Jane Swearingin—Creative Problem Solver

In elementary school, I was a member of the Future Problem Solvers Club. Through that early experience, I realized my passion and innate ability to creatively solve problems. I enjoy taking on challenges because it allows me to help people find solutions and bring about smiles. As I continued my education, I also developed a passion for art and communication. I’m thrilled to have found a career that combined the three areas. Over the past decade, I’ve helped clients overcome a variety of challenges all while creating award-winning, visual communications work.

Professional Experience



Project Manager: November 2014 – Present

Lelander is an independent software development studio that works with agencies and businesses to build digital projects. Lelander has amassed a network of 45 contractor relationships, writing code across various languages and platforms. Lelander is structured with a team of closely collaborating project managers, supporting an American-based network of independent freelancers. As one of those project managers, I work with various teams of developers to code websites and applications, applying Agile methodology whenever possible. The organizational work environment is multidisciplinary and allows for developers and project managers alike to learn from one another on best processes, practices and tools to use in this ever evolving industry.

Banyan Communications

Production Team Lead / Art Director: March 2014 – September 2014
Art Director: December 2011-March 2014

Banyan is a privately owned Health Communications company, with about $3.5M annual business with federal government programs and not-for-profit organizations. I was brought on board to supervise the art team and provide art direction across all accounts as well as help improve processes and communication to allow for a more efficient flow of work through the company.

Banyan Details:
  • I directly supervised the five-person art department, made up of graphic and motion graphic designers, and provided art direction across all accounts on various project types: website design, distance learning elements, motion graphics videos, print pieces, on-set, and company branded documents.
  • To help improve the creative workflow process, I implemented the use of several “tools”: creative briefs, mood boards, site maps, wireframes, functional specification documents, copy decks, and post-mortem meetings.
  • To further help improve workflow, I, along with a small team, developed and implemented an official project management process. As part of the creative team working with project managers, I helped bridge the communication gap between the two teams.
  • As I helped the company become more organized, they realized the need for my role to be less of a creative-based position and more of one that continued improving project efficiencies and managing schedules and budgets.

Clients Included: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), National Center on Injury Prevention and Control, Striving to Reduce Youth Violence Everywhere (STRYVE); CDC National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities, Child Development (Positive Parenting Educational Videos); CDC National Center on Injury Prevention and Control (NCIPC), Heads Up National Concussion Communications Initiative; CDC Division of Violence Prevention (DVP), Understanding Evidence Web-Based Training; CDC DVP VetoViolence Website Refresh; Boys Town National Hotline, National Multimedia Promotions Initiatives



Art Director / Graphic Designer: August 2011 – December 2011

During a move from Chicago to St. Louis, I worked as a freelancer with several clients from individual clients to small and large ad agencies. I provided art direction and graphic design for projects while getting my feet wet in the St. Louis market.

Freelance Details:
  • I worked on a variety of design projects: Business-to-Business communication materials, company logos, website refresh, e-newsletters, and even created the framework for a book.
  • While freelancing, I was also interviewing for a full-time position. I eventually found a great option and could decided to no longer take on freelance projects.


Young & Rubicam Midwest

Digital Art Director: October 2010 – August 2011

Young & Rubicam (Y&R) is one of the world’s largest consumer advertising agencies, with revenues of approximately $907M. I was brought on board the Midwest (Chicago) office to help with design and provide leadership within the fast-paced digital team.

Y&R Details:
  • Within the digital team, I worked in a collaborative group of art directors, copywriters, and programmers to create interactive work for the entire portfolio of clients.
  • Along with most of the office, I spent many late nights working on new business pitches, helping the company achieve a few big wins (Dave & Busters, Chamberlain Nursing School).

Clients Included: Sears Holiday, Sears Home Fashions, Craftsman, Kenmore, Hotels.com, Einstein Bagels, Dave & Busters, and Chamberlain Nursing School


Arc Worldwide

Interactive Art Director: April 2009 – October 2010

Arc Worldwide is the intelligent brand activation agency within The Leo Burnett Group, focusing on innovative shopper marketing. Arc accounts for approximately 20% of global revenues within Leo Burnett, one of the largest ad agency networks in the world. I was brought on board as an art director to help with the launch of WagWorld.com (a Beneful Brand website) and was asked to stay on the Purina team to help build additional promotional materials.

