MakerBot’s Bre Pettis to Step Down as CEO in Order to Head up New ‘Innovation Workshop’ at Stratasys

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Update: 1:45PM:

It’s Official: From Stratasys CEO David Reis – “Stratasys and MakerBot are excited to announce some management changes at MakerBot that will take effect in the 3rd and 4th quarter of 2014 and into January 2015. Most notably, Bre Pettis will be transitioning from the day-to-day activities of management to a position with Stratasys where he will be able to influence and direct the vision of MakerBot and Stratasys; he will also be a member of the MakerBot Board of Directors.  Jenny Lawton, president of MakerBot, will be promoted to the role of CEO of MakerBot; Frank Alfano is being moved from chief revenue officer to president.  Aric Jennings, chief operations officer for MakerBot, will also transition into the international role of vice president of global manufacturing for Stratasys.  We are excited about these promotions and pleased to continue the positive momentum that Stratasys and MakerBot have experienced and achieved.”

If you follow the 3D printing industry at all, then you know the influence on the market that MakerBot co-founder, Bre Pettis has had. The man who created the company just over five and a half years ago, has become the face of desktop 3D printing. In those short five and a half years, he has led his company to the top of the consumer-based 3D printing world. He was so successful that in June of last year, additive manufacturing giant Stratasys bought his company out in a $403 million stock deal.

Over the last 14 months, Pettis has continued to oversee operations for the Stratasys subsidiary, taking the company to new heights as its CEO. Back in January, he announced three new 3D printers, all of which have received exceptional ratings in the early going. With all the success, one would expect him to continue his lead role at the head of MakerBot.

Yesterday, we received an anonymous tip from a reader, who has provided us with information pointing to Pettis stepping down from the CEO position at the company. According to the tipster, internal emails within the company have outlined the new positions which will be created and filled by various individuals within the company.


We want to urge our readers to understand that all this information was provided by an anonymous source, which we can not confirm or deny to be factual. Emails to the company have neither verified or refuted these claims:

  • Bre Pettis will be moving out of a day-to-day role at MakerBot to launch the Innovation Workshop, while Jenny Lawton will be acting CEO and move to be the MakerBot CEO in 2015.
    Jenny Lawton

    Jenny Lawton

  • Frank Alfano will move to be President of MakerBot with Sales, Marketing, Business Development, Support, Professional Services, regional offices (MakerBot Europe for now) and Retail reporting to him.
  • Aric Jennings will be transitioning from his role of COO to VP Global Manufacturing for Stratasys. Aric will remain COO for the balance of 2014 and will work with his team on the PMI for manufacturing as well as building his new team. Aric will transition to his new global position in January, 2015.
  • Robert Steiner, Liz Randel, and Aljosa Kemperle have moved to the Innovation Workshop.
  • Dave Veisz, VP Manufacturing, will move to report directly to Jenny as Aric transitions to his global position.
  • Anthony Moschella, VP Product and Jan Sumeral, VP R&D, will report directly to Jenny, effective October 1, 2014.
  • Jaclyn Mack, VP HR, is moving to report directly to Jenny, effective October 1, 2014.
  • Dave Brown, VP IT, is moving to report to Teri Balog, effective September 1, 2014.
  • Richard McCarthy, General Counsel, will report to Jenny Lawton.
  • Anthony Wille is moving to Stratasys as the PMI Project Manager, working directly for Ben Lazarus, effective October 1, 2014.
  • Ryan Luikens, Project Manager, MakerBot Academy, has moved to report to Tom James, VP Business Development.

According to the tipster, in the email that was sent out, the following was stated:

“We have exciting news to announce about Bre. Now that we have a team in place to carry on with MakerBot and continuing to move Full Speed Ahead, Bre is launching a new initiative (separate from MakerBot), The Innovation Workshop, with Robert Steiner, Liz Randel and Aljosa Kempele, to showcase what is possible with MakerBot, Stratasys and Solidscape 3D printers. I can’t wait to see what they make … and for the launch party!”

If these claims are true, the ‘Innovation Workshop’ may be an enormous undertaking, provided that Pettis is willing to leave the head of the company to launch this project. With Pettis’ innovative mind, as well as other employees within the company following over to this new project, it will be very interesting to see what it materializes into. Jenny Lawton, who has been with MakerBot for close to three years, should prove to be a worthwhile replacement, and this could be a move that ends up helping both Stratasys and Makerbot expand even more in the long run.

Let’s hear your thoughts on this possible breaking news within the Unofficial MakerBot forum thread on

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