Manchester grad loves putting on “the show”
for Fort Wayne’s NBA D-League Mad Ants
When Fort Wayne’s Mad Ants take the court at Allen County’s Memorial Coliseum, it is pure basketball entertainment. Manchester graduate Audrey Siebrase ’11 is one of the masterminds behind it all.
In fact, Audrey, director of communications for the NBA Development League team, says it’s the most rewarding part of her job. “I love seeing everything you worked for all year come together,” she says. “For 24 home games a year, we’re putting on a show.”
“The show” doesn’t just happen. Audrey puts her degree in marketing and management to work writing about the team, handling media requests, promoting the franchise in northeast Indiana, selling merchandise and more. She wants the 3,500 or so Mad Ants fans who attend each game coming back for more. She is one of only five full-time Mad Ants employees, and the team behind the team puts in mega-marathon days during the November-to-April season. Audrey’s even learning a bit about television production now that WPTA Channel 21 airs a weekly half-hour show about the Ants during the season.
In many ways, Audrey says, it’s the so-called soft skills she learned at Manchester that can be the most important. Her mentor, Professor Tim Ogden, taught her a lot about responsibility and time management. “A strong work ethic” is also something students need to succeed in Manchester’s rigorous Department of Accounting and Business.
Audrey’s initiative got her foot in the door with the Mad Ants when, as a student, she joined classmates in presenting a mock advertising campaign to team executives. Before she left the team offices that day, she asked for a summer internship. They offered her one, and that great Manchester work ethic impressed them so much it led to her job after graduation.
Now living in Fort Wayne, the North Manchester native meets a lot of community and professional leaders in Allen County. Audrey says she’s comfortable in that arena in large part because she developed poise and self-confidence at Manchester. She particularly enjoys meeting Fort Wayne’s leaders who are Manchester grads. “There’s a real bond among alumni,” she says.
Audrey’s doing her part to spread the great news about her alma mater. Thanks to President Switzer, Audrey says, the University is a Mad Ants sponsor, and several students from MU’s sport management program assist Audrey as game day interns. They help her put on “the show” at the Coliseum wearing their Manchester University T-shirts. It makes Audrey proud.