How We Got Started
“Your efforts are a remarkable example of the generosity and compassion that make our communities stronger and better.”
President George H. W. Bush
2017 Points of Light Award Citation
In 2014, my brother, Gabriel, and I discovered entrepreneurship when we co-founded RobotsNOW. Our team had just won the VEX IQ World Robotics Championships, and we were walking on air. Then, we learned just how few schools had after-school robotics clubs. With a healthy dose of naivete and a desire to “change the world,” we launched our tiny nonprofit organization.
From humble lemonade stands funding a single robotics club to crowdfunding campaigns culminating in mobile robotics laboratories that support entire school districts, RobotsNOW’s impact quickly grew. Every step forward that we committed RobotsNOW put us in deeper water, well over our head. We were forced to learn how to swim.
We expanded into week-long summer robotics camps, teacher STEM workshops, robotics demonstrations and coaching. For providing thousands of students with access to after-school STEM programs, we were awarded the President George H.W. Bush Points of Light Award, our nation’s most prestigious award for volunteerism and service.
With the help of more people than I could ever personally thank, RobotsNOW has helped us make an impact in numerous under-served schools. On a personal note, I was very young when we launched RobotsNOW. Although my heart has always been in the right place, my abilities and maturity did not always match the awesome responsibilities that we assumed. To everyone who has been a part of RobotsNOW’s work, thank you for allowing me an opportunity to grow with RobotsNOW.
Although we may have not “changed the world,” I am certain that we have changed many worlds. We have changed the world for each child who now sees STEM as an exciting educational and career opportunity. RobotsNOW has also changed my world.
— Chandler Wimmer, Co-Founder & Managing Director
Chandler Wimmer, Managing Director
Chandler Wimmer is a passionate entrepreneur, leader and competitor.
Chandler Wimmer was building with Legos before he could walk and loves all STEM fields. In addition to being a VEX IQ Robotics World Champion, his Odyssey of the Mind team won the Virginia State Championships and his toy invention came in Second Place in the Toy 2.0 National Toy Invention Competition for students, 11 to 17 years in age. As a National Finalist, he entered into a Royalty Agreement with the sponsor of the competition. To share his passion of STEM fields, Chandler founded and leads his high school’s Engineering Design & Prototyping Club. Chandler also holds multiple Computer-Aided Design Professional Certifications.
As an Eagle Scout and Patrol Leader, Chandler has been active in Cub/Boy Scouts since First Grade. In addition to countless hours of community service, his Eagle Scout Service Project culminated in an outside Chapel for a local Catholic school.
Chandler is also an avid epee fencer! He’s a First Team, ALL-AMERICAN Fencer, and was also selected on the First Team, Academic All-American Fencing Team. His Juniors Fencing placed in the Top 8 at the Junior Olympics. As a former member of TEAM USA Pre-Cadet Fencing, he won the Bronze Medal for the USA at the 2017 Pan American Youth Fencing Championships. Chandler is presently a nationally ranked fencer, possessing a A Rating, the highest rating in competitive fencing.
However, to really know Chandler, you must know that he’s a passionate impact-entrepreneur. In addition to RobotsNOW, he co-founded and leads Remain Prepared LLC to help Scouts study, advance and stay in scouting. Today, thousands of Scouts use his iOS and Android mobile study apps. He has also sold or donated $10,000 dollars in study flashcards to hundreds of Boy Scout Troops across the country.
Recently, he founded EcoCierge to provide families with convenient, easy access to environmentally responsible home and lawn care services. For most people, lawn mowing creates more pollutants than commuting to work! His emission-free lawnmowers and environmentally friendly fertilizers and pesticides are helping entire communities realize that EcoCierge is leading a cause…not just providing lawn care.
Gabriel Wimmer, Co-Founder and Adviser
Gabriel has been active in competitive robotics since he was 8 years old, holding over a dozen regional, state and world championship awards. He credits his early exposure to robotics for his passion of STEM fields and ultimately contributing to educational and career choice. In addition to his numerous robotics awards, Gabriel was a CyberPatriot National Finalist (Top 12 of thousands of teams).
After graduating from Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology, Gabriel enrolled in UC Berkeley where he was selected into their prestigious Management, Entrepreneurship & Technology (M.E.T.) Program. He is concurrently pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering & Computer Science from the College of Engineering and a Bachelor of Science in Business from the Haas School of Business. Gabriel also possesses the CompTIA Security+ Professional Certification and the ITIL Foundation-level Certification in IT Services Management. He has co-authored multiple books on STEM subjects and his senior research project was published in Thomas Jefferson High School’s Teknos Journal.
Gabriel He enjoys entrepreneurship, skiing, scuba diving, kayaking and “tinkering” with every kind of electronics possible. He literally has a satellite dish connected to his computer! However, his latest passion is restoring an abandoned 1968 Chevy Camaro.