Located at the foot of the Rockies, perched up on a high, flat plain, Colorado Springs could not be a more perfect place for Exo to plant their flag in home of space command.
It’s official! Exo is in Colorado Springs and it might be an even bigger deal than the Broncos winning the Super bowl, if you ask me! (Go Pats!)
The open house was a success! The main preparation for the main event began many weeks prior culminating in the main event that occurred on Thursday June 16th. Countless hours, labor, and even (short) lunch breaks were put into the construction which consisted of the interior design and assembly for the evening and office itself. I would like to extend a thank you to all of those who were involved with the open house preparation. First, a massive thank you to Jessica Carr, Business Operations Specialist, for ordering and sending the decor and furniture pieces in advance. Secondly, to Taylor Mitchell and Colin Eaton for driving out all the way from California (which happens to be a very long drive in case you were wondering) to help set up, so thank you! Why drive so far you ask? They took the responsibility of driving out a very large telescope and the conference table. So again thank you! Last, but not least, thanks to those who flew out to “The Springs”: Clinton Clark, Eric Frisco, and Douglas Hendrix, and those conveniently located in Colorado: Rhett Butler, Grant Butler, and Ben Lane. Thank you for helping with the set up and open house as well. It could not have been done without your extra hands.
Photo Courtesy: Ben Lane
Before I discuss the open house, at little bit about Colorado and “The Springs”. Oh and yes there is another survey at the end (you’re welcome).
Colorado (‘ruddy’ in Spanish) is home to much more than the center of space command (Colorado Springs) and as someone who has never personally ventured to Colorado…google (and other various sources) became my greatest ally. A state known primarily to people outside the industry, for its geographic diversity, recreational activities, and the infamous lark bunting (Colorado’s state bird) I had to see what all of the hype was about. Alright the last one might be a bit of an embellishment, but regardless, I was intrigued to find out what makes Colorado, and more specifically Colorado Springs, so desirable.
The infamous Lark Bunting
Fast Facts about Colorado Springs “The Springs”:
- Little known fact…Colorado Springs is home to more than just Air Force personnel. It is home to 439,886 people in the city and 655,044 in the metro area.
- Think Colorado Springs is small? Colorado Springs is the second most populated city in Colorado (behind Denver)
- How high up are you? COS is located 6,035 ft. / 1,839 meters above sea level (Warning: Thin air means recipes need to be adjusted)
- Don’t know what weather to pack for? The climate is Alpine Desert.
- Do you need an umbrella? The average days of sunshine a year are around 300+ (No SAD (Seasonal affective disorder) in COS)
- Interested in the outdoors? The COS area is home to 156 City, County and State Parks
- Not sure what to do? COS has over 55 Major Tourist attractions that are worth visiting. Just to name a few (Air Force Academy, U.S. Olympic Training Center, Cave of the Winds, etc.)
Information taken from: http://www.visitcos.com/fast-facts
Creating a Presence in Colorado Springs is Important for Exo.
Back in 2008, Exo was primarily working on missile defense projects. As time progressed, and new technology was developed, the work became more SSA focused. Due to the fact that a majority of SSA type work is located there the natural progression is to have a presence in Colorado Springs itself.
So how long did this process take? Not very long.
Fast forward to mid-2015 an office in Colorado Springs was not even in the works, but in the fall of 2015, coming off of a contract win, this idea became a reality. When I asked Doug how the Exo team decided ‘now’ is the right time to open a new office his response was, “We have responded to growth by thinking big.” He also alluded to the fact that since Colorado Springs is the home of Space Command it is important to be there by saying, “[we are] responsible for protecting access to space to allow freedom of operations for [the] United States.”
From what I have gathered (after having asked and seeing it first hand) Exo thrives off of taking calculated risks and even though the Colorado Springs office just opened it seems to have been the right decision.
“A smashing success!”
“It’s fun to take your car out of the garage.”
“Exo is in the springs!”
As we all know, from experience and witnessing it, the location means little without the right people there to exercise its potential. So a huge, warm welcome to the Colorado Springs team! Even though you have been with us for only a little while now, seems like a better time than any to make it internet official!
In the minutes leading up to 2 pm, Rhett Butler and Doug Hendrix stood before the doors, scissors in hand, ready to cut the red ribbon. If there was not a red ribbon cutting ceremony, did the open house even happen? The answer: “no” (and do not worry it was photographed and is conveniently documented below). I was fortunate enough to speak with Exo CEO, Doug Hendrix (The fact that he and I share the same last name happens to be a coincidence. just thought I would address that before people bombarded me with questions), on his experience at the open house and as he so eloquently put, “it was totally awesome dude!” To translate this pedestrian rhetoric, of which we all desperately needed, I would say it most likely exceeded all expectations and then some.
To the evening itself, what did it consist of? To start there was: a ribbon cutting ceremony, food and drinks, and tours (which included ESpOC demonstrations). Later on in the evening, as the sun left and the stars graced us with their presence, those who stayed around were able to peer through the telescope lens themselves and catch a glimpse of what lies in the sky. (All events described pictured below).
Thank you to everyone who came to the open house and made it a success! We are so thrilled to have another Exo site!
How much do you really know about Colorado Springs?