Veterans in Industry

Saluting a Service Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business

TZ Medical

TZ Medical

There is an old black Ford F-150 that sits in the back lot of TZ Medical’s home office in Portland, Oregon. On the bumper there is a sticker that reads, “NOT AS MEAN, NOT AS LEAN, BUT STILL A MARINE.” The truck is owned by Tom Tribou, founder of TZ Medical and a proud Vietnam Veteran, serving from 1966-1969. Although today he may not be as mean or as lean, Tom still lives each day by the Marine Corps values of Honor, Courage, and Commitment.

When Tom Tribou started TZ Medical in 1992, he wanted to create a company that would mirror the principles and values he learned and cultivated in the Marine Corps. Tom founded his company on three clear-cut ideas: The first idea was that TZ Medical would turn the para- digm of medical equipment manufacturing on its head by taking the time to listen to medical professionals in the trenches, to find out what they needed, before huddling with its own engineers. The second idea was that pricing should be at the value level, to ensure that these bright ideas would make their way into the hands of critical-care medical profession- als faster. The third and final idea was that the vast majority of TZ’s products would be manufactured in the United States, helping create jobs for Americans.

TZ Medical’s slogan is “Sparked by Your Ideas.” It is a company that has been built by working with front line industry professionals; physi- cians, nurses, and technicians. These are the people who have product ideas and want to partner with a company to bring those ideas to reality. The best ideas come from the “end users” in any given field, and healthcare is no exception. TZ Medical recognizes this and seeks out clinicians with which to collaborate to help develop novel, problem solving ideas and products.

Tom Tribou was first introduced to Booker Pullen in 1998. Booker Pullen worked at the University of California-San Francisco Medical Center as an EP technician for many years, beginning in 1979. Booker was a member of the United States Air Force from 1954-1958. The core values of the United States Air Force of Integrity First, Service Before Self, and Excellence In All We Do truly define Booker Pullen. Booker developed a product called the BOOKER BOX that was being used in EP procedures to help save patients’ lives. Tom Tribou recognized the value of this unique product and worked with Booker to bring this product to market in the US and around the world.

In 2010, Tom Tribou sat down for dinner with Rob Souza, a radiology technician from O’Connor Hospital in San Jose, California. Rob Souza also happened to be a proud member of the United States Air Force, serving from 1985 to 1995. Rob shared with Tom some unique product ideas that would be used to provide comfort and safety to both patients and hospital staff. Those ideas are now the products that make up TZ Medical’s newest product line, the Comfort Zone.

Although TZ doesn’t exclusively partner with Veterans, they love working with Vets because they fit in well with the culture and values of TZ Medical. TZ Medical would like to thank all the brave veterans who have served in the United States military.