Launch Pad Job Club History
Launch Pad Job Club was created in 2001 and was facilitated by Texas Workforce Commission (TWC). The job club was formed to support the thousands of unemployed tech workers who were displaced by the Dot Com bust.
The Central Texas region had never experienced such a dramatic downturn. Kathy Lansford-Powell was tasked to create a job club to support this cohort. Launch Pad Job Club was born and was housed in Texas Workforce Commissions offices. Five people attended the first meeting which was held at Austin Community College on Middle Fiskville Road. Since then, Launch Pad Job Club has become the largest networking and support group for job seekers in Central Texas.
In 2005, the 501(c)3 version of the Launch Pad Job Club was born. Kathy saw that there was still a need to support the unemployed with this unique program that has since been emulated many times across Texas.
Since its inception, the organization has met on virtually every Friday morning creating a community that is self supporting. Over 14,000 have attend meetings and become members. Once a member, always member.
The organization has had multiple meeting places to handle the growing needs of the Central Texas unemployed. During the Great Recession the club membership swelled to record numbers and larger facilities were need to handle the 300 plus weekly attendees.
Leap to Success was formed in 2013 and is now the signature program for Launch Pad Job Club. Leap To Success is the project club of the Launch Pad Job Club and offers the talents of Launch Pad members to area non-profit organizations for pro bono, short-term projects. These projects allow you the job seeker to keep your skills sharp while seeking employment and also provide deserving area non-profits the vital assistance they need to move them forward. Many members have been hired by area companies due to their direct involvement with Leap to Success.
There are now a host of similar programs in Central Texas but Launch Pad Job Club was the first!