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UMKC Innovation Center
By Sarah Mote
December 09, 2015

"What If . . ." Leads to Entrepreneurship

Philip Goggin“What can be done to make night landing zones more visible for the helicopter EMS service?

Philip Goggin, a former flight medic from Farmington, Missouri, and his flight team were teaching a local ambulance service when this question was asked.

“From that point on I was determined to find a solution.” says Philip. “There had to be something better than chemical lights or headlights, especially in rural settings.”

Applying his software knowledge and 15 years EMS experience, Philip sought manufacturers who could construct a product using a laser and defractive optical elements.

“This technology worked for computer software, so I wanted to use the same concept to create a landing zone image.”

Through his research, he connected with several people who helped make his vision a reality. The Southeast Economic Development Fund, Codefi and the Cape Girardeau 1 Million Cups were a few of the organizations that moved him forward.

“It can be difficult to find connections, financing and partners to make it happen, but we accomplish more when we seek out the experts to help us succeed.”

Through his efforts, The LZAD was founded and the first prototype tested November 2015, one year after the question that started it all.


Philip admits that he hasn’t been stalled or scared by the process. “I’m an entrepreneur and it’s my responsibility to find solutions. Once I start on something, it would take an act of God to get me to quit.”

He advises others with an idea or at any phase of their entrepreneurial journey to put passion into whatever they want to do and to find the right people to make it happen.

That’s when it becomes a whirlwind.

“It’s one thing to present your great idea to investors and yet another when you test your first prototype. It’s the best feeling in the world!”

Post provided by Kris Edens, a copywriting and blogging resource for small business. She resides in Festus and enjoys networking, writing and the entrepreneurial community.

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