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Our Approach

Thrill. Delight. Satisfy.

That’s how we want you to feel when you experience Higher Ground.
We do that by finding pressing needs (or needs find us) and solving them with designs that balance form and function and creating modern, tech-friendly products for work, life, and everything in between.
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Tried, Tested, And Trusted. Since 2002.

Higher Ground was founded in 2002 by award-winning industrial designer, Mark Zadvinskis and his former professor Shaun Jackson.

After graduating the University of Michigan, Mark became a teaching assistant to Shaun and soon became business partners consulting for clients including L.L. Bean, Harley Davidson, Nike, Herman Miller, and more.

Being on a college campus, the two recognized that soon all students would be learning from and using technology in education. With their passion for problem solving and design, the team set out to create a line of protective gear which not only safely transports your laptop, but makes it more functional, accessible and easier to use.

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Born Out Of Necessity. Built On Innovation.

In 1998, out of necessity for a better way to carry and use their laptop, Mark and Shaun designed a carrying case that transforms into a portable office.

This new product, called the Lapdog, quickly found it’s way into countless magazines, catalogs and even the MoMa collection in NYC. To this day, Higher Ground continues to invent, develop, test, and manufacture products that combine beautiful design with long-lasting functionality. Designed to use every day.

Designed to perform.

Designed for life.

Digging Deeper & Aiming Higher Towards Sustainability

At the heart of Higher Ground is the desire to do better and we aim to source our materials responsibly to minimize our environmental impact as the next step in doing better.

We’ve always taken pride in the fact that we design products to last, built from high quality materials, replaceable parts, and easily repairable designs. Using recycled woven fabrics and eco-friendly coatings keep excess plastics and waste out of landfill (and oceans) and ensure our products are both good for our customers and planet.

Ultimately, we strive to reduce our environmental impact, and add value where we can - for our customers, partners, and planet - and maintaining that value for the lifetime of the product itself.

Giving Back With A Helping Hand

Since day one it’s always been about more than just our products and we believe delivering on our mission requires that we expand beyond the scope of our day-to-day business.

This is why we started the Helping Hands program where we partner with local and national giving partners to provide protective gear for their communities to enable them to reach higher ground.

How You Reach Higher Ground Matters.

Our Design Philosophy Is Built on Five Overarching Principles.

Go The Extra Mile

We commit ourselves every day to our work, customers, and each other. This means always approach each task, challenge, and encounter with curiosity and fearlessness and embracing possibilities.

Built The Best

We’re committed to quality and believe our products should be built to last. It's important for us to take pride in the craftsmanship of everything we make.

For The Long Haul

Just like our products are built to last, we’re committed to meeting the needs of our team, customers and partners today, tomorrow, and every day after that.

Customer-Obsessed

We consider serving our customers and partners a privilege, and are dedicated to the highest standards of service that makes them say “WOW.”

Do What's Right. Always.

Seeking to build trust through every interaction, we always strive to do what’s right and never what’s easy - whether anyone is watching or not.

We made the right choice by going with Higher Ground…Built to last beyond any other brand out there. Our low repair costs have proven these cases/bags have exceeded our expectations. Customer service is A+. I will never go with another brand.

Christopher Uridil
Technology Coordinator; Blue Hill Community School

Territory Account Director - South Central

With over 20 years of Sales, Marketing, and Customer Success experience, Julio is a dedicated professional with a passion for helping clients achieve amazing results.

As a subject matter expert in device deployments, workflow, education technology, and learning environments, Julio delivers unparalleled insight and perspective.  By helping clients make successful and well-informed decisions, Julio continues to build great trust partnerships.

Vice President of Sales

An experienced business leader with a proven success record in sales, marketing, business development and operations with a proven track record of identifying market opportunities to increase revenue and market share for clients.

Customer Service Representative - East

Lynn has spent over 20 years in sales and marketing serving the education channel.  She has a passion for providing the best solutions and customer service to her customers.  Her career in the education channel actually started out as a student employee in her campus bookstore during college.

Originally from Wisconsin her favorite hobby is watching the Greenbay Packers!

Accounting & Business Operations

Chris dedicates her attention to Higher Ground's accounting and warehouse management.

Detail-oriented and a meticulous notetaker. Chris is our very own "Time Machine," able to retrace every step of a transaction.

Senior Product Manager

Adam brings over 15 years of Industrial design, engineering and production experience. He has worked internationally, developing a wide range of consumer products including soft goods and electronics.

Adam enjoys tinkering, 3D printing and inventing new ideas for products.

Regional Sales Director - Northwest

With over 30 years of background in the IT/PC channels, Frank utilizes his strong relationships with vendors, distributors and reseller partners, to work with multiple parties, together toward a greater goal, through alliance and partnership marketing, event production and management, strategy development, and complete follow through to execution.

Regional Sales Director - Central

Gavin’s number one priority is you! Experienced K-12 background as a regional reseller for over 8 years. He has seen it all!

From start to finish, he is here to help you meet your goals and provide top-level sales support.

Inside Sales Manager - Midwest & West Territories

Since 2015, Casha has enjoyed working in the K12 space. She believes that asking the right questions is the key to finding the best solutions for customers and resellers.

When she's not working, you'll find her camping and adventuring with her dog and husband.

Director - Marketing & Sales Operations

With over 20 years of Marketing and Sales experience, Matt is focused on building long-term relationships with partners and clients with the goal of providing a high level of service and a superior customer experience.

Regional Sales Director - East

Alex's has a passion for helping resellers and customers find the best solutions for their needs. He also has a serious sweet tooth, so if you ever need a favor from Alex, just send Sugarpova gummies his way and you've got a friend for life!

Director - Channel Partner Sales

Rick is always willing to help. From selection process, to best practices and even installations, he’ll go the extra mile for you.  He can do this, because we are small enough to be nimble, but large enough to deliver.  

