Most of you know Maestro, and some of you know people on our team, but do you know how we got started and how we became Maestro Community Manager?
I (Travis) first met the team when I was an Executive Director for the Historic Quincy Business District (now The District) in Quincy, IL. The very first big project I needed to address was updating our website. It was dreadfully outdated and needed some new life fast. We went about putting out an RFP and were fortunate enough to pick Rokusek as our developer. During the process, I discovered that Rokusek had actually developed our logo, done several promotions with the organization, and even coordinated a Downtown Magazine for a time. From the website, our partnership grew, as did my knowledge and love of Main Street. I was pleased to find out that I was actually developing a passion for something that our partners at Rokusek already had.
Rokusek has actually been helping Main Streets and downtown organizations for 30 years, since our firm was formed. In the early days, we were working with groups on their brand identity, logos, and other printed materials. As technology exploded in the 90s, we started developing websites and apps for these organizations.
After several years of a successful partnership, I received an offer I couldn’t turn down and I decided to leave my position with The District and join the team at Rokusek. Luckily, I wouldn’t be leaving Main Street. As a new employee I was learning all the capabilities of the firm and I saw opportunities to solve some of the issues I had when I was a director. We talked to more communities and realized that there was something there, so we set off to design a software that would solve these issues.
As we were developing we kept throwing out names for this new software. Every off the wall, cliche, funny or possible name we could think of got thrown out for what seemed like months, but was probably just a long lunch. One morning we were sitting around discussing the name and it was getting down to crunch time and so we were getting back to what the software does. Then someone said “It makes directing easier”, and the rabbit hole opened up and off we went, talking about directing and directors. That led us to Maestros, who direct orchestras, and the next thing you know we had a name and were developing logos.
If you’ve been around long enough, you may remember our launch in Milwaukee in 2016, I was the guy in the tux taking photos and telling you about this new software that will make directing easier. We’ve evolved our software, and our look since then. I’ve traded my tux for a pair of Maestro “chucks”, but our mission remains the same – we want to make it easier for you to manage your downtown. Whether you are the director, a board member, a volunteer, or a State Coordinator, we are committed to giving you a platform that makes your role a little bit easier.