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Meet Christine Dilley with MAD Scientist Associates, LLC

Tell us about your business. 

MAD Scientist Associates, LLC is a full-service ecological and wetland consulting firm.  We provide clients with a high level of expertise in wetland science, ecological site characterization, and environmental impact assessment. 

Our specialists empower clients to meet their goals.  We do this by providing timely and accurate ecological and water resource information, and by backing their teams with guidance, support, and encouragement.  This allows our clients to confidently design and implement projects that demonstrate environmental stewardship, foster a sense of community, and reflect a genuine interest in quality of life issues. 

We hire lifelong learners with an entrepreneurial spirit who share our vision of expanding their knowledge of the natural world and share that knowledge (and passion) with others.  We promote a "work hard, play hard" work environment, with a relatively flat administrative structure where open communication is the norm.  

BTW, my husband's initials are MAD.  This business has been a team effort for nearly two decades...no foolin'!:  The company will celebrate its 20th birthday next April 1, 2018!

What inspired you to get into your business? 

I have had a variety of experiences working in scientific contract consulting during my years at Battelle, where I was tasked with responsibilities in the areas of outreach, education, marketing and public relations.  

After my husband had worked as a sole proprietor in environmental consulting for a few years (under the business name M.A.D. Scientist), it became obvious to him that it was too much for him to handle the scientific side of things as well as the business side.  Building on my marketing and public relations background, I became 51% owner to run the business and we changed the name to MAD Scientist Associates and became an LLC. 

By assuming management of the business, Mark has been able to focus more on the technical/scientific work he excels at and enjoys.   Making a positive impact on natural areas and increasing appreciation for the environment in our community is especially rewarding.

What are your three best practices or best tips that every NAWBO member needs to hear?

  1. Come up with a plan and stay the course.  Starting a business (especially one that involves your spouse!) can be stressful and trying at times, but if you offer a great service or product and you treat your clients well, you will achieve more than you might imagine.
  2. Make time for yourself to recharge.
  3. Become part of a NAWBO Roundtable – it is a great experience to share concerns and successes with peers who understand the challenges of running a business.

 What does your future look like? 

Right now we are seeing steady growth in our business and we’ve been adding staff.  We plan to sustainably grow our business, while retaining our reputation as one of the leading ecological and wetland firms in Ohio.  

Growth for growth’s sake has never been our driving motivation.  We are focused on developing our capabilities and capacity in the areas where we provide the most value to our clients, and we are grounded in being a responsible “corporate citizen” that values and respects the environment and the communities in which we work.

We are learning as we go,  optimizing our operations and processes for greater efficiency to benefit our staff and our clients.  We are also invested in developing our staff and providing an exceptional work environment, adhering to Richard Branson’s idea that you should train your people well enough that they can leave, but treat them well enough that they won’t want to. 

 What do you do in your free time?

In my free time, I enjoy spending time with family and friends.  I am a proud mom to three handsome young men – Jacob (just graduated from Otterbein University), Trevor (sophomore at Otterbein University), and Brent (graduating from Westerville North HS and headed to Ohio State University). Three female cats help me balance out the gender inequality at home. 

My primary hobby is genealogy.  In high school, I became interested in researching my family history and have never stopped.  Watching Trevor run cross country and track for Otterbein and volunteering to care for cats at a local shelter with Brent keep me busy on the weekends.

What is your company website?

 I enjoyed designing and continue to manage our company’s web site:  www.madscientistassociates.net