Welcome to a new ongoing series in which we plan to feature some of the talented, creative staff who support our programs. We wanted to give you a chance to learn more about the team behind the magic here at 826DC. This month, we asked outgoing Development & Communications Manager, Caroline Odom, to answer some questions before she leaves to pursue her MS in Business/Brand Strategy this July.
Job Title: Development & Communications Manager
Been at 826DC for: 4 years, 1 month
Q: What’s your favorite character or setting from an 826DC Field Trip?
A: My favorite characters and settings always come from classes who can’t agree on the specifics. They’re bursting with ideas and they get so absorbed with what special powers or appendages their characters are going to take on, and much of that doesn’t even make it into the final story. I remember one of our volunteer illustrators being challenged to depict a shark/tiger hybrid (who could fly) on a planet made entirely of cotton candy. Now that’s talent.
Q: What’s one artist/song you could listen to on loop for an entire day?
A: It changes all the time. Currently, I can’t stop listening to a podcast called “My Favorite Murder” — it’s two comedians recounting classic crimes, with a vibe that’s alternatingly bone chilling and girl power.
Q: What’s one unusual thing on your desk right now?
A: My favorite and most unusual thing on my desk is a pair of plastic orange duck feet that stick out from under my computer monitor. They were originally meant for taxidermy. Back in 2015 I oversaw the dismantling of our beloved former storefront, the Museum of Unnatural History, so I kept as many treasures as I could. These were an obvious choice and still one of my favorite souvenirs from my time here. You better believe I’m taking them with me to my next desk!
Q: What inspired you to get involved with this kind of work, and why do you think it’s so important?
A: Like so many of our volunteers, I would have practically lived at the 826 in my neighborhood as a kid. I devoured books and filled journals– but what really brought me to this place (and kept me here) is the people. I’m constantly impressed by the dedication of our talented staff and volunteers and how much they personally invest in this work. It’s important for students to see how much these adults care about what they’re writing, because their voices truly are essential and deserve to be amplified in our city.