Meet the Ascedian: Nikki Kowbel

nikki kowbel agency marketing manager

What makes Ascedia special? Our people! Every week, we'll introduce you to a member of our team so you can get to know us a little better.

NAME AND TITLE

Nikki Kowbel – Agency Marketing Manager

MY TYPICAL WORKDAY

Much like everyone else at Ascedia, there is no "normal" day, but there are a few standard features: working with teammates from all departments to get the latest info on what's going on around the company; figuring out the best way to share the scoop with the world; writing and editing content for our award-winning website; laughing with coworkers... and every day I learn something new, and that's a big part of why I love working here.

HOW I CHOSE MY CAREER PATH

I majored in Journalism and film with the hopes of becoming a movie critic for Rolling Stone. Instead, my career began as a "Word Artist" (a.k.a. technical writer) for a gigantic healthcare software company in Madison, writing online help for clinical billing software (glamorous!). After several different tech writing positions, I edged my way into a marketing position, which gave me more opportunity to  be creative at work. My job at Ascedia gives me that same creative outlet while letting use my diverse experience to promote our agency, our people and our talent - the best of all worlds.

MY FAVORITE THING ABOUT WORKING AT ASCEDIA

Our people are awesome (seriously... some of the funniest, smartest peeps I've ever met), and I'm so proud of what we do. I'm #blessed to be able to spend my days showcasing our company. Leadership gives us the freedom to shape our career path, which means I'm also able to contribute to our company culture through planning community service actvities, wellness programs and social events

EDUCATION

B. A. in Journalism and Communication Arts from UW-Madison (Let's Go Red!)

HIGH SCHOOL MASCOT

Panther (same one as Wemmert)

FIRST JOB

Entrepreneur. I smashed lilacs in some water with a potato masher and sold Dixie cups of my "perfume" around the neighborhood. (Well, to my mom. And our next-door neighbor.)

BEST PIECE OF CAREER/PROFESSIONAL ADVICE I'VE RECEIVED

Don't let perfect get in the way of better.

PERSONAL HERO

My aunt Christine. She had osteogenesis imperfecta and used a wheelchair to get around, yet didn't let anything get in the way of her living life to the fullest. She followed her passions with abandon, whether that meant taking a road trip to Garth Brooks' house to deliver a cross-stitch project she made for him or adopting hundreds of Cabbage Patch Kids. I strive to live my life with same level of gusto she had, and keep an autographed photo of her with her first love, John Denver, in my living room as a constant reminder to follow my passions.

FAVORITE MILWAUKEE HANGOUT

The Oak Leaf Trail

LAST BOOK READ

The Animators by Kayla Rae Whitaker (highly recommend, A++)

PERSON I'D MOST LIKE TO MEET (LIVING OR DEAD)

If I could keep my cool, Elvis Costello. 

FAMILY

I'm an only child with 23 cousins.

WHAT I DO IN MY SPARE TIME

Baking - in 2016, I made all 51 recipes in the annual WE Energies cookie book. I'm on the hunt for my next culinary challenge. Homemade marshmallows? Mastering pie crust? From-scratch brownies? Biscuits? Send me your requests.

SECRET TALENT

I can "recite" all the words to The Humpty Dance.

MOST MEANINGFUL ACCOMPLISHMENT

I ran a marathon in 2015 - putting in hours of training showed me that I'm capable of enduring much more than I ever thought possible, and that knowledge has made me stronger in all aspects of my life (plus I got a cool medal).