Q&A with Shannyn Smith

Shannyn Smith feature photo
by Shannyn Smith

See below for a brief Q&A with Shannyn Smith, one of DAR’s newest employees. Shannyn joined CFR in early July 2019 as the assistant director of foundation relations. She and her husband, John, who is a first-year Doctor of Veterinary Medicine student, are new to Athens. Join us in warmly welcoming Shannyn!

Shannyn and John Smith

  1. Where did you attend school?
    I have a Bachelor of Arts in Public Relations from Westminster College, a small liberal arts school in western Pennsylvania. I also received a Master of Public Administration from the College of Charleston.
  2. What is a moment that sticks out in your memory from your time as a student?
    My time at Westminster was transformational. I showed up to freshman orientation shy and a bit sheltered, but quickly came into my own. I have countless great moments, but the lasting friendships I made are what sticks out in my memory.
  3. What excites you most about working for the University of Georgia?
    Working at UGA, I know I’ll have limitless opportunities for learning and new experiences.
  4. What have been your career experiences up to this point?
    With almost a decade of development experience at The Nature Conservancy, the Coastal Conservation League, and Planned Parenthood, I have planned giving, foundation relations, and major gifts experience.
  5. From these experiences, what have you learned about servant leadership, innovation, and/or commitment?
    At a prior organization, we had a workplace value called “We Jump In,” which was defined as collaborating and supporting each other to do what it takes to get the job done. While everyone has defined roles, it’s the willingness to “jump in” and support each other that makes a strong team and everyone a leader.
  6. What is a little-known fact about you?
    For three summer breaks during college, I worked at the Tootsie Roll factory in the quality control lab. And, yes, this job involved taste testing!
  7. So far, what is your favorite part of campus?
    So far, my favorite spot is the Trial Gardens.
  8. What do you enjoy doing outside of work?
    I plan all of my vacations around hiking or SCUBA diving, but I’m looking forward to staying local in my new town and exploring all that Athens has to offer.
  9. Do you plan on attending any football games this fall?
    I probably shouldn’t admit this, but I’m not a big football fan. Although, I think being at UGA might change that – so, yes, I definitely plan to go to a game!
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