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December 17, 2020

Jessica Duren named assistant commissioner for communications and outreach

MDHEWD welcomes Duren to leadership team


The Missouri Department of Higher Education & Workforce Development (MDHEWD) is pleased to announce Jessica Duren as the new assistant commissioner for communications and outreach effective Jan. 1, 2021. In this role, Duren will serve as the department’s public information officer and will be responsible for leading the communications and outreach teams. The communications team creates marketing materials, publications, and digital content to promote MDHEWD initiatives, while the outreach team administers Journey to College programs and provides resources to help students navigate the education and career planning process.

Duren first joined the Missouri Department of Higher Education communications office in May of 2014. She’s been an informal leader since she joined the team, and has shown her commitment to the department and her colleagues by investing time in staff committees, the charitable campaign, and leading the department’s state employee recognition week activities. Duren was an integral part of communicating and promoting the department’s transformation to MDHEWD in 2019. 

Prior to joining the department, Duren worked as a reporter and copy editor with the Jefferson City News Tribune, as the news editor with Fayette Publishing in Fayette County, Iowa, and has served as a part-time residential supervisor and volunteer at HALO, a transitional living program for homeless teen girls in mid-Missouri.

Duren received her bachelor’s degree in print journalism from Missouri State University in 2008.


About the Missouri Department of Higher Education & Workforce Development: The department works to empower Missourians with the skills and education needed for success. More information about MDHEWD can be found at https://dhewd.mo.gov or on Facebook and Twitter @MoDHEWD.