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Meet an Enterprise Hokie

Each month, the administrative enterprise e-Newsletter features the segment, "Meet an Enterprise Hokie," where enterprise employees are highlighted. Learn about how these Hokies serve the university community and some fun facts you might not know about them. Have an idea for an enterprise Hokie that would be great to highlight? Submit here.

Meet an Enterprise Hokie: October 2021

Melissa Wrenn Headshot

Melissa Wrenn, business manager, Virginia Tech Electric Service, Division of Campus Planning, Infrastructure, and Facilities

Q: When did you join Virginia Tech?

A:
1997

Q: Can you describe your role?

A: I manage the business office and metering at Virginia Tech Electric Service. I facilitate customer service, billing, service applications, meter reading, work orders, accounts receivable, accounts payable, and other aspects of the business office. I work closely with engineers and linemen on projects on campus as well as in the Town of Blacksburg.

Q: What is the most rewarding thing about working at Virginia Tech? 

A:
Interacting with people. I am a people person and have always enjoyed working with the public.

Q: What’s one project you’re working on now? What’s interesting or challenging about it?

A: I am currently working with our billing system in getting our online payment system upgraded to better serve our customers. The new online system will be more customer friendly and will offer our customers more account information than our current system does.

Q: What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given? Or, is there a favorite quote or saying you’ve heard that sticks with you? 

A:
I have a favorite quote from Maya Angelou. "You will face many defeats in your life, but never let yourself be defeated."

Q: Where are you originally from?

A:
I am originally from Covington, Va, went to school at Radford University, and never left the area. I started applying for jobs at Virginia Tech 20+ years ago.

Q: What is your favorite spot on campus? Why? 

A:
My favorite spot on campus would be Hahn Horticulture Garden. I use to take my kids there when they were little and they enjoyed running around and looking at all the pretty flowers. As they grew older, they would go there to take pictures before a school dance.  

Q: Do you have pets? 

A:
I have a spoiled rotten golden retriever named Benji.

Q: What’s your favorite place you’ve visited? Why did you like it so much?

A: Maui. The whole island was just amazing and breathtaking beautiful. There was so much to do and see.

Q: Where’s somewhere you’ve never been, but would love to visit someday? Why there?

A: Spain. Of course, I would like to see some of the tourist areas but would love to go to some of the old towns to really experience the culture.

Q: What TV show(s) are you currently watching that others need to check out?

A:
Virgin River, Grey’s Anatomy, and Ginny and Georgia.

Q: What would you describe as your most important personal attributes or strengths that you bring to your job? 

A:
One of my personal attributes that I bring to my job is that I always try to be fair and understanding. This applies to co-workers, employees, as well as customers.


Meet an Enterprise Hokie: Prior Editions

Chandra Flight Headshot

Chandra Flight, fiscal technician, Division of Campus Planning, Infrastructure, and Facilities

Q: Can you describe your role?

A:
I work in the Division of Campus Planning, Infrastructure, and Facilities Business Office providing support for employees that travel. I also process orders for the division and also support the Real Estate Management team.

Q: What are some of your favorite hobbies outside of work?

A:
I love to read, listen to live music with friends, and travel. 

Q: What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given? Or, is there a favorite quote or saying you’ve heard that sticks with you?

A:
The most liberating quote for me is “Fear says what if, while faith says even if,”

Q: Where are you originally from and what drew you to Virginia Tech and Blacksburg?

A:
I grew up just down the road in Narrows, Va. A majority of my adult life had me living in Tacoma, Wash, Ft. Campbell, Ky., and then Darmstadt, Germany. I was fortunate to get back home to the NRV in the spring of 2007. The mountains and the people here drew me back; it’s a truly special place.

Q: Where’s somewhere you’ve never been, but would love to visit someday? Why there?

A:
New York City. My daughter and I enjoy Broadway shows. 

Q: What is your favorite spot on campus? 

