Marnie Allen, Specialist of Community Attention Foster Families, City of Charlottesville
Where were you born (and raised, if different)?
I was born and raised outside of Princeton NJ.
When and why did you move to the Charlottesville/Albemarle area?
I moved here immediately after high school graduation in 1991 to live with my grandmother.
What neighborhood do you live in now?
I live in Hogwaller. I love it! When I first moved into the neighborhood there was an actual hog loose and running around.
Family (spouse, kids, etc.)?
I have a wonderful husband, a step-daughter, and a daughter who is just turning one.
What is your alma mater and when did you graduate?
I graduated from PVCC in 1994, and UVA in 1998. Both schools are fantastic!
What were you doing before you came to work for the City?
I worked with two different housing programs for homeless families.
Your job title is Family Assessment, Recruitment and Retention Specialist of Community Attention Foster Families – what, in your own words, would you say you do?
I support the families in our community. I do that in a variety of ways, but that is the crux of it.
What is the best part of your job? The most difficult part?
The best part is building relationships with people. The most difficult is seeing what some of the children in our community have gone through.
How does your job most directly impact the average person?
Community engagement is a big part of what I do, and helping the average person understand how they can engage with the fostering process even if they aren’t able to be a foster parent has the biggest impact. Most people don’t realize that there are many opportunities to support what Community Attention Foster Families does.
What is the most interesting project or work experience that you’ve had while with the City?
Oh, there are too many things to list.
What is a little-known fact about you?
When I am having a bad day, I take a break and visit Feast. Their samples always brighten my day!
What do you do outside of work hours – hobbies, etc.?
I enjoy music, reading, cooking, gardening, hiking, volunteering, and playing with my girls!