The Next Generation

The next generation

The children of today have an abundance of career opportunities from which to choose for their future livelihood. Though the career field has changed somewhat since the birth of the country in 1776, there is one service that has, is, and will remain a strong part of American culture – delivering the mail.

Earlier this month, Murray, UT, city officials asked Murray Station Customer Service Manager Jenifer M. Bertolina-Teper if the Post Office would like to participate in their Career/Vehicle Day. The event, held at Murray High School, gave local third graders the opportunity to see a variety of career options along with the vehicles that accompanied them. Bertolina-Teper knew just the right person to help with the event.

“I asked City Carrier Ben Frost if he would like to help out with this event and to share what he likes about his job, what he needs to know to do his job (writing, memorization, reading, directions, math, etc.) and what he does each day,” said Bertolina-Teper.

“When asked by the kids if he liked his job, Ben would respond, ‘I love my job.’

“Ben also spoke about the importance of safety and reminded each group of children not to run up to a vehicle and to stay clear of postal vehicles. He spoke to about 160 kids and did an amazing job!”

Community Pitches in to Beautify Fairfax Post Office

fairfax

Thanks to the generosity of the local community and a little hard work, the Fairfax, MN, Post Office building recently received a nice facelift.

It all started when Postmaster Lori Kiecker (in photo) attended a meeting of the Fairfax Civic and Commerce Association. She asked if the Post Office would qualify for assistance from the association’s Decorate Fairfax Fund.

The fund provided for new plants from a pair of local merchants. Kiecker, her boyfriend and his dad removed the old plants and replaced them. Early this summer, the local Cairo 4-H Club approached Kiecker and volunteered to mulch and plant annual flowers as a community service project.

With the new flower beds in place, things were about to get even better. The local VFW provided new paint for a couple of deteriorating areas on the front of the building.

Kiecker loves the new look, as do her customers.

“It’s just so nice. The community loves all the improvements and we’ve received so many compliments,” she said.

Pink for the Cure

Mail Processing Clerks Jackie Townsend, Karen Gordon, Denise Spier, Bob McLean and Tina Valdez-Luna.

Mail Processing Clerks Jackie Townsend, Karen Gordon, Denise Spier, Bob McLean and Tina Valdez-Luna.

On October 16, some of the Medford, OR, mail processing team decided to wear their true colors – pink.

The team wore the special color in support of Wear Pink for Breast Cancer Awareness Day.

There’s Only One Safe Way to Change Your Address

Change of address

USPS wants customers to know they may be paying too much for change of address (COA) services at non-postal websites.

Some sites charge as much as $40 to register new addresses. Others charge nominal fees upfront before tacking on hefty charges later, according to recent news reports.

Consumers often find the sites while searching for change of address information online. Some sites falsely claim to be affiliated with the Postal Service.

USPS has no relationships with non-postal sites that offer change of address services. COA requests made at Post Offices are available at no cost. There’s a $1.05 identity verification fee to process COA requests submitted online.

Customers who used a non-postal site to submit a change of address request and would like a refund should request it from the business that operates the site.

The Vote is in the Mail

Denver P&DC Dock Supervisor Dzung Nguyen verifies a tray that holds just a few of the 3.5 million ballots mailed in Colorado’s first all-mail ballot election.

Denver P&DC Dock Supervisor Dzung Nguyen verifies a tray that holds just a few of the 3.5 million ballots mailed in Colorado’s first all-mail ballot election.

Mail acceptance, processing and distribution, transportation and delivery units across the nation have seen an influx of political mail over the last several weeks. For Colorado operations, there’s an additional piece of mail in every registered voter’s mailbox – a ballot.

A recent change in state law eliminated traditional polling places and instead turned to the United States Postal Service to deliver and return ballots.

Over a five-day period, 64 Colorado counties entered more than 3.5 million ballots in the mail. Colorado/Wyoming Election Mail Coordinator Donna Walker was tasked with coordinating with counties, printers, mail acceptance units, and mail processing personnel.

“I’m thrilled that the process went so smoothly,” she said. “The only problems we had were with printers or vendors. Nothing internal.”

Voter Records Manager Amanda Beach of the City and County of Denver was involved in the planning and mailing of nearly 350,000 ballots from her jurisdiction. Using Intelligent Mail barcodes, they tracked their ballots through the distribution process.

“All ZIP Codes were processed by USPS at 100 percent,” she said in a note to the District manager. “Thank you so much for all of your support in this delivery.”

Adams County Clerk and Recorder Karen Long said, “We appreciate the attention and detail you gave our ballots. Together, we will succeed with the mail ballot delivery system to distribute our voter’s ballots.”

You Can Make a Difference in the Lives of Others

Wendy Reinholz

Everyone has a chance to make a difference in the lives of others, and it doesn’t require herculean effort to be a positive influence. Molt, MT, Postmaster Wendy Reinholz had the benefit of many helpful individuals willing to help her succeed in her job as a new employee with the Postal Service.

The following is her story.

“I came to my position in a non-traditional way. I was hired in July 2013 as a PSE for the Molt, MT, unit. While I was in my new employee orientation in August the position of Postmaster was posted. I was hired as Postmaster after never having worked a single day, except