He is one of the prominent voices of FIRST. Literally and figuratively. All participants in FIRST have heard Dan Green’s voice on the field. Dan “Mr. FIRST” Green’s involvement started when he co-founded the WildStang team in 1996. He partnered with teachers to successfully make WildStang a credited class. Dan works full time at Motorola, but devotes his free time to the students on WildStang and FIRST. He started with a genuine desire to motivate students into becoming engineers and scientists of the future.
For over a decade, Dan has gone beyond the walls of WildStang and assisted FIRST. He also volunteers at multiple regionals and the Championship event as a play-by-play announcer. Through this venue, Dan has been dubbed “Mr. FIRST”; the name has stuck as he continues to be a memorable announcer. Dan presently serves as the Midwest Regional Planning Committee Chair, where he received “Outstanding Volunteer Award” in 2005. He has started Illinois FIRST, a network of teams that support each other and help rookie teams with all aspects of robotics.
While Dan constantly helps the FLL program each year, he wanted to take it a step further. This year he created a Junior FLL team of elementary school students. He mentored and encouraged the individuals to be knowledgeable, creative, and self-confident. Dan wanted to bring the joy of FIRST to younger children to introduce the elements of robotics as well as show them that math, science and learning can be fun.
Although Dan is highly dedicated to the FIRST organization, he still is a lead engineer on the WildStang team. He can always be counted upon to add input and have us think of ways to improve our projects as well as answer questions in a way that is easy
to learn from. Often times you can find him relating our work on the team to his work at Motorola. Dan is responsible for ensuring that WildStang maintains its partnership with Motorola, consequently he is the liaison on our team when we have a request or question for our sponsor.
Something unique that Dan has brought to how we run our team is the subteam structure. The 12 subteams are like departments in WildStang because they allow us to simulate a corporation, and make sure each student is able to participate. For effective communication, Dan gives students his e-mail and is also available to all students via the
Dan’s fierce commitment has no business hours, as he has been called upon to preview the team video at 7 in the morning, and has been asked for calculus help just as everyone is leaving Motorola late at night. Dan’s work for WildStang is not limited to students; he personally sees that each WildStang adult becomes a world class mentor.
Each year, Dan helps several graduating students secure internships at Motorola. These internships help establish credibility and potential future employment. A number of former team members are Motorola employees and are adult mentors on the team. Dan helped establish this student, intern, employee, mentor cycle that successfully works for our team.
Without Dan, WildStang would be a team floundering for sponsorship and direction. He is the electrical tape that holds us together. He is an enormous asset to our team, and more importantly he recognizes that any success the team has had is a product of combined efforts from each student, mentor, school administrative, and parent
volunteer. Despite his modest attitude, we, the students, would take great pleasure in being a part of Dan’s deserved recognition.