Women of PCSD: Anna Olsen, Senior Project Manager, Northern California

For Women’s History Month, PCSD highlighted the many extraordinary women who guide our charter school partners through the complex facilities development process so our partners can focus on what matters most – teaching and learning.

How long have you worked at PCSD?

4 years

How did you get into the field of facility development and education?

I was always interested in real estate so after college, I got my real estate license and started temporarily at a commercial property management firm. There were a lot of technical issues and problem solving along with some interaction with the clients and customer service practice. I was exposed to a lot of construction projects but not a full building development project. And I realized I was really interested in that side and that is how I landed at PCSD. I had not worked at a nonprofit or mission-driven organisation before, but I have always been passionate about education. My mom was a public school teacher and it’s always been something close to my heart.

What advice would you give young women entering this field?

One thing that I learned is that you really need to stand up for yourself and set your own boundaries. Even if you have a good mentor or a good boss, you still need to set those boundaries for yourself and then stick to them. Additionally, I got a lot out of volunteering for different groups, or being on committees in the industry, going to networking events and learning about different parts of the industry and what’s going on outside the field as well. It helps you to stay connected and meet more people. There are so many different jobs in the field that it helps you to learn about the opportunities and what you may best interested in.