Chattanoogan: Angel Suliveres – Battling The Odds

Friday, January 10, 2014 - by Jen Jeffrey

Chattanooga is becoming well known for its entrepreneurial platform as people from all walks of life are beginning start-up businesses and tapping into their own dreams. Inventor Angel Suliveres is hoping to be a part of that as well.

Born in Brooklyn, Angel admits to never having stayed in one place for very long. His parents separated when he was a child and his mother remarried when he was eight years old, moving to Rhode Island. When Angel was a teenager his family moved to California.

Dealing with his parents’ divorce, an alcoholic stepfather and the death of his brother, Angel’s childhood was not an easy one, yet he learned to cope in positive ways.

Angel says, “I have always loved reading books. When I wanted to escape what was going on in my life, I relied on my imagination. I wanted to be an airplane pilot and one book I had was an Army book on how to fly planes. I found friends who I played with imagining we were jumping out of airplanes and I built an imaginary world around that.”

While living in Bakersfield, Angel was placed in advanced classes. His grades were impeccable and he was offered many scholastic opportunities, but family undercurrents prevented him from being able to explore them.

“I always tried to spend the least amount of time at home and spent my time doing other things or creating. I became more introverted and, even though I did well in school, I still would not interact with people,” Angel admits.

Another family move would take Angel to Massachusetts until he was 16. When his stepfather discussed moving once again, Angel had had enough. It was hard dealing with things at home, but to be uprooted and leaving the friends he was able to make, Angel felt old enough to make his own decisions.

“I ran away after a huge argument about moving to Florida. Arguments always turned into fights because I had to defend my mom and the kids… he caused all kinds of havoc,” Angel reveals.

Angel lived on his own working odd jobs until he was old enough to join the military. When he joined the Army, he went into computer science and worked for a computer consulting company.

“That is where I really built up my skills. It was back when Windows was barely coming out. When I got out of the Army, people were just learning how to do this. I was playing with Commodores 64, Apple 2C and making video games when I was a kid, so I was introduced to computers early in my life, but did something with it when I worked with the computer company. I continued to follow what was going on with computers at that point,” Angel insists.

Angel didn’t let his upbringing hold him back. Though he hid away in his own imagination, he tapped into his creativity with sketches, creations and inventions.

Eventually, Angel moved to California where he met his wife Maguis (pronounced Maggie) while working for a Christian ministry. They got married in 2002. “I got a job as an operations manager for a high-end electronics company – it was the biggest one at that point and it introduced me to a lot of technology. I stayed with them for a little over four years, then worked for Rescue Rooter as an assistant manager for about two years and then worked for DSI.

Angel was attending classes to keep up his computer skills. Living expenses in California along with the commute to his classes prompted Angel and his family to move to the Chattanooga area in 2010. Maguis began working at Mohawk Industries and Angel was hired on at Volkswagen until his contract ended. He now works freelance as an Analyst/Consultant for I.T. and general business services.

Angel was ahead of his game as he witnessed his concepts being made by others years after he had come up with them. So he decided it was time to make his ideas a reality.

“One of my ideas is kind of mind-blowing. It is a self-sustaining perpetual energy generator. That’s exactly what it is, it generates stored energy, but it is more complex and really expensive to make,” Angel explains. “So I wanted to start with something more basic like the game idea ‘Spring Battle’ and I hope to generate money from this to go to the next invention.”

What urged him more was seeing a game he thought was quite ridiculous and felt what he had created would be much more appealing to people.

“I was watching television with my family and that ‘Doggie Doo’ toy commercial came on.  It’s a toy where you feed the dog and make the dog poop. If they can make a game out of poop, I know my invention is better than that! So, I wanted to get started with Spring Battle. It has to be more fun that making a dog poop,” Angel laughs.

Spring Battle is an interactive game that allows people to have an alternative to anti-social technology gaming. With two boards lined with pegs, one player (or team) launches a spring from one board to another. As the spring captures a peg, the peg is taken out. The object is to cause your opponent to lose all their pegs.

To make the game interesting, Angel plans to create the boards to have logos of sport teams or colleges to play against each other and also to involve kid’s themes such as Hello Kitty verses Ninja Turtles.

“It is an interactive game you can play at the park or inside open places like gyms or to have it during barbecues at the beach or a tailgate game. The board itself can promote whatever you are into – a cartoon theme or sports theme, or for companies such as VW verses Audi… you can promote whatever you like to battle what someone else likes.” Angel says.

