2014 Winner - Doretta Prior
Vince pointed out to me the other day, that he’s never known me to be speechless, and I rarely am, but at ACTEM 2014, that is how I found myself. So belated as it is, I’d like to say now what I “wished” I had said then.
First and foremost, thank you for bestowing upon me such a wonderful honor. I am humbled by your acknowledgement and by the wonderful things that Crystal said about me at the conference. Did anyone get that in writing? I have friends and relatives that will never believe she was talking about me.
Thirteen years ago I found myself blessed to fall into a job that seemed to have all the elements of a job custom made for me. It taxed the knowledge I’d been building for the previous 20 years in the tech industry, it gave me the ability to add to that knowledge and satisfied my need to “manage” things. And, oh yes, spreadsheets, lots and lots of spreadsheets, the staple of my life, both on the job and at home.
As I came up to speed with the tech knowledge, I found it fascinating that I was in a position that while I rarely left the office during the
job, I could travel all over the state and touch so many people. I took ownership of that. When I’d be out driving around the state, I bored my husband with the details. “Hey, that’s such-n-such school or library.” Then I’d tell him who the tech person was there, the type and speed of their circuit and if they had any troubles that I had to help solve, as of late. One day, after suffering through years of this, he replied dryly “of course you do.” That’s when I started backing off the verbal recitations and did it mentally from there on.
I could never have done what I did for all of you without the “guys upstairs.” I’m talking about the NetworkMaine professionals that supported me. They are the best in the business and they made me look good. When I got to the end of what I could do, I’d gather all of my facts and walk up the stairs for a face to face with one of these overworked professionals. They always made time for me. I’ve worked places in the past where the people with the knowledge would not share how they found the answers for fear of losing job security. That is not how it works at NetworkMaine. They were more than willing to teach me what they could. I suppose they figured it would cut down on the face to face chats in the future, and it did.
While the “guys upstairs” made me look good to all of you, I took it upon myself to make you look good in the eyes of your organizations. Over the years I made sure the NOC support staff knew it was their job as well. It is my fondest hope that when you decide to retire, your organizations will honor you the way that you honored me and if I could have had even a small hand in helping you along the way to achieve that, I will have done my job. Thank you all from the bottom of my heart for all of your warm wishes and accolades. ‘Till we meet again,
Doretta Prior, NetworkMaine Retiree