Meet a Hodger: Anderson Hayes

Anderson wearing a suit smiling slightly off camera

When we first met Anderson Hayes during his interview to be a Hodges intern, we knew he was going to be a rockstar from day one. Come on, if he can lead a classroom of high school physics students for over three years, he can handle anything, right?

And that wasn’t a typo. Anderson has his degree in physics, and he taught the subject in Chesterfield County Schools before he realized some of his greatest passions were met through his side projects. At the time, Anderson had his own podcast which he then translated into a show on WRIR called Urban Enthusiasm, where he talked about all-things music and urban-related news. From there, he decided to go back to school where he’d pursue a degree in media management.

When he isn’t working, and when it isn’t a global pandemic, Anderson and his wife Toni can be found enjoying live music, going to concerts and festivals, and maybe even grabbing some beer and wings at one of his favorite joints, Saison.

If you haven’t already, please meet Anderson Hayes.

Why did you decide on a career in PR?

I should start from when I decided to study media management. I wanted to go into more of the production side of media, doing television, radio production, that was more of the stuff I was into. Last fall, I even did an internship at Studio Center and worked in audio production and audio engineering, but it wasn’t for me. That’s why I also wanted to do the internship at Hodges, because I wanted to explore another side of media. Being a part of Hodges, interacting with the team, joining accounts – I went into the things with the idea of doing media production, but now I have more of a passion for PR. I like the engagement of telling a good story. I like connecting with people, and PR is about connecting to the public.

What advice do you have for young people who want to get into public relations?

First, make sure it’s something you want to do, make sure you have a passion for it. Enjoy writing and be able to step outside of your network talk to other people. You should be engaging and enjoy telling stories. It’s about engaging with people, inviting them in and learning more – whether you’re promoting a product, a person or even an idea.

Can you think of a PR campaign that you particularly admire?

I really admire Nike’s new sneaker releases. It’s so amazing because they get in contact with every blog and all the small micro-influencers. There’s content on YouTube, different blogs, posts on Instagram, they really make sure its thorough in its reach during new releases. It’s a huge culture, sneaker culture, and I think it is in part because Nike does a good job at making sure people want to buy its shoes and people feel like they need to buy Nike’s shoes.

What’s your favorite Richmond eatery?

I’m going to go with the old faithful, not for myself but for my family, LUNCH/SUPPER. But Saison has a really nice bar and its drinks and wings are awesome, so that’s a personal favorite of mine.

What’s something people would be surprised to learn about you?

One of the biggest things would be that I studied physics, got a degree in it and started to study it in grad school. I’m kind of a sci-fi nerd, I guess. I like thinking about quantum physics and that kind of thing.

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Casey Prentice

A self-proclaimed organizational junkie and data geek who confesses to a secret desire to be a professional organizer, Casey enjoys account management, writing, editing and digital content strategy. Her agency work has helped clients like Virginia’s Community Colleges, VCUarts and Swedish Match.

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