A: I can’t pick just one, so you get two. One is the small animal clinic at Vet Med. I enjoyed working with the patients and their owners. Seeing all the dogs kept a smile on my face for sure! Two, Lane Stadium at night with 66,000 others jumping to "Enter Sandman." 

Q: Do you have pets?

A:
Yes, Katniss. She was dropped off at Vet Med at 5 weeks and it was all over for me and my daughter. 

April Myers, director of governance administration, Office of Policy and Governance

Q: What year did you join Virginia Tech?

A:
2004.

Q: Can you describe your role?

A: 
I serve as the secretary to University Council and have the responsibility for managing the infrastructure for the university’s system of shared governance and the development, design, and delivery of governance training for the university community. I facilitate the University Council Constitution and Bylaws and provide strategic direction to procedural questions from the university community.

April Myers headshot

Q: What is the most rewarding thing about working at Virginia Tech?

A: The Ut Prosim attitude that most everyone here exhibits is the most rewarding thing for me. I feel very blessed to work with others who are so willing to help whenever they can. I have met some wonderful folks and have made lasting friendships with faculty, staff, students, and administrators.

Q: What’s one project you’re working on now? What’s interesting or challenging about it?

A: I am counseling and assisting the Staff Senate with a review and update of their constitution and bylaws. Collaborative projects have always been my favorite because it is good to have different views about how and why certain things should or shouldn’t be done. I always learn something new when I get to participate in these types of projects which can help me in my role as I advise other governance groups about similar processes. Plus, I get to work with some incredible folks.

Q: What was your first job? 

A: I worked in the shoe department at Hess’s Department Store that was located where Dick’s Sporting Goods is in the New River Valley Mall. I loved this job, I got to meet so many people and was able to keep up on the latest shoe fashions. The only downside was I spent most of my money on new shoes!

Q: What TV show(s) are you currently watching that others need to check out?

A: The three TV shows I am currently watching are Big Sky, Virgin River, and Atypical. I have already finished Cruel Summer which I absolutely loved!

Q: What’s one thing on your bucket list?

A: To visit all 50 states.

Q: Do you have pets?

A: I have a one-year old Mountain Fiest named Boston, and five ferrets Busch, Beavis, Blaze, By-Tor, and Bobo. I had two other ferrets Bubbles and Butters.

Q: When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?

A: I wanted to be a radio DJ. My sister and I used to take turns playing DJ by taking walkie-talkies and taping the button down on one of them so that we didn’t have to keep the button pressed down while we were working. The other sister who would be off would take the other walkie-talkie outside to the swing set and listen to the radio show.

Elvis Rosario

Elvis Rosario, emergency coordinator, Virginia Tech Emergency Management

Q: What year did you join Virginia Tech?

A:
2016.

Q: Can you describe your role in Virginia Tech Emergency Management?

A: My primary role as part of the Virginia Tech Emergency Management team is being responsible for the update and maintenance of campus-wide emergency plans for preparedness, response, continuity of operations (COOP), mitigation, and recovery. Collectively, we develop plans for the response to and preparedness for incidents and events at the university. I also conduct trainings and serve as the Emergency Management team's point of contact for exercises. I also help with program development and outreach. 

Q: What is the most rewarding thing about working at Virginia Tech?

A:
Working alongside like-minded employees. I first started as a security officer, and then as a police officer - specifically, as a Residence Life Resource Officer – working with Student Affairs staff and students. All of these experiences, including now as emergency coordinator, have provided exposure to countless top-notch committed employees. All of these individuals readily give of themselves in support of the greater community. As someone who has spent the majority of their adult life in the profession of service to others, this makes for a great place to work.

Q: What’s one project you’re working on now? What’s interesting or challenging about it?

A: I am working on updating the Resource Management Plan. COVID-19 really peeled back the layers of the complexity  of managing limited resources during a global pandemic. Who could have predicted that we would manufacture our own physical shielding options to mitigate the spread of the virus? Or that we would centralize the purchasing of certain items in order to leverage buying power among the available vendors? These are some of the things we need to think about as we update our plans. 

Q: Where are you originally from and what drew you to Virginia Tech?

