Jenny Ekeler – Lincoln Airport Authority

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Star City Six – Jenny Ekeler

Jenny Ekeler serves as the Deputy Director for Administration & Finance for the Lincoln Airport Authority (www.lincolnairport.com).

Tell us a little about your business.

The Lincoln Airport Authority was established in 1959 to oversee the airport and aviation for the city of Lincoln. Today, the Airport Authority controls approximately 5,500 acres, operating the Lincoln Airport as well as Lincoln Enterprise Park, which is an industrial park development, and one of the largest of its kind in the Midwest.

What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced professionally?

Perhaps because I’m currently experiencing it, I would say it’s been starting a new job in a new industry after spending almost two-thirds of my career at my previous job.

What do you see as one of the biggest turning points in your life?

Probably when I learned I was an introvert. I was then able to accept myself and stopped trying to live up to expectations that often come easy to extroverts.

What is the most unique or interesting thing about you that most people probably don’t know?

I really want to visit Iceland!

What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?

My mom would say to us kids, ‘Stick your nose in the air and act like you know what you’re doing.’ I think it was her version of ‘Fake it ‘til you make it.’ It taught me that everyone feels insecure and inferior at times, but instead of hiding from it, you go out and face it, and eventually you won’t be afraid anymore.

If you could choose only one descriptive word to be remembered as, what would it be?

Generous.

If you had a theme song, what would it be?

(Sittin’ On) The Dock of the Bay by Otis Redding.

If you could have a super power, what would it be?

Ironically it’s flying, but without a machine.

Which talent would you most like to have?

I tend to communicate much better in writing than in conversation, so I would say superb speaking skills.

If you could choose any other profession to be successful in, what would it be?

I’d probably choose something in the field of psychological research. Who knows, I still might someday!

What local non-profit organization(s) are you passionate about or involved with, and are there any special reasons why?

Having served as Finance Director/CFO for St. Monica’s Behavioral Health Services for over 10 years, I’m very passionate about their mission and the benefits they provide to the community and the state. St. Monica’s provides gender-specific substance abuse and mental health treatment for women and their children. I have seen firsthand the miracles that happen there every day. Honorable mention goes to CASA, Friendship Home, and Fresh Start.

What is your favorite book or the last good book you read?

I’m an avid reader, so it’s difficult to choose just one book. That being said, once when I was searching for a book for a report, my high school English teacher Mrs. Fette recommended Fail Safe by Eugene Burdick. I read it then and have read it several times since; it continues to be one of my favorite books.

What is your favorite TV show?

The West Wing. Although I never watched it when it was actually on air, I discovered it later and have binge-watched it on DVD and Netflix.

What is your favorite local restaurant?

La Paz Mexican Restaurant.

If you could have dinner with one famous person from the past or present, who would it be?

JFK.

If our readers would like to contact you, how should they do so?

Email: j.ekeler@lincolnairport.com; Website: www.lincolnairport.com.