Oladotun Idowu has worked in several capacities in media — from marketing to publicity to events. But throughout her professional experiences, one thing remained the same: she was often one of only a few black women in the room. That's why she started Sisters In Media, an organization for women of color in media to access mentor/mentee relationships, job opportunities and conversations about race in media. Her end goal? Making sure women of color have a real voice in her industry.
We spoke to Idowu about her career path in one of the most competitive industries in the world, who inspires her and how she got started with Sisters In Media. Then, she shared her best career advice — and her best fashion advice.
Fairygodboss of the Week: Oladotun Idowu
Founder, Sisters In Media
Greater New York City Area
Tell us a little about your career. How did you get to where you are now?
I started my career at NBCUniversal working in the marketing department, then transitioned into publicity at Fox Searchlight Pictures. During the earlier stage of my professional career, I was adamant on building a strictly entertainment profile, so I was strategic with each role I accepted. While I still love entertainment, I decided to take a minor shift and try out events at Twitter. I very much love what I'm doing and plan to continue to execute more experiences for friends of the brand.
Sisters In Media was born during my second year out of college, in lieu of the frustration of constantly being one of few black women in the office. My hope was to create an organization that made women of color feel like they had a community that supported their career growth. I wanted to stem mentor/mentee relationships. I wanted job and internship opportunities to be available, and to create an environment for women to have conversations about race in media.
What is an accomplishment that you are proud of?
Starting Sisters In Media!
What is a challenge that you've faced and overcome?
Expanding the brand and building partnerships is so tough, but I've learned that being consistent and being patient with the process is crucial.
Who is YOUR Fairygodboss? and Why?
Elizabeth Luke embodies women empowerment. She not only does a phenomenal job as a Communications Manager at Twitter, Luke stands out because she makes it her mission to have women of color be guaranteed a seat at the table. Her passion for building up and supporting women inspires me to keep going.
What do you do when you're not working?
Binge Netflix, go to screenings and BRUNCH!
If you could have dinner with one famous person - dead or alive - who would it be?
Easy: President Barack Obama and Former First Lady Michelle Obama.
Lightning Round: What is your karaoke song?
"Jenny From the Block" by J. Lo.
Lightning Round: What is your favorite movie?
Too many, but I'll say "Remember the Titans."
Lightning Round: What book would you bring with you on a desert island?
"Eleanor and Park" by Rainbow Rowell.
Lightning Round: What is your shopping vice? What would you buy if you won the lottery?
I would buy out Zara. OBSESSED!
What is the #1 career tip you'd like to share with other women who want to have successful careers like you?
Be patient with the process and value every relationship you make during your career. You never know where it will take you.
Why do you love where you work?
I love connecting people, and I find that Sisters In Media helps me connect the most random professionals together. The end goal is making sure women of color have a voice and are represented in the industry. If I can help push that narrative, I'm happy.