Chandler Community Meeting Notes

As part of our growing efforts to share our activities publicly, here are meeting notes from our weekly community meeting.

Community Meeting

START 4:00PM 9/11/2013

Air Conditioner

Jeremy S shared that service was performed on our system last Thursday. It was found in good order, and not the source of the smell. Someone adjusted the temperatures of the systems (why it was so hot). The system was indeed recirculating the “dead fish” air, but not the source. Like we said last week, please don’t adjust the system. It is programmed to work optimally for us.

Dead Fish Smell

Source of smell was determined to be a collapsed bee colony on the roof & facade & our north walls. Beekeepers killed the remainder of the hive on Friday and went in for removal over the weekend. Smell is better!

Drinking Water Solution

Jeremy wishes to thank to Timmus and Derek for the help in rethinking the solution. Original solution fell through due to donation promised wasn’t in working order like was originally thought. A plumber is coming on Friday to quote the installation of a waterless R/O cooler. R/O cooler will be funded with current donations with funding gap covered by Integrum (thank you!). If you are willing to give further funding to help cover gap, donate to billing@gangplankhq.com via PayPal.

WiFi

WiFi has a fresh set of eyes (Jill R & David M & Geoff S) to get a better solution for the failing system (due to DNS caching issue). The firmware upgrade from 6 weeks wasn’t sufficient to fix issue. The new team is speccing a trade in for a different system, more to come. Current fix for DNS issues is still: set custom DNS (google or open DNS). Ask Jill or Trevor for help.

Entrepreneurship Ecosystem presentation @ ASU

Gangplank presentation to MBA and ASU WP Carey Alumni as part of a wider review of Arizona Entrepreneurship Ecosystem. Saturday 2:30 – 5:00 PM on Saturday 9/21. Jeremy S (Chandler Location) and Vincent N (Avondale Location) to speak. Ignite-style presentation with lots of photos, so help us make it awesome. Email Jeremys@gangplankhq.com some cool graphics/photos/etc. Can come participate in networking as well. Dress code: shorts and GP/black shirt. :)

Blog Post Series for Website – Where are they Now

Greg T to lead new blog series “Where Are They Now” as discussed on Facebook Group. Will interview old Gangplankers and tell stories of Gangplank success stories. Is accepting input.

Feedback Mechanism

Should we make a UserVoice… like the “Things I Want” email discussion. David M & Chuck R to build, share.

Building Hours

Saturday 9/21/2013 needs keyholder to open, Matt S is gone in SF. There will be two events that day. Public hours are 9AM to 4PM also. David M & Tim A will cover.

Discussion: Initiative of the Week Studios

Timmus A wants to thank to everyone who went to the idea/brainstorming/planning meeting this week on Monday. Big announcement: Monday’s to become Creativity Open House night. 6PM – 9PM ala Hacknight The naming/branding of the night TBD… we will use the UserVoice that will be started to determine it. Activities should be creativity focused. Catch-all for creativity events that ask to schedule. Encourage organic growth, but would like to see jam nights, open mic nights, writing groups, etc. Provision Coffee to offer free coffee on Mondays. Promotion: Ryan G says he will literally street team it at local art nights, etc. Starting next month on Monday’s: Learning to Draw Free Classes led by Eileen Kane with help from local artists. Weekly on Mondays starting in October. Help promote!

Future Topics

Note: Next week Initiative of the Week is Business, Week After 9/25 is Labs

END: 4:35PM

What is Next?

Gangplank has been wildly successful on a number of fronts, but we always push for more. It is in our DNA. Recently Gangplank Chandler has been struggling with defining what an anchor is, what social obligations exist and how to operate without an appointed leader. These are things all locations have or will struggle with at some point. It was time for a retrospective of sorts. We asked for help from Kim Kressaty of Future Pull Consulting (and a Gangplank Board Member) to facilitate a discussion on What is next?

The full report can be found at Gangplank Report.

The TL;DR version.

Top Priorities

  1. Show the world how a shared leadership model can work at scale.
  2. Live the Gangplank manifesto in every Gangplank community.
  3. Message the Gangplank manifesto.
  4. Build the Gangplank Network out with an emphasis that Gangplanker’s work together regardless of location.
  5. Leverage the Gangplank community for optimum effectiveness both locally and globally.
  6. Be Dangerous. Really. For Real.
  7. Emphasis on youth programs to break the cycle and restore creativity.