A: I’m originally from New York City. Following the 9/11terrorist attacks and during my deployment to Iraq, I began looking for a place to retire and raise my kids. Blacksburg kept hitting all my search criteria, and after a decade of research, we made the move in July 2016. My retirement was short-lived and I began working at Virginia Tech in August 2016 for Rhino SES as a security officer. I joined the Virginia Tech Police Department as a security officer in November 2016.

Q: Do you have any pets?

A: There are many pets in my home. My son has a ball python, leopard tortoise, and a gargoyle gecko. Add to that tropical fish, two dogs, and a parakeet, we have, too.

Q: What’s one thing on your bucket list?

A: I would like to take a long scenic rail trip through the U.S. Hope to cross that off sometime in the next few years.

Q: Do you have a favorite food?

A:
Spanish style rice with beans and chicken. Its one of my comfort foods. 

Q: What was your first job?

A: Handing out fliers on a street corner in lower Manhattan for a local storefront. I was 14 and worked at that job for about 35 minutes. I guess you could say it wasn't for me.

Buzz Johnson, assistant, Hokie Bike Hub, Alternative Transportation Department

Q: What year did you join Virginia Tech?

A:
2019.

Q: Can you describe your role?

A: 
I instruct Hokies on bicycle maintenance and repair and answer questions about alternative transportation available on campus. 

Buzz Johnson posed on bike with his two dogs

Q: What’s one project you’re working on now? What’s interesting or challenging about it? 

A: Helping a grad student negotiate a warranty claim. The problem was very technical compared to the normal issues we see at the Bike Hub.  

Q: What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given? Or, is there a favorite quote you’ve heard that sticks with you? 

A: “Nothing is finished, nothing is complete, nothing is permanent.”  

Q: Where are you originally from and what drew you to Virginia Tech and Blacksburg? 

A: I’m originally from West Virgina, but spent many years fishing and biking in the New River Valley. Blacksburg is a great place for cyclists. With three bike shops and the Hokie Bike Hub for students, bikers have many places to learn and grow as riders and as people.  

Q: Do you have pets?

A: Yes, two rescue pups named Lolly pop and Iggy pop (pictured).

Q: Where’s somewhere you’ve never been, but would love to visit someday? 

A: New Zealand because the natural scenery is amazing. I’m sure there are some killer mountain bike trails there!  

Q: Have you ever met anyone famous? 

A:
Mark Bryan, who is the guitarist for Hootie and the Blowfish. He would come into the bike shop I worked in and talk about music and make purchases for his kids. 

Terri Allen headshot

Terri Allen, senior fiscal technician, safety and security units

Q: When did you join Virginia Tech?

A:
2006.

Q: Can you describe your role?

A:
I am responsible for purchasing for the Police Department, Rescue Squad, Emergency Management, and the Office of the Vice President for Enterprise Administrative and Business Services.

Q: What are some of your favorite hobbies outside of work?

A: I love anything that involves water: kayaking, paddle boarding, swimming, boating, or just laying on a float soaking up the sun.

Q: What’s your favorite place you’ve visited? Why did you like it so much?

A: Niagara Falls. The falls are majestic, powerful, and the color of the water is unlike anything I could describe.

Q: What is your favorite spot on campus? Why?

A: Hahn Horticulture Garden. The garden is a beautiful and serene spot that anyone can enjoy.  It changes with the seasons so there is always something new to see every time you visit.

Q: What was your first job? Did you love it, hate it, etc.?

A: My first job was at a hardware store when I was 16.  I was interested in pursuing architecture as a career at that time in my life.  I loved learning how things were made and what specific tools and supplies were used for.  Working there gave me the opportunity to ask questions about the products the company sold and to hear about customers' ongoing projects.

Q: Do you have any pets?

A: I have two cats, Kidder and Katty.

Gennelle Chatman headshot

Gennelle Chatman, equity manager, Office for Equity and Accessibility

Q: What year did you join Virginia Tech?

A: 2021.

Q: Your role is brand new at Virginia Tech. Can you describe what you do?

