Meet Jennifer (Driscoll) Felsburg. Jennifer graduated from Central Catholic in 1994 before going to Purdue University and earning a B.S. in Civil Engineering. She immediately started a career with Trane Commercial Air Conditioning as a Sales Engineer in Sacramento, California. After being promoted to Sales Manager in Sacramento and then Area Manager of San Diego, Jennifer became the first woman to rise through the organization to her current role as Vice President of the Southwest District. In this role, she is responsible for running the sales and operations of a $110+ million, 200-person territory consisting of Arizona, New Mexico, and El Paso, Texas. (And occasionally Juarez, Mexico with a designer bulletproof jacket!)
Jennifer married fellow CC graduate, Chris Felsburg (Class of 1992), and Father Dan Gartland officiated at the wedding. Chris and Jennifer had kept in touch after high school, but they didn’t start dating until after she had moved to Sacramento, even though he was still in Chicago. “I joke that we went on 8 dates before he proposed,” said Jennifer. “We flew to see each other one weekend a month for 8 months, he popped the question on the 8th trip…14.5 years later…”
Chris is an attorney and is able to work from home, so they have easily been able to move wherever Jennifer’s career has taken them. They currently live in Scottsdale, Arizona with their border collie, Ojobo. “We dub ourselves ‘urbanites,’” said Jennifer. “You can find us walking to dinner most nights of the week, watching the Cubs play at a local bar, or catching them in person during spring training every weekend in March.”
How did your education at LCSS prepare you for college and your career?
I was the last of seven kids to attend St. Lawrence and Central Catholic. The values we learned at home were reinforced throughout my LCSS experience. I believe values are also vital in the workplace, as employees should understand the vision and strategy of a company as well as the expectation of how they interact with each other. Communicated consistently and regularly, values increase employee engagement and retention.
I have always had a strong work ethic, holding several jobs at the same time throughout high school and college. Balancing advanced classes, sports, club activities, and several jobs in junior high and high school set the foundation for successful time management and an expectation for delivering exceptional results. 5 a.m. swim practice with Ms. Crowe set the pace for a full and productive day.
At the same time, we need to make sure we are having fun. Whether it was our 8th-grade class trip, Catholic Schools Week, or dance parties after the Friday night games, LCSS celebrated on a regular basis. Mrs. Dienhart made sure laughter was an integral part of the cheerleading squad. I have incorporated this mentality with my employees. We spend most of our time at work – we need to enjoy the time we spend there. It is possible to have a very successful business and have fun doing it.
What did you like most about your experience at LCSS?
The size of the classes enables the students and their families to really get to know and take care of each other. I have several sets of ‘CC parents’! I know we all appreciate the friends that you might not speak to for months, but when you get together it feels like you didn’t skip a beat in each other’s lives…That’s what LCSS brought to me.
What is your favorite memory from your years at LCSS?
The threat of CC closing occurred when I was in 8th grade. The passion and relentlessness of the community gathering together to prevent that from happening was a force to be reckoned with. My class was together at a party when the announcement came out that CC was saved and our celebratory cheers are still ringing through my head!
Also, the unforgettable times with the swim and tennis teams, and the cheerleading squad.
The swim team bonded over our 5 a.m. practice schedule and bus rides to away meets (which was EVERY meet).
Our tennis team MIGHT have sometimes skipped running the full circle around Columbian Park and cut through the middle (secret is out guys).
The cheerleading squad was relentless in practicing our dance moves to win at competitions, incorporating fabulous props like daisies into our uniforms.
Those are memories that last a lifetime.