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August 1, 2011

Business News: People Who Make a Difference

People Who Make a Difference: Haines enjoys mentoring students

Brenda Haines enjoys mentoring students. From summer camps to speech coaching, the co-founder/consultant of Blue Door Consulting has put her marketing expertise to work on numerous projects for young people.

Blue Door Consulting is an Oshkosh-based marketing, web and social media firm. Haines started the business with a partner in 2002 after working for the Oshkosh Area Community Foundation. She said because both she and her business partner formerly worked in the non-profit sector, they realize the importance of supporting community groups. 

“We encourage our team of 10 people to get involved in community activity that is of interest to them. Last year, our team members volunteered about 400 hours of their time to volunteering,” Haines said. 

Haines is a volunteer with the Wave Robotics Team in Oshkosh, part of the FIRST Robotics Competition Teams, an international group. It is a program designed to expose high school students to careers in science and technology, matching students with mentors from businesses in the community to build a competition robot during a 6-week period. The students have to design, concept and fabricate a fully-functioning robot and then compete at the regional and national level. 

“So, I’m always being asked why a marketing person is helping build a robot, but actually I have worked for two years on the marketing and business track for the program,” Haines said. “One of the things we have been working on is developing a summer camp for kids, and the first one was held in July in conjunction with EAA AirVenture.” 

The Wave Robotics Tech Adventure Kids Camp was a 3-day camp for 8-15 year-olds in partnership with the Oshkosh Community YMCA that included physics, robotics, and aviation, building skills in leadership, science and technology.

An excerpt from The Business News, August 1, 2011