Employee Recognition: Carolyn and Her Preschoolers
When our Ride Right leaders talk shop together weekly, employee engagement is always part of the conversation. Recognition of coworkers who take extra safety precautions or instill continuous measures of comfort for passengers is a large part of our culture. Here’s one story that really stood out to us.
Recently, when a corporate director traveled to our newest Lane Transit District (LTD) RideSource office, they couldn’t help but notice the extraordinary work of one of our drivers. Her name is Carolyn Renner. Carolyn transports three- and four-year-old children to Pearl Buck Center in Eugene, Oregon, a special school for underprivileged children, every day. She constantly finds new ways to make sure the often-neglected children she transports are at ease while traveling. While some of her passengers come aboard sad or afraid, her goal each day is to put a smile on their faces and hear them laugh.
One way Carolyn does this is by securing “Forever Friend,” a stuffed animal travel buddy, in each car seat. Each sits waiting patiently to greet their passenger when they enter the vehicle and is often held tight all the way to school. Carolyn also keeps a crate full of books for any reading rider to entertain themselves with while on board, and decorates the bus with seasonal items to make each ride a little more fun.
Chris Tovey, our LTD General Manager, also shared other initiatives Carolyn employs for her little riders: “She always has a ‘co-pilot’ student who sits with Tigger and plays navigator for the day. The co-pilot is tasked with decisions to help them build confidence. Birthday banners are posted for each child’s birthday, and each is given a small gift and a special hat to wear for the day. Weekly stickers accompany regular music and singing. Carolyn loves the opportunity to spoil her kids just to earn smiles and hugs from them.”
We’re proud to retain so many drivers who are equally as dedicated as Carolyn and do similar things for the children they work with. We applaud their efforts and commitment to others above and beyond their required duties. Our culture of recognition is integral to the success of our team – we’re glad to share it and recognize an amazing employee!