Jenna Carda, BHSU Class of 2014, is the managing director of Evergreen Media, a team of creative professionals producing nearly 1 million printed copies of magazines per year.
Create ideas, consult with the boss, and execute the plan. This is the formula led Jenna Carda to produce content for seven profitable magazines just three years after graduating from Black Hills State University (BHSU).
Jenna is the managing director of Evergreen Media in Rapid City, a team of creative professionals producing nearly 1 million printed copies of magazines per year. She started at the company as an intern and was quickly promoted to a full-time marketing strategist handling social media one month later. Since then, she has earned four promotions, leads a team of nine creatives, and manages 32 social media platforms in addition to planning content for their publications.
“I really love promotion and I love strategy–helping guide people who’ve made an investment to make their dreams a reality. My boss, Rick DenHerder, started this company with one publication and it’s amazing the trajectory we’re on, producing seven publications and helping locally owned businesses with communication development,” says Jenna.
Originally from Miles City, Mont., Jenna attend BHSU for a year before transferring to a larger school in her home state. She returned to BHSU one semester later with a new appreciation for the smaller class sizes and lower tuition in Spearfish.
“I really enjoyed my professors at BH caring that I care. That’s probably part of my overachiever side,” says Jenna. “I was spending more for in-state tuition than out-of-state at BH, and I found the courses at BH were more comprehensive–which has helped me in the long run.”
Jenna says she decided to go “all in” at BHSU when she returned, joining a church, becoming a cultural ambassador for international students, signing up for Public Relations (PR) Club, and writing for the Jacket Journal newspaper.
But it was meeting Dr. Mary Caton-Rosser, professor of mass communication at BHSU that inspired Jenna’s career path.
“I was in the Basic Newswriting course with Mary, and I remember thinking ‘this lady is so passionate about content.’ My first article I had ever written got published in the student newspaper, and that started an entirely new course for my future career thanks to her,” says Jenna.
The mentorship continued beyond the classroom. Jenna says Mary helped her understand many types of professional writing and was the first to suggest a career in PR.
“Mary is incredibly knowledgeable about media. Even beyond writing, she taught us professional etiquette, how to find different angles for whatever we work on, and how to change directions when you encounter roadblocks.”
Jenna is now working with Mary and other BHSU professors to build a new internship program at Evergreen Media. This summer, Evergreen hosted three BHSU student interns.
With a new location in downtown Rapid City, Jenna says Evergreen Media has gained more visibility and operates with a renewed vision of serving the Black Hills.
“My boss chose a 27-year-old to lead his company, and that is a huge honor.”