I hired Jesse Riechman as a prototyper in late summer of 2007 as LRRD outgrew my home office. Jesse left us last November to become a full time grad student in SIUC's Forestry program.
Jesse had many skills, from fixing motorcycles to deftly dropping 250-pound drums of media from a pickup truck bed to the ground. He built our shop from the ground up. A Carbondale Townie, he was incredibly resourceful, knew everybody and could fix or find or borrow anything--these skills were a huge help to us as we moved into a new building and found our way.
He streamlined parts making for our Em2 models, and came up with a near zero non-recyclable packaging system for shipping them.
Jesse developed a standpipe for the Em2 and Em4 models using a shaft seal from motorcycle shocks--this problem, of a pipe sliding up and down in highly abrasive media--had vexed me for years. His system is elegant, inexpensive, and works flawlessly. He also designed and built much of the sophisticated pumpcart for the Em4 model.
Jesse was an important part of LRRD's history. There are dozens of photos of him on this blog, making parts, solving problems, and carrying an Em4 model up eight flights of stairs at St. Louis University. I wish him the best.