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7 Things About Starr Gray ’98

What inspired you to do this kind of work?

I found this work in a very serendipitous way. I worked as a Legal Assistant at my first job out of college and it wasn’t a good fit. I have a lot energy and wasn’t fulfilled being isolated in a cubicle for 40 hours a week. I wanted a job where I would be able to utilize my gifts and energy, and also learn a lot. After taking some time to think about various fields I could get into, teaching and working with young people really stood out as a fit for me. I then starting subbing at O’Dowd and all of the puzzle pieces started to fit together. I have been here ever since.

What is your position here and how long have you worked at O’Dowd?

I am the Director of Activities and I started the Digital Music Studio class that I have been teaching for seven years. I have been at since 2008 and I am also an alum from the Class of 1998.

What is the best piece of advice you ever received (generally – it doesn’t have to be related to O’Dowd)?

To be present and focus on whatever is in front of you. This works for everything in life. I think it is easy, especially in today’s world, to get distracted from the present moment. I do my best daily to stay focused on what is in front of me, and I try to be aware of the energy I bring to whomever I encounter daily. Some days are better than others, but I do always try.

What is your favorite thing about your job?

Working with students. They all have so much fun energy and are at a time in their lives where there is so much promise ahead. It is amazing to get to watch them grow through their years here at O’Dowd. It is also wonderful when they visit and check in as alumni.

What about your field or position do you think would surprise people the most?

For Activities Director, I think the most surprising thing is that it’s not just about being fun and silly. In my position, it is like I get to be captain of all of the fun. It is a lot of fun, but it also takes a lot time, work and organizing to make everything go.

For Digital Music, I really get to know the students in my class on a pretty deep level. They are constantly sharing their hearts and it is really inspiring.

What is the most interesting or surprising thing about you?

I am both an extrovert and introvert. I have a very outgoing personality, but like to have alone time a lot. I am a very talkative person in social settings, so it might be surprising that I like time to myself.

If you could rescue only one thing from your burning office, what would it be?

My extra guitar that lives in the office. Through the years students have come in to the office and play it during their lunch break and it is a little community guitar. A lot of stories have been told through it.

Bonus Questions

What is your favorite kind of music/what are your favorite bands?

I am a sucker for singer/songwriter soul types but I love all types of music. Mostly anything that tells a story will get me.

What is your favorite sports team or who is your favorite individual athlete?

I have always loved the Oakland Athletics and I used to collect baseball cards when I was little. I will forever be an A’s fan. I married into being a San Jose Sharks fan and I am a late hockey lover.


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