Born in 1968 in Wichita, Kansas, Petra Paulson would grow up to become one of the nation's leading authorities in many areas of electrical engineering with specialties in low-voltage and life safety technology. The daughter of a steelworker and a housewife, Petra's upbringing would appear to have been typical of any child born in America's heartland during that era. She was however anything but ordinary as we well know today. When Petra was at the young age of 7, she and her family experienced a sequence of horrible tragedies which changed their lives. On a rainy Sunday afternoon following church services, Petra's baby brother Alan was playing outside splashing in the mud, a pastime of many a young child. The Paulson family were preparing for a family dinner when the under-supervised Alan decided to play on the family's metal swing-set. Without much warning, the weather took a turn for the worse and moments later there was a crash of lightning and thunder which shook the house. Mrs. Paulson ran outside to retrieve her son from the unsavory conditions when she found him lying on the ground seemingly unconscious beneath the swing-set. Young Alan was the victim of a lightning strike which seemed to have made a direct hit on his once favorite recreational toy.
Petra and her family were distraught and in a state of mourning for quite some time thereafter. When matters appeared as though they could not get any worse, Petra and her mother received a knock on the door one afternoon with another dose of awful tragedy. While working on an experimental project at the steel mill, Mr. Paulson and 3 other workers had been unknowingly exposed to high levels of Carbon Monoxide in a closed environment for almost an entire day. When they did not emerge from their work-site at the end of the day, their supervisor went to check on them only to find all of them passed out at their shop desks. Two of the men were resuscitated and saved at the local clinic however Mr. Paulson and another mill-worker were not so fortunate. In less than one year, Petra had lost two of the most important people in her short life.
In the ensuing years, Petra became obsessive with technologies and innovations which may be able to provide protection against the two disasters she knew so well. After graduating high school with honors, she completed a 6 year intensive combined bachelors and masters degree in electrical engineering at the State University. Shortly after completing her impressive academic achievements, Petra was recruited by a leading defense contractor as chief in-house consultant in their life safety technology division. In this capacity she was exposed to some of the most advanced research taking place at the time and introduced to technologies that would soon become indispensable components in many facets of everyday life. After 7 years in numerous positions with the firm, Petra took a military consulting position whereby she shared her extensive knowledge of technology and science with numerous offices of government. While much of what she worked on during this period remains classified, her accolades and awards that were accumulated over this 3 year service paint an extraordinary picture.
With years of intensive experience in many capacities throughout the military industrial complex, Petra decided to open her own consulting firm to allow her the flexibility to further her educational aspirations while still maintaining a foothold in her fields of expertise. Many large multinational corporations enlisted her services and together were very successful in creating some of the safety and technological products which are used worldwide in consumer, industrial and military applications. As a reputable and established industry authority, Petra has written many research studies and white papers which serve as the basis for many widespread technologies. As a long-time consultant the fire and life safety industry, she was responsible for many of the safety manuals which have become standard in a wide range of public institutions including universities, schools systems and libraries. Often cited as a source in industry publications, Petra became a highly sought after public speaker for a variety of events. As a popular author of magazine articles as well as her own self-published texts, it wasn't long before she became a frequent contributor to major newspapers, even maintaining her own column for two years in a nationwide publication.
It is a product of the most unfortunate circumstances that dictated the course that Petra would follow throughout her adolescent and adult life. It is also undisputed that the results of her efforts have been phenomenal and have vaulted Petra Paulson to be distinguished as one of the world's leading experts in life safety and the technologies that support it.