A: I provide equity, diversity, and inclusion services to members of the university community in the greater Washington, D.C. metro area. I strive to build a bridge between the Office for Equity and Accessibility in Blacksburg and all the D.C. region to create a safer and more equitable environment for students, faculty, and staff.

Q: Where are you originally from? What drew you to Virginia Tech?

A:
I am a Florida girl through and through. Born in Miami, raised in Orlando, and went to college in Tampa. I am passionate about equity and inclusion work, so the opportunity at Virginia Tech called out to me. I have also always had an interest in living in the D.C. region, so those stars certainly aligned.

Q: What are some of your favorite hobbies outside of work?

A:
I enjoy cooking and watching and playing any kind of sports. I’ll watch curling if that’s all that’s available. Curling is actually really entertaining, though, once you understand the rules. I’m also trying to get back into traveling.

Q: What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?

A:
 My mom gives the best advice. I’m sure she heard this somewhere else, but she told me once, “If you get a chance, take it. If it changes your life, let it.”

Q: What type of music do you enjoy? Do you have a favorite musician or band?

A: 
My musical tastes are truly eclectic. Right now, though, I’m on a strong R&B kick. Top of my now playing list these days are H.E.R, Jazmine Sullivan, Kiana Lede, Megan Thee Stallion, and Lil Baby. I do consider myself a budding playlist curator, so if you need sounds for your function or your mood — I’m likely your girl.

Q: What’s your favorite place you’ve visited? Why did you like it so much?

A: My favorite trip was to the UAE. I got to see the other side of the world with my mom, who is a fantastic travel partner. She’s down to try almost anything, so we align there. I saw new world opulence pressed right up against old world tradition and that was amazing to me. Not to mention the food, sightseeing, and shopping. I could talk all day about the things we did and saw. In short, everyone should go if they get the chance.

Q: What TV show(s) are you currently watching that others need to check out?

A: Top of my list is Wentworth. Super gritty, a real gratifying slow-burn. But if you’d rather laugh, I’d go with Dead to Me. Both are on Netflix and Dead to Me has a third season on the way.

Jarrod Alls, quality control assistant and pest control specialist, Division of Campus Planning, Infrastructure, and Facilities

Alls was a 2021 President's Award recipient.

Q: What year did you join Virginia Tech?

A: 2010 in a part-time capacity; 2018 full time.

Q: Can you describe your role?

A: I execute quality control inspections and review policies and procedures in regard to contractual housekeeping. I also assist in the planning and operations of our in-house floor care team,  perform pest control within Blacksburg campus buildings, and provide oversight around contractual pest control processes.

Jarrod Alls headshot

Q: What’s one project you’re working on now? What’s interesting or challenging about it?

A: I am currently working on policies and procedures around integrated pest management on the Blacksburg campus. The challenge is adapting the policies and procedures to every unique building on campus for which we oversee housing, grounds, and maintenance.

Q: Where are you originally from and what drew you to Virginia Tech and Blacksburg?

A: I was born in Princeton, W.Va. Moved to Giles County in seventh grade when my mom started working at Virginia Tech. From that point on, this has felt like the right place for me.

Q: What is your favorite spot on campus? 

A: The Drillfield. My brother and I enjoy throwing frisbee there when the majority of students are away for the summer.

Q: Have you ever met anyone famous?

A: I met Rudy Ruetigger at Burruss Hall in 10th-grade after a motivational speech he gave. It was great because my dad got to meet him too.

Q: Do you have pets?

A: I have two cats. Polly is 18 years old and Petey just turned 1.

Q: What’s your favorite place you’ve visited? Why did you like it so much?

A: St. Martin is my favorite place in the world so far. White beaches, clear ocean, and great times. One day when I was on the beach there, I looked over and saw a man wearing a Virginia Tech hat. Special.

Dane Sheely photographed next to American flag with the Ronald Reagan quote, "Evil is powerless...if the good are unafraid."

Corporal Dane Sheely, Virginia Tech Police Department

Sheely was a Hokie Highlight recipient.

