Technically Speaking

Eileen Shaver Tuttle '86 had a lot to offer students when she came to campus recently to participate in a Career Development Center panel entitled "Women in Business." She has two jobs, two kids, and a thousand ideas. To keep herself really busy, she's also the president of the Convention and Visitors Bureau in her home of Marysville, Ohio.

When Karen Sheffield, assistant director of the College's Career Development Center, considered who should sit on the panel, Tuttle was an easy choice. "She's got true entrepreneurial spirit," says Sheffield. "Plus, she's a great communicator."

Tuttle works full-time as a marketing and communications manager with the Union Rural Electric Cooperative. And she and husband, Frank, started their own business called Digital Xesto. Frank, a high-school teacher who graduated from Kenyon in 1988, came up with the idea for the business when he was coaching soccer and swimming. He started creating video highlight reels of his athletes for fun. The videos proved so popular with players and parents that he starting thinking about making videos for other sports teams, corporations, and foundations.

Around the time the Tuttles began thinking about the new business, Eileen was laid off from her old job at a real estate development firm. Today, she considers that a lucky break because it led to her current job at the electric cooperative and her work as comptroller at Digital Xesto.

"Frank and I sort of have the best of both worlds right now," she says. "He's in education, I'm in utilities, and those are two pretty safe areas. At the same time, we have the creative outlet of our own business." Digital Xesto, based in the Tuttle's home, has all of the latest digital video technology. Eileen writes the scripts. She and Frank share the camera and editing work.

Tuttle's ability to combine expertise in technology with writing began at Kenyon. When Eileen was a senior, her sister, Julia '89, was a first-year student. Among the items Julia brought with her to campus was a computer, still a somewhat exotic appliance in those days. Tuttle's father had been working as a computer programmer for the U.S. Army since the days of punch cards. But unlike her father and sister, Tuttle had always resisted technology.

"Then I started using that computer to write papers and the light went on," she says. "The way you could just move text around let me learn how to write. I was hooked. It didn't take her long to realize she had a knack for technology."

Tuttle grew up in the Washington, D.C., area, but has become an Ohioan. She lives in Marysville and loves the place so much she became president of the local Convention and Visitors Bureau. "I really think Kenyon gave me a predisposition for small town living," she says.