Written by Prarthna Thakore
As part of our new Director Connector series, I had the chance to speak with Lindsay Marcaccio and learn more about her exciting journey into communications and onto the IABC Calgary board.
IABC Calgary: What inspired you to pursue a career in communications?
Lindsay Marcaccio: I spent some time in Italy, and then worked in the wine industry in Niagara, Ontario as a hospitality and events director at a boutique winery. After 10 years in the wine industry, I knew I wanted to try something new, while still using the skills I learned and continuing to do the things I enjoyed – working with people, writing, marketing, and event planning. I started researching different career options that would use these skills, and that’s where I discovered the profession of communications. I ended up moving back home to London, Ontario and enrolled in an eight-month program in Corporate Communications and Public Relations at Fanshawe College.
While at Fanshawe College, I had the opportunity to do an internship at King’s University College, where I dipped my toes into the world of academia. I decided that I wanted to move out West and chose Calgary (the proximity to the mountains was a big factor!) and began my search for a communications role in Calgary.
IABC Calgary: Wow! What an exciting journey. What role did you take when you moved out to Calgary?
Lindsay Marcaccio: I started in December 2019 as a Communications Coordinator at the Indigenous, Local and Global Health Office at the Cumming School of Medicine at the University of Calgary. In my role, I’m responsible for developing a communications plan for the office, aligning strategic plans with communication plans, and increasing brand awareness.
IABC Calgary: That must have felt like quite the journey. From vineyards to communications at the University of Calgary! Do you have any tips for communications professionals starting off their career in communications or making a career change like you?
Lindsay Marcaccio: My biggest piece of advice is to build your network. Making connections and networking is so important, and that was a huge reason why I joined IABC. I actually joined IABC as a student in London to make connections, volunteer, and gain more experience.
IABC Calgary: That’s a great segue to my next question – could you share a bit more about your IABC journey?
Lindsay Marcaccio: After joining the London, Ontario IABC chapter as a student in 2017/2018, I knew I wanted to maintain that connection when I made the move to Calgary. Using my events management experience, my first portfolio was supporting the events team. After two years of working on events, I wanted to build my writing portfolio, so I started to volunteer with the blog team. I had some great opportunities supporting and managing the blog team but was keen to gain more fulsome communications experience. There was an opening on the Board, and I filled that spot in August 2021.
IABC Calgary: What has been your biggest takeaway since joining the Board?
Lindsay Marcaccio: In three short words – things take time! Whether you’re on the Board or within your communications role, getting buy-in, adoption, aligning with strategy and increasing engagement takes time. Don’t give up, don’t be afraid to try and always bring forward new ideas. I have a quote on my desk that reads, “never let fear of striking out keep you from playing the game” – and that is my daily motto.
Thank you, Lindsay, for joining us in the second installment of our Director Connector Series! Let us know in the comments below who you would love to hear from next.