Q: When did you join Virginia Tech?

A: 2017.

Q: Can you describe your role?

A: 
My role at the Virginia Tech Police Department is to enhance the safety and quality of life for students, faculty, staff, and visitors through effective law enforcement and proactive crime prevention in partnership with the university community. I answer calls for service and love to interact with the community. I'm passionate about helping my fellow officer with questions and being a part of the VTPD team. I am engaged in field training of new recruits and participate in student and faculty/staff police academies. 

Q: What is the most rewarding thing about working at Virginia Tech?

A: I have the opportunity to educate the community in which we serve. I believe education is the key to assisting our community in growing towards a common goal of being civil to our neighbors and having the willingness to help people.

Q: What’s one project you’re working on now? What’s interesting or challenging about it?

A: I am currently training a new recruit. I love assisting people when they are new and growing at the beginning of their careers. I find the field training process to be a positive challenge in showing our recruits how to interact with the public and learn the nuts and bolts of the job.

Q: Favorite food?

A: German food would have to be my favorite. I love Spaetzle with beef gravy.

Q: What is your favorite spot on campus? Why?

A: My favorite spot on campus is the Smithfield Police Barn. I love this spot because the new foals are born in the facility, and I enjoy interacting with all the new animals.

Q: Where are you originally from and what drew you to Virginia Tech and Blacksburg?

A: I am originally from North Lima, Ohio, and I came to the Blacksburg area when my wife obtained a position in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences in the Department of Animal and Poultry Sciences.

Q: What TV show(s) are you currently watching that others need to check out?

A: I enjoy watching Jim Cantore on the Weather Channel. I think everyone that watches the weather would find it much more entertaining if they gave good old Jim a chance. YouTube clips of thundersnow are my favorite.

Doug Epps, Mail Services Manager

Doug Epps headshot

Q: What year did you join Virginia Tech?

A:
2007.

Q: Can you describe your role?

A: I oversee the handling of student mail and packages, and departmental mail for the university, on-campus, and throughout the state.

Q: What is the most rewarding thing about working at Virginia Tech? 

A: 
For me, this is twofold. It’s very compelling and rewarding to work with other university staff that are quality professionals in their respective fields. Equally so, is seeing the heart and dedication our staff put into their positions on a daily basis – it's simply amazing.

Q: What’s one project you’re working on now? What’s interesting or challenging about it?

A: My top project is guiding the installation of our new package lockers for student use by their return in August. It’s a large undertaking that poses daily challenges. It requires the “It Takes a Village” approach to solve, which is one of the parts I enjoy most.

Q: What are some of your favorite hobbies outside of work?

A: My hobbies include gardening with a light green thumb for moderate success, my never-ending home improvement project, and a myriad of volunteer and community service projects – all truly enjoyable!

Q: What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?

A: My father was a Marine. He instilled the concept of “plan for the worst and hope for the best.” My take on this is to plan for every conceivable issue, and never give up hope that the solution lays in the top 30 percent of quality planning.

Q: Where are you originally from and what drew you to Virginia Tech and Blacksburg?

A: I’m originally from upstate New York - the Buffalo to Rochester region. My folks retired to this area and I followed shortly thereafter to work for their newly-acquired sign shop in Roanoke. I have lived in Virginia for 35 years now and despite constant ribbing, consider myself officially transplanted.

Q: What was your first job?

A: My first job ever was pulling hay on New York farms at age 14. This helped instill the work ethic I’ve carried all my life and supported my love of the outdoors.

Q: Do you have pets?

A: My best sidekick is Rosie the pretty pitty, the sweetest pitbull gal you could ever meet. She’s a favorite on walks as “everyone must pet Rosie,” and at the dog park where she’s quickly acquiring other fur-faced friends. She is truly a joy!

Q: What type of music do you enjoy? Do you have a favorite musician or band?

A: Music will take some time to cover. I love 80s rock, country, and bluegrass most of all. This is one of the many things that keeps me in this area; music is the lifeblood of these hills. We have an incredible group of pickers on the campus, many of whom play at our operations events and countless local events as well.

