Meeting notes from March 13

Notes from organizational meeting: 3/13 /2012


What are other makerspaces doing? and how are they structured?

  • Educational tools
    • Feltronics
    • safecast radiation mapping
    • research what others are doing
      • How organized
      • Policies
      • basic supplies


Discussion of space – two thought tracks: #2 Seemed to have more support

  1. “build it” they will come
  • need space to facilitate cross pollination
  • unknown what will happen, but worth trying
  • if you have a month, go for it and figure it out as you go
  1. wait until we have more things in place / Keep looking for space as we figure out things – work in parallel towards goal
  • determine budget (rent, insurance, utilities)
  • $ set aside to ensure longevity and success
  • need a bank account with a financial cushion of a year?
  • insurance etc. Needed especially if minors in space
  • Types of spaces available? Size? Needs?
    • Anchored space with studio rentals
    • look at space with in existing studios as step to own space. (Phil Mechanic as an example)
  • Vision of space needed
    • Social
    • work
    • gallery?
    • space for creative traffic
  • Hours vs. Access discussion
    • Who has keys?
    • security needs? (key code at mojo example of 24 hours access for 6 month payers)
    • key holders on schedule
    • staff at larger facilities
    • class schedules
    • buddy system for safety


Start with cyber connections to develop relationships/member communications

  • Virtual as stepping stone toward space goal
  • Sustainability built through relationships
  • facebook group exists
  • Networking skills and topics online
  • website needs
    • categories
    • people
    • interests
    • teams
    • equipment/tools/supplies
    • place to ask for help


Need to identifying sub-groups within interested people in Asheville

  • material focus: i.e. wood, metal, electronics, fabrics, robotics
  • Data on members needed
    • post to website
    • refine questionnaire sheet to populate website
    • resource/skills
    • equipment/supplies willing to contribute
    • speaker resources for schools/groups


Suggestions for meetings

  • Education topics, focus meeting on topics
  • mini lectures share knowledge/exchange ideas


Steps to success

  • divide up tasks
  • need name / vision first


Committees suggested

Mission / Vision statement

  • Making stuff focus
  • Joining minds
  • ”making to learn, learning to make”
  • What can be built
  • Curiosity
  • education learning/teaching


Organizational structure

  • Non-profit, incorporation?
  • board of directors?
  • by-laws, policies, involvement,
  • EIN, City/State/Fed permits


Membership / Communications

  • More data on members (see notes above)
  • Build cyber connections (see notes above)
  • Interesting/engaging meetings



  • Press releases
  • expand connections with other groups
  • look for potential partners (Trash as example)
  • tie back into education services
  • Build interest, check contests (national/international)
  • Demo/Booth at festivals



  • Kickstarter, Indiegogo, others? (what needs to happen to get it done?)







Committee Details


Vision Statement

Group to work on collectively

Goal: Define vision of organization.

  • What do we want to be?
    • Social group, work space, gallery, classroom, nexus for creative traffic, education, etc..
    • What do we want to accomplish?
      • Product development, socially useful items, fun, functional, artistic
      • 15 second “elevator speech”
        • ”making to learn, learning to make” suggested at meeting
        • Expand to a 5 minute version
          • Full detailed statement can be worked on for fundraising and such by Marketing Committee


Organizational Structure

Chantal is lead

Goal: research and bring recommendations back to group, implement agreed upon structure

  • Review structure of other organizations
    • Hugh has some links already
    • Incorporation structures pros/cons
    • Board of Directors?
    • Bylaws?
    • Policies?
    • Formal paperwork? EIN? (city, state, fed)
    • Budgets of existing spaces?
    • Revenue structures? (dues, sponsorships, grants, products and services)


Marketing / Community Outreach

Alice is lead

Goal: develop strategies and content for marketing group to community, supporting membership development and fundraising

  • Combine Vision Statement, name and look to achieve our “brand”
  • Creating content that we can use to let people know about us (press releases, flyers, web ads, print ads, generic business card, etc…)
  • Work closely with other committees to support their efforts and needs
  • Research ways group can be engaged with community (contests, festivals, educational outreach)
  • Build relationships with other makerspaces, community assets, possible collaboration places
  • Help find and/or generate content of interest to members and/or help distribute info created by members


Membership Communications

Hugh is lead

Goal: develop strategies for communicating with members, facilitating discussions and collaborations

  • Work closely with marketing committee on messaging and to not duplicate efforts
  • Online content tools and communication channels
  • Put in place tools for people to share information.
  • website (categories, people, interests, teams, equipment, tools, supplies)
  • facebook
  • twitter
  • forum
  • youtube


Membership Engagement and Directory

Harold is lead

Goal: develop a comprehensive database of members and help them connect with each other

  • identify sub-groups by material focus and skills/experience
  • refine questionnaire to get better information
  • work closely with membership communications committee to share information



Need a lead

Goal: development of funds beyond membership dues to support organization

  • Identify pros/cons and paperwork/infrastructure requirements of fundraising options (Kickstarter, Indiegogo, etc.)
  • Work with Marketing Committee on Events
  • Help identify potential revenue generating Products/Services
  • Plot out Financial Donation types
  • Research potential grants



Mimi is lead

Goal: identify appropriate space(s) and work towards occupation

  • Identifying potential raw spaces
  • Create a budget with space costs factored in to assess viability of individual spaces
  • Consider Partnering with other organizations (Trash Inc, Phil Mechanic Studio, Mojo Coworking, AB-Tech-Enka, AAAC, RAD buildings)


Programs and Meetings

Need a lead

Goal: schedule meetings and programs in support of vision and member interests

  • Identify additional local spaces to visit for “field trips” (Bookworks, Odyssey, Kitsch Fabric & Craft, Blue Ridge Food Ventures, Cloth + Fabric,  AB-Tech, UNCA, WCU, BRCC, HCC, glass blowers, etc)
  • Consider Educational programs – possibly bringing in outside guests
  • Focus meetings on topics and have a lecture or workshop about it.
  • Identify members as “speaker” resources we can provide for schools/groups – coordinate with Marketing committee to implement
  • Coordinate Mini lectures to share knowledge / exchange ideas – member to member knowledge sharing
  • Coordinate Mini classes on skills

Asheville Maker meeting March 13

Our next meeting will be on Tuesday, March 13 at Burgermeisters, 697 Haywood Road in West Asheville from 6 to 7:30pm. The focus of this meeting will be strictly organizational related topics. During this meeting we will determine some key items to do in order to move forward as an organization. Please note that Burgermeisters is closed on Tuesdays so there will not be any food or drink available during the meeting, and many thanks to Chantal for being our host and allowing us the use of her restaurant.