with a BS in Mechanical Engineering Technology from Penn State University (1985), then moved to the SF Bay Area and worked
in manufacturing and design engineering for several years. He then returned to school to get his MS in Biomedical
Engineering from California State University - Sacramento (1997) and worked in the fields of medical devices
and assistive technology, wheelchair seating and positioning (for humans).
He started designing
and building dog wheelchairs in 2004, after seeing a dog wheelchair featured on the Animal Planet channel and deciding to
try his own design.
After instructing in AutoCAD and mechanical drawing at Brookdale Community
College for a few semesters, Rich took a position as an Instructor of welding at another community college in central
NJ, more recently teaching welding at Athens Technical College. Not mentioned above, he attended welding school and was an
accomplished welder for four years prior to attending college. He enjoyed the hands-on aspect of teaching welding and the
enthusiasm of his students who came from all different backgrounds and fields.
Using his TIG welder (Miller Diversion 165) in his home shop, Rich has designed and
fabricated projects including bike display racks for Halter's Cycles in NJ, a custom bike carrier for his car, a rowing machine, mountain
bike chainring mudguard, a stand for rotating composters and an off-road recumbent trike with front suspension.
See his Facebook page for photos of some of these and other projects: https://www.facebook.com/rich.bergins
Other activities he enjoys are walking,
indoor rowing (he built a rowing machine), mountain biking with his Giant 29-er, and volunteering. He has two cats with
CH who enjoy the cat trees and condos he builds for them!