Staff Profile: Dee Athey

Staff Profile: Dee Athey

What do you do at the Community Foundation?

I have the opportunity to do a variety of things at the foundation to support and facilitate philanthropy and investment in the common good. I like to think of myself as a connector. It gives me great satisfaction to help leverage synergy and effort by connecting people, groups and organizations that are working toward similar missions and visions. In my role of facilitating the foundation’s community investments, I support the grant making and scholarship programs that make a difference and improve the quality of life locally and beyond Howard County.

What do you love about Howard County?

Howard County really is the best place to live and work. Our community has vibrant green places, an abundance of activities and events and a rich diversity of people. And most importantly, our community has opportunity and strives for equitable access to that opportunity. I love that we have so many people who are generous, care about people and are committed to helping others.

What advice do you have for those interested in giving back?

If you are interested in giving back, there are so many different ways you can do that.  Think about the things that are important to you and look for ways that you can support those things. You can give back with your time, talent and treasure in many different ways. Making that difference can be as easy as sharing what you have learned with others. The Community Foundation is a great place to find out about the needs in our community and beyond to discover ways that you can make an impact.

What has surprised you most about working at CFHoCo?

I love continually learning about new things that are happening in Howard County.  There are so many great ideas and ways that people are helping others.   Since the Foundation’s move to The Apple Ford Center at Athol Manor, I have become acutely aware of the deeps roots of history that run through Howard County.  Being in a space that was created over 280 years ago, highlights the fact that there have been people in Howard County creating community good for centuries!

What’s the last book you read that you love?

I LOVE to read and many people have heard me say that reading saved me during the pandemic. At the beginning of the pandemic, a good friend gave me Amor Towles’s A Gentleman in Moscow, and it became a book spark for me during that time. I am also a huge Jane Austen fan, and I read Pride and Prejudice every year. Howard County is blessed to have a world-class community institution in the Howard County Public Library System. The access to the world that a great public library provides for everyone in a community is something to treasure.

What are your favorite things to do outside of work?

Well I have talked about my love of reading, which is a big part of my life outside work. I enjoy being in nature and seeing and experiencing new places and things. My family loves to travel, and I have been lucky over time to have lived in and traveled to a variety of places and cultures.

As you begin to work remotely/telecommute, what are some adventures you have planned?

During 2024 I will be working remotely from different places across the nation. I will spend the winter at the very south tip of Texas, South Padre Island. It is a place where you can experience the beautiful Gulf of Mexico and the development of rockets to Mars all in one place! When spring comes, my husband and I will start out from Maryland in our RV and begin exploring across the country. We have been traveling around the Mid-Atlantic area in our RV for years and are excited to head out on the highway to see what we can find.