About Us

Textile Instruments was born on a visit to the NASA Technology Days in Cleveland, Ohio. Susan Bernard was spending the day at the event and had left her newborn baby at home for the first time. As she spent the day learning about the latest technologies, she couldn't help but be concerned about how her child was doing at home. When she learned about the latest NASA sensors, it was then that she realized the sensors could be incorporated into a fabric that would allow for wireless health status monitoring. Being the ambitious entrepreneur, Susan was quick to share her idea with her husband. She further talked with Sara Bowen, a trusted friend and professional, to lay the groundwork for Textile Instruments. After outlining a business plan and forecasting the future of Textile Instruments, it became clear that a skilled engineer was needed. Robert Donley was the proven individual to complete the Textile Instruments team. 

Susan P. Bernard is a driven entrepreneur at heart. Combining her business administration degree from the University of Miami with her ability to analyze situations and speak numerous languages, Susan determined her talents could be most effectively used in the electronic component industry. While working as a component broker, she gained experience working with global companies and uncovered the nuances of shipping commodities around the globe. 

Susan’s desire to create business plans and capitalize on valuable business opportunities worldwide led her to start her first company, SPB Global, in 2009.  Building on her knowledge of component brokering, using her language acumen, and employing her passion for business development, SPB Global saw significant growth and success in the early years. Her ambition and attention to detail separate her company from the competitor, and she is driven to maintain a clean supply chain for her customers. As a studied performer and musician, motivated entrepreneur, and creative solution provider, Susan has a unique presence as the CEO of Textile Instruments.  

Because of her discipline, vision, and experience, Susan can provide extensive and meaningful direction to teams and produce unparalleled results. 

Benjamin T. Bernard is a productive business development professional with a foundation in materials science and metallurgical engineering.  Benjamin is a graduate of Michigan Tech University and has experience in process failure analysis, metallurgy research, die shop management, and test plan development.  

He is able to combine his engineering expertise, team management skills, and process development to generate effective solutions and new products that impress his many Fortune 500 customers.  Benjamin’s ability to speak fluent Spanish has allowed him to develop business relationships both in the United States and internationally.  He thrives in environments where he is able to provide solutions to the most complex and unique business technology issues.  Benjamin’s experience combining lab work with real world practical solutions makes his leadership on the Textile Instruments team esteemed.  

Additionally, Benjamin’s interest in the creating sound financial decisions for his customers, as well as his knowledge of cost analysis, cost structure, and product scale-up processes bring his business resume full circle. 


Robert P. Donley, P.E., is a driven and passionate engineer with expertise in medical device design, team leadership, and lean transformation. Robert has experience in component and assembly design with 3D CAD Modeling/Finite Element Analysis, Mechanical Design, Prototype Fabrication, Systems Integration, and Project Management. 

Robert graduated from the Colorado School of Mines with a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering, and has worked for numerous companies in the alternative energy industry as well as medical device design and manufacturing. A contributing author on several pending patents, Robert has a keen ability to develop creative solutions to complex problems. His proven track record of design, product management, and process optimization improves quality, reduces costs, and supports new business development. 

He is an influential leader with exceptional analytical skills and a remarkable ability to guide new technologies from R&D studies and Proof-Of-Concept testing to successful commercial application and production. 

Sara E. Bowen is a creative business strategist who has a unique ability to merge business development, operations, and diverse groups of people to produce successful, measurable outcomes. Sara can systematically analyze a project, organize a detailed course of action, and inspire a team all the while attracting new customers and increasing current client satisfaction rates. 

Sara’s passions for improving business processes and performance were ignited when she was a student at Northwestern University. After graduating with a Bachelor of Science of Industrial Engineering and Management Sciences, Sara’s desire to develop and enhance business operations led her to several companies throughout the United States where she welcomed challenging tasks and accomplished impressive results. Sara has enjoyed building her first business, Cobalt Consulting, a sales and business marketing consulting company that provides process documentation, market collateral development, and sales support. 

She leads a staff of professionals and has grown her company by providing distinctive, practical support services. Sara’s ambition, performance, and impressive interpersonal skills speak to the quality individual she is.