Get to Know Ann Odens, Finance Specialist

Ann: A desire for fresh, meaningful work led me to Children’s HeartLink

Tell us a little about your background and why it led you to Children’s HeartLink. 

With degrees in public health, education and Spanish, my background includes working at the State Health Department in rural health care access and working in the classroom helping middle school students learn Spanish (and life skills!). The desire for fresh, meaningful work that combines my background experience and skills led me to Children’s HeartLink over 4 years ago. The focus on improving the lives of kids and working internationally drew me here. I began as international programs assistant, providing logistical support for our many partners and volunteers, and I have recently moved into operations as finance specialist, learning a whole new set of support skills.

What motivates you?

I am most driven by a desire to help others. This motivates me in every aspect of my life – work, family and community. When I’m not supporting the awesome Children’s HeartLink team, you’ll find me helping my family or volunteering with community organizations.

What is the most rewarding part of your job? The most challenging? 

The most rewarding part of my job is supporting the staff at Children’s HeartLink. This group of people is dedicated to the work we do for children and works tirelessly to improve the lives of kids with heart disease. I enjoy providing operational support for staff, allowing them to attend to the work that is most important, reaching as many kids in need as possible. The most challenging… providing a broad range of support to ensure the needs of all staff and volunteers are being met. I like to keep people happy 🙂

What are the most important traits for your job? 

I think the most important traits for my job are the same for almost any job – positive attitude, communication, collaboration, integrity and being a lifelong learner.

What’s something people are surprised to learn about you? 

I like famous quotes, and I often use them to motivate myself or others. Some of my favorites:

“It always seems impossible until it’s done.”

-Nelson Mandela

“The sky is the daily bread of the eyes.”

-Pablo Picasso

“To know one life has breathed easier because I have lived, this is to have succeeded.”

-Ralph Waldo Emerson

“It’s a beautiful day, don’t let it get away.”


Ann supports our vendor relationships related to finance and assists with budgeting, restricted grants, payroll, accounts payable and other key finance functions. She was previously our international programs assistant. Earlier in her career she worked as a Spanish teacher. 

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