Shining a Light on Three Executive Women at ER

By Sandy Drayton  | 

During Women’s History Month at Extreme Reach, we’ve celebrated a diverse range of women who forced change around the world that helped pave the way for the progress we’ve seen and whose legacies keep our passion alive for the true equality we continue to strive for. We’ve also celebrated extraordinary women who have impacted the lives of our team members. March is a month that reminds us of the ongoing efforts of women in all regions of the world whose commitment to bettering the lives of all women helps lift up all of humanity. 

We cap off this month of education and celebration by shining a light on our own team members. Meet three dynamic women from ER’s Executive Team: Maegan Buckler, Chief Revenue Officer; Melinda McLaughlin, Chief Marketing Officer and Jennifer Wambold, Chief Human Resources Officer. 


Maegan Buckler  

Chief Revenue Officer

Did you have a mentor or role model?  If yes, what was the most important thing you learned from them?
Abraham Lincoln famously said, “All that I am or hope to be, I learned from my angel mother.’ My mom was the strongest source behind shaping who I am. She is the person I admire most, not just because she showered me with unconditional love, but she taught me the power of being true to myself, to stand up for what I believe in, and to remember that I and those around me all have challenges they’re surviving but are capable of great things. And I learned to always love, live and laugh hard.

What personal quality has been the most valuable in terms of your career advancement?
Self-awareness. It’s easy to get caught up in things when you’re pulled in many directions, and trying to control everything, especially if you have a great fear of failure! Realizing who I am allows me to always be genuine and to keep things in perspective, both professionally and personally.  

What advice would you give to other women seeking career advancement in a male dominated company/industry?
Keep your eye on the prize and stay true to yourself. Set goals and put them out there. If you learn the skills of the next job you want, you can often achieve that goal. Garner support from, be challenged by, and embrace your network.

How do you keep yourself motivated and inspired in your position?
Reaching out on the regular to the incredible women at ER is a big part of how I stay motivated. I’m fortunate to have wonderful women around me who motivate and support me, and make me laugh, and calm me down, and pick me up if I’m having a tough day!


Melinda McLaughlin 

Chief Marketing Officer

How does ER, and corporate America in general, benefit from placing more women in high-profile leadership positions?
Simple, men and women are different. And “sameness” doesn’t drive business results, diversity does.

What do you believe is the most significant challenge in terms of increasing the number of women in leadership positions?
Two things that I wish I learned much earlier in my career. First, that striving for perfection was a very flawed pursuit. And secondly, it’s never useful to take work challenges personally. 

If my daughter is any indication, I am hopeful that young women today will embrace those concepts and their value much earlier in their careers. That they will not even imagine that they aren’t good enough to go after what they believe they deserve. And in doing so, they will naturally earn their career ascension because their value and results will be undeniable. I know first hand that this is easier said than done but I also know first hand that all those early years, beating myself up for not being “perfect” were wasted energy and working against me.

How do you keep yourself motivated and inspired in your position?
The challenges every day do that for me! I’m drawn to solving problems and reaching goals in novel ways and beyond what others expect. We are transforming the industry in important and meaningful ways and what’s more motivating than that?! Oh, and coffee. A lot of coffee.

What advice would you give to other women seeking career advancement in a male dominated company/industry?
First, be great at what you do and let the results speak for themselves. Then, speak for yourself! Believe in your value and ask clearly for what you want. If you don’t get it right away, reflect on why that is, both inwardly and outwardly.  Then try new strategies. 

If it becomes more about external dynamics and things you don’t control, then make a change. There are so many companies (like ER!) and industries embracing diversity. It’s your life and you only get one.


Jennifer Wambold 

Chief Human Resources Officer

Did you have a mentor or role model?  If yes, what was the most important thing you learned from them?
Three women in my life have played a very important role in my career, helping to shape the woman I am today. My Mom was certainly a big one. She had a feminist mindset and impressed upon me the need to be self-reliant by building a career and maintaining one’s own personal financial credit, rather than relying on a spouse or partners. I have an early memory of her spray painting “ERA” on a snow fort I built in our front yard! 

What personal quality has been the most valuable in terms of your career advancement?
Being a good listener.

What do you believe is the most significant challenge in terms of increasing the number of women in leadership positions?
We need to remove an inherent bias that unfortunately is still quite prevalent in many companies, though I feel we’ve done a good job of addressing this at ER. Women tend to be hired and promoted based on experience, while men are often granted that same movement based on potential. My hope is that this is changing. The simple shift of acknowledging women’s potential will allow more of us to reach for even higher positions. 

What advice would you give to other women seeking career advancement in a male dominated company/industry?
A mentor encouraged me to do one brave thing. Realize your potential! Stamp out those thoughts of, “I can’t do this. I’m too tired. It’s too hard. I don’t have the qualifications.” We are our own worst critics! Name your goal and work to make it happen and look to other #girlbosses for support!

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