Apogee's newest R&D team member, Bailey Shaffer, has an impressive background that led him to Apogee. Bailey will be working on the development, testing, and characterization of products.
Tell us a little about the path that brought you to Apogee.
During my undergrad at Utah State University, I studied Agribusiness and pursued a minor in soil science. That led me to a marketing internship with Decagon Devices in Pullman, Washington. I enjoyed working with sensors that measured the environment and wanted to continue to do that. Pullman was nice, and we loved working for Decagon. However, as an avid fly fisherman, it was a bummer to be far away from good fly rivers like the Logan River, Blacksmith Fork, and, my personal favorite, Lefthand Fork. My wife and I moved back to Logan while I finished a Master’s Degree in soil science. By this time I knew what I wanted to do as a career, and I was hoping to find a job working with environmental sensors while also remaining close to good fishing after I graduated. I’d sold Apogee sensors while working for Decagon, so I was already familiar with Apogee and interested in the sensors before moving back to Logan. My wife and I started watching for job openings at Apogee, and that’s what eventually led us here.
What are you most excited to work on at Apogee?
I am excited to have a job that allows me to continue to learn about environmental sensors. I’m especially excited to learn more about the interactions between soil, water, and plants. My family has a little farm, and my favorite plants to grow are tomatoes and peppers. I like to experiment and figure out the right variety, nutrient program, irrigation strategy, and fertilization techniques (like whether or not to fertigate) to get the best crop possible. There’s this old saying that’s something like if you enjoy what you’re doing you never work a day in your life.
What is your favorite movie and why?
My favorite movie is a three-way tie between...
- Forrest Gump
- Oh Brother, Where Art Thou?
I love history. In fact, the podcasts I listen to are either True-Crime or history podcasts. So I love Forrest Gump because Forrest is involved in Watergate, the Vietnam war, and other historical events, and I think it’s funny how the writers tied everything together. In Tombstone, I’m a huge fan of Val Kilmer’s character, Doc Holliday, and how all the characters are based off real people. It helps that this movie is also a good Western film and Doc Holliday is a gun fighter. Oh Brother, Where Art Thou? is set in the 1930s during the Great Depression, but it follows Homer’s Odyssey and is absolutely hilarious.
What do you like to do in your spare time?
In our spare time, my family and I love to fish, play softball, snowmobile, and be in the mountains.
What is your craziest fly fishing experience?
One time, I decided to go fly fishing in the Logan River in January. It was obviously really cold and snowy, so I had to snowshoe down. I’d just taken off my snowshoes and had cast maybe twice when I heard splashing coming from somewhere downstream. When I turned around, I saw this big cow moose staring at me maybe 10 ft. away. I had to take a picture as proof because I knew nobody would believe me if I told them. And then I slowly moved away upstream while the cow moose continued to stare me down.