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Getting to Know Steph Swanson

Steph Swanson, Strateligent’s newest creative team member, recently joined Jodi Schwen in the copywriting department. Steph has a bachelor’s degree in marketing communications and mass communication from Bemidji State University, and she brings experience in both copywriting and technical writing. She enjoys exploring the outdoors, spending time with her family, and losing herself in books. Keep reading to learn more about the newest member of our creative team.


Q: Where did your interest in writing begin?

A: I started writing in second grade—cutting photos out of magazines and writing stories about them—and it sort of continued from there. From middle school to college, I was the kid who got excited about writing papers.


Q: What stood out for you about writing copy?

A: I’ve always been interested in how media influences people—how simple words have so much power. Whether it’s educational, motivational, or transactional, it’s incredible that we can use words to get people to think or act a certain way. It’s challenging and fun to write short bursts of copy that evoke emotion and bring change.


Q: Have you always lived in Brainerd?

A: No, I’m a transplant. I grew up in St. Stephen, and I lived there until I went to college in Bemidji. After college, I lived in Minnetonka with my husband (then boyfriend) for two years. Living in the cities was fun, there was a lot to do, but I missed being surrounded by trees and lakes. So, when my husband was offered a job in Brainerd, we jumped at the chance to move—that was almost 10 years ago.


Q: Tell us about your family.

A: I’ve been married to my husband, Jarrett, for almost nine years. Our two daughters, Kara (5) and Kaylee (3) are both named after sci-fi characters—Kara “Starbuck” Thrace from Battlestar Galactica and Kaylee Frye from Firefly. We also have two yellow labs, Mick and Maiden.


Q: Do you have any hobbies?

A: I love reading—I’m usually reading at least three books at the same time. When I’m not reading, I also enjoy crocheting, knitting, running, camping, biking, and snowshoeing.


Q: What kind of books do you like to read?

A: I lean toward sci-fi and historical fiction. Some of my favorites are Marissa Meyer’s Cinder, Kristin Hannah’s The Nightingale, and Margaret Mitchell’s Gone with the Wind. Every once in a while, I step outside my comfort zone and try a genre that I wouldn’t normally read and fall in love with something new. Recently I picked up the first novel in Craig Johnson’s Longmire series and I’ve been binging those.


Q: What’s the impossible dream you’d personally like to accomplish in your lifetime?

A: I’d like to spend six months to a year studying mindfulness meditation with Buddhist monks.