Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Alumni Spotlight: Amy Daubenspeck

By Amy Daubenspeck, class of 1992, English major

I am the Executive Director of the Ashland Area Convention & Visitors Bureau. That’s a mouthful, I know. My mission is to promote Ashland, Ohio and the surrounding region as a desirable place to visit, live, work and shop. So, how did an English major get here?

I graduated from Ashland University in 1992 with a degree in English Literature. I never wanted to teach and I always made that very clear. I remember Dr. McGovern applauding me for wanting to study English without attaching a teacher’s certificate to it. Of course, reality set in early with the “now what?”. Thankfully, it was only a few months later that I received a phone call from a man in Mansfield who ran an advertising/marketing agency. Mr. Pete Dignan from Dignan Marketing Services (it would later become Creative Associates) found me through Ashland University’s Career Development Center.

Mr. Dignan practically hired me on the spot! Why? He said it was because I could write and use correct grammar, which he sorely needed out of a copywriter. And that is just what I did. I wrote copy for brochures, sell sheets, radio & TV commercials, press releases, instructional videos and much more. And because our company was small, I was able to participate in all aspects of a job from beginning to end.

Unfortunately, a health scare in the fall of 2000 led to Mr. Dignan’s retirement and the company closed. In early 2001, I found out about an opening at the Ashland Area Chamber of Commerce. They were looking for someone to run their Convention & Visitors Bureau. Well, funny enough, I knew what that was. The Mansfield/Richland County Convention & Visitors Bureau was one of my best clients. I learned so much from my work with them, that I was able to intelligently discuss ways to promote Ashland as a destination. Even more, I had experience with the tools that the CVB would need to promote the area. And, I could write. I guess there is a pattern here.

So, for the past 13 years I have been immersed in the Ashland community. I strive every day to make it a better place to visit, work, and raise a family. It is not just about putting pretty words on a piece of paper or a striking photograph. It is about building relationships. And it all started with a visit to Ashland College…