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Our Team

Sarah Headshot

Sarah Palya

Founder and CEO
Sarah’s journey with her son Gus, after whom the company is named, uniquely qualifies her to lead Gus Gear. Sarah’s experiences with Gus’s complex medical needs, coupled with her passion to improve our customers’ safety, health, and quality of life are the key factors in Gus Gear’s success. This combination has led Sarah to develop and take to market a portfolio of unique and successful products designed to support and protect medical devices, such as our patent-pending Central Line Vest, which is currently being used by hospitals in the U.S. and Canada, and by individuals worldwide.
Don Williams

Don Williams

Living and working most of his life in western Pennsylvania, Don is an alum of Anderson University (Anderson, IN) and Robert Morris University (Pittsburgh, PA), where he completed his MBA. Prior to joining Gus Gear, Don spent the last 25 years of his nearly four-decade career building and managing healthcare startups with focused efforts on operational systems and efficiencies, team development, financial management, and business development. He is passionate about fulfilling Gus Gear’s mission and vision.

Amy Braglia-Tarpey, MS, RD, CNSC

Director, National Clinical Growth
Amy Braglia-Tarpey, MS, RD, CNSC has been a registered dietitian since 2003, earned the designation of board-certified specialist in renal nutrition, and is currently a certified nutrition support clinician. She received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Arizona and Master of Science degree in Nutritional Science from California State University, Long Beach. Amy previously led a large national home parenteral and enteral nutrition program, working to improve the experience of both home parenteral and enteral (HPEN) consumers and clinicians. As a result of her extensive experience in the clinical care of Chronic Kidney Disease and HPEN patients, Amy has developed a passion for patient safety and quality of life that align with Gus Gear’s mission.

Tom Wagner

VP Growth & Strategy
Tom has nearly 30 years of MedTech leadership experience from product creation through operational scale. He started his career as an electrical engineer at Contraves Goerz before joining Philips Respironics in 1993. There he held key roles in growing the Sleep and Respiratory business including: Vice President of Operations and Supply Chain, Vice President/General Manager of Patient Interface, Senior Director R&D and Director Global Services. Tom has a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering Technology from the University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown. Tom is excited to help Gus Gear succeed in its mission to improve the quality of life for those facing medical challenges and help them live their lives to the fullest.

Dina Colangelo

Soft Goods Design Engineer
Dina brings more than two decades of soft goods design experience in the areas of durable medical equipment and sports apparel with companies such as Philips Respironics and Dick’s Sporting Goods. Her experience and understanding of these industries coupled with her training and education at the Art Institute of Pittsburgh and Penn State University provide great value to our team. In addition to product development and design, Colangelo handles negotiations and management of our manufacturing outsource partners. After being introduced to Gus Gear in 2019, she instantly believed in our products and wanted to join our mission.

David Groll

Business Advisor
David Groll, CEO of Circadiance, has developed, manufactured, and sold medical devices for over 30 years. Prior to Circadiance, David held senior management positions in several medical device companies. He was the founder and CEO of Vincent Medical, a company that performs contract manufacturing of medical devices in China, which he sold in 2002. From 1986 to 1997 David ran the Respironics Patient Interface Group and developed the Respironics PAP masks. He completed his career as General Manager of Respironics Hong Kong Ltd, running the Asian factories for mask manufacturing. David holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Texas at Austin and a Master’s Degree in Manufacturing Systems Engineering from the University of Pittsburgh.
Gagan Mathur

Dr. Gagan Mathur

Medical Advisor
Dr. Gagan Mathur is a board-certified transfusion medicine physician. He serves as the Medical Director of Transfusion Medicine at the Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, and is the Associate Professor of Clinical Pathology at the Keck School of Medicine University of Southern California. Dr. Mathur completed his residency and fellowship training at University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics. During his clinical training, he also pursued a Master of Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Iowa Tippie School of Management. Recently, Dr. Mathur received the title of Certified Physician Executive (CPE) from the American Association for Physician Leadership (AAPL)

Doran Edwards, MD

Reimbursement Advisor
As former Medical Director of Palmetto GBA’s PDAC, and Chief Operating Officer of Advanced Healthcare Consulting, Inc., Dr. Edwards brings 40+ years of experience as a surgeon, executive, and consultant to provide strategic direction to our team in the areas of DMEPOS coding, coverage, and policy development, as well as product design and clinical trial design. Dr. Edwards completed his education at the University of Tennessee-Health Science Center College of Medicine with a specialty in surgery. He joined the Gus Gear team because of his passion as a patient advocate for innovative products that improve quality of life and community activity.

Carol Wright

Operations, Insurance Contracting and Marketing Advisor
Carol is an award-winning entrepreneur with more than 30 years of experience as owner of Wright Therapy Products, Inc., a Pittsburgh-based medical device manufacturer. As the current founder and President of ProtoWright, LLC, a consulting firm, she provides executive support to life science start-ups and global durable medical equipment manufacturers. Her depth of knowledge and experience with the FDA, OIG, FAR, UL, the Joint Commission, Medicare, and HIPPA assist our team in strategy development and execution of regulatory compliance, insurance contracting, and marketing within the healthcare arena.
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