Summary: Rienzi is a New York City native, passionate about creating and building new things. He always loved creating and playing with legos, and was introduced to coding in high school where he developed a deep interest.  He studied Mechanical Engineering at Columbia to get a better understanding of the physical world, but continued programming throughout. After graduating, he worked as a software engineer at PeerIQ, and pursued a Masters Degree in Computer Science from Georgia Tech to deepen his software knowledge. Now, he has joined Auba to build the future of supply chains and logistics.

You don’t need to understand why something is fascinating for it to become a part of your life. In fact, it’s often the case that such fascination is all that is needed to keep a concept or a passion around. As life marches forward, many of such interests arise. And, when those fascinations are put together, one gets the bare bones of a life.

Such, in a way, is what emerges when talking to Rienzi. A sense that there is much passion in the world even if it comes with little explanation—or, perhaps, by virtue of this very mystery. 

The story of these fascinations goes back to his early childhood. Rienzi was born in New York and, excluding a brief period in New Jersey, he’s always lived in the city: the object of his first, and ever-present, interest. When asked if he ever considered moving, the answer was a clear no, followed by an hint of surprise. As if there was no possible alternative but there was no clear reason for such a thought. “It’s hard to describe,” he said as we talked, “but New York feels more like home than anything else.” 

Other passions were soon to arise. From a young age, as Rienzi made his way across the city, he discovered a deep passion for building things. It was, once again, a matter of intuition, not of pure reasoning. Ever since he was little, he was playing with Legos, trying to create new structures from simple pieces of plastic. There was, put plainly, a deep passion in the act of creation that couldn’t be put into formal logic.

Naturally, as he grew older, such interest in building would push him towards STEM, studying computer science in high school and later pursuing an engineering degree in college. Staying in his native New York—again, another object of fascination—, he studied mechanical engineering at Columbia, while still pursuing courses in coding and computer science as a whole. It was a natural extension of those early evenings playing with Lego. A means to create new things in the world.

Yet before continuing with Rienzi’s fascination with building—for there’s still much to be told—, there was another force acting upon his decisions in those early years: a deep appreciation for fencing. Much like New York or his interest in creating things, his love for fencing came almost by coincidence. As a child, he got into an accident while swimming that left a minor scar on his face. As people around him saw the small wound, they suggested he should say he got it while fencing, as sword fighting seemed to be a far cooler explanation than what actually happened. Rienzi took this to heart and, after much insisting, convinced his mother to enroll him in fencing lessons. 

What began almost as a childish joke soon became a true fascination. By the time Rienzi was in high school, he was participating in national tournaments and ranking amongst the best 20 fencers in the US. At one point, he even spent a summer training with the Romanian national team, combining his passion for the sport with his own ancestry, coming from a Romanian family. When it came time to choose a college, he was looking at places where he could both pursue his passion for creating things while also continuing his fencing career. Columbia, ranked amongst the top in fencing and engineering, soon became a natural choice.

After he finished his undergraduate degree in Mechanical Engineering, Rienzi decided to take a small pivot and, instead of looking for jobs more closely related to his studies, he sought positions as a software engineer. Soon after graduating, he got a job with PeerIQ, working as a backend developer and, in the process, discovering a new form of fascination. It wasn’t just that he was building new products every day through code, but that his actions had an impact on the company itself and, through products, on people galore. Impact thus became a new form of unexplainable interest to him, one he would later pursue working for Elemy and, now, as a core member of Auba.

When he decided to join our team, Rienzi did so by considering all these past fascinations that make up his character. At Auba, he is able to build a product from scratch, helping us understand the complex world of logistics. At the same time, he is able to create tools of immense impact to the logistics industry, seeing his code transformed into actual results.

There may not be a clear explanation now, as there hasn’t been in the past. Perhaps there never will be one. But Rienzi has managed to turn that curiosity into a powerful fuel that now brings him to make an impact in the world of supply chains.