As I mark 20 years of service at Career Path Services’ I am filled with gratitude. I still vividly recall my first days back in October 2003, when our brand-new Benton-Franklin Out of School Youth Team arrived in Spokane for orientation. The excitement and nervousness of starting a job in a new field was palpable. I fondly remember the warm welcome from Trina Mirabal as I entered the Broadview Dairy office, the celebratory breakfast, and the thick binder of policies to absorb. I immediately felt I had found a workplace aligned with my values—a true “work home.”
In those intensive two weeks, I met amazing team members like Robin Knott, Nick Hughes, and Bo Schumacher, who generously shared his deep expertise in engaging youth in impactful services. He laid a strong foundation that served me well.
Two weeks later, we embarked on our first day at WorkSource Columbia Basin as the first Career Path team to co-locate within a WorkSource. It was an eye-opening transition to a whole new culture, and I was thankful for the corporate immersion that prepared me. Yes, those early months held growing pains as some partners adjusted to our arrival. But there were also bright spots, like Ricardo Valdez of Columbia Industries, who treated all with professionalism and kindness. His example reinforced our commitment to customer service. I was delighted when he later joined the Career Path Services team as part of our new Guest Resource group. Over time, through dedication and consistency, we built trust and strong partnerships that still thrive 20 years later.
While I have moved into new roles within the organization, our incredible team has continued to grow our services and impact on the community. I am so proud of all we have accomplished together through the years.
And I’m thankful that those early days instilled lessons that guide me still:
– Respect those who came before you
– Lead with generosity and hospitality
– Let systems and policies guide you
– See dignity in every role
– Take the high road when challenged
– Performance matters and kindness counts
Here’s 20 years of meaningful work and service. I’m excited to see what the next 20 will bring!
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