Extension Educator, Community and Economic Development
P.O. Box 158
208 E. Main
Vienna, IL 62995
201-B W Main
Marion, IL 62959
34 Veterans Drive, Suite D
PO Box 467
Harrisburg, IL 62946
Susan Odum began working for the University of Illinois Extension in the Alexander-Johnson-Massac-Pulaski-Union (AJMPU) Unit since November 2005. In October 2006, she accepted a full-time position with the AJMPU Unit as the Community and Economic Development (CED) Program Coordinator.
In July, 2011, Odum transitioned into a new role with the University of Illinois Extension as a CED Extension Educator for the southern Illinois 16 counties, which is comprised Gallatin, Hamilton, Hardin, Pope, Saline, White, Franklin, Jackson, Perry, Randolph, Williamson, Alexander, Johnson, Massac, Pulaski and Union counties.
In this new role, she has responsibility for development, delivery and evaluation of educational programs supporting the mission of the University of Illinois Extension across the 16-county region of southernmost Illinois.
Odum graduated Summa Cum Laude from Southern Illinois University Carbondale with a master of business administration degree(MBA) and a bachelor of science degree in advanced technical studies. In 2009, she received certification as a Professional Community and Economic Developer (PCED) from the Community Development Council.
During her time with Extension, Odum has worked closely with city and county governments, community leaders and community development organizations to facilitate community and economic development efforts in the region. Her regional community development efforts include service on the Illinois Department of Transportation Human Services Transportation Region #11 Planning Committee, and the board of directors of the Southernmost Illinois Delta Empowerment Zone (SIDEZ), a federally designated Round II empowerment zone comprising portions of Alexander, Johnson and Pulaski counties.
In 2010, she was honored by the Johnson County Chamber of Commerce for her dedicated service to tourism and the advancement of economic development in Johnson County and the City of Vienna.
She has created opportunities to contribute to the University of Illinois Extension CED knowledge base by participation in professional development activities and trainings including completion of Years One, Two and Three of the Midwest Community Development Institute (CDI) and continued participation in the advanced programming offered to CDI graduates. In addition to CDI, Odum has received extensive training in the concept of Economic Gardening and has worked to educate local officials and community leaders on the benefits of "growing your own" as a sustainable economic development strategy.
She has also engaged key stakeholder groups in community and economic development topics including: asset utilization; tourism development; small business development; business retention and expansion; downtown redevelopment; tax increment finance (TIF); and buy local campaigns.
<< Return to Staff Listing