Space Committee Minutes011814

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New Space Committee
Meeting Minutes
Meeting date: 01/18/2014

This meeting was a specially scheduled Committee meeting, only because we didn't have the time set at least 30 days in advance. It started about 1:01pm

Members in attendance:

  1. Weston Turner
  2. Rick Osgood
  3. James Hukill
  4. Sam Foster
  5. Marie Slatton-Valle
  6. Bob Miller
  7. Clif Cox
  8. Ben Hallert
  9. Mark Danburg-Wild
  10. Tim Heilman
  11. Ellery Weber
  12. Don Easton
  13. Tom Conlin (late)


  • Discuss the latest LOI (letter of intent) for the 584 Wilson space (Clif)
  • Discuss our website and changes we need/want to make:
    • Why is our site "just a blog"? (Bob)
    • What should our 72pt font call to action be? (Bob)
    • What can we put on our About EMS page, such as a mission statement etc..
    • Should we have a base page that puts a face on us that is fairly static? (Greg)
    • Show off individual projects or community outreach by splitting these into separate sub pages? (Greg)
  • Answer the questions:
    • "Why should I sponsor/contribute to EMS?" (Sam)
    • "What do we do, what do we have, who do we work with, what do we want, and what are our plans for the future?
  • Discuss the School Factory fund raising Workshop (Mark)
    • Talk about main ideas that members took away from watching it
    • Go through Darrell's notes

Discuss LOI

We went over the LOI, and some further talk on Wilson. Compared it to others like the second Tyinn place. No really viable other spaces are known (if we want a large percentage of office space) at this point. Still some trepidation about the high cost. We set an action item to sign the LOI ASAP.

Discuss Marks video he pointed us at:

Also talked about some of the changes that we might make to our site.


  • Foundation founding
  • Corporate funding
    • What is a reasonable amount to ask for?
    • Have a list of things to ask for sorted from big to small, if they say no to the first few items
    • A lot of spaces have a friends category to direct a newsletter to. and who you could hit up for semi annual support.
      • This is a great idea!
  • The School factory has some resources to help with the funding search.
  • Weston's takeaways:
    • When applying for grants it's very unlikely that anyone will fund either rent or staff.
    • Workarounds are having a pie chart for an attractive project that includes some portion for rent and staff.
    • Why should we donate to you? because we compliment your organization and mission.
    • Kickstarters are only viable for major projects
    • indiegogo has looser requirements so you might get away with raising money for rent / staff there.

Talked about being honest in what we want even though you might be able to finagle money through other projects. We could ask for money to host classes for free from a sponsor. Then we can have guaranteed income for rent and ramp of our classes at the same time.

Ben had some ideas about a strategy for securing donations. A lot of companies will have mission statements that talk about outreach. we should target the intersection between our two groups. We check your box if you check ours! ;-) This was reinforced by the video Mark referred us to.

Tim: Find out what they want, then offer it to them.

Sam: Come up with a short list of potential funders

Weston: We don't have staff, but it would be much easier if we were big enough to have paid staff.

Clif: We are small and have working board and whatever volunteer time we can get.

Sam: Code Chops got 25 volunteers just dieing to help! and they put them to work. SO have a prepared list of volunteer jobs ready to go.

Tom Conlin showed up at 13:50

Website and changes we could make

Marie was looking at Maker Has, and got some ideas there:

  • Reorganize to make it look nicer.
  • Links to press
  • Have a FAQ
  • More concise info
  • Better info about what we offer, who we are...
  • Classes
  • Press releases
  • Video
  • Mission statement (at the top)
  • Mailing list links
  • News letter list.

Weston: how could we more compartmentalize the content and index it? (From Greg's email suggestion)

Ben: Wordpress can be organized as either posts and pages. Ours is set up as posts / blog.

Some would like the proposed newsletter on the WP site, others might like it delivered to them via email, which currently implies it also is copied to the forum.

One of Bob's takeaways from his meeting is Have something in 72 point type!

Encourage all to sign our guest book. Implicitly sign up all guest book entries to the newsletter! (evil grin) ;-)

Discussion about our pitches for sponsors

What are we (would we be) doing wrong (If we were doing anything). ;-) what do we expect to give back to them for their support?

Ben: my wife's on the board for Sore Monday Putting together elevator pitches to get your foot in the door is a great exercise for sponsors.

Tim thinks you should know exactly who you are and what you want. James disagrees he wants more feedback from them to feel out what we can get.

Possible mission statement snippet: Trying to restore innovation, lab science, and teaching - skills...

Include a few testimonials.


Are we liable for 60 days rent after we give our notice? Yes. Though Clif thinks that the overlap will most likely be about 30 days by the time we actually move in to the new space. So how can we time it for minimal overlap?


We had a great turnout, and lots of good discussion. We now have a few more action items to work on. There was also a new web site committee formed to work on a face lift.

Acton items:

  • Get our PR media kit done James, Marie, Sam, Rick , Weston, also the website face lift IIRC.
  • Board email action to sent off LOI
  • Bring back the awesome teeshirt lady.

Done! adjournment at 2:47PM

-- Main.ClifCox - 13 Jan 2014