Q: Have you ever met anyone famous?

A: I was fortunate enough to meet Jimmy Carter at one of his Habitat for Humanity builds in Texas. We were working in the area many years ago and pitched in for a day. I found his commitment to the cause and the people he serves truly inspirational.

Q: Do you have a favorite food?

A: Mexican – mic drop!

Doug Epps posed with his dog
Doug and his pitbull Rosie.
Jim Murphy posed with the Hokie Bird

Jim Murphy, distance learning specialist, Technology-enhanced Learning and Online Strategies (TLOS), Division of Information Technology

Q: What year did you join Virginia Tech?

A: 1995.

Q: Can you describe your role?

A: I create protocols, train, and support faculty and students using TLOS' services at the Northern Virginia Graduate Center. I supervise a team, including a dozen international graduate students, in supporting remote learning.

Q: What’s one project you’re working on now? What’s interesting or challenging about it?

A: 
Today’s challenge is getting instructors and students back to the classrooms safely ahead of the coming fall semester. The dedicated TLOS team supports a large number of courses offered in the region and is committed to implementing all safety precautions. Classrooms are used several times a day. The TLOS team is here to provide our community with confidence that all safety precautions are being taken.

Q: Where are you originally from and what drew you to Virginia Tech?

A: I am from University of Virginia terrority. I attended NCI&S training at Virginia Tech and left a Hokie. I will always cherish my time at University of Virginia, though - and my season football tickets. 

Q: What was one of your first jobs? 

A: National Railroad Passenger Corp./Amtrak. I was an onboard service attendant and a bartender working Montreal, Boston, New York City, Cincinnati, and New Orleans routes. My favorite route was the Southern Crescent to New Orleans. We had dining cars with linen tables and a bar car with leather seats and a piano. Every trip was an adventure and each city second home. It really was the opportunity of a lifetime; I loved it.

Q: What is the most rewarding thing about working at Virginia Tech?

A: The community. The Northern Virginia Graduate Center is located in the greater Washington, D.C. metro area. Many students arrive here with little guidance on housing and the region. It is always important to take the extra effort to engage with them. I am in a unique position to engage daily with students and leverage my team to create community among the graduate programs offered at the Northern Virginia Graduate Center. One special event we hosted was on International Women's Day with over 40 international female graduate students participating. Each told their story of their journey to Virginia Tech, and openly shared about their personal and family sacrifices.

Q: Have you ever met anyone famous? Who?

A: I am fortunate enough to have had many exciting opportunities to visit the White House and attend NFL and MLB games, and countless concerts. Throughout them all, I crossed paths with many memorable people. Two stand out:

  • Mohmand Ali; met at Joe Louis' memorial service at Arlington Cemetery. 
  • Willie Nelson; traveled with Willie Nelson and family on the “Who will Pay my Taxes?" tour.


Q: What type of music do you enjoy? Do you have a favorite musician or band?

A: I enjoy all types of music, especially live music. When traveling is safer, I am heading to Austin.

Q: What are your favorite foods?

A: Barbeque, fresh fruits, and veggies. I've always loved the saying, “Two things money can’t buy are true love and home-grown tomato.”

Q: When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?

A: A head coach in the NFL or an NYPD detective.

Four women posing at International Women's Day event
Photo from the International Women's Day celebration Murphy helped host in 2021.



 

 

Juliet Dadras

Occupational health nurse Environmental Health & Safety
Administrative & Business Services Portfolio

Juliet Dadras posed with the HokieBird.

Q: What year did you join Virginia Tech?

A: 2017.

Q: Can you describe your role? 

A: I am the manager for the Virginia Tech Environmental Health & Safety Occupational Health Clinic. Our clinic serves every Virginia Tech employee that may have a work-related risk exposure and we offer them the protection they need with respirator clearance and fit testing, hearing conservation, and vaccination referrals. This year, my main role has been providing COVID-19 case management for every employee, student wage employee and graduate student impacted by COVID-19. Fortunately, the program has grown, and we now have a team of case managers that I supervise that provide this outreach.

