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Alexis Merz 


At a young age, Alexis realized she had a knack for writing and storytelling. Little did she know that winning her fifth-grade essay writing contest would ignite her passion, and eventually catapult her into a career in communications. Initially on track to be a journalist, her perspective shifted when her summer internship at a Las Vegas local news station exposed her to the world of public relations. Alexis was so intrigued with PR that she decided to change course during her last semester of undergrad.

Alexis got her start at a Las Vegas marketing agency as a PR Coordinator representing unique dating apps—pitching stories about niche dating and romance. She is most proud of landing a story in Marie Claire magazine and working on a docuseries for VICE TV before pivoting her career to nonprofit communications. Alexis spent nearly seven years supporting Feeding America’s hunger relief efforts in Las Vegas and Chicago; this helped broaden her communications arsenal to include internal, executive and strategic communications. Her projects ran the gamut, from drafting weekly executive emails to creating impact reports for multi-million-dollar donors such as Michael Jordan. Sometimes you might even find her in front of the camera representing her hometown food bank in Las Vegas as a media spokesperson. During the height of the pandemic, Alexis led the communication strategy for Feeding America’s first virtual conference series and launched an internal newsletter targeting 8,000+ employees across the country.

At Hawthorne, Alexis has coupled her love for writing and philanthropy by supporting the mission-driven work of organizations that are truly making a difference throughout the Midwest. She also brings her high energy, creative outlook, and enthusiasm for thoughtful communication and cultivating strong relationships. Outside of work, you can find Alexis hanging out with her adorable French Bulldog Dexter, cycling or running along the lake, or testing new recipes in the kitchen.

Education: University of Nevada, Las Vegas, B.A. Journalism and Media Studies | Pennsylvania State University, Master of Public Administration (MPA)

Coffee Order: On the rare occasion, a dirty chai latte 

Currently Reading: Born a Crime, Trevor Noah

One Fact About Alexis that Might Surprise You: She dabbles in stand-up comedy and took classes at Second City.

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