We all remember the story, that came out of the Sandy Hook school shooting, of how Victoria Leigh Soto used her own body to shield her students. It was a heroic story but it could have been so much happier of an ending if she had a shield to protect her. That is just what Maryland-based Hardwire founder and CEO George Tunis thought after hearing about the school shooting last month. So, he decided that he would use the resources of his company, that provides composite armor plating to the military, to remedy future times that a teacher might find themselves in the same position..
"It's something I don't think any American can tolerate anymore, and we're in a position to do something about it," said George Tunis, CEO and chairman of Pocomoke City-based Hardwire. "I was like — all right, let's take everything we got, see what we can throw at this problem, figure out an innovative solution."
The solution the company came up with is a bulletproof whiteboard. The whiteboard is a portable 18 x 20 inch version of the type you would normally see in the classroom. The one big difference is that with the Hardwire whiteboard is that it has arm-holds on the back and can stop a 9mm bullet at close range. The portable whiteboard only weighs 3.75 pounds making it light enough to carry around the classroom and write on one minute and then use a shield to protect the class if ever needed.
"As teachers are doing their daily lesson plans, it's in their hands. And if there's a crisis, it's in their hands," Tunis said. "Teachers are not first responders, but sometimes they're thrust into that role."
To make sure that the school he sends his children to are protected by this new product he gave 90 of these whiteboards to Worcester Preparatory School in Berlin, Maryland.
The whiteboards are made of the same technology that goes into protecting the Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected used in both Afghanistan and Iraq. Hardwire has also used this technologies to protect police with their bulletproof clipboards.
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