Jennifer was born in the Kokomo area. She is a graduate of Northwestern High School and Vincennes University. She has also lived in Illinois and Colorado. She has been a life long maker. She was involved in 4-H in grade school- taking clothing, interior design and cooking. She has done a wide variety of art and crafts through the years with her mother, grandmother and aunts being an inspiration. She has worked in Early Childhood Education as a teacher, Daycare Director, at a call center in Workforce Management. She has also had jobs doing secretarial and factory work. She likes learning new skills and creating beautiful and useful items. At SHAK she works in sewing, knitting, upcycle, paper craft, jewelry,and more. Jennifer is the lead for Programming at SHAK, and is actively growing opportunities for folks of all skill levels to learn and grow here at the makerspace. In the next couple of years she looks forward to learning many new skills, helping others learn to new making skills, creating group events, and growing the SHAK family.
Her grandfather an airplane mechanic and spacesuit technician, her father a millwright, machinist and woodworker, and her mother a painter, stained glass artist, draftsman and seamstress, Susan Alexander was born into a maker family. Throughout her life she’s often told friends, “Don’t buy that, we can make it.” Then figures out how and does. She will try almost anything once, like the time she jumped out of a perfectly good airplane. Susan has tiled, built shelves and fences, wired fixtures, sewn covers and costumes, and hooked rugs-her current favorite pastime. She has on her list of things to try: welding, specialty concrete and upholstering. A former mayoral candidate and current downtown revitalization specialist with the Greater Kokomo Economic Development Alliance, she loves to inspire people to action for the good of the community. Susan believes a makerspace is a much deserved amenity for the creative and innovative people of Kokomo who make things with their hands and minds. She retreats, whenever possible, to the mountains of North Carolina to meditate. Susan has a Bachelor of Business Administration in Marketing from the University of Houston-Clear Lake. She is married with two sons.
Alan is a longtime mentor for the TechnoKats Robotics Team at Kokomo High School, and a serial volunteer at FIRST robotics competitions. He was a programmer starting at Delco Electronics, riding its journey through various iterations of Delphi, retiring just in time to miss the rise of Aptiv. He still writes software, both recreationally and for hire.
With his father as a role model and supporting tutor, he has been a tinkerer since grade school, finding ways to be creative in many contexts such as electronics, papercraft, rudimentary sewing, and simple wooden structures. He has learned not to get involved in plumbing, however.
He is also fluent in Klingon, the language constructed for the Star Trek franchise. The maker connection involves occasionally stepping "into character" with prosthetic forehead and a costume that he is incrementally improving with handcrafted details
Mike learned to build and fix things at an early age working alongside his dad and older brother Craig on one of the many “20 minute” jobs. Most people take the objects they have for granted while Mike, his brother and father always analyze things and figure out how to improve them or use them for a different purpose. His hobbies include fishing, woodworking, metalworking, electronics and 3D printing using a printer that his brother Craig designed, and Mike built. Mike also is into antique engines and restored a 1929 IHC McCormick Deering 1 1/2hp engine that drives a car alternator that he made into an ‘antique’ cellphone charger. Mike served as the co-production chair for Curtain Call Children’s Theater for 10 years where he also served as their interim Executive Director from 2011-2012. Mike’s day job is as the Vice President of Information Services at Four County Counseling Center. Mike holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Electronics and Computer Engineering Technology from Oklahoma State University.
Mike’s motto is, “Don’t break it if you don’t know how to fix it!
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Cheri enjoys making, volunteering, and learning new things. Her creative exploits include knitting, sewing, spinning, crocheting, felting, painting, digital art,lapidary,and working with wood and metal.
Braxton is a farmer, substitute teacher and classically trained and certified carpenter . He has experience building everything from small outdoor sheds up to large hospitals and high-rises. His favorite projects always involve fine woodworking and detail skills. His free time is spent on the farm or teaching others some of the knowledge he has acquired.
Fred likes to try his hand at many new things, and is active in 3D printing, wood working and electronics. He runs the FTC Robotics group that is hosted at the Makerspace and has a great time mentoring youth from 7-12 grade in designing and building competitive robots.