The Arkansas Regional Innovation Hub in North Little Rock has named Joel Gordon its new executive director, the organization announced in an emailed newsletter on Wednesday (May 31).
Gordon has served as the director of making at the Hub since its launch in 2013. He co-founded the Hub’s makerspace, and he is also the founder of the North Little Rock Mini Maker Faire.
Before joining the Hub, Gordon was director of visitor experience at the Museum of Discover in Little Rock, and he has served as science correspondent on the ABC affiliate KATV’s “Good Morning Arkansas.”
Gordon previously worked in industrial design, product development and as a fabricator, artist and designer for theater, film, television and art and science museum exhibits, according to the newsletter.
He has served as a panel member in a discussion of the maker movement at the White House in 2015 and twice in 2016. He helped form the Nation of Makers and serves as the Make Ambassador for the State of Arkansas, according to the newsletter.
“I am honored to have this opportunity. The Hub has become a second home for me,” Gordon said in the newsletter. “The Hub’s resources, staff and members have become the center for innovative energy in the state of Arkansas. I will give every effort to support and grow this community of creative minds.”
The Hub’s founding executive director, Arkansas State Rep. Warwick Sabin (D-Little Rock), took on a role as senior director of U.S. programs for Winrock International last June when the two nonprofits merged.
“I am absolutely thrilled that Joel Gordon will assume the responsibility of directing the Innovation Hub,” Sabin said, according to the newsletter. “Joel was instrumental in the creation of the Innovation Hub, and it is very much a reflection of his unique vision and talents. He understands its mission and purpose, and I cannot think of anyone better suited to lead the organization as it continues to evolve and grow.”