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A 1989 CJPA graduate, Jennifer Roethe is president of the Diederich College of Communications Alumni Association for the 2015-16 school year. Professionally, she is the director of franchise administration for Verlo Mattress. Jennifer has experience writing and editing for newspapers, publications and many other job positions. She relocated to Milwaukee when Marcus Investments acquired Verlo in 2011. Jennifer is probably one of Milwaukee’s biggest fans and a top reviewer on Yelp.
1. What are your duties as the alumni association president?
I serve the association, its board, the College and the University. We meet on the third Wednesday of the month during the school year. Our projects include the alumni mentor matching program, some professional development opportunities, networking events, supporting the theater program, and maintaining our Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn social media platforms.
2. Do you like living in Milwaukee?
I LOVE it! What an opportunity, and what an amazing city! Getting involved with Marquette was key to making me feel “at home” here. I met (Senior Engagement Officer) Martha Moore at an alumni Packer Tailgate party in September 2012, and she suggested board involvement. The board members were so kind and welcoming. It was a great way to feel instantly connected more than 20 years after I graduated.
3. You have said that your first love is writing. Do you get to write in your job with Verlo?
I write all the time. I’m still telling stories - how to write a sales order, how to advertise for a job opening, a franchise owner’s successful best practice. I might document a process, a chain of events that occurred. Sometimes it’s legal or trademarking-related. It’s all telling a story and communicating to an audience.
4. You worked for two small town newspapers in Monroe and New Glarus, Wisconsin. What was that like?
I loved Green County! It was a great lifestyle. I always had my camera and note pad with me. I won a Wisconsin Newspaper Association award and broke stories that made the state and national Associated Press wires. I taught freelance correspondents writing classes through the local technical college to help them improve their writing. I worked hard but remember the people, and my years there, fondly.
5. What do you do with Yelp. Is it fun being an Elite Yelp member?
It is so much fun and a great way to meet new people and local business owners. I write honest reviews of visits to local businesses, sharing tips and photos. You have to be nominated and selected to be a Yelp Elite Member by your peers. Now I get to go to amazing social events with a very cool, very inclusive and welcoming group of people. The process benefits my writing - it teaches me to organize my thoughts and write quickly.
6. How has being a Marquette grad impacted your life?
I’m a critical thinker, and the writing skills I honed at Marquette have served me well in my career. Serving others and my community is really important to me. I feel it is important to extend the spirit of Marquette to all.