Persevering Through It All with Samantha Snabes

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There is no slowing Samantha Snabes down when it comes to achieving her goals. Having been a volunteer firefighter, a trained EMT, an officer in the Air National Guard, a former NASA employee and the CEO and co-founder of re:3D, there is no better word to describe Samantha with than ambitious. 

Samantha always wanted to be an astronaut, but the path to space is a tough one. Although she hasn’t been successful yet, Samantha preservers and she’s continuing to find ways to solve big problems here on earth. And her mission is to use fewer resources to do so.

Samantha and her peers from Engineers Without Borders decided to start a 3D printing company in order to make a difference in the world. In developing countries, trash has become a huge problem. Samantha and her team wanted to find a way to reuse waste with the magic of 3D printing thus, creating compostable toilets using recycled materials. 

“Those 10,000 water bottles laying in the middle of the farmland right now that CNN or The Hill was reporting on last week, what if those could be used to make things that otherwise are going to have to be purchased unsustainably and with a long supply chain?” Samantha asks. “What if it could be used to create a new business on the island? So it’s just cases like that that I think we are very focused on right now.”

That focus helped Samantha build a community of makers, who created re:3D’s flagship product, the Gigabot, to print human-scale objects using recycled materials. It wasn’t easy, and this work is far different than the life Samantha dreamed she’d be living as an astronaut. But after everything Samantha had been through, she’d learned an important lesson.

“When you’re giving something your all, it may not turn out the way you think it will,” Samantha says.“But something’s going to happen because you’re pushing against a rock with other people, so it’s going to move one way or crumble at some point by sheer will.”

On this episode of Find Your Mission, we sat down with Samantha to find out more about her journey to becoming an entrepreneur. Samantha discusses everything from her time at NASA, to her decision to join the service, to her work as a CEO and co-founder. Plus, she divulges some interesting information about her unique pre-pitch routine, which got her through a million-dollar pitch competition. 

Learn more about Samantha and re:3D here.

Find Your Mission is presented by WeWork in partnership with Dell. 

Thank you again to WeWork! Veterans in Residence, a partnership of WeWork and Bunker Labs, is a six-month startup incubator and leadership program that provides veteran and military family members the community, business support, and workspace to help launch and grow their businesses. 

To learn more about WeWork and the Veterans in Residence program, visit we.co/veterans

Also, thank you to our friends at Dell. Dell offers small business advisors to help any small business owner manage and understand all the ins and outs of technology in their small business. To speak with an Advisor today, Call 877-BUY-DELL or click here. 

This podcast was created by the team at Mission. If you want to hear more from Mission, be sure to check out Mission.org.


Episode 4