Alethea O’Dell

Chief Marketing Officer

Northland Controls

Alethea O’Dell wishes she were Dolly Parton, Molly Ivins or Beyonce. Instead she is the Chief Marketing Officer for Northland Controls. Her journey is confounding–even to her. After college at the University of MA, Amherst, she managed a shelter for battered women. Inspired to tell the stories of the women and children she met, she packed up her car and her cat and headed to Bloomington, IN to earn a Masters in Journalism. However, her studies inspired a deep desire to write for the Weekly World News, a now defunct icon of journalistic integrity that frequently featured aliens adopted by first ladies. Between rows of corn, she heard the West Coast calling her. Oakland-bound, she found herself temping for a high-tech company that needed a marketing communications person. From there, it was a glamorous ascent to professional services marketing, as the Director of Marketing and Business Development for an earthquake engineering firm. Prior to Northland Controls, she was the Creative Director and Brand Strategist for Brazen Brands. Her 20-year career is marked by more than 30 marketing communication awards and a solid sense of humor and wonder. She is the 2016 Lifetime Achievement Award recipient from the Society of Marketing Professional Services (SMPS) San Francisco Chapter, the 2012 SMPS national chapter president of the year award recipient, and was named an SMPS Fellow in 2018 – a distinction for those who represent the highest level of experience (endurance) and leadership in professional services marketing.