In the beginning of April Bob Buist attended the JobBOSS conference in San Diego, where he heard speaker Titan Gilroy talk about his experiences owning a CNC machine shop in Northern California. Gilroy’s story is unique. On the one hand he was an entrepreneur’s story: he started his own business in 2005 and now employees around 30 workers. They make precision components from carbon fiber, plastic, steel, and aluminum for a number of high-tech industries.
That’s not all, though. Titan Gilroy also produces and stars in the TV series Titans of CNC, a labor of love he created to highlight the struggles and the victories of the machine shop owners who kept themselves above water in the wake of the Great Recession. Gilroy strongly believes in the importance of CNC machining to the American economy and to workers who benefit from learning a skilled trade that American manufacturing depends on. He also thinks that American manufacturing is the best in the world.
As a result of this passion, Gilroy created an important free training platform and resource called Titans of CNC: Academy in order to train and inspire students, educators, and shop owners. This CAD/CAM and CNC manufacturing educational program is online with thousands of projects, video tutorials and TV episodes available to assist anyone with the desire to learn CNC.
Another way that Titan Gilroy is educating and creating opportunities for other would be machinists is through his machine-shop training program in San Quentin Prison. Gilroy’s upbringing and youth were troubled and full of violence and poverty. A former amateur boxer, he served time in prison himself, but learning the CNC trade gave him better goals and aspirations and kept him from returning to his previous patterns of anger and violence. He’s now sharing those skills with the inmates of San Quentin and highlighting their journey in season three of Titans of CNC. In this way he hopes to be able to help others like him to break the cycle of hopelessness and poverty while helping to rebuild American manufacturing again from the ground up.
Titans of CNC is involved in many initiatives designed to give people both training and inspiration. Check out the Titans’ Giving Back Inspiration page to see more examples of the good that can be done when passion, energy, and concern for the people around you intersect. If you’ve ever thought of CNC machining as just another job or type of work, Titan Gilroy’s story will excite you about the opportunities for both people and innovation in this fast changing industry.