Hello everyone, this is Becky Elias, the new volunteer coordinator for OWCN. The welcome that I’ve received from the staff here at the OWCN has been great, and I already feel like I’ve been adopted into the most amazing of “work families”. Kyra and Emily have been great at showing me the ropes, even as they are learning themselves, and Kaiti was kind enough to leave a wealth of highly organized information to help me along.
A little about myself, I was born and raised in Washington State and obtained my bachelors and masters at Washington State University (WSU). I did my masters work on reproduction and behavior of endangered Columbia Basin pygmy rabbits, and went on to manage the pygmy rabbit captive breeding program at WSU for an additional four years. My husband’s work took us to Michigan a few years ago, and at that time I became involved working for the Children’s Zoo in Saginaw, MI, as a zookeeper. Those cold Michigan winters (I didn’t even know that -15 was a possible temperature until I moved there!) and the distance from family made us decide to look toward coming back west. When I received the opportunity to work here at the OWCN, I jumped at the chance.
So far everything has been more than I could have hoped for. I also got a chance to meet many people from the OWCN network this past weekend during Oilpalooza, which was very exciting. Now the only thing left, is awaiting the arrival of my husband and daughter, who are unfortunately staying in Michigan for a few more months. I have, however, been adapting to being a long-distance wife/mom, and I am getting good at fielding phone call questions (“Yes, you can wear sandals to school tomorrow, no, you cannot use printer paper if you run out of toilet paper, and Honey, please go buy toilet paper immediately!”). In the meantime, I will be enjoying my new work family and looking forward to digging into work!