 

Five Day Plan

  1. Finalize details necessary to kick off the Community Builders Program.
  2. Push out plan for newly implement Google Groups strategy to facilitate communication.
  3. Start a migration path to remove the concept of anchors and define something much more powerful.

 

Thirty Day Plan
Community Builders. Let’s build it together.

Ninety Day Plan
Community Builders. Let’s build it together.

We should all be asking ourselves, “How can we drive towards these priorities?”. As a first step towards starting to message the manifesto we have started the Dangercast. Where we will be talking about the manifesto and culture that makes Gangplank work. We expect community participation in it. The first episode is available (and transcribed) at “Dangercast #1 : Collaboration over Competition“. It is also available on iTunes at “Dangercast“.

So if you love Gangplank and want to go deeper let us know you are interested in becoming a Gangplank Community Builder.

Yes, I am interested!

Be Dangerous. Be Excellent.

Dangercast #1 – Collaboration over Competition

In our inaugural episode of the Dangercast, Jade Meskill, Derek Neighbors and Roy van de Water talk about the first value of the Gangplank Manifesto: Collaboration over Competition.

Transcript

Jade Meskill: Welcome to “Dangercast,” the official Gangplank podcast where we talk about the design and culture of Gangplank. I am Jade Meskill.

Derek Neighbors: I am Derek Neighbors.

Roy van de Water: I am Roy van de Water.

Jade: This is our inaugural episode. Thanks for listening. We wanted to talk about the Gangplank Manifesto. We are not going to get into the history that’s documented in other places. What we want to do is dissect the manifesto and really talk about some of the things that we mean, some of the nuance, details behind the points of the manifesto. If you are not familiar with the Gangplank Manifesto, you can check it out at gangplankmanifesto.com.

The first point of the Gangplank Manifesto, the first value that we list, is Collaboration over Competition. Derek, what does that mean to you?

Derek: I think it’s important when we are looking at the manifesto that there’s things on the left and there’s things on the right. It doesn’t mean that the things on the right are bad things. It just means that we prefer the things on the left.

A little bit of the way we came to some of this is, is we talked about what is hurting our communities and those are things that were on the right or the things that hurt our communities. Then we would say what are the things that would neutralize that?

Competition was a big one, and I think what happens when there’s competition is it breeds scarcity. It says that the only way to be successful is to put somebody else down, put somebody else’s ideas down or put them out of business, where when you have a mental model of it says that we operate in abundance, which means if I am successful, you can be successful.

I think that that’s a much better model to operate in and a good way to think about this. I think when we were dealing in an industry that was say, the automobile industry or the industrial industry, and we were both trying to get steel.

Steel is a scarce resource. There’s only so much steel available, and so if I am taking steel, that means there’s less steel for you. But when we look at knowledge industries, and we look at creative industries, when we look at industries around creation, there is very rarely scarcity, because what happens with idea is if I have an idea and I share the idea with you, I don’t lose that idea. I still have the idea but you have it too.

I think the concept here was collaboration is all about saying how do we share ideas. How do we share the things that we are doing so that we have an abundance of those things and people can build on them?

If I do something really great and I share with you and allow you to do it, and then somebody takes what you are doing and builds on it, and we continue to build on that, we have something much more magnificent than if I was trying to push you out of business with my idea.

I think a lot of these values for me, or this value for me came a lot from doing a lot with Free Software Foundation and looking at Patent Law, Copyright Law, number of things that say the best innovation actually tends to come when you allow people to build on other people’s works.

I think that that was a lot of it. The other thing is it really became petty. I mean people would be just stupid on purpose because it was so fulfilling to go hurt a competitor and then…

Jade: Even sometimes at your own expense.

Derek: At your own expense, right. See, the problem is you start to become stupid, because it’s like well, keeping Jade from getting the work is better. I don’t even care if I get it, as long as I keep him from getting it.

It’s like what a waste of energy is that? I mean to starve you out doesn’t do me any good. If I go on, I just kick ass, then I don’t need to worry about that, and if you’re kicking ass too, then awesome. If we’re both kicking ass, we are going to attract a whole bunch of other stuff.