The first step was to hire a company to make a prototype, but after investing his own money into the project, he found difficulty in getting the right prototype to market. “I need to get a prototype to my specifications and I need financing to get a good prototype done." 

As Angel spoke with schools, organizations and various people, they thought it was a great idea and encouraged him to have it developed.

“The whole thing is to get everybody out there playing again. To have kids interacting with each other, Angel says. “If they are introverted and inside themselves, they will not learn how to interact with people when they get older.”

Together, Angel and wife Maguis have four children, Tuirin, Jennifer, Angel and Rachel, and they encourage their children to get out from behind their iPad.

“I try to expose my kids to a lot in regards to open doors or being around others socially. When I was a kid, I was offered so many different things because of the level of intelligence teachers felt I had, but because of what was going on in my home life, I could not participate in them. I want my kids to be able to have the best and I want them to feel loved,” Angel says.

When Angel visits schools, kids draw to him like a magnet because he interacts with them. He cares about kids today who stay inside themselves like he used to and encourages them to be more involved.

Angel hopes to get funded to create a working prototype for Spring Battle. “Once it starts moving, I want to keep moving it forward and market it for major things. I am a local entrepreneur and plan to make the Chattanooga area the home of Spring Battle. I say this because Spring Battle was not only born here as an idea, but I have also developed it here. I sketched it while on the production floor at VW, and I made phone calls while at the parks trying to find who could make components for it.”

 Angel says. “I think it would be great for Chattanooga to see this thing come together not only to have a Chattanooga-based invention, but also to have our kids getting out from behind their iPads and more involved with each other.”

For interest in Spring Battle contact Angel at:

asuliveres@gmail.com

jen@jenjeffrey.com


Whitfield Cert Adds 10 New Members After Emergency Response Training

A father-son duo and a husband-wife team were among the 10 people who completed Whitfield County’s Academy 11 CERT training on Nov. 8-9.  The 10 new Community Emergency Response Team members increase the total to 208 men and women who have completed the emergency training since classes began here in 2010.   The graduates, who completed the intensive training ... (click for more)

The Salvation Army Of Greater Chattanooga Expecting To Feed More Than 1,000 Hungry Neighbors This Week

The Salvation Army, with the help of dozens of volunteers, hosted the 5th Annual Thanksgiving Eve Community Festival Wednesday, from noon–2 p.m. at 800 McCallie Ave. Over 200 were served by 50 plus volunteers. The Salvation Army will also be delivering meals to over 600 homebound neighbors Thursday, on Thanksgiving Day.   Volunteers will arrive at 9 a.m. to begin deliveries ... (click for more)

1 Dies, 1 Critically Injured In North Chattanooga House Fire

For the second time in three days, a house fire has resulted in tragedy with a 35-year-old woman dying and a man critically injured in North Chattanooga. At 10:13 a.m. on Wednesday, Chattanooga firefighters were dispatched to a reported house fire with entrapment at 220 Houser St. The first firefighters on the scene saw flames shooting out windows and part of the roof. Having ... (click for more)

Appeal Dropped In $25 Million Lawsuit Filed Against Hennen's Restaurant By Lisa Barnes

An appeal has been dropped of a Circuit Court jury verdict that found Hennen's Restaurant not at fault in a $25 million lawsuit brought by Lisa Barnes. Circuit Court officials said the appeal was "voluntarily" dropped. It had been set to be reviewed by the Tennessee Court of Appeals. The verdict in the courtroom of Judge Neil Thomas in early February came at the end of ... (click for more)

Lawlessness At Heritage Park

As a frequent visitor at Heritage Park in East Brainerd, I must say that the situation is becoming slightly out of control.  To start, parking is atrocious.  The unpaved lot contains nothing but loose gravel which has naturally given way to divots in the ground assuring you a few bumps.  Why isn't this area smoothed out?  It's not worth parking there anyways ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Why I Am Thankful 2014

Over 40 years ago I was a young sports writer when I came up with the notion of setting daily things aside, just for one day, and writing about why “I Am Thankful.” Every Thanksgiving I come up with my list and it is as much about me as it is about my gratitude for all things great and small. I can’t imagine approaching this day in any other way. Here we go … I AM THANKFUL for ... (click for more)