Beth is SECC’s longest tenured staff member and has seen a lot of change in the organization and the community. She is currently the Job Coach for Employment Connections, working with employers and helping clients with job retention.
Q. How long have you worked at SECC?
A. I started on October 5th or 7th, 1987. So it has been 28 years. Yes, it was the 7th
Q. So was that when the agency was at the Princess Centre?
A. No, at the old Selkirk School, which was on the corner of Selkirk and Baird Avenue.
Q. Then it moved to the Princess Centre, then to our current location?
Q. What do you remember about your first day?
A. That I got the only computer in the agency. And besides the Executive Director, I was the only other full-time person of a staff of approximately 10 people.
Q.What’s the biggest change that you’ve seen over the years?
A. The number or programs and staff that we have. When I started we had 10 staff, Meals on Wheels, the Day Program and Community Information. No transit or employment.
Q. What is the highlight of your career here at SECC?
A. During my career here, I have been privileged to witness the reunions of two families from Vietnam. These two events took place 25 years apart, but the feeling was the same when I saw these spouses, parents and children being reunited again; that feeling of gratitude that I live in a country with resources and programs, like SECC, which are readily available to help people in their times of need.
Q. What is your favourite song of all time?
A. Goodbye Girl by David Gates. It is the song from the movie Henry (her husband) went to see on our first date.
Never heard Goodbye Girl? Click HERE!!
Q. Name one thing on your bucket list.
A. I don’t have a bucket list. I try to live day by day.
Q. Who was the one person who had the greatest impact on you and why?
A. My high school basketball coach. He taught us to work hard and pushed us hard but had fun. We hated it at the time but respected him greatly.
Q. What did you want to be when you grew up?
A. An Occupational Therapist. I went to Waterloo and got my Honours BSc in Health Studies.
Q.I didn’t know that. How did you end up here?
A. I was working at the Salvation Army in Windsor in their Employment Program. I lived out here so when a position became available, this is where I wanted to be. I used to volunteer here with the SECC Teen Program. It was in the Gallery restaurant, the town used to own it.
Q. If you could learn to do anything, what would it be?
A. To play the piano. I can read simple music, but it would take a lot of practice to get good.
Q.What was the greatest meal you have ever eaten?
A. I’m going change this to my most memorable meal which was eating clams in Nova Scotia which my family & I dug up ourselves. Our boots were being sucked into the mud, the tide was coming in and it was drizzling. We thoroughly rinsed the clams, our boots and our rain gear back at our campsite. We were looking forward to our first clam dinner until we took that first bite and realized we hadn’t rinsed the sand out of the clams enough. We’ve never had clams again.
Q. You just got a free plane ticket to anywhere. You have to depart right now. Where are you going to go?
A.On a safari in Africa. It’s something I’ve always wanted to do.
Q. If you could choose your age forever, what age would you choose and why?
A. Each decade has had its challenges, but I think I would go with 40. By that time I had learned a lot about life to help with making decisions and choices in my life and I also had ten years of experience being a parent to 3 children so I figured I knew everything. Ha! Ha! I’m still working on perfecting that skill.
Congratulations on your 28 years at SECC Beth!