Hiring Spotlight – Kathy Townsend

March 28, 2022

Kathy Townsend.

Kathy Townsend joined Yale in July 2021. We had a chance to talk with Kathy about her current role, hobbies, and advice for job seekers as a New Haven Hiring Initiative (NHHI) program alumni.

Tell us about yourself.

I am a native of New Haven, attended a Historically Black College or University (HBCU) in South Carolina, and later transferred to Southern Connecticut State University. I earned two graduate degrees in urban studies and organizational leadership, and I am currently pursuing a Doctor of Education degree. My professional and educational background includes working in the private and public sectors in various leadership roles. I am extremely passionate about social justice, diversity, equity, and inclusion work, and leadership development for women of color, specifically involving equal pay and promoting equity in the workplace. I am an active member of two national public service organizations for women of color, the New Haven Chapter of The Links, Incorporated and Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated. When not volunteering, I spend as much time as possible with my beautiful daughter and my grandson, my pride and joy.

Tell us about your job search.

Fallon Thomas from the New Haven Hiring Initiative made my job search experience extremely pleasant. She is an amazing professional with excellent relationship-building skills. Her support changed my perspective of working at Yale: Yale is committed to celebrating diversity, and as a Black woman, I feel like I belong at Yale University. Fallon offered two critical pieces of advice: accurately share your professional story and showcase your transferable work skills.

Tell us about your current role at Yale.

I am the Associate Director of the Yale Law School (YLS) Fund. I am responsible for working with alumni volunteers, managing reunion classes, and soliciting donations for annual gifts for YLS. Recently, I was asked to sit on the Alumni Diversity Task Force Committee.

What is your advice for other job seekers?

First, stay on a constant learning curve. Be open to feedback and coaching regarding your overall skills, resume, and cover letter. Doing this is crucial because it allows us to grow as adult learners and professionals. Second, every institution’s culture is different. Therefore, the application and interview process will be different. Be sure to follow up on your next steps, and make sure that you follow up promptly (within a 48-hour turnaround or less). Third and most importantly, make sure that the way you share your career journey supports the needs of that department. Finally, do not give up. Just because you do not get the interview or job you hoped for does not mean it will not happen or that you are not worthy. It just means there is another role that is a better fit for you. Stay connected and committed to your professional development journey and process.