A lot of this at the time for us was talking around talent. It was talking about funding and if you look at the areas that attract the most talent, look at the areas that have the most funding, it’s because there’s a lot of awesome stuff happening there.

It’s not because “Oh, the one person is in-charge,” or the one company has the lion’s share of what’s going on.

Jade: It’s like having a great restaurant that is surrounded by other great restaurants.

Derek: Right.

Jade: Right. That doesn’t detract from you. That actually is an attractor for more people to experience the greatness of your restaurant. But we don’t see that happen in real life.

People get way more territorial than that. They have a hard time understanding that concept. I remember us having that problem a lot very early on in the Gangplank days where I am a web developer, and you run a web development company and the customer becomes the imagined scarcity.

There were battles and wars and things happening inside of Gangplank because I was afraid you were going to come steal my customer set. I remember having to constantly harp on people say, “No, there’s plenty of customers for all. If we were all doing great work, we would all have an abundance of customers.”

Derek: I see this in the power networking groups, and it’s even evolved into a lot of co-working spaces I see, and a lot of mindsets of freelancers. It’s like, I am the PR guy and I don’t think that another PR guy should be able to have a desk in our space.

Jade: We need the exclusivity agreement.

Derek: Right. Like if I am going to be here, I need to be the only PR guy, because when I bring clients and I don’t want people to know who my clients are because they are just going to try to steal my clients.

That is a lot of the mentality that I think we were really fighting against, fast-forward to a point where we had multiple instances. We still have instances of companies merging together that were inside of Gangplank.

We’ve had instances where employees have left one company inside of Gangplank, started a competing business that does almost the exact same thing in Gangplank, next to the company that they left. Those companies collaborate on customers and ideas and help train each other.

Jade: Yeah, and we’ve helped people with that. We’ve given them examples of our contracts of our former employees who moved to one desk over to start their own company.

Derek: Yeah, I think it was Mike Binder who said it really well. In Silicon Valley they have the really awesome saying of, “I switched my job, but I didn’t switch my parking lot,” and Binder said, “I switched my job, and I didn’t switch my desk,” like trump that, right?

Roy: Yeah. I think there’s something too about focusing on the wrong problems when you start worrying too much about competition. If you are really focusing on your customer and focusing on making their lives better, ultimately it doesn’t matter if you are the one who gets to help them or if it’s the better alternative that’s also available.

When you insist on doing great things, you start focusing on delighting people and not on making money, and that making money happens to be a side effect of that. It almost becomes irrelevant at that point because that’s given where if you do great things.

I feel like that’s part of the problem as well that you are just too focused on making money, that you just try to compete with everybody all the time instead of trying to make the people that really matter, happy.

Jade: I think this is very easy to understand on the lowest level that we can see that there’s direct competition between businesses, and it shouldn’t have to be that way. But I think this statement of Collaboration over Competition also exists at a higher level.

When we talk about multiple Gangplank locations or cities working together, government, things like that, how do you see this value holding true at that next level out?

Derek: I think it scales the same way. People just tend to not think about that way. You have cities and you’ve got one city next to another city, and they are fighting for the next company that comes in and lands in their city.

In reality, what they really should be thinking of is the region. In reality, more often than not, the person that works at the company that you are trying to attract, may or may not live, or go to school, or have a wife that works, or a husband that works, or a spouse that works in the same city.

The more opportunity a region has, the more attractive it is to somebody. I think a lot of times we get very shortsighted in that as well. The other part that I think starts to be a little bit silly is we don’t recognize, we all have our unique DNA, whether we’re individuals, whether we’re companies or whether we’re cities or corporations. When we play to our strengths of our DNA instead of worrying about what the competition is, I think we open up the ability to do really magnificent things.

We can start to say, “Hey, if we work together on this, we can do something that is so much better than if we weren’t doing something together.” I firmly believe that you will see this principle in play at some time in my lifetime, bar I live another 20 years or 30 years, where you will see companies working, and when I say companies, I mean bigger companies working out of the same buildings or sharing the same resources and blending to the point where you don’t know which employee belongs to what company, and they are in the same space.

Jade: What would that mean for those companies?

Derek: I think it would mean that they would be able to advance things much quicker. Think of if I was doing an automobile assembly line or I was doing an advanced chip manufacturing plant. The capital costs in doing those things are still fairly expensive.

