Curator Q&A: Jennifer Carroll

Name: Jennifer CarrollTitle: Account Supervisor Joined Curator: October 2012 Go-to Happy Hour Drink: Something sparkling!

What did you want to be growing up? When I was young, I dreamed of attending law school at Stanford and becoming a prosecuting attorney. Oh, and I wanted to drive a Porsche and never have children. My life is the complete opposite of my adolescent dreams. Though, my husband would argue that I missed my calling. I’m a pretty good debater. I haven’t given up on the Porsche yet either!

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How did you get into this field? My parent’s were season ticket holders for the Los Angeles Clippers when I was in high school and college. Yes, the Clippers. I attended a number of games with my dad and was fortunate enough to meet the team’s PR director who, coincidentally, is now one of my best friends. I was envious of her job that combined two things that sparked my interests: sports and public relations. In my first semester at Long Beach State, I interviewed with the university’s sports information director and he gave me a job assisting on the public relations efforts for the track and field and cross-country teams. After about a month on the job, I was travelling and calling the women’s basketball team’s games on radio. That job led me to an internship with the Los Angeles Lakers and Sparks, and the rest, they say, is history.

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What do you love most about the industry? I’ve never been bored at work. Things are always changing. Also, I love the fast-paced nature of public relations and marketing. I think starting my career in sports, albeit not the most traditional route, was great preparation for how quickly things shift in this business.

What’s the biggest change that’s happened in the industry since you’ve started? Social media. Hands down. Individuals and brands weren’t using social channels then the way they are today. The ways in which information is shared and digested has completely changed and, as a result, forced communicators to evolve. In some way, we all can be considered journalists: documenting our lives and sharing our findings with an audience beyond our own social communities.

What’s the best career advise you were given? Brian Byrnes, the VP of Sales and Marketing for the SuperSonics and Storm once told me that if I could learn how to sell myself, I could do anything. Sounds like a typical sales guy? He was absolutely right. Feeling confident and finding your voice in a professional setting isn’t always easy and doesn’t come natural to everyone. Though once you do, it’s noticed and can open up a ton of opportunities.