Sioux Henley Campbell: "I’m honored to be working at CDC alongside their world-class scientists, communicators, and computer experts."
Editor’s note: A technical writer and graphic designer by trade, Sioux Henley Campbell finds herself in the nerve center of a global health crisis: the outbreak of Ebola.
Headquartered in Atlanta’s Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Campbell is a Northrup Grumman employee who’s currently assigned to the CDC, working on public health communications related to the outbreak.
A self-described lifelong learner, Campbell earned a UC San Diego Extension Professional Certificate in Technical Communications in 2010.
Q: What is your role with CDC’s Emergency Operations Center?
A: I am at CDC’s main campus and currently on deployment in the Joint Information Center of the Emergency Operations Center. I am assigned to the Content team.
Q: Specifically, what are your day-to-day tasks and responsibilities?
A: Since I’ve been here, I’ve compiled demographics on the countries affected by the Ebola outbreak and written multiple fact sheets and public service announcements geared to different audiences in the U.S. Currently, I’m working on a series of informational PowerPoint presentations for download off of our website. These will be for external audiences.
Q: Given the enormity of the crisis, do you work long hours?
A: My work schedule may seem long, because I pack as much activity into each day as possible. But really, I don’t think I work any longer than other team members.
Q: How has the Ebola crisis impacted you? Emotionally, what are you feeling? Frustrated? Driven? Inspired?
A: First, I’m honored to be working at CDC alongside their world-class scientists, communicators, and computer experts. The human impact of the outbreak is immense. So, I am very inspired and driven to do whatever I can to make a difference in squelching the outbreak.
Q: How did your certificate prepare you for this role?
A: I am a life-long learner. The UC San Diego program refreshed old knowledge and taught me new skills — all necessary to stay current and competitive. The courses were challenging, mainly because the instructors invested energy in making the content compelling and timely.
Q: What lessons do you feel have helped you do your current job?
A: For me, it’s more than just the old adage, “If it’s worth doing, it’s worth doing right.” I feel a responsibility to the reader. If someone takes the time to read a webpage I’ve written or an infographic I’ve created, I want it to be a valuable learning experience for them.
Q: What is your background? Where are you from originally?
A: I was born and raised in Alabama but have lived in many places—including eight years in lovely San Diego. I have an BA from the University of Alabama, a certificate in instructional technology from the University of Georgia, the UC San Diego certificate in Technical Communications, and umpteen continuing education courses in instructional design, writing and editing, public health, and computer applications.
Q: What are your future plans?
A: Professionally, I plan to continue working in health communications on assignment to the CDC. Personally, my goal is to exhibit my artwork in a gallery show.
Q: Finally, what is the origin of your first name?
A: My father, who was a small-town attorney who aspired to be a country/bluegrass musician, dubbed me “Sioux” after the song, “Sioux City Sue,” when I was a small child. It’s been my legal name since. Pop was a very colorful character.