Program Manager (April 2011) occurred in the capacity of Independent Verification and Validation specialists for the United Kingdom’s Military Flight Training function tasked with supporting the MFTS program in replacing existing simulation software including the analogue cockpit-equipped Bell 412. The oversight role entailed my supporting industry giant Lockheed Martin (United States – Orlando, Florida) and Ascent Flight Training Systems of the United Kingdom. The joint venture between Lockheed Martin and Babcock, Ascent is the UK Ministry of Defence’s “training system partner” for MFTS.
Additional Program/Project Management credentials were developed as the Project Management of NEXTEL’s National Trouble Ticketing system that encompassed a implementation and maintenance function for the Telecommunications national support software with a footprint that covered the entire United States.
Recent Past Performance can be traced to the following clients: District Homeland Security Emergency Management Administration (Grant Management); Federal Trade Commission; District Office of the Chief Financial Officer’s Office of Tax and Revenue (PM, Independent Verification and Validation, and Business Process Analysis); District Department of Transportation (PM and Business Process Analysis); NETTEL Communications (Key Performance Indicators Program), Quest Diagnostics (Digital Documentation through Optical Character Recognition), NEXTEL Communications (National Trouble Ticketing System), the United States Postal Service (Year 2000 Readiness Program – Energy and Telecommunications), the General Services Administration (508 Compliance and Personnel Assessment Survey),
Marc is responsible for developing program and product ideas, architecting systems and customizing each Digital City deployment for Digital City Mechanics’ customers. Marc manages the technical, community engagement and multimedia production efforts as well as lead all sales and business development. As CEO of Digital City Mechanics Marc’s vision and compunction leads him from developing new open standards and software infrastructure to establishing distributed networks and business syndicates in each customer city or region.
Marc is responsible for inspiring and motivating dynamic teams of Digital Citizens around the world who will be building Digital Cities – in their own capacity and level of contribution. Striking a balance between: altruism and capitalism, on-line technology and the real-world and between family and work is Marc’s constant challenge and goals.
Marc has been in the software business since 1980. He founded his first company in 1984, MacroMind, after working at Bally-Midway on videogames such as Professor Pac-Man, 10 Pin Deluxe and SpyHunter. The later was the first videogame to include licensed music in it; “Peter Gun” by Henry Mancini. MacroMind was formed at the birth of a new personal computer platform – the Macintosh. MacroMind developed the first music product, MusicWorks and the first animation/authoring tool, VideoWorks, as well as the first maze game, Maze Wars+. When the color Macintosh was released MacroMind launched VideoWorks II, which garnered the company critical reviews as the first color tool for the Macintosh (1988.) This brought venture capital investment (Kleiner, Perkins) and a move from Chicago to San Francisco and re-release of the company’s flagship product, as Director. MacroMind became the first software company in the SOMA area of San Francisco.
MacroMind became the world’s leading multimedia company, created the first multimedia player (now called Flash), the first multimedia authoring tool (Director) and the first ‘author-once, playback many places’ development environment. MacroMind merged with Authorware in 1991 and became Macromedia. Macromedia went public in 1993 [MACR] and later merged with Adobe (2005.)
After leaving Macromedia in 1992 Marc provided consulting services for Sony, Fujitsu, NEC, JVC, Intel, Apple, Microsoft and other leading technology companies. Marc then co-developed an interactive flat panel display for SuperBowl XXXII (1997-98), a digital city architecture and feasibility study for Trieste, Italy (1998), an IPTV authoring system for NOW.com (1999), was a co-founder of Digiscents (1999) and helped create numerous other web sites, designs and architectures for AOL, Reuters and eCast. The new decade brought work on the design of a new AOL, a digital production facility at the Ealing Studios (London) and several early designs, of what became known as ‘social networking’ (aSmallWorld, 1Up, Always-On, AIMpages, EMInet, Conde Nast Net.)
Marc formed Broadband Mechanics in 2005 to create an open social networking platform – which became known as ‘white labeled” social networking. Systems were built for the Sacramento Kings, theTimesofIndia, Mondadori, Bell Canada, RadioOne, NVidia and the U.S. Army ROTC program – among many others. Broadband Mechanics’s platform – PeopleAggregator is an open source, social media and blogging platform which was the first social networking platform to support OpenID. Municipalities and regions can have their own social network at the foundation of a ‘Citizen dashboard’ platform, while connecting seamlessly to Facebook, Google + and other social media platforms
Digital City Mechanics was created in the summer of 2010 – after Marc moved his family to Cleveland.