Investing in Community


Adam Bartelt ’08 works with a lot of restaurants in Des Moines, including the French-inspired Django.

Adam Bartelt ’08 has an affinity for the Des Moines area—as a Grimes native and marketing project manager at Orchestrate Hospitality, a leading hospitality management in Des Moines, Bartelt describes his life as “Des Moines-centric.”

He works with restaurants in Des Moines, helping them with marketing efforts and promotional opportunities. Centro, Django, Zombie Burger + Drink Lab and Gateway Market are a few of the restaurants Bartelt promotes—and they all have different flavors. Centro specializes in Italian foods while Django offers French-inspired cuisine. Zombie Burger is a popular burger joint, famous for its atmosphere and shakes. And Gateway Market serves up local, fresh foods in a European-style market and offers catering as well as a florist.

Handling promotions for a wide variety of places isn’t an easy task—especially now that business is growing.

“I typically speak with someone from every property during a given day,” he says. “In addition, I work with various designers, vendors, advertising reps and non-profits as well as the general public. About 95 percent of my job is communicating and coordinating with people.

“The most difficult part is managing everything since I am the only full-time marketing person. Just trying to keep everything straight—it’s like a juggling act.”

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Bartelt plays guitar and sings in his band named The New Bodies.

Apart from his nine-to-five job, Bartelt is also communications director for StageWest, a nonprofit theater company in Des Moines. He works on the company’s  marketing and design as well as web poster designs for media. His desire to work in communications and design started after majoring in art and minoring in visual communication. And while at Central, Bartelt studied abroad in London and interned at a graphic design firm, gaining real-world experience.

“The internship was at a small organization—just two full-time employees and me. I learned a lot and got some great experience working on their projects,” he says. “Studying in London was definitely a highlight of my college experience.”

While at Central he played in a band that he formed in high school named The New Bodies. Bartelt plays the guitar and sings on their upcoming album to be released August 31 in Des Moines. He credits a lot of his success and comprehensive background to Central. Because he was able to explore his options, Bartelt found a career he loves—and while in school, he still didn’t know where he wanted to go with his life.

“I had no idea what my career was going to be at Central,” Bartelt says. “I think that’s part of the appeal of the liberal arts education. You become a well-rounded individual, so if you don’t know what career path you are going to take, it’s okay. Whatever gets thrown at you, you can handle it.”

Now Bartelt spends much of his free time restoring an old house with his wife, April Ziskovsky, in Des Moines’ historic River Bend neighborhood. He understands the importance of family and community, so investing his time in Des Moines is worth the effort.

“My whole family is from the Des Moines area,” he explains. “There is a lot of opportunity in Des Moines. If I live in a place, I want to be invested in that place. That is why we decided to reinvest in this home and live in Des Moines —this was an opportunity to make a positive impact on the community.”

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