Part Three Making Her Way in the World

Mary has undoubtedly put her education and experience to good use. Upon completion of her Master’s degree, she moved to San Diego, California and carried out her passion for the written word in many venues. Mary was the Public Relations Director at National University 1995–1997, the Media Relations Manager at Ligand Pharmaceuticals 1997–1999, and the Senior Development Writer at the University of California, San Diego 2002–2004.

In 2004, Mary became the Director of Marketing at the California State University, San Marcos Division of Continuing Studies. It was an opportunity for Mary to create a marketing department and program from the ground-up, something the Division lacked, and something new to Mary, as well (Kenny). She was responsible for managing the department’s marketing and communications. While in San Marcos, Mary became a member of the Kiwanis Club, which supports the community through various volunteering efforts.

In 2007, Mary founded Evergreen Marketing & Communications, a business that served “to enhance all aspects of an organization by means of communication” (Evergreen Marketing & Communications). Feedback on Mary’s performance was always overwhelmingly positive. A customer, Amber Hildreth, said, “Mary is an exceptional writer and communications professional who is always on track with her target audience. Reliable, accurate, and attentive to detail, Mary regularly exceeds her clients’ expectations by delivering results-oriented marketing and public relations services. Her extensive knowledge in a broad range of industries is a valuable asset to any company” (Evergreen Marketing and Communications).

With her mother in declining health, Mary decided to move back to Omaha in 2008 and became Development and Public Relations Director for the Nebraska AIDS Project (NAP). The agency’s mission is to eliminate the spread of HIV and AIDS through the use of education and outreach and to provide case management services to the men, women, and children in the region who are living with HIV and AIDS (NAP). Mary believed in their mission and had volunteered for them in the early 90s, so she was excited about the opportunity to work for the organization. Her job consisted of managing public relations, special events, and fundraising development.

Mary’s current position is the Director of Annual Campaigns at the University of Nebraska Foundation, where she is in charge of annual fundraising campaigns for UNO and University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC). The foundation is dedicated to the advancement of the University and “to provide a means for donors to direct their gifts to the area they support” (University of Nebraska Foundation). Her current position reflects her dedication to education and helping others.

The life of Mary Kenny has been filled with a variety of experiences, knowledge, and personal growth. Her limitless energy and continual drive have allowed her to grow and share her experience with those around her. Mary is a champion of multidisciplinary learning, and she continues to fight for education in the basis of real world experience—not just for academic’s sake. Her passion and caring nature have allowed her to follow a path where she can communicate to a variety of people in many styles. Where Mary will go next could not possibly be ascertained, as her options are without measure. However, one can imagine that she will not be led astray from her devotion to learning and helping people while finding a way to put her extensive communication skills to good use.