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Interview with Brian Gylland – Design Engineer
Sep
26

I grew up on Vashon Island and first worked at BURN Design Lab (BDL) in the summer of 2015 to develop technical skills between my junior and senior years at the University of Portland. Upon graduating with a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering in 2016, I returned to BDL to fill the full-time position of Design Engineer. As part of such a small team, I’ve been challenged with managing the testing lab, assisting and leading stove development projects, and training new interns. I enjoy working for BDL because the wide range of tasks and responsibilities requires high levels of time management and accountability, and there are new problems to solve each day. In my free time, I enjoy hiking, sailing, fishing, and following sports.

Q: TRUST in design is…

A: A commitment to creating a product that addresses customer needs, is easy to manufacture, and addresses a larger issue.

Q: Where have you found TRUST through design?

A: Through conversations with local women in Guatemala and Ghana, where their feedback on my ideas is essential to forming trust, and ultimately a product that will meet their needs and help the environment.

Q: Where do you see a need for TRUST in design?

A: TRUST in design is needed for a project to be the most fruitful and have the greatest possible impact. TRUST is essential in forming relationships which ultimately make design a collaborative effort rather than an individual one.

Q: My favorite thing about my city is…

A: My favorite thing about Seattle is the weather. We are very lucky to be surrounded by water and mountains and to experience all the seasons with a variety of activities to do year-round.

Q: If you could sum up your outlook on life in a bumper sticker, what would it say?

A: “All we have to decide is what we do with the time that is given to us.”

Q: If you could have one superpower what would it be and why?

A: I would want to fly, so that I could have an additional perspective on things. Perspective is essential in forming our opinions and world view, and flying would enable me to broaden my perspective by going to places I couldn’t otherwise.

 

Learn more Brian’s work:
Website – www.burndesignlab.org
Instagram – @briangylland
Email – [email protected]

Don’t miss BURN Design Lab’s project, BURN Cookstoves—which reduce fuel consumption and smoke production to enable a more affordable and less toxic cooking environment—featured in Design with the 90%, on view at The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Discovery Center through May 11, 2019.