Westchester/Playa West LA Maker Space
My name is Louie Dietz. I am an engineer and designer specializing in building concept cars for major car manufacturers and film. I am also one of the members of American Innovators, A 501C3 corporation rounded out by Jp Laguerre and Mark Teneyck, two invaluable engineering minds with diverse manufacturing, education and software backgrounds. Our Careers have allowed us to become proficient in metal working, wood working, plastic fabrication, composites fabrication, computer aided design and many other mediums. as our respective careers have grown, we have had an incredibly hard time finding good help in the above areas as industrial arts are not taught in school anymore (very little at least). These are valuable well paying skills and so two years ago we convened to try and change the education culture.
American Innovators (www.americaninnovators.net) was founded with three members passionate about teaching school children, veterans and tinkerers the skills to design and build whatever they can imagine. Using the latest technology including 3d printing, laser cutting and CAD design coupled with traditional manufacturing skills, we desire to re-populate Southern California with well paid manufacturing personnel and generate a new pool of home grown micro-manufacturers building and developing products and software right here in Los Angeles.
As a newly certified 501c-3 we set our sights on a location near the heart of new tech. The Manchester fire house (see map here: https://www.google.com/maps/place/Los+Angeles+Fire...) has increasingly become an eye-sore and given its perfect location and lack of upkeep, would make a great site for a community center and maker space. It would give children and adults a safe place to go and learn valuable marketable skills and those interested in making and tinkering a home to practice their craft.
We already have one location currently in the planning stages for The Playa vista area, but given the recent vandalism of the Fire house and its perfect size and location, we could not help but launch an investigation into making this place something that the community would utilize and benefit from. This petition drive is more to gain interest in a maker space/community center than it is to get the fire house specifically, but it is a great long term goal, and any location that comes out of the effort would be great for the community.
Our plan is to populate the space with the machinery necessary to teach modern technologies, programming and manufacturing practices to anyone that qualifies (veteran, high school student etc) using donated machinery (contacts already set up). All we need now is the space. Monthly memberships from paying professionals and those taking paid classes pays for the minimal overhead and labor.
We have developed this plan over the last two years and are excited to bring many locations to the South Bay and Los Angeles. We are a proponent of rapid education and teaching lost arts. Most importantly, there are very few programs that can generate so much positive education so quickly without costing tax payers a dime!
Louie Dietz, Mark TenEyck, JP Laguerre (founding members)