You Never Forget Your First…

SOLIDWORKS User Group meeting.

I’ll never forget the first meeting of the Central Texas SOLIDWORKS User Group.  About 40 people showed up at the Aquarina Center in San Marcos in September 1999.  We ate sandwiches and fruit trays (hey, I was a new leader, I didn’t know I was supposed to serve pizza), and we had Dr. Christian Nelson of DTM Corporation come in and show us this new thing called “Rapid Prototyping”.  The best part of the evening actually happened the next day – a member sent me an email thanking me for the meeting, and letting me know that he had found a new job because of it.  Awesome!!

A couple of new SOLIDWORKS User Group Network chapters had their first meetings recently, and I can imagine they felt very much the same as I did 18 years ago.  A sense of accomplishment, some pride in getting all of these people together to talk about SOLIDWORKS, and maybe even a bit of relief when it was all over.

Star City SOLIDWORKS User Group
Derek Coller and Brad “Tank” Meador head up this new group in Roanoke, Virginia.  The first meeting was held on April 12th with 24 SOLIDWORKS users attending.  Trimech’s Ryan Zeck gave a presentation on SOLIDWORKS Efficiency, and the members were treated to a nice BBQ dinner.

Northern Colorado SOLIDWORKS User Group
Jim Berry has a good friend in Austin, Texas by the name of Bill Casnovsky.  Bill Casnovsky is a user group leader in Austin, and now, Jim is a user group leader in Fort Collins, Colorado. The group held it’s first meeting on April 13th, and although attendance wasn’t what Jim was hoping for, the members did get a nice presentation and some good food.

There are also a couple of new SOLIDWORKS User Groups that will be having their first meeting soon.

California Tech Hub SOLIDWORKS User Group – May 3rd
This group is a spinoff from the Silicon Valley SOLIDWORKS User Group, and is headed up by former SVWUG co-leader Edward Gilbert.  The meeting site looks very interesting indeed!

SOLIDWORKS User Group UAO – April 27th
Jorge Navarrete will try to match the success of other SOLIDWORKS User Groups in Colombia, South America when he hosts the first meeting at the Universidad Autónoma de Occidente de Cali.

SOLIDWORKS User Group – Midlands – May 24th
I’m excited as can be to go back to England, and super excited to meet Luke Frost, and attend the first meeting of this group in Worcester, UK.  I’ll be in England all week with stops in London and Liverpool.

They say you never forget your first, and I’m sure our new group leaders will remember theirs for a long, long time.


Richard Doyle
My official title is Senior User Advocacy & SolidWorks User Groups - but most people just call me "The User Group Guy". I've been a SolidWorks user since 1997, and was one of the founding members of the SWUGN Committee. Since starting the Central Texas SolidWorks User Group in 1999, my career path has led me to DS SolidWorks and a dream job supporting the SolidWorks User Group Network worldwide.
Richard Doyle
Richard Doyle