If we were sharing that line, or sharing that resource of some kind, and it could be any resource, it doesn’t have to necessarily be a physical piece like that, and I had access to really bright engineers and really bright folks.

Some of them maybe work for me, and some of them maybe work for you, and then some of them maybe work for both of us. Maybe they had a really specialized skill that we only needed for a small amount of time during chip production or maybe there’s only few months of time.

If I have them it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense because the best of their talent is not being used and if you have them, the best of their talent is not being used. But if we are kind of sharing them back and forth, that allows us to continue to riff and build on common things that are really commodities.

You see this time and time in markets place, the things that are hot commodities in scarcity at some point become commodities. But then when you have those commodities, people build on them and launch stuff into the stratosphere.

We look at the free software where a web server would be an example of this. Like at one time the Netscape web server was extremely expensive, really hard to configure, all sorts of problems with it.

As Apache came in, as other things started to come in, and we’re made commodities, where they didn’t really cost anything. They are really easy to do. Look at how it exploded entire new economies that didn’t exist before.

I think that’s what we are really talking about is if we can get to the point where we are going fast enough that stuff that is valuable today is a commodity three days later. That means the innovation cycle is just fucking insane, whereas if stuff that is scarce today is scarce 20 years from now. That means our innovation cycle is really slow.

What does it cost? Can any of us go to the moon today? The answer is no. But if we got to the point where owning a spaceship, and going to the moon cost the same thing as owning a car, and putting gas in the car tank, think of what would happen, all of the new industry that would blow up out of having that capacity.

I think it’s as much about capacity building. In my mind it is like once you break the scarcity model. You open up a capacity model and once you have capacity model like you’re enabling things that humanity can’t even think of right now.

Jade: How does that kind of collaboration work? How do we envision people embracing collaboration at that level?

Derek: Oh, you tell me.

[laughter]

Jade: We’ve been experimenting with some different things in the leadership structure and just kind of the interactions of how Gangplank functions at a higher level. We struggled with authority and hierarchy, things like that.

One of the things that we found that is the most important for real collaboration is true alignment, and that requires a whole lot of things including some level of intimacy, trust, all of those things.

If we are going to be too large corporations sharing this very precious resource, we better have a very deep and trusting relationship in order to make that be successful.

Derek: Yeah, I think for me the big factor is right now companies are focused solely on bottom lines, and they are focused on profits. Because of that, that becomes a scarcity model for them, because I want to dominate the market, I want the position. I want everything about that because that means more money for me.

What that means is less innovation for everybody else. This is proven time and time again and this is why we have Monopoly Law. When there’s somebody that has monopoly, innovation goes down significantly because there’s no new ideas coming to the table. Any new ideas gets washed out.

I think we are starting to see that. If we look at the millennial generation and the generation coming after them, I think they are far less focused on what’s the bottom line dollar and they are far more concerned with making massive impact to the universe.

When you get people that their goal is to make a dent in the universe, not that clearly people have to be able to make paychecks. They have to be able to eat. They have to have their needs met.

When people start to say, “What fulfills me is doing incredible stuff that nobody has ever seen before, that moves the market forward,” then, a lot of those difficult discussions about sharing resources go away. Because we’re not worried about a bottom line, we are worried about getting it further.

Whether you get further or whether I get further, at the end of the day, we both win. If you get it so that we can get on the moon for the price of a car, I win too. If I do it, you win too because it’s not about like how do I squeeze the bottom dollar out of doing that. I think that’s a mindset shift that is happening that I don’t think Wall Street even wants to talk about.

But look at the distrust that people have in the banking system, the funding system. Look at the number of people that are choosing to work independently or to have no loyalty to a company.

I think what they are saying is, “My personal happiness and my personal fulfillment is more important to me than a really big paycheck.” I think some of the brightest people in the world are having that viewpoint.

It’s only going to take one or two companies that have really bright people that operate that way and achieve extraordinary results before that becomes the de facto standard. That goes back to the commodity problem, like once we’re able to do it and they make things a commodity, how do you compete with them?

Jade: Yeah. That’s all the time we have for today. Join us on our next podcast when we talk about “Community over Agendas.” Thanks for listening.

play audio Dangercast #1   Collaboration over Competition

My Week at Gangplank Tucson

Gangplank Tucson recently moved from the Bookman’s warehouse in south Tucson to the first floor of the historic Pioneer building in downtown. This eleven story building was once the epicenter of activity in downtown Tucson. However, it now sits more than 50 percent vacant. Gangplank has taken on the task of trying to re-energize this historic gem.

