During his 11 years at UT, Rod Edwards has shared elevator rides with Willie Nelson, Lyle Lovett and Asleep at the Wheel frontman Ray Benson.
As the desktop support specialist in the Moody College of Communication, Edwards greeted the famous artists on their way to the KUTX office the same way he does any person on campus — with a big, toothy smile and a “What’re you up to, man?”
Edwards said he has never been shy. His love for people and optimistic, curious nature have governed his actions throughout his entire life.
“I’m not saying you have to be mature or seasoned,” Edwards said. “That comes with time. You just have to be optimistic about new things.”
Before he accepted his current position at UT, Edwards had a varied array of jobs. He taught middle school language arts in Dallas, starred in several beer commercials and even had a corporate job with Bank of America. But he said his story truly began in the late ’90s, when he moved to Tyler with his family to care for his sick father.
In 2003, he left the rural comfort of Tyler for the city of Austin. As soon as he got to the city, people started complimenting his speaking voice, suggesting he start doing voiceover work for radio or commercials.
For years, Edwards shrugged these comments off. But eventually, he convinced himself to market his voice. He created a website and, over the past three years, has done voiceover work for KUT and the College of Communication. He said he hopes to do more projects in the future.
“You have to see the glass as half-full and not half-empty,” Edwards said. “Good things will come because you believe in yourself. My story is not over. It’s still being written.”