From the minute you meet Jan Barton – often the first person you see when entering the Syracuse Center – it’s clear she loves her job and the people she works with.
Barton, who works at the Syracuse Center as a stores clerk, 1st class, has been with OPPD for 30 years. She started her OPPD career as an armed guard at Fort Calhoun Nuclear Station, where she worked for seven years.
As part of her job at Syracuse, Barton is responsible for pulling and issuing material for crews and other offices that have requested equipment. She also handles incoming orders from vendors.
Barton said she completes and issues the work orders, shelves inventory and helps with the work orders and materials for OPPD’s Louisville, Tecumseh and Humboldt offices.
And then, Barton said, there is the big bonus of her job: driving the equipment. She gets to drive any and every piece of equipment that comes through the Syracuse office’s storeroom.
“I run the forklift, Bobcat and crane,” she said. “Once, I had to drive our forklift clear across town when we were working on replacing transformers in Syracuse for a rebuilding project. That was one bumpy ride.”
The crane is a different story, a far smoother ride, Barton said, but still, the Bobcat is more fun to drive.
Barton said one of the greatest joys in being a part of OPPD is working with the utility’s linemen. She said it’s a point of pride for her knowing she is part of the team that helps people get back to their normal lives when trouble hits the power grid.
“Our linemen work so hard and are so amazing at their jobs,” she said. “The linemen work straight through until the storm is over. It’s rewarding to be a part of it all. The linemen, they are my heroes and I tell everyone that everywhere I go.”
Outside work, Barton enjoys theater and is a season ticket holder at the Lofte Community Theatre in Manley, Neb. She’s also a dog lover and spends some Saturdays volunteering to walk dogs for Hearts United for Animals, a national no-kill shelter and sanctuary dedicated to the relief of animal suffering.
Whether Barton is filling orders for other offices or helping load transformers for the crews in the field, she’s proud to be a part of OPPD.
“This is the best job I’ve ever had,” she says. “I love all aspects of my job. We really are a family here, we take care of one another and work well as a team.”
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