Meet the Interns: Joey Dunn Talks Strategic Communications, the Renaissance, and More!

Joey Dunn

Each summer, OFN interns make outstanding contributions to the community development finance field, and this year is no different. Our five interns share a passion for OFN’s work and a desire to grow the CDFI industry. They will talk OFN, CDFIs, summer fun, their personal backstories, and even time travel.

This week, we learn a little more about OFN strategic communications intern Joey Dunn (me!) and the role I’ve been playing at the organization this summer.

Name: Raymond (Joey) Dunn V  

Bio: Raymond or “Joey” is the strategic communications intern for OFN. Joey was born and raised in Washington, D.C. OFN’s youngest intern, Joey is a rising sophomore at Washington and Lee University in Lexington, VA, where he is a member of W&L’s wrestling team and will double major in environmental studies and business administration.  

OFN Department:  Communications 

Major & School:  Plans to major in Business Administration and Environmental Studies at Washington and Lee University 

Hometown:  Washington, D.C. 

Hidden Talent: Considers whistling one of his best talents   

“From helping us collect and publish borrower success stories to interviewing fellow interns (including himself!), Joey has played a major role this summer in helping us raise the profile of CDFIs and the impact they are making in communities nationwide. His enthusiasm and can-do attitude in getting the job done no matter the task has been extremely valueable and hugely appreciated!” 

Caroline Valvardi – OFN Senior Associate for Strategic Communications 

What attracted you to the CDFI industry and OFN? 

Before I found OFN and learned about the CDFI industry, I was really interested in the concept of impact investing, which is essentially investing with the intention to generate a measurable, beneficial social or environmental impact alongside a financial return, so I was excited to learn about the CDFI industry and was really attracted to the mission-driven aspect of OFN.  

Tell us about some of the projects you are working on. How will they help OFN and the CDFI industry? 

I’ve enjoyed working on a diverse group of projects. Much of my work is centered around our borrower success stories, which involves outlining, editing, tagging, researching, and writing articles about the successes of our member CDFIs and the businesses, projects, and communities that they support. The stories help OFN showcase the great work that the industry is doing and the amazing people and places CDFIs support.

What have you learned about OFN and the CDFI industry that you didn’t know when you started? 

I knew very little about the industry before I started, so I have learned an enormous amount in my time here. I’ve learned a lot about how the industry functions regarding relationships between the government, banks, CDFIs, and borrowers. I have also learned a lot about specific CDFI projects and the magnitude of their impact from my work with the borrower success stories.  

What are you up to this summer when you’re not at OFN? 

Primarily, I have enjoyed spending time with friends and family this summer. I also spend a lot of my time diving deep into music, working out, and using the summer to catch up on current events as well as educate myself on today’s political climate in light of the upcoming election, which will be the first time I am able to vote.  

If you could travel back in time, where and when would you travel? 

As somewhat of a history nerd, I have thought about this question a lot and have trouble deciding on just one time. If I had to choose, I think I would probably like to go to Florence and experience the Renaissance. I think it would be fascinating to see the boom of art and new ideas as society moved out of the Dark Ages.  

What are you going to take away from this experience? 

My experience at OFN has offered me incredible insight into the CDFI industry in addition to giving me great exposure to different things I may want to do with my career. This was my first nine to five job, and I don’t think it could’ve been a better intro to the adult world. It was great and often inspiring to be surrounded by such smart and welcoming people who are all in some way dedicated to improving the world in which they live.