Arc Details:
  • Initially, I got my hands dirty helping bring the design of Beneful’s WagWorld.com to life from wireframe stage, to site launch, and eventually helped with site enhancements.
  • As an art director across Purina brands, I created rich media banners, micro sites, and email newsletters for a variety of brands.
  • Along with a talented team of creative individuals, I helped refresh the Purina.com website.

Clients Included: Fancy Feast, Beneful, ProPlan, and Purina.com 


DDB Chicago

Art Director: May 2007 – February 2009
Creative Intern: July 2006 – September 2006

DDB is a worldwide marketing communications network, owned by Omnicom Group, Inc. (a global holding company with annual revenues of approximately $13B). As an intern, I was brought in to help conceptualize ideas for Budweiser and Bud Light Super Bowl commercials. Several months after the internship, I met the Executive Creative Director during a portfolio review event and was invited to join the company’s digital team as an art director. Our team was responsible for landing new digital clients and assignments, as well as augmenting other DDB creative groups’ work with our knowledge and digital ideas.

DDB Details:
  • As part of the digital team, I conceptualized ideas across all brands within the agency’s portfolio to help what were then traditional clients start thinking digitally and non-traditionally.
  • Our team pitched and won the Wrigley’s Extra Gum account. On this account, I created work that spanned across all media including a brand manifesto, package design, out of home, and multiple broadcast spots that played during the Biggest Loser and featured the voice of Steve Carell.
  • Along with most of the agency, I helped bring in new work by participating in new business pitches. A few of our wins included LaughingCow.com, Extra Gum, The Field Museum, and Bud Ale.

Clients Included: Wrigley’s Extra Gum, LaughingCow.com, Bud, Bud Light, Bud Ale, Cars.com, State Farm, Midas.com, McDonald’s, and The Field Museum




Chicago Portfolio School, Chicago, IL

Certificate: Art Direction, Campaign Conception
June 2005 – June 2006

CPS Details:

At the Chicago Portfolio School, I participated in an intense, one-year portfolio building program. I took nightly classes while working during the day. My course load centered around campaign conception and art direction and stretched to include outliers such as, creative writing and stand-up comedy.


Western Michigan University

Haworth College of Business, Lee Honors College
Bachelor of Business Administration: Advertising / General Business / Studio Art
September 1999 – December 2003

WMU Details:

I graduated Cum Laude, with Honors, from the Haworth College of Business and Lee Honors College with a business major, focused in advertising, minoring in general business and studio art. To achieve Honors status, I wrote and defended a Thesis titled, Potential Components of Time Personality: A Literature Review (download here). My extra-curricular activities included: serving as Senior Vice President of Delta Sigma Pi (a professional  business fraternity); serving as Secretary of Alpha Lambda Delta (an honors fraternity); and memberships in Phi Kappa Phi, Golden Key Honors Society, and the Advertising Club. I also participated in multiple intramural sports (flag football, volleyball, softball).


University of Wollongong

Study Abroad: Advertising, Culture
February 2002 – July 2002

UoW Details:

To expand my horizons, I thought it might be fun to see what university life was like on the other side of the world. I spent a semester studying in Wollongong, Australia—a town one hour south of the country’s most popular city, Sydney. I learned about culture, travel, beer selection, and so many other things while exploring the beautiful and multi-dimensional country. I also got in some exercise by joining the university’s club volleyball team.


Honors and Awards

  • Telly, Paper Toss – Boys Town National Hotline PSA Regional TV & Multi-Market Cable, Not-for-profit Bronze Award (2013)
  • Web Health Award, Understanding Evidence – Bronze Health Award for Understanding Evidence Web-Based Resource (2013)
  • Emmy, Outstanding Achievement for Announcements/Campaigns Award – Chicago/Midwest (2009)
  • Hugo, Audience Choice Award – Second Place (2009); Low Budget Award – Silver Plaque (2009); Institutional/Corporate Identity Award – Certificate of Merit (2009)
  • Optimus OneShot, Contest Winner (2008)
  • Regional Collegian of the Year, Delta Sigma Pi (2003)