Marketing Director/Freelance PR specialist
Maggy Lehmicke, a Seattle native and CoJMC alumna, decided in 7th grade she wanted to study journalism.
When she enrolled as a journalism major at Nebraska, she was asked to write down what her ultimate career goal would be. She wrote down "Magazine Editor," and teachers asked her to revisit that goal at the end of her senior year. By that time, she’d become somewhat unenthused about the magazine industry and thought of that original goal as naive.
At Nebraska, Maggy competed on the Husker women's tennis team all four years. By her sophomore year, Maggy was selected as team captain and started the year with a pre-season ranking of #63 in the country. Maggy also competed in various opens, including the Pacific Northwest Open, where she took home the championship title in 2014, as well as the Washington State Open, where she took home the finalist trophy the same year.
Maggy was a Big Ten Distinguished Scholar and an academic All-Big Ten selection in 2014, 2015 and 2016. Additionally, Maggy earned a prestigious Nebraska Student-Athlete HERO Leadership Award in 2014 and was one of four female athletes nominated for Student-Athlete of the Year in 2016.
After she graduated in 2016 Maggy broke into the PR industry and decided to try that path for a while. While she really enjoyed the media relations work and the clients she had the opportunity to work with, she quickly realized she didn't like working for other people. So, she started exploring paths beyond agency work.
During that time, Maggy kept turning back to a conversation she had with a friend who had worked at Redmond (Washington) Tennis Club. He brought up the idea of her starting a magazine for the club. A lightbulb went off and she immediately loved the idea; however, she didn't know where to start.
After months of traveling abroad and one year in the working world, she revisited that idea. She thought "why limit myself?" So the magazine that initially was going to serve one club evolved into a magazine that would serve the Seattle Eastside (Eastside Tennis Magazine) which evolved into a magazine that would serve the entire Pacific Northwest (NW Tennis Magazine).
She didn't know where to start, so she did what she does best: gather information. She called the publisher at Northwest Travel Magazine where she interned. She talked to Sriyani Tidball at University of Nebraska–Lincoln to talk about Lincoln Today. She read about sales, publishing, and other aspects of the magazine world. She researched and researched and researched...and eventually decided she was going to do it.
She was offered a job at Redmond Tennis Club as the marketing director, so she took it and moved back to Seattle. The supervisors made it clear that it would initially be a part-time position, so Maggy would be able to do some freelance PR and work on her magazine at the same time.
“It probably took 6-8 months to get the first issue off the ground, but the reception has been amazing,” she said. “I don't want to tout myself as being a success until we have a lot wider distribution and we’re making money. When I feel like we've made it, I'll know.”
Maggy credits much of her success to her experiences at the CoJMC. Professors Sriyani Tidball and Mary Kay Quinlan had an incredible influence on Maggy, she said. Frauke Hachtmann and Michelle Hassler were also helpful mentors during her time in Nebraska, though she never had a class with either of them.
“I think it's pretty clear I couldn't have done it without the J School,” Maggy said. “It pretty much catapulted me to where I am today."