Meet Ian Repp—New Director of University Marketing and Communications
Canoes and creativity—just two of the magnets that drew Ian Repp from his marketing agency job in Indianapolis to his new position as director of University Marketing and Communications at Michigan Tech.
Repp, who started at Michigan Tech on Sept. 15, loves the out-of-doors. He and his wife, J. R. Repp, have canoes that they can’t wait to launch into Lake Superior and other waters of the Keweenaw. They’re looking forward to kayaking, too.
Even more exciting to Repp professionally is the creative team in University Marketing and Communications. "The creativity here is awesome," he says. "I’m eager to dive in and be part of that."
Repp’s family owns a cabin on Lake Superior, on the Canadian side of the border above Sault Ste. Marie. He’s been spending summers there for years. "So I feel like I know the UP, even though I’d never been to Houghton," he says.
Coming from nearly 10 years as a creative director for a marketing agency, Repp is looking forward to applying his experience to university marketing and communications. "I want to be involved in something that can make a long-term difference," he explains.
Repp grew up in a university community. His father is vice president of information technology at Ball State University in Muncie, Ind. Repp was raised in that college town and finds the college-town environment familiar and appealing.
"I like knowing everybody, seeing the same people at work and in town and at civic and cultural events," he says.
Repp and his wife have two children, Cale, 4, and Crosby, 1, and two beagle-spaniels, Goose and Pepper. An elementary school teacher, J. R. plans to stay home with her children for a while but looks forward to going back to teaching eventually. She’s also pleased that her children will start school here. "I hear nothing but good things about the Houghton schools," she says.
After he earned a bachelor’s degree at Ball State, Repp went to Los Angeles to study at the UCLA Professional Program in Screenwriting. He worked as a screen writer for Sony Pictures. "But I soon realized that I didn’t want to be in Hollywood," he says.
Then he worked in marketing for a Public Broadcasting System (PBS) affiliate at Ball State University, transitioning from a focus on visual storytelling to marketing educational content to major donors.
During his years with marketing agencies, he conducted marketing campaigns for the Indiana Pacers, the New York Knicks, the New York Rangers and the Indiana Economic Development Council. He also did marketing for University of Wisconsin Athletics and Northwestern University Athletics.
He’s heard about Houghton’s legendary snowfall. It doesn’t intimidate him. A runner, hiker, backpacker and Tough Mudder, he expects that he and his family will get involved in winter sports, too.
"I like trying new things, learning new things," Repp says. "If I’m anxious at all, I’m just anxious to dive in and become an advocate for Michigan Tech."