Nathan Pilcowitz and the Companion Mobile App

Nathan Pilcowitz(1)

What years and programs were you at Tamarack?
’04 Levison, ’05 Hermelin, ’06 Grosberg Ruach, ’07 Maas Speciality, ’08 Western, ’09 Alaska, ’10 Shiffelbaum staff

What are you up to now?
I’m finishing my senior year at U of M, graduating in May with a concentration in Informatics. I plan to focus on Companion after school.

Tell us about Companion. What does it do? What are your goals, etc.?
Companion is a peer to peer safety app that makes public safety smarter and provides peace of mind to anyone on the move. The Companion solution consists of the Companion Mobile App and the Companion Monitoring Service. The Companion Mobile App, allows users to ask friends, family, or public safety organizations to keep an eye on them as they walk home late at night.

The Companion Monitoring Service allows public safety organizations to harness real-time walking data combined with historical walking patterns and a predictive engine to determine the optimal placement of officers. It also provides a direct line of communication between students and campus safety departments, which many organizations lack but desperately need.

Our goal is to provide peace of mind to anyone on the move and position officers more optimally to prevent crime from happening in the first place.

What has the response to Companion been?
Great response! Since launching into our “Public Beta” in November we’ve had thousands of downloads and interest from Campus Safety Organizations.

What was it like to win the Michigan Business Challenge and your experience with the competition overall?
Really an awesome competition and it was a great feeling to win. It made all the work worth it. We’re really excited for some great things to come.

What are you favorite memories of Tamarack?
Pinnell backcountry in Alaska, an all-guys backcountry. I learned a lot about myself and how to work as a team. I constantly found myself talking about different ideas and inventions with fellow Tamarack alumni, Andrew and Ryan Landau (they will always be great mentors).

What impact did camp have on you?
Leadership — how to have an influence on someone’s life and how to be impactful.

What advice would you give to campers and staff at Tamarack today?
Appreciate every second of being at camp, you don’t know how much you might miss it.


Clara and Irvin Charach Tamarack Museum

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Linking Our Past, Present, & Future!

Thanks to a generous donation by Natalie and Manny Charach, we are building the Clara and Irvin Charach Tamarack Museum to showcase our community camp’s illustrious history.

Share your memories! We are searching for items that tell a story; objects old and new that relate to your Tamarack experience.

Contact Gabe Neistein at and he will tell you whether your item is needed at present. Our storage space is limited so please do not bring items to us. Please be aware that our exhibits will change so items may be useful in the future.

Stay tuned for more information about this exciting project!

We are interested in, but are not limited to, the following from all eras:

  • Photos or video
  • Articles of clothing –hats, hiking boots, old tee shirts, swim suits, jacket etc.
  • Arts & Crafts projects
  • Paper Plate Awards
  • Canteens
  • Duffel Bags
  • Memorabilia from Brighton, Maas/ Ortonville, Agree, Kennedy, Western, Alaska and other programs
  • Letters
  • Mess Kits
  • Paddles
  • Sports Equipment (old)
  • Travel Souvenirs
  • Itineraries
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