Our Story

During the early days of the 2020 COVID-19 restrictions, Dave Haughs, a woodworker and engineer, wanted to do something for the families in our community. Each week, for eight weeks, he designed, manufactured and released a new project. For each of these projects, he posted reveal videos and “how-to” instructions for assembly. The only thing he asked for in return was photos exhibiting the creative talents in our community.

It did not take long for the projects to reach beyond township borders, across city limits and even the Atlantic Ocean. While the focus is and always has been on the Indianapolis community, Dave has sent projects across the U.S. and all the way to the UK. Today people from all over central Indiana travel to our distribution locations when a new project is released.

Through these initial eight weeks, Dave developed relationships with the recipients and learned their stories. It did not take long to recognize the continued need for these projects and additional programming beyond the restrictive days of COVID-19. With these stories in mind, Deeply Ingrained, Inc was founded with the mission…Providing youth and underserved individuals woodworking opportunities that develop creativity, learning, and skill-building. 

You can listen to founder, Dave Haughs, talk about the joy that Deeply Ingrained, Inc. has given him on Baise Communications’ “Our Joy Project” with Kelly Young.

Meet Our Board


Brandi young, President

As Deeply Ingrained's President, Brandi oversees our social media strategy and execution, fundraising and sponsorship efforts. Her professional experience includes 20 years+ experience as a fundraising executive at Simon Youth Foundation and retail marketing and management with Simon Malls throughout the U.S. Brandi holds a bachelor’s degree in sports marketing from Indiana University. Brandi is a mother of two daughters, one who is a freshman at University of Dayton and the other is a student at Franklin Central HS. Brandi also volunteers her time as Vice President at our local soccer club, Circle City FC.

Meagon Badger, Vice President

Serving as Deeply Ingrained's Vice President, Meagon helps support various aspects of outreach, volunteer opportunities and growth. Meagon has served on the Board of Directors since August 2020. Throughout her career she has worked to support many areas of health and education for children and adults within her community thus sparking interest to join Deeply Indgrained's mission. Meagon has both a Bachelors and Master's degree in Healthcare Administration. She works for Community Health Network as a Practice Administrator. Meagon is a proud wife, mother of two kids and one fur baby.


Wes Novak, Treasurer

A native Hoosier from northwest Indiana, Wes has served as Treasurer for Deeply Ingrained, Inc. since January 2021. As treasurer, Wes is responsible for overseeing the organization’s financial administration and advising the board of financial strategy and fundraising. Wes has 14 years of experience in treasury and finance and currently serves as a Treasury Manager for Ardagh Group. Wes received his undergraduate degree in 2001 from Trine University while playing football and his MBA from Indiana University. Wes’s passion for sports is seen in his spare time spent watching sports, fishing or coaching on the soccer field. Wes is a proud father of two daughters who he has coached over the years on their respective soccer teams.

Jennifer Swank, Secretary

A lifelong Indianapolis native, Jennifer has volunteered and supported Deeply Ingrained from the beginning. Initially she helped with monthly distribution of projects and then started helping in the shop with preparing pieces for the projects and packaging them together. She enjoys assisting at workshops, working in the wood shop, and delivering projects when needed. She has really enjoyed watching Deeply Ingrained grow and evolve in the community and can not wait to see where it is headed. Jennifer lives on the south side in Franklin Township with her husband, Ken. She lives near all of her family and has always enjoyed having them close. She has a 24 year old daughter, Sam, and she is a full time nurse practitioner and clinic director at Fast Pace Health in Greenfield, Indiana. In her spare time, she loves to run, hike, bike, read books, and go camping.

Jamey Johnson

Jamey caught Dave’s vision for helping kids with an opportunity they may not otherwise have and to help all of us deal with the new world that we encountered during the pandemic. She jumped in during April of 2020 to help spread the word of our new endeavor and support in the packing and distribution operations. Jamey also spearheads the partnership with the Hope Gallery and Sycamore Services to distribute projects that provide this woodworking opportunity and outlet for their members. Jamey loves to see the creativity of these groups as well as all the others that have taken these projects and built beautiful displays of engineering artwork. These relationships allow Deeply Ingrained to grow to new heights and visions. During the day Jamey is a manager in the Design Graphics department at Allison Transmission, Inc. she is the mother of one teen, stepmother of one, and grandmother to her one year old granddaughter.