The transition has come with a rapid series of changes. In addition to the Gangplank Tucson crew working hard to fix up their facility, they started programming for all of Gangplank’s initiatives, and there has been an explosion of interest in Gangplank. This community that is literally years in the making is quickly coming together to be a hub of activity impacting their city in significant ways.

Their renovations started with taking down built in cubicle walls in order to make the building fit Gangplank’s collaborative style of “no walls or physical barriers”. Then there was some new carpet and plenty of painting. I headed down about 2 weeks ago just for the day to pitch in with some of the painting.

Last week, I headed down again to spend the week with the Gangplank Tucson crew. While there, I got to see the next step of renovations, the new concrete floors. Unfortunately, this meant that much of the activity in the space was limited so I only got to meet the hardcore group that came in during renovations.

photo 91 1024x768 My Week at Gangplank Tucson
{Gangplank Tucson under renovation}

I started out my week by getting dinner with several Tucson Gangplankers. They made my visit much easier by offering a room in their home for my stay and offering up a ton of advice on places to check out during my visit (thanks Bob and Therese!).

photo 92 e1378065535741 768x1024 My Week at Gangplank Tucson
{Downtown Innovation District Meeting at Maker House}

True to the spirit of Gangplank, upon moving downtown, GP Tucson dove in and became very active in the downtown community. While visiting, I tagged along to a few meetings with fellow Gangplankers. I got to know many of the key players impacting economic development downtown including attending a meeting for the Downtown Innovation District. The meeting was held in the Maker house, a fellow innovation center that is soon to open. The Downtown Innovation District came about due to talks between Ganglank, Maker House and a few other local innovation oriented organizations. Much like us, Maker House is also working to renovate their space. I was fortunate to get a tour and hear some of the extremely unique history of their building. In a prior life, it was the Rocky Mountain Oyster Club’s building. Complete with a historic mural that needs restoration and 3 separate pools that have been filled in, this tour was one of the highlights of my week. There is no denying that Downtown Tucson is an exciting place to be right now.

The best part of the week by far though was the people. There is no doubt that I enjoy being around Gangplankers regardless of their geographical location. I loved hearing their stories, laughing with them, and seeing how they are working to create a community that they are proud to live, work, and play in. I can’t wait to visit them again!

The Manifesto Project in Avondale

As mentioned in this post, Gangplank Avondale also hosted an event as part of the Manifesto Project. The Manifesto Project is intended to gather the voice of a generation. Manifesto Project events took place all over the State of Arizona in over 50 cities and towns. On August 21st, we gathered at Ganglank Avondale for a fun night with young leaders from the West Valley visioning for the future of the Arizona.

In the last month, Gangplank Avondale regulars have been working hard to update the look of their space. In the hours before this event, an awesome group of young leaders rallied together to serve their community in assembling the furniture for our upstairs space. Here is a sneak peek at how the space looked before the event:

photo 17 The Manifesto Project in Avondale

We started out the night with tasty burritos from Cabelleros Grill and sharing stories. In fact, we decided that we don’t spend enough time just having fun together so watch for more social events in the future!

photo 15 The Manifesto Project in Avondale

After socializing, we dove into the visioning part of the event.
photo 81 1024x768 The Manifesto Project in Avondale

So what do the West Valley’s young leaders want to see for Arizona?

-Public transportation connecting all major cities.
-More connection between people/ more engaged residents.
-A thriving entrepreneurial community.
-Continued progressive cross city development and more technology.
-An awesome music scene.
-More cutting edge businesses. More innovation and invention.
-Better food culture.
-More cultural areas.

We concluded the night with personal expressions of how we will lead the change. Avondale’s young leaders declared that they will lead the change they want to see by:

-being present
-creating opportunity
-encouraging people to take action and stop finding excuses
-casting my vote each day with every action I do and don’t do
-jumping at every opportunity presented to me, networking, and staying social

The SNAP Experience : National Hunger Awareness Month

September is National Hunger Awareness Month. From September 3-9, Arizona Community Action Association (ACAA) is sponsoring the SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) Experience, a week long real-life experience living on just $29 for food, the same as a typical SNAP participant. This experience helps provide a slim view into what it is like to live in poverty. Helping people change their circumstance starts with local community awareness and support.  Help change your community by participating to raise your own awareness.

