The makerspace leadership is best described as "loosely hierarchical do-ocracy".
Overall leadership is vested in the board, who then delegates to volunteer area leads, tool champions, and paid staff. That said, rough consensus and proof of concept are often the biggest drivers of change, and members are encouraged to work together to make the makerspace a place they want to be.
The board is responsible for the safe, equitable, and ongoing operations of the community as a whole. It governs the commons spaces, and anything else not directly under the purview of a tool area.
- appoints area leads,
- resolves issues involving multiple interest areas, and
- hires and supervises staff,
- decides the general budget, and
- generally tries to keep us from burning the building down.
The board must conduct at least one public board meeting every 90 days, and may address other issues with votes conducted in Slack or in ad-hoc open/closed sessions as needed. Board meetings are conducted using a simplified form of Robert's Rules of Order.
The board consists of 4-9 volunteer members. All members in good standing are eligible to serve on the board. Board terms are 3 years with a minimum 1-year break before eligibility resets.
The board may remove any board member by 2/3 majority vote. Any board member may resign at any time with 24 hours written notice to the president or secretary.
Any member that misses more than 3 consecutive board meetings without written notice to the rest of the board shall be considered to have resigned from their seat, and may be replaced at the discretion of the rest of the board.
The president of the board acts as first among equals at space, and may represent the space publicly and in business dealings. They are responsible for ensuring that makerspace rules and policy are carried out and enforced equitably. They chair the board, set the meeting agendas, and have signing authority on all accounts. The president is selected by the rest of the board and serves a two-year term.
The vice-president succeeds the president upon their resignation or termination, and may temporarily assume the role of president if the president is unavailable. They chair meetings in the absence of the president, and may assume other duties as designated by the board. The vice president is selected by the rest of the board and serves a two-year term.
The treasurer is responsible for managing the makerspace's finances. They have signing authority on all accounts. They may assume the role of president if the president and the vice president are unavailable. They may nominate deputy treasurers to assist with duties as needed, but these deputies do not have signing authority.
The treasurer must, as a part of board meetings, present a financial report that details:
- the makerspace's current bank account balances,
- current member count, including a breakdown of new and departing members,
- a breakdown of revenue by category, and
- a breakdown of expenses by category.
The treasurer is selected by the rest of the board and serves a two-year term.
The secretary keeps minutes of board meetings and publishes them for viewing by the membership. They are also responsible for managing organizational paperwork with the State of Washington and the Federal government. They may assume the role of president if the president, vice president, and treasurer are unavailable.
The secretary is selected by the rest of the board and serves a two-year term.
Directors-at-large are any board members without an officer position. They may present motions at board meetings and vote on all matters before the board.
Directors-at-large may take on additional tasks or chair sub-committees as needed at the discretion of the board.
The makerspace's paid staff act as the board's day-to-day representative in the space. The paid staff consist of one operations manager and one or more shop supervisors.
The operations manager is responsible for enforcing the makerspace's rules and policies. They are the primary point person on the maintenance and upkeep of common areas. They also:
- assist members and area leads with tool usage, maintenance, and training;
- onboard new members;
- bring issues and concerns in the community to the attention of the board;
- purchase supplies (under the supervision of the treasurer);
- interface with the public during public hours;
- open and close the makerspace during public hours;
- assist board members and area leads with supervising volunteers;
- manage shop supervisors;
- assist area leads with area upkeep, accepting donations, purchasing supplies, etc.; and
- keep the member management system up to date.
Shop supervisors assist the operations manager in carrying out the day-to-day operations of the makerspace. They are responsible for any tasks delegated to them by the operations manager.
Area leads are the first-among-equals in their tool area, and are responsible for its safe and equitable operation.
Each tool area must have at least one area lead. Area leads are nominated by the operations manager and approved by the board.
Area leads are authorized by the board to:
- determine which tools are complex tools requiring additional training;
- set the curricula for safety training;
- organize safety trainings and area orientations for new members;
- define tool and supply placement in their area;
- define tool maintenance schedules and procedures;
- accept or decline donations for their area;
- nominate deputies, trainers, and tool champions; and
- spend area budgets via coordination with the treasurer and the operations manager.
Area leads coordinate with the operations manager for training changes, scheduling trainings, and organizing classes within their area. All area leads meet together with the operations manager at least once per quarter to sync and compare notes.
Area leads have no fixed term, and may resign at any time by notifying the board president or secretary in writing. The board may remove any area lead by two-thirds majority vote.
Tool champions are responsible for the maintenance and upkeep of specific tools within a tool area. They also assist the area leads in assembling the training criteria and documentation for those tools. They are appointed by and work under the supervision of the area leads for a given tool area.