SHAK Makerspace
Jennifer Bollnow

(Co-President)


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

Mike Kessler

(Co-President/Co-Founder)



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!

Ed Conner

( Secretary)


Ed joined SHAK a few years ago after seeing the group at a craft bazaar. He is 65, worked 32 years at Chrysler, then 4 years delivering flowers and now have worked 6+ years at a prison facility.

    He discovered he enjoyed working with wood after refinishing their hardwood floors. He decided to get into making things but wanted to keep it to simple things. He started out doing small tables and have since done bowls, a planter and clockface. SHAK is a great Makerspace to hangout, share your interests and discover other interests.



  Susan Alexander

(Member-at-Large/Co-Founder)


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. 


Leanna Brown

(Vice President)


Leanna Brown is a third generation maker, second generation potter, first generation photographer, and all around crafter. She is the owner and operator of Alpha Cub Pottery and shares making space here at SHAK. Although she has no formal artist training, she has almost 50 years of watching her artist dad at work and practicing in his art studio. Leanna has been taking professional photographs since 1989 and has been making and selling pottery for over five years now. Leanna loves creating and experimenting with her art and loves sharing it with others.




Nan Braun

(Development Director/Innovation Architect/Co-Founder)



Nan has been a maker and entrepreneur for as long as she can remember- from helping her Dad build out the basement, family endeavors in landscaping and gardening, or cooking, canning , cake decorating and other creative endeavors with her Mom. She had her first successful create/"sell for profit" venture at age 9 and there was no looking back from there. She is currently the CEO of Thavron Solutions and the COO of Cogbots, a kinetic art studio. She and her husband David run Indiana Makers and are the Nation of Makers Ambassadors for the state of Indiana.  She loves supporting maker educators and consults with schools wanting to grow their makerspace and/or maker programs.  She is one of the champions of the SHAK CoderDojo program,  and organizes the Ignite Kokomo Program.


Nan runs a side hustle jewelry business called Twisted Dreams and helps to coordinate the Artisan Business Collective at SHAK. She has found a love of playing with hardware electronics for the fun of it, and hopes to see a wearables group get off the ground at the Makerspace. 


She has a passion for making makers, and enabling them in the entrepreneurial process.

Cheri Myers

( Member-at-Large)


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. 

Alan Anderson

( Member-at-Large) 


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


Fred Jarrett

(Member-at-Large)  


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. 


All Member information and images are copyright that member and may only be used with their permission.
SHAK Makerspace is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization.

Address: 210 W Monroe St, Kokomo, Indiana 46901

Phone: (765) 865-8701

Email: info@shakmakerspace.org

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