William Odom studied at the Freie Üniversität Berlin, entering the university in 1961 as construction on the Wall was beginning; he holds a Ph.D. in German from Tulane University. He is the author of German for Singers and translator of: JAZZ: A Photo History by Joachim-Ernst Berendt; Hörspiel: A Collection of Contemporary German Radio Plays; and Tomorrow We'll Be in Switzerland: Saving the Children of La Hille by Klaus Ihlau, a play which tells the story of a group of Jewish children who were hidden from the Nazis in the south of France during World War II. He is a professor of German at the University of Southern Mississippi.