By Carla Short
2018-07-122018-07-12https://wvuieleaders.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/[email protected]WVU IE200px200px
Though Dave Hawkins resides in Pittsburgh, he will always consider Morgantown his home. As any West Virginian will tell you, it’s not just a place to live, it’s a way of life. West Virginians are driven to work hard, aim higher and dream bigger, all while giving back to the community and remembering their roots. The career Dave Hawkins has built has been no different.
Dave always had an interest in medicine and when he first entered WVU in 1994, he spent his first year taking the prerequisite courses to pursue medical school. An unexpected change occurred when Dave gained exposure to the orthopedic medical device industry through a part time job during college. He was driven by the business opportunity while knowing that he could still impact how patients are treated. As Dave explored the paths available at WVU, he settled on Industrial Engineering (IE) due to the combination of business and engineering skills it would provide. Despite starting IE his sophomore year and working 25 hours a week, Dave still completed the IE program in three years, graduating Magna Cum Laude and named the Senior IE Student of the Year. Upon graduation, he chose to pursue the medical device industry and took a job in Pittsburgh with the company he worked with during college.
During college, Dave would assist surgeons with orthopedic implants (e.g. knee, hip replacements). By the time he graduated, he had participated in 500 surgeries. He was so experienced that he often guided surgeons about the technology.
Dave started as a sales person in Pittsburgh and worked with multiple device manufacturers under the same distribution company. These manufacturers had no business in the area, but Dave was able to build a solid presence in the region along with a strong market share. Being entrepreneurial, Dave always had a desire to start his own business and in 2007 had an opportunity to start his own distribution company, Mid-Atlantic Surgical Systems. Dave was 31 years old.
In 11 short years, Mid-Atlantic Surgical Systems has grown to be 10 times the size it was when it started. It has been recognized as the top agency in the United States for its manufacturer and now employs 75 people in the region. The company provides medical education at their Pittsburgh headquarters, training local surgeons daily on the latest technology in the industry. Also, Dave has built a values driven organization that has contributed to over 100 different charities in the region through its Pay it Forward program.
The culture at Mid-Atlantic Surgical Systems is what Dave considers his biggest accomplishment. The company was named a Top Workplace in the region by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette for three consecutive years. It has been named the top company in Pittsburgh for “doing things efficiently and well”, which isn’t surprising for a WVU IE graduate. Last year, Mid-Atlantic Surgical Systems was ranked the #1 Top Workplace for their company size. This ranking is very meaningful because it is based on employee feedback to questions regarding leadership, ethics, training and operations, among other business metrics.
Dave is a member of the Young President’s Organization and the parent of twin daughters. He continues to care deeply about WVU and the state, and is always looking for opportunities to give back in a meaningful way.
A native of Morgantown, Dave Hawkins is the president and founder of Mid-Atlantic Surgical Systems (MASS). Recognized as the #1 Top Workplace in the region by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Mid-Atlantic Surgical System is an exclusive agency for Arthrex, a leading global medical device company specializing in orthopaedics. Their employees work in the operating room and function as technology consultants for over 10,000 different Arthrex products. MASS also specializes in surgeon education and maintains an educational lab in Pittsburgh and a mobile lab that travels the region.
Dave also owns commercial real estate in Morgantown and supports his wife Sarah’s graphic design company, Sarah Hawkins Designs. He has been a member of the Young President’s Organization since 2013. Dave earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Industrial Engineering from West Virginia University and lives in Pittsburgh with his wife, Sarah, 9 year old twin daughters and goldendoodle Musket (WVU dog!). In his free time, he enjoys fishing and spending time with his family.