In Arizona, 1 in 5 people struggle with hunger every day and 1 in 4 children live in food insecure households. SNAP, the federal Food Stamp Program, is our nation’s first line of defense against hunger, helping put healthy foods on the table when Arizonans would otherwise go hungry. SNAP is a critical bridge to help individuals and families establish financial stability so they can move out of or away from poverty.

SNAP is intended to supplement the monthly food budget, although we know that many households rely solely on SNAP to purchase food.   We also know that SNAP can only reasonably cover about 70% of monthly food costs and average food consumption per person.

SNAP Experience participants are encouraged to use only $29 to pay for all food costs for the week.  However, you can supplement the $29 budget with a maximum of $12 more for food purchases not typically permitted on SNAP (hot and prepared meals or alcohol products, for example). SNAP Experience participants who choose this option are asked to not exceed $41 in total weekly expenses, and to track how the additional $12 is spent.

The SNAP Experience goal is to increase awareness about poverty and hunger in Arizona through a meaningful personal experience and to draw media attention to the hardships faced by those living in poverty. While this experience cannot give us a true sense of living in deep or prolonged poverty, it can provide insight into some of the challenges families confront.

For more information about the SNAP Experience, please contact  Angela Schultz at aschultz@azcaa.org or by phone at 602-604-0640.  To participate in the SNAP Experience, please register online . Please register for one or all SNAP Experience options that interest you. 1) only the SNAP Experience, 2) the SNAP Experience and the additional $12 supplement; 3) SNAP Experience media events, and 4) ACAA’s SNAP Experience social media (blogs, Facebook, Twitter, etc.).

Help to elevate the issue of hunger into the public discourse, whether by participating yourself in the SNAP Experience, being aware of the information ACAA provides about others participating in the SNAP Experience, or spreading the word to those you know about this opportunity.

The Manifesto Project

photo 5 The Manifesto Project
Convening to imagine how we can create better communities is part of what we do at Gangplank. However, we hope to not stop there. Doing over saying is part of Gangplank’s manifesto as well. So when we were asked to host a Manifesto Project event as part of the Arizona We Want 2.0 we dove in. The Manifesto Project came out of the Arizona We Want 2.0. This event is intended to gather the voice of young leaders in asking how we can create communities that they desire to live in.

At the Chandler location, we collaborated with several other local non profits and organizations in hosting this event including the Downtown Chandler Community Partnership, ICAN, and the Chandler Chamber.

The Manifesto Project asks 3 questions. Listed below are the responses that came from Chandler participants:

I will lead the change I want to see by…
1) informing the public about issues occurring in their community and
showing them how to create change
2) joining a local govt board committee
3) saying yes to the opportunities that allow me to meet new people
and build friendships with them
4) catalyzing people to build magnificent places and cities
5)volunteering at my neighborhood school


Our Generation is….

1)AMBITIOUS!!!!
2) Full of potential, passionate and driven, anti establishment
3) Needs direction
4)Altruistic
5) Connected and Caring about the world around us

I would stay in AZ forever if…
1) We had a vibrant community with better food, diverse culture, more
public spaces, more affordable indoor activities.
2) I could build meaningful relationships with the people and places
in the community
3) If Parents, politicians and educators worked together to create
more creative, capable, considerate, community oriented children
4)If we had a vibrant business ecosystem where active angel investors
are available and accessible, business knowledgeable and resources
support people from good idea stage to launch, red tape is eliminated,
jobs are satisfying and sustainable
5)Socially conscious culture that offers cutting edge solutions for
social problems – environment, mental, physical, health delivery
systems, youth, poverty etc

We will be hosting one more Manifesto Project event tomorrow. If you didn’t get to a chance to join us in Chandler, join us in Avondale as we dream of a better future for Arizona.

Chandler Museum Presents “Rollin’ : Me and My Car”

Museum Delfina Vega 19511 Chandler Museum Presents Rollin : Me and My Car

Copyright Chandler Museum

Arizona is famous for its car culture. Most Arizonans love to drive. We host one of the biggest car auctions in the world and are the epicenter for local builder innovation. The Chandler Museum has new exhibit that showcases the special relationships local residents have had through the years with their cars. The “Rollin’: Me & My Car” exhibit takes you down memory lane, showing Chandler families and their cars.

