Carolyn Cades has worked in Grants & Fellowships since 2008, with a focus on projects relating to African American and Virginia Indian history, folklife, and global Virginia. She advises grant applicants and recipients, and as a member of the staff Grants Review Committee, focuses especially on applications relating to the history of diverse cultures in Virginia.

Cades helped coordinate Virginia Africana, begun at Virginia Humanities in 2009 to support African American programming in museums throughout the Commonwealth. She has contributed research, edited, and administered two digital initiatives, the Virginia African American Historic Sites Database and the Virginia Indian Archive, and has organized and managed several musical events presented by Virginia Humanities Community Programs. Cades serves as a writer and copy editor for the Virginia Humanities annual magazine, Views.

She earned a BA in English from Wesleyan University in Connecticut, where she minored in French language and literature, including a year of study in Paris. Before joining the Virginia Humanities staff, Cades worked at Rare Book School at the University of Virginia.