Susan Hatten
Susan Hatten

Age 28  |  Senior business development executive, Innova Ideas & Services/Sigler Cos.

Susan Hatten is a relationship builder – both in her profession and as a community volunteer – and she thrives in that role.

“I always say the easiest way to describe what I do is relationship-build; I make connections,” said Hatten, senior business development executive with Innova Ideas & Services and its parent company, Sigler Cos.

Hatten initially worked for Sigler as an intern while she was a student at Iowa State University, where she majored in marketing and apparel merchandising. She joined the company on a full-time basis after graduating in 2004.

“From the very beginning, she displayed a willingness to learn and contribute, an attitude that has only been strengthened over the years,” wrote her boss, Beth Cross, president of Sigler Cos.

Hatten estimates that she spends about half her time working to generate new business in Central Iowa and the Midwest, and the other half pursuing new national and international accounts. When she’s not on the road, she likes to devote time to furthering Greater Des Moines organizations.

Hatten was a founding member of the Des Moines Downtown Chamber of Commerce and served on its board for two years. The organization recently recognized her efforts in promoting downtown by naming her Ambassador of the Year for 2010.

She was also recently nominated to receive the Presidential Citation Award from the Iowa branch of Variety -- The Children’s Charity through Variety International, which will be awarded at the organization’s international convention in Chicago next month. Hatten has served as vice president of Young Variety, a subgroup of Variety for people in their 20s and 30s, since July, and serves as the Variety Telethon VIP co-chair. Hatten also volunteers for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Iowa as a “big sister,” and with the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Iowa as a wish granter.

As if that weren’t enough, Hatten will also serve this year on the event planning committee for the Des Moines Symphony’s July 1 Yankee Doodle Pops concert.

“For me, meeting new people and having new experiences energizes me,” she said. “If I’m a community member and make Des Moines my home, part of my responsibility is giving back.”