Along the way, we provide industry leading support before, during and after the sale.  Our innovation and quality craftsmanship, along with our talented team all combine to provide the best experience in the industry!

Founder & President

Mark is an award-winning industrial designer and entrepreneur with a passion for science, art, music and his family. He holds degrees from the University of Michigan in both industrial design (BFA) and mechanical engineering (BSE).

Our team is your team

Meet the team that makes it their mission to lighten your load and get you to higher ground.

We go above and beyond to deliver a seamless experience and customer service that inspires “WOW,” so you can take a load off to focus on what matters most.

Mark Zadvinskis
Mark Zadvinskis
President

Mark is an award-winning industrial designer and entrepreneur with a passion for science, art, music and his family. He holds degrees from the University of Michigan in both industrial design (BFA) and mechanical engineering (BSE).

Robert Danese
Robert Danese
Vice President of Sales

An experienced business leader with a proven success record in sales, marketing, business development and operations with a proven track record of identifying market opportunities to increase revenue and market share for clients.

Matt Rogers
Matt Rogers
Director - Marketing & Sales Operations

With over 20 years of Marketing and Sales experience, Matt is focused on building long-term relationships with partners and clients with the goal of providing a high level of service and a superior customer experience.

Rick Toftey
Rick Toftey
Director - Strategic Accounts

Rick is always willing to help. From selection process, to best practices and even installations, he’ll go the extra mile for you.  He can do this, because we are small enough to be nimble, but large enough to deliver.  

Along the way, we provide industry leading support before, during and after the sale.  Our innovation and quality craftsmanship, along with our talented team all combine to provide the best experience in the industry!

Frank Raimondi
Frank Raimondi
Director - Distribution & Alliances

With over 30 years of background in the IT/PC channels, Frank utilizes his strong relationships with vendors, distributors and reseller partners, to work with multiple parties, together toward a greater goal, through alliance and partnership marketing, event production and management, strategy development, and complete follow through to execution.

Adam Ostroff
Adam Ostroff
Senior Product Manager

Adam brings over 15 years of Industrial design, engineering and production experience. He has worked internationally, developing a wide range of consumer products including soft goods and electronics.

Adam enjoys tinkering, 3D printing and inventing new ideas for products.

Bethany Swaney
Bethany Swaney
Marketing Manager

Bethany has over 9 years of experience in marketing for both B2B and B2C industries. As our Marketing Manager she is responsible for elevating Higher Ground's advertising, digital marketing, communications, branding, and growth strategies while bringing our products to new users and increasing engagement with our existing customers.


Chris Laurain
Chris Laurain
Office Manager/Accounting

Chris dedicates her attention to Higher Ground's accounting and warehouse management.

Detail-oriented and a meticulous notetaker. Chris is our very own "Time Machine," able to retrace every step of a transaction.

Cindy Leppek
Cindy Leppek
Customer Service Representative & Logistics Corrdinator

Cindy, a senior at Eastern Michigan University completing her degree in Supply Chain Management, brings her knowledge and expertise to determine the most beneficial solution for transporting products to our customers and partners. 

During her free time, she enjoys camping and spending time with her dog and husband. 

Alex Stevens
Alex Stevens
Territory Account Director - East

A Long Island native, Alex has been helping school districts all along the east coast protect their students' devices since 2016.

With a passion for providing our customers with the best service and a knowledge of all things K12 Technology, Alex is eager to answer any questions you may have regarding Higher Ground products.

Lynn Gorecki
Lynn Gorecki
Customer Relationship Manager - East

Lynn has spent over 20 years in sales and marketing serving the education channel.  She has a passion for providing the best solutions and customer service to her customers.  Her career in the education channel actually started out as a student employee in her campus bookstore during college.

Originally from Wisconsin her favorite hobby is watching the Greenbay Packers!


Gavin Raitt
Gavin Raitt
Territory Account Director - North Central

Gavin’s number one priority is you! Experienced K-12 background as a regional reseller for over 8 years. He has seen it all!

From start to finish, he is here to help you meet your goals and provide top-level sales support.

Giancarlo Danese
Giancarlo Danese
Customer Relationship Manager - North Central

Gian is a senior at the University of Portland finishing his Bachelor’s in Operations and Technology Management. Gian is focused on developing and maintaining customer relationships with a high level of service.

When he’s not in class or working, Gian enjoys cooking and all things soccer.

Julio Angulo
Julio Angulo
Territory Account Director - South Central

With over 20 years of Sales, Marketing, and Customer Success experience, Julio is a dedicated professional with a passion for helping clients achieve amazing results.

As a subject matter expert in device deployments, workflow, education technology, and learning environments, Julio delivers unparalleled insight and perspective.  By helping clients make successful and well-informed decisions, Julio continues to build great trust partnerships.

Casha Reardon
Casha Reardon
Customer Relationship Manager - South Central

Since 2015, Casha has enjoyed working in the K12 space. She believes that asking the right questions is the key to finding the best solutions for customers and resellers.

When she's not working, you'll find her camping and adventuring with her dog and husband.

Roger Goh
Roger Goh
Territory Account Director - West

Several decades of experience in multiple roles for major IT brands has imbued Roger with deep respect for the great things that sincere partnership can accomplish. Every successful relationship results from a win/win collaboration and he operates with one simple thought: What Goes Around Comes Around. When even complex deals have the simple end goal of mutual success, there will be happy endings.

Brenden Yim
Brenden Yim
Customer Relationship Manager - West

Brenden is a recent college graduate and is looking to build his sales career. After coming from the customer service space, he knows what it takes to service a customer and that satisfaction is the utmost importance. He enjoys playing golf, and is always striving to get better.  

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