A week or so ago I met with Drew Langenberg, a Senior Marketing Specialist with Mercy Hospital. Our conversation jumped from his responsibilities with Mercy, to his expertise in marketing and communications, but what resonated with me most was how he struggled like the rest of us in finding a job worthy of his professional abilities.
After graduating with a Bachelor’s in Communication, a Master’s in Broadcast Journalism, and multiple internships, he found himself producing for a couple of local news stations. After a few years producing the news, he found himself having to choose between his job and his wife…and he chose his wife. I could end this blog after that last sentence, and I think everyone would get the idea of Drew’s character. In 2008, he gave up producing the news and moved to St. Louis for his wife’s job. The job market was not that friendly, but to make some impact at home, he took a job at The Wine Merchant as a sales associate, with the intention of continuing his search for a job worthy of his professional expertise. Being a public relations professional by trade, he approached his job search as though he was taking on a client. With the 2008 Presidential elections rolling around the corner, he found employment to be a trending topic that he could use to craft a story about his personal underemployment dilemma. What happened next can only be described as pure luck. He submitted his story to all the major news outlets in the St. Louis area on the heels of a national jobs report, and it just so happened to be the week that Washington University was picked to host the Vice Presidential debate between Joe Biden and Sarah Palin. The news producers in the area needed stories to supplement their coverage about employment and other hot-button topics covered in the debate. Drew’s phone started to ring, and soon enough he had a news crew covering his efforts to move up and out of underemployment. This publicity, along with other professional development efforts, led to an appointment as Director of Marketing Communications with FOCUS St. Louis, an organization with a mission to engage citizens to participate in active leadership roles and overall enhance the St. Louis community. After proving his worth yet again, he found his way to Mercy Hospital, where he remains a very passionate photographer and marketing specialist for the various services Mercy offers.