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,crochet, upcycle, paper craft, jewelry, cricut projects 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.
Brian is a 26 year retired USAF veteran from Greenwood, Indiana; currently working as DoD civilian Air Traffic Control Specialist at Grissom AFB. He primarily does lathe work making custom pens & bowls. He recently took up carving as well. Brian looks forward teaching through demos and helping the SHAK continue to be successful in the Kokomo community.
Brian is also a member of The American Association of Woodturners (AAW), Central Indiana Woodworkers (CIWW), and Eastern Woodland Carvers Club Inc.
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 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.
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.
Randy worked at Chrysler for a tad over 42 years and spent the last 28 years as a toolmaker, having graduated from the joint apprentice program. He spent time during those 28 years as Apprentice Representative and then Skilled Trades Training coordinator. Needless to say, He believes in the need for adequate training to become proficient in learning new skills. SHAK provides an excellent opportunity to do just that.
Randy consider myself to be a “jack-of-all-trades and master of none” in the purest sense of the phrase. While he worked at Chrysler, through its many iterations, he constantly found people that performed tasks better than me. Fortunately, most of them were willing to share their skills. This is a tradition that he intends to continue.
After Randy retired in December of 2014 he decided that he wanted to pursue woodworking and try to hone skills that I was able to gain through personal enhancement classes that he took through Tech Ed, courtesy of UAW negotiated benefits. He took many woodworking classes in addition to stained glass and tiling. Woodworking went pretty well with his background as a toolmaker and machining.
At both SHAK and Tech Ed Randy has been able to continue to learn more about woodworking and find that he can fill some of the problem solving that he has missed since retirement. He really appreciates it when he can do something that requires practicing a new skill. He believes that he is in the right place to do that here at SHAK
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 designer, entrepreneur, and formally 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.