After spending a long day at work and a full evening caring for her three active sons, Mary Tiffin was finally ready for her daily run. Seeing it was well past sundown and knowing that she needed to make it back home safe to her boys, she grabbed a couple of her son’s small camping flashlights and duct taped them to a pair of gloves before heading out. As she ran, she realized that many others were living this same busy lifestyle, and she began to dream of a product that would help others find time in their days to stay fit. Knowing of their work with many other successful inventors, Mary turned to Bucknell University Small Business Development Center (SBDC) for help. Consultants provided her with assistance in topics such as business startup procedures, marketing strategy, and financial projections. Concurrently, the SBDC’s specialty Engineering Development Services helped her with patent research, product development, and prototyping. The SBDC also helped Mary’s firm, Mangata, attain membership in StartupLewisburg, the Bucknell University Entrepreneurs Incubator, where she connects with other company founders and finds collaborators throughout the university’s ecosystem for entrepreneurship.
In addition to having a back-ground in fashion and technology, Mary is also a talented marketer and networker. Among her advisors is Kevin Harrington, one of the original sharks from ABC’s Shark Tank. His investment, advice, and video testimonial on the website for her RunLites gloves helped build significant buzz for the product launch.
The momentum continued as Mary was recognized by the SBDC and PA Representative Lynda Schlegel Culver as a regional winner of the Small Business Administration’s 2016 InnovateHER Business Challenge. Her gloves that “Light up the Night” have been exhibited at the New York Road Runners New Year’s Eve Midnight Run, at the Philadelphia Marathon Health and Fitness Expo, and at the Mid-Atlantic Emergency Preparedness & Survival Expo. RunLites have also been featured in Fitness Magazine and on sites such as Active.com and Examiner.com.
For running, walking, cycling, hiking or hunting at night; or even for indoor tasks in low-light areas, RunLites are an innovative wearable technology solution that puts light where it's needed most.