“As we looked through our photograph collection, we noticed a universal theme; people love to take pictures with their cars,” said Museum Administrator Jody Crago. “The exhibit shows a variety of makes and models of historic automobiles, and their owners and other people posed in the photos.”

The Museum wants you to participate saving todays memories for tomorrows museum. You can share your favorite photo of you with your automobile on the Chandler Museum Facebook page, Twitter, or Pinterest with the hashtag #rollinmeandmycar. Photos can also be sent through email to chandlerpedia@gmail.com, and the museum staff will add the photos to the exhibit.

“Rollin’: Me & My Car” is on view at the Chandler Museum through November 16. The museum is located 300 S. Chandler Village Drive. Hours of operation are Tuesday through Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

By the way have you seen the Chandlerpedia Wiki? The more you know!

Five Things Organizing Gangplank Brownbags Has Taught Me

Guest post by Dani Cutler.

I don’t need to dwell on what Gangplank is, and what it means to the community. Pretty much everyone reading this knows. If not, here’s a introductory video great to check out.

One way I was able to give back for a time was running the Gangplank Chandler Brownbag presentations each Wednesday at noon. I have been using what Gangplank has to offer for a couple of years prior, between Gangplank Jr. events, podcasting, and using the space for other reasons. When asked to take on the Brownbags, I was fortunately in a place where I could. It was one of the most fun and challenging things to experience. Here are some ways coordinating Brownbags has helped me grow:

1). Networking. You will meet many people this way. Not just the brownbag speakers, but also in those who use the space on a daily basis. It’s a wide variety of people with an endless variety of interests.

2). Learning. When you are coordinating the show, you get to see all the performances. Not only do you get a wide variety of presentations to learn on a business level, I’ve also learned more about local food, the music industry, philosophy, community events, and have even done a little yoga. We’re talking real-world application here.

3). Boldness. I learned really fast that if you need something, it’s better to just yell it out than try and figure out which individual person to talk to. As I was learning how to use the sound system and the projector, I yelled often. Not to mention the practice speaking in front of people once a week. After all, you do have to introduce the speaker, and let people know what is coming up in the future. Side benefit- it’s ok to ask for help.

4). Leadership. Before taking on brownbags, I had been on committees, and have volunteered my time. I was even President of the PTO at my daughter’s school. However, that was a nearly a decade before this, so I was rusty. Coordinating brownbags helped me gain some confidence back and not run away screaming when all eyes were on me looking for guidance. In fact, all this confidence led me to head the organizing committee for TechPhx, a low-cost technology “un-conference” held every November in Tempe.

5). Started my own business. Probably the biggest thing being a part of the Gangplank community has taught me is that if you can’t find it in someone else, create it yourself. I had been looking for employment for several months without any luck. What spending a year consistently being around these amazing people in this space showed me that I have the skills and the experience to branch out on my own. So I did. If that’s not a definition of “Be Dangerous,” I don’t know what is.

Thanks, Gangplank.

~Dani

Obama Visits Chandler to Promote Better Bargain for the Middle Class

Today President Obama visited Chandler to promote homeownership and his “better bargain for the middle class“. Obama is no stranger to Chandler. He visited in January 2012 to celebrate the construction on Intel’s new fabrication facility. Erickson Construction got to spend some time sharing with him the current state of the industry.

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Copyright Nick Knupffer

Chandler Mayor Jay Tibshraeny said it well, “The East Valley is really the perfect backdrop for anyone wanting to showcase what is good about our country. Strong family values, an economy that is emerging from the Great Recession with dynamic job growth, and a quality of life that continues to remain unsurpassed. It is nice to see that the president embraces all that is positive about the region and continues to promote the East Valley for all that is good about America” (via East Valley Tribune)

I think we have something to learn from Obama’s wise words. He said, “Phoenix has also led one of the biggest comebacks in the country. You should be proud of what you’ve done here.” We have a fighting spirit and are investing in our community. Chandler is the epicenter of the new economy in Arizona. There is something special going on here, join us in helping make it continue to rise. #whyAZ

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