35 Under 35 Class of 2020-21: Callen Moore

Callen MooreCallen Moore

Public Relations Officer
Walton County School District
Monroe, Ga.
Twitter: @CWMOORE15 @WCSD_GA

 

What does leadership mean to you?
To me, leadership is the ability to influence people and move them towards one common goal while building confidence and capacity in those around you. I believe leadership is much more about actions than words. In both my personal and professional life, I strive to be a servant leader. I find that supporting those around me through service in order to help meet their needs results in a win-win for both parties.

What was the most fulfilling professional moment you have experienced?
Spearheading a complete website redesign that consisted of 15 individual school sites and a district website has been one of the biggest projects in my career thus far. As a department of one, this was a huge undertaking with only one other individual in our district supporting this project. When I began my job, all 15 schools had varying websites that were all designed, managed and operated by someone in the school. There was no branding or consistency across the district. Designing, building and transitioning to the new site in just under eight months has been the most challenging yet rewarding professional moment in my career.

What are the most challenging and rewarding parts about working in school PR?
The most rewarding part of working in school PR is getting to celebrate the successes of our district, our employees and our students. I love getting to spend time in schools where I am able to share the mission and vision of our district through real-life stories. On the flip side, I have found crisis communication to be one of the most challenging parts about working in school PR. Schools need to be places where parents feel their children will be safe, supported and respected. Unfortunately, schools are also places made up of imperfect people and things happen. However, communicating when things don’t go as planned or expected can be extremely stressful and challenging.

How has NSPRA and your state chapter guided you along the way?
NSPRA and the Georgia School Public Relations Association (GSPRA) have been instrumental in my development as a school PR professional. The relationships I have fostered through both groups have been key in helping me develop my craft while learning from others. I have found that the support, recognition and professional development that these organizations offer are vital to my success as a department of one.

What are your favorite work and personal apps?
For work, I am a big fan of Canva and anything Google Workspace. Canva has completely transformed the way I design for work. It has been a great resource for our school-level communication contacts as well. It has provided a much more cohesive look and feel to our brand across the district. This user-friendly graphic design platform gives my school-based social media managers, who do not have extensive graphic design skills, the ability to design high-quality graphics. Facebook Pages has also been a great app to manage our district account, helping make sure personal accounts are kept separate. Personally, I use Instagram and Spotify more than any other app.

What book has inspired you professionally?
The Heart Led Leader by Tommy Spaulding.

What is a recent communications/media campaign you enjoyed – either one of your own or one you saw nationally?
Over the course of 2020, I have found it interesting to watch national and local media campaigns shift from regular product promotions to entire campaigns centered around COVID-19 and how each company/organization has responded. While media campaigns are always generally designed around what is happening within a company or in society to market to certain groups, it has been intriguing to see car companies, food and beverage businesses, healthcare companies, corporations and more develop different content that all generally centers around the same idea. It truly speaks to the ever-changing and fast-paced nature of communications, whether it be in the private or public sector.

What emerging trends in school public relations get you excited?
For me personally, I am excited about the expansion of public relations into every facet of public education. The ability that public relations has to connect all departments and schools with the local community and key stakeholders is a responsibility that I don’t take for granted and one that excites me when thinking about my job. I think public relations is still a relatively new concept in the public sector, but the trend of seeing others in education understand and appreciate its value makes me excited about what the future holds for school PR professionals.