Elliot Rudell - President
Elliot started Rudell Design in 1975, after working for Mattel for 5 years. He has an Industrial Design degree from Pratt Institute, New York. Elliot is typically involved in what he calls the "C's" of the business: Concepts, Contracts, Clients, and Communications. The great skill level of the people on staff has allowed him to take his hands off a good deal of the day-to-day product development phases, and he's fine with that. Over the years, as the business has grown and the demands for business management have increased, he's discovered lots of Creative opportunities on the business end. There's another C for you.
Robyn Rudell - Business Manager
As Elliot's wife, Robyn has been involved in the business since its beginning. A degree in accounting truly qualifies Robyn to keep the finances in-line, and equips her to professionally manage the day-by-day financial matters of the business (even though her day-by-day has been carefully sculpted into a once-a-week presence at the offices).
Joe Cernansky - Technical Director
The official "first employee" to join Elliot, Joe has been on staff since 1975. Joe started at Rudell Design because Elliot needed a gigantic flower pot constructed out of plastic - for a consumer products client. Joe wanted to build it out of wood. Ahhhh. Times of changed. Gifted hands and a tenacious attitude towards getting things accomplished (things that sometimes would appear to be impossible), are strong traits. Joe is a creative force at the company, both with hands-on skill as well as new concept ideation.
Rick Kamrath - Design Director
Rick has been at Rudell Design as our Artiste/Design Director, since 1976. If something can be drawn, Rick can draw it. His artwork typically flies past all approval phases when we have to work with picky studios or property licensors. His kids drawings make you want to hug them, and his action figures intimidate you. Conveniently, Rick is also a gifted musician and an accomplished studio recording guy, providing Rudell Design with great talents above and beyond drawing and illustration. When Rick came to Rudell Design, it was markers and French curves. Markers are now Macs and French curves are Quark and Photoshop. The Harley in the back is Rick's. He is put in well over 100,000 miles.
George Foster - VP - Product Development
Upon leaving TRW in 1985, George came onboard at Rudell Design, first as a consultant and then full time. When Elliot was at Mattel, they used to refer to TRW as The Real World. Welcome to The Other World now: Toys. George is highly creative, works fervently, and oversees most all development projects. He'd rather be neck-deep in development than sit a long time in a meeting, but he'll do whatever it takes to make a product great, and to move it forward. He is the go-to guy for an overview of what is happening project-wise and who is doing what. A skilled industrial designer, George's modelworking talents and illustration abilities are in concert with his conceptual drive. George is setting up bluetooth to control his iPod to work with his cell phone and his GPS unit. Or is it the GPS unit to work with the Sony game unit to control his microwave?
Ian Osborne - Senior Engineering Tech
A second-generation toy engineer, Ian began at Rudell Design in 1991. This second-generation situation makes Elliot really feel old, since he worked with Ian's dad at Mattel! Ian is Mr. Mechanism. If there's a way to get one part to interact with another so that a task is accomplished or a movement initiated, it's an Ian-thing. He is methodical, purposeful, not easily ruffled (although we all try). Ian loves eBay, by the way, so we're thinking of changing his name to eAn, But that's a secret so don't tell him. Ian's come up with some great concepts over the years. Golfing is his only noticeable flaw. For some reason, he loves chasing that little ball. A total sports trivia nut.
Besides our full-time staff, there's a small bunch of folks that we often call upon, outside of our four walls, to work with us/beside us/for us on different projects. Engineers, programmers, sourcing/costing folks, face painters, sculptors, other artists and designers, etc. We are blessed to be in relationship with some great folks, in this exciting and unpredictably wacky industry of ours.