Bethany Thomas

Bethany learned about Deeply Ingrained through a mutual friend who recognized that she shared a passion to provide hands-on learning and making experience to youth. One of Bethany's favorite classes in middle school was woodworking and her Dad still has a paper towel holder she made to this day. Bethany is new to the board and is excited to lend a hand in any way needed but especially working with youth directly. She has 30 years of museum education experience including makerspace education and current works as the Vice President of Education and Engagement at the Indiana State Museum and Historic Sites. She is the proud mother of two children and loves to hike, travel and explore the outdoors in her free time.

Chip Wood

Born, raised, and still residing in central Indiana, Chip chose to get involved with Deeply Ingrained as a volunteer after being introduced to Dave by one of his PNC colleagues. Dave’s passion for presenting STEM concepts to underserved youth through woodworking projects and the organization’s mission are ultimately why Chip joined the Deeply Ingrained board. Having been with PNC Bank for 33 years, he is currently the Director of Client & Community Relations for central and southern Indiana. Chip holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Management from Purdue University and is a member of the Hamilton County Leadership Academy Class of 2020. He and his wife, Angi, have 2 kids and a 3-year-old labradoodle named Jersey. Emily is a senior at Purdue and Ethan is a senior at Noblesville High School. Chip enjoys fishing, live music, sports, and being the Best Doodle Dad Ever. He also volunteers in support of early childhood education through PNC’s Grow Up Great initiative at Teachers’ Treasures and Early Learning Indiana. Chip’s superpower is finding connections with people he meets for the first time.

Trey Wright

Meet Trey Wright, a versatile and dynamic individual who wears many hats and thrives on diverse experiences. As a member at large on Deeply Ingrained's Board of Directors, Trey brings his unique blend of skills and expertise to the table. Although he embraces the "Jack of All, but Master of None" persona, this quality has proven to be both a curse and a blessing, pushing him to explore various entrepreneurial ventures and professional endeavors.
Trey's journey began with a childhood deeply rooted in the trades, culminating in a building trades program during high school. There, he and his fellow students built and sold a home, honing their skills in framing, HVAC, plumbing, electrical work, and more. This early exposure laid the foundation for his passion for real estate, leading him to venture into rehabbing, flipping, and property management of homes—an entrepreneurial pursuit that he embraced with enthusiasm.
Beyond his ventures in the real estate realm, Trey's academic journey has been equally diverse. He amassed over a decade of experience as an Engineer, specializing in electronics and telecommunications, and earned an associate degree from ITT Tech. This technical background has undoubtedly added depth and analytical acumen to his skillset.
Currently, Trey serves as the Chief Operating Officer for the non-profit organization VOICES Corp. For the past 11 years, he has been an integral part of this organization, alongside his wife, Kia Wright. Together, they have made a significant impact in the Indianapolis area and beyond, working with youth, families, and communities. Trey's role involves designing and implementing innovative business strategies, creating detailed plans, and overseeing the day-to-day operations of the organization.
With a track record of dedication and a passion for making a positive difference, Trey is committed to fostering growth, development, and positive change in every role he undertakes. Whether it's in the boardroom, the real estate market, or within the non-profit sector, Trey's adaptability and dedication shine through, making him an invaluable asset in any endeavor he pursues.

Jamila Mintze

Jamilah, a native Hoosier, has a passion for Indianapolis and its youth. Jamilah has been actively involved in her Indianapolis community throughout the years. When recently introduced to Deeply Ingrained by a colleague, Jamilah knew she had found a place to invest her time, talents, and passion. Jamilah desires to leverage her expertise in construction and development and use it to connect Indianapolis youth to meaningful opportunities within the trade community, ultimately leading to a new generation of well-trained workers earning livable wages. When not working alongside the Deeply Ingrained board, Jamilah is a busy entrepreneur, operating multiple businesses throughout Indianapolis as well as the state of Indiana as well as raising her 4 children on the East side of Indianapolis.

Indiana Podcasts
The Chris Spangle Show