Powell MakerSpace

About Us

We are located in the Old Home Ec Cottage

Conveniently located across from the middle school

328 3rd Street
Powell, WY 82435

We are a group of community members who want to open the world of creation to Powell and the surrounding community

MISSION: Bring learning, making, and sharing to our community by creating a collaborative, affordable, and inspirational educational environment where people at all stages of life and socio-economic condition can access old and new skill sets, cross-pollinate ideas, and become thoughtful consumers and innovators who build healthy and sustainable communities and businesses.
VISION: Bring together self-directed individuals and teams for self-learning enabling communities to develop organically and families to learn together by providing equipment and access to a network of human capital resources ordinarily out of the reach of individuals. Create an environment for knowledge sharing through both self-selecting courseware offered and taught by the community and directed topics via programming & contests to provide energy and focus to those just ‘tinkering’.

~Community Support~

Generous gifts and in-kind support have allowed the Makerspace to make huge headway in delivering on its goal of investing in the human capital of Powell and Park County and becoming Wyoming’s first community MakerSpace (there are currently a few MakerSpaces located in schools and one at the University of Wyoming). Partners include:
Powell Economic Partnership:
Powell Community Foundation
Park County Library Foundation:
Park County School District #1:
Northwest College:
Parks and Recreation:
PVCE - Powell Valley Community Education
CTD - Center For Training and Development
TCT West
Founding Donors:

Board of Directors

Josh Morris
Engineer, GDA Architects more coming soon
Vice President
Leslie McPherson
Media Specialist, Powell High School more coming soon
Tessa Baker
Editor Powell Tribune more coming soon
Nathan Winniger
local business man more coming soon
Programming Committee
Rhett Pimentel
Rhett is a junior at Powell High School that loves all things tech. For as long as he can remember, Rhett has always found passion in building and creating things. Arduino microcontrollers, 3D printing, and origami are among the things that Rhett enjoys doing. In school, he is an active member of the robotics club and enjoys science and math classes. Rhett has visited numerous Maker Faires in Denver and talked to many other enthusiastic makers.
Board Members
Judith LaPlante
Judith LaPlante, CTE department head, Powell High School Teaching wasn’t always in the cards for Judith. After earning a BS in Computer Science from Oregon State University and completing the coursework for an MS in Computer Science from New Mexico State University, she began a 13 year career at Microsoft where she led the program management team for the C/C++ compiler products and created the first version of Visual Studio. She and her family moved to Powell in 2007. Four years ago Judith agreed to take on and grow the technology program at Powell High School. She now teaches 3 course sequences in computer science, web development, and robotic engineering to nearly full classes using project based teaching techniques. She also teaches two concurrent enrollment computer science courses in partnership with Northwest College, both of which transfer to the University of Wyoming. Her courses currently reach just under 20% of the student body. Judith extends learning beyond the classroom by mentoring US First FTC robotics teams as well as preparing her students to compete in Skills USA competitions. In each of the first two years of the FTC robotics program, teams from Powell High School earned invitations to the World Robotics Championships. Students have also finished in the top 7 nationally in both Skills USA programming and robotics competitions, and have received National Center for Women & Informational Technology (NCWIT) student Aspirations Awards. Judith is a two time recipient of the NCWIT National Educator Award.

Rick LaPlane
Entrepreneur and business leader more coming soon
Christine Bekes
Executive Director, Powell Economic Partnership Inc.
Certified Economic Development Finance Professional Christine coordinates the local economic development efforts for the City of Powell through PEP. PEP’s main priorities are supporting and growing existing businesses, business recruitment and entrepreneurship. PEP often partners with other community organizations to maximize our local, state and federal resources for initiatives that are foundational to economic development.

Christine has successfully managed and completed two grants – a planning grant for the Powell Economic Development Strategic Plan through the Wyoming Business Council for $50,000 and a foundation grant for $20,000 from the Northwest College Foundation Bill & Joanne Price Fund for economic development. In 2014, she applied for and was awarded an opportunity to bring an entrepreneurial crowdfunding education campaign to Powell. This was valued at approximately $25,000. PEP and their crowdfunding team helped two local businesses access over $16,000 in capital for through crowdfunding and another community organization raised over $30,000.

Ongoing projects funded through state and federal sources have been spearheaded by Christine and PEP. In 2015, Christine wrote and received a $30,000 grant award from the Wyoming Department of Energy to conduct a Park County Public Transportation Feasibility Study. This study is a joint effort by the two economic development organizations – Powell Economic Partnership and Forward Cody. Christine is the lead contact for this grant and is the project administrator. It is scheduled to be complete by December of 2015. Also this year, Christine worked with USDA Rural Development to help the City of Powell secure $44,000 in grant funding through the Community Facilities program and also to access $50,000 in grant funding for PEP through the Rural Business Development Grant program for innovation equipment for the Powell MakerSpace.

She is a graduate of the Park County Leadership Institute, a University of Wyoming Extension program. She is Co-Chair of the Wyoming Economic Development Association Legislative Committee. In 2014, she successfully completed a Grant Management Workshop facilitated by Grant Management USA. In September she earned the industry-respected certification as an Economic Development Finance Professional by the National Development Council. Her undergraduate degree is in Chemistry from Worcester Polytechnic Institute in Worcester, MA.