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Several of my friends have kids under age 10, all of whom adore me because I have the mentality of a kid myself and never tell them “no” to anything.

Lately, all the little kids in my life have been telling me all about what they want to be when they grow up. This is generally followed by blank stares when I try to explain the intricacies of what I do when I am not playing with them.

And I am not the only one!

“Just yesterday, my son Aiden told me he wanted to be a firefighter and a Jedi when he grows up and he would use a real light saber and the force,” said Rachel here in our office.

So, this inspired me to think about all of my friends – those in public relations and beyond.

What did you want to be when you grew up and why? Asked around and got some great responses – but, unsurprisingly, not a one said “public relations.”

Add what you wanted to be below too.

And, food for thought – doing anything in your “adult job” today that resembles that childhood dream?

Me An avid Notre Dame fan and lover of all things Joe Montana and Walter Payton, I wanted to play professional football. It also helped I developed early and was involved in every team sport imaginable – picked first over the boys and girls in most cases. Today, I still play on a team and implement strategies on a regular basis – just not on a field or turf.

Scott Hanson I wanted to be the play-by-play voice for the Phoenix Suns, which later evolved into wanting to be a sports writer, which is how I started my professional career. This eventually led me to public relations.

Kate Crowley for a while we had so many contractors at our house I insisted on wearing a tool belt. After that I wanted to be an artist. My life goals at 5 were strange.

Yvette Gia Roeder I wanted to be the next Connie Chung, until I realized broadcasting wasn't for me. At least I gave it a shot.

Kate Crowley I had a friend who wanted to be Whoopi Goldberg and marry Johnny Carson. Her
mom had to explain that she couldn't change races and that Whoopi was not going to marry Johnny.

Paula Hubbs Cohen I wanted to be Della Street - she had both beauty and brains. As I got older, I figured out being the lawyer rather than the admin would be much better money-wise and that "girls" could be lawyers or private investigators, too, for that matter... And no, I didn't end up going into the legal field, other than writing about it occasionally.

Andrea Aker When I was in kindergarten, we had to write a sentence about what we wanted to be when we grew up. My dad saved mine. It said, "I want to be Madonna and have a roommate to do all my chores." Neither came true.

John Echeveste I wanted to be second baseman for the LA Dodgers. That dream was quickly squashed when I discovered I couldn't catch or bat very well.

Caitie Quick For the longest time, I was dead set on becoming an astronaut. I have scrapbooks full of newspaper clippings about anything space related from when I was a kid. I would always take my telescope out in the middle of nowhere to stargaze, and kept journals of what I saw, where I was and when (very scientific!). I spent one summer re-creating the stars’ positions on June 22 (my birthday) on the ceiling and walls of my bedroom with glow-in-the-dark paint. I was THAT nerdy.  It all ended when I went on a hot air balloon ride when I was 12 and became terrified of heights. Though when you're floating around with no gravity, you can't really "fall."

Christia Gibbons I've wanted to be an editor since I was about 3. I knew about them because my dad was an editor and he was very smart, knew everything there was to know and knew things ahead of time. I got the knowing-things-ahead-of-time thing right . . . at least some of the time!

Leslie Tweeton This is fun! I wanted to be a writer--I always had a weird fixation on pads of paper, rice paper (I called it crinkly paper) pens, pencils, crayons etc.

Georgann Yara  when I was in college, I couldn't decide between law school and journalism. Wound up getting a job at Boston Magazine but still like to argue with the best of them!

Nicole Jaillet Moon At that age, I wanted to be an actress like my favorite aunt. I figured out that it wasn't my calling in high school when, even though I'd been voted Drama Club President, I still kept getting cast as a stagehand. LOL!

Jami Reagan I wanted to be a FBI agent because I figured I'd be good at it since my parents couldn't effectively hide my Christmas presents from me.

Sally Cooper I wanted to be a ballerina…then as I got older, a pilot. Then I went to college and got lost in parties...

Shelly Talsma Everson I wanted to be a journalist or an actress. We have photos of me interviewing my stuffed animals around age four.

Sherry Butler  I wanted to be a veterinarian. We lived on a farm and I was always taking care of any hurt animal. Some had to be put down, not in a nice way back then, and I was so sensitive it scared me that I decided I couldn't do it. Now I help with rescue hands-on and with PR.

Stacey Wacknov I wanted to be a dentist. I have no idea why, but that aspiration stayed with me for years.

Carrie Morgan I was a horse lover for decades, and wanted to be a vet as a child. It actually lasted until I was a freshman in college studying Equine Science, but math got the best of me!

Kirti Dwivedi  I wanted to be an actress when I was young, and then an engineer. I would have been a terrible engineer!

Morgan Bullard Vanderwall: A marine biologist. Love sea life and am fascinated when I see them in their environment. I discovered later in life I hate swimming in the ocean and turns out you need to be good at tests to be a biologist of any kind. They also didn't have the schooling available at any of the colleges I actually wanted to attend...so...go Purdue!

Alison Bailin
Alison Bailin
Senior Account Executive Alison has a lot to say…about pretty much everything...all the time. From the current state of public relations to the social media impact on Shark Week to crisis communications in the sports world, Alison’s blogs are focused on “amusing through her PR musings,” and then some. Check out Alison's full bio


  1. Scott Hanson says:

    And some could/would argue about growing old, but not growing up.

  2. Dianne Price says:

    What fun, Alison! Thanks for sharing. I was torn between wanting to be Nancy Drew or Betty Jo on Petticoat Junction!

  3. Deb Krol says:

    My major was actually cellular biology with a writing certificate minor – I was intending to be a science writer.

  4. Wendy Kenney says:

    I’ve always loved to write ever since I learned how. Then when I was in first or second grade we had to write a speech for our class. My speech was so “good” I was asked to give it in front of the whole school! It was at that time that I decided I wanted to be a professional speaker like Billy Graham, or a TV journalist like one of my favorite media people of the day. I also wanted to become and author some day.

    When I discovered that I had to make cold calls to try to get interviews I decided that side of journalism wasn’t for me. In reality I’ve always been a little shy and have always hated making phone call- even to my own mother!!

    As far as being a professional speaker, I pursued that dream and accomplished it many years ago and I have been a keynote and workshop speaker at many conferences. I also published my first book in 2010. It’s been a blast and I’m so happy to be able to combine my talents, skills and passions into my career.

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