BY MAIRE O’NEILL
Shirley Huber is retiring after 55 years of service to Los Alamos County. She was honored by Los Alamos County Council at Tuesday’s virtual workshop session.
County Manager Harry Burgess noted that having worked around the state in a variety of local governments, he has never met anyone as dedicated to an organization as Huber.
“I have not many anyone who has exceeded 30 years in the PERA system and she has put us all to shame in her longevity here with the County in her dedication and commitment to her family at work,” he said.
Burgess noted that Huber was a passionate participant in County events, maintaining documentation of and constantly taking photos which she later shared in books she put together.
“She is a wealth of information. I have often asked Shirley about historical issues that only she would know because we have lost that institutional knowledge through the years. I just want to say that I really appreciate anyone that can stay committed to the same organization for that period of time. You’ve been very special to this organization and I just wanted to take this opportunity to say thank you,” Burgess said.
Deputy County Manager Steve Lynne called Huber’s service remarkable.
“I’ve worked with Shirley for 25 years and all I can say is Shirley is just a real treasure and very much a piece of the Los Alamos County family,” he said. “After 55 years, she has earned not only this retirement privilege but she has also earned lifetime privileges at all County events. She will always be welcome no matter what we’re doing, no matter what special event. She is very close by. She’s been with us all this time and we will continue to be there for each other. You really are special, Shirley. We love you, Shirley, and congratulations.”
The following recognition of Huber was read by Council Vice Chair Randy Ryti:
“We have the unique privilege of honoring and recognizing Shirley Huber on her retirement after an incredible 55 years of service with Los Alamos County. Shirley first joined the County as a data entry clerk on November 16, 1965 (before the County was even officially incorporated!), and she has been busy supporting the County in a variety of administrative roles since then.
In just a few weeks it will be Shirley’s 55th Anniversary with the County. She has announced her intent to retire and it is our honor to recognize her for her tremendous service. Shirley has worked tirelessly “behind the scenes” for 55 years – and has quietly given so much of her time and energy in dozens of ways – for example, her time spent organizing the employee’s annual holiday fund drive to gather toys, food and donations to help needy families in our area, or her time spent helping the employee committee with the organization, decoration, and set up for hundreds of County employee events – Shirley is willing to pitch in and help other departments with tasks whenever extra assistance is needed.
Every County employee who has ever attended an event knows that Shirley will be there – camera in hand – to snap memorable photos of that day for a photo or scrapbook that she’ll compile to mark the event. Shirley is well-known for her thoughtful gifts made and presented to County employees over these last 55 years – whether they are celebrating the birth of a child, a wedding, their retirement, or some other significant event in their personal or family life.
Shirley could have retired twice over, but she loved her job and wanted to continue to contribute to County government – and we admire her dedication to our employees and to public service. No other County employee has ever reached such an historic milestone, and therefore the County Council wishes to commemorate this monumental accomplishment with a formal recognition of Shirley and her “55 Incredible Years of service”.
Furthermore, we congratulate Shirley on her very well-deserved retirement. We applaud her time in service and all of the other wonderful things she has accomplished. Shirley is a valuable part of our history, a dedicated employee, and has been a truly fantastic asset for County government! Shirley will always hold a special place in the hearts of so many County employees both past and present. She will be honored and recognized by future employees to come.”
Huber noted that the County has been her family.
“I’ve lost all my original family and now the County is my family and that’s my second home. It’s going to seem funny not to go to work every day because I love to go and I love to work. It’s going to be so hard to stay home. I don’t know if I can get used to that. I’m going to have to. I’m a person that never wanted to retire but I have to so here I am,” she said.
Councilor Antonio Maggiore said Huber was one of the very first people he had the fortune to meet at the County.
“I have always admired the way you are there day in, day out, and all that you do, but what I think I’m going to miss most is seeing you with your cute Santa’s elf hat around the holiday season. You’re always such a ray of sunshine and personally I can’t imagine working for any organization for 55 years and still being a ray of sunshine,” he said. “I just wish you all the best and thank you for all your service. We were so fortunate to have had you. I hope you don’t just sit in your house. I hope you come and visit all your friends and your family because we all love you.”