Q: What is the most rewarding thing about working at Virginia Tech? 

A: 
Meeting people from all different departments, not just in Blacksburg but across the state in our offsite locations. During the pandemic, this outreach helped build networking opportunities and resource utilization.  

Q: What are some of your favorite hobbies outside of work? 

A: I love the beach and I collect sea turtle memorabilia and artwork.  If you have ever been to my office, you know every time I go to the beach I come back with a sea turtle something.

Q: What TV show(s) are you currently watching that others need to check out? 

A: I am currently watching Outlander. Why did I wait so long to start?

Q: What type of music do you enjoy? Do you have a favorite musician or band? 

A: I love all kinds of music, but my favorite genre is 1990s alternative. That might surprise people, but I love to crank it up with the windows down!

Q: What’s one thing on your bucket list? 

A: Traveling to Iran to meet my relatives!

Q: What is your favorite food? 

A: Sushi and soba noodles!

Q: What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given? Or, is there a favorite quote or saying you’ve heard that sticks with you?

A:
My favorite quote is "Well behaved women rarely make history." 

Q: What was your first job?

A:
My first job out of nursing school was with CHIP in Roanoke as a community health nurse.  I knew from the beginning I wanted to work in public health. In that role, I served uninsured and underinsured children with case management, and helped them meet their childhood development goals.

Q: What’s your favorite place you’ve visited? 

A: Longboat Key, Fla. Every year (prior to the pandemic), my college girlfriends and I go for a long weekend. The water is warm, beach is almost empty, the sand is so soft, and water clear blue. Is it summer yet?  I'm ready!



 

 

 

Jim Tibbs

Systems engineer
Network Infrastructure & Services (NI&S)
Division of Information Technology

Jim Tibbs, IT

Q: What year did you join Virginia Tech?

A: 2012.

Q: Can you describe your role?

A: I support central IT services at the university. My specialty is Linux operating systems.

Q: Where are you originally from and what drew you to Virginia Tech and Blacksburg?

A: I grew up in southern Arizona, the desert. What drew me to Virginia Tech is the opportunity to learn and work on high performance computing (HPC) systems. It was after I moved here that I learned what an awesome place the New River Valley is to call home.

Q: What are some of your favorite hobbies outside of work?

A: Fitness - particularly biking - live music, and enjoying the outdoors.

Q: What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given? Or, is there a favorite quote or saying you’ve heard that sticks with you?

A:
Advice: Never make an important decision or respond to a situation when upset.

Q: What was your first job?

A: My first job was building cabinets and furniture for a custom builder. I did this all through high school and university. I like working with my hands and the job schedule dovetailed nicely with my school work.

Q: What is your favorite spot on campus? 

A:
It is hard to pick between Land Stadium and Hahn Gardens. I have had such a good a good time attending football games at Lane and hope in-person attendance returns in the Fall. Hahn is my favorite pit stop on bike rides.

Q: What type of music do you enjoy? Do you have a favorite musician or band?

A:
My musical tastes span a wide spectrum. I particularly enjoy live music. If I had to pick a favorite band it would be London Grammar. I plan to fly to Perth Australia next year to see them.

Q: What’s your favorite place you’ve visited?

A:
New Zealand: The scenery is magical and I was with someone who is very special to me.

Q: What TV show(s) are you currently watching that others need to check out?

A
: I recently started watching Doc Martin out of the UK. Another good UK-based series is All Things Great & Small.

Q: What is your favorite movie or book? 

A:
I've always liked the movie Patton. My Dad served in Patton’s army during WWII. Plus, I've always loved European history. One funny aspect about this movie is that George C. Scott, the actor who played Patton, seemed to actually think he was Patton.

Q: What is your favorite food?

A: Tamales. At times my physique has resembled a tamale because I like them so much.

Q: What’s one thing on your bucket list?

A: Ride a bike for 100 miles.