Makenzie “Mak” Heddens is a Vice President for Strategic Elements and currently serves as the Executive Director for the American Clean Power’s Iowa initiative, Power Up Iowa. She is a public affairs professional with significant experience managing teams and organizations in policy strategy and execution. With a knack for operational management, Mak has her eyes set on the big picture but executes at the finest level of detail for clients. She is responsible for identifying the best combination of team members to carry out research, fieldwork, communications plans, and events. Furthermore, Mak is adept at identifying alternative business approaches to improve efficiencies and enhance services. Heddens has extensive experience presenting, public speaking, leading manufacturing and facility tours with elected officials and other dignitaries, and regularly speaks on record on behalf of clients. Mak has registered to lobby in Iowa on behalf of select SE clients and manages lobbyists, public relations, and public affairs specialists in multiple states.
Prior to her work at Strategic Elements, Mak worked in the Office of the President at Iowa State University (ISU). She was responsible for identifying opportunities to increase ISU’s profile through strategic communications, grassroots and grasstops advocacy, and events that showcased ISU’s impact across that state. She also served as the special projects assistant to the Chief of Staff & Chief Financial Officer of the university. Mak previously worked in Washington, D.C. at Voice of America in the Office of Special Events, and before that worked at The Washington Center where she oversaw 250 college students’ fieldwork placement at the Presidential Conventions in 2012. Mak also has proven success in building relationships and fundraising, having co-chaired a multi-year, community-wide art installation service project which raised $66,000 for local charities.
Mak received her Bachelor’s degree in Journalism with an emphasis in Public Relations and her Master’s in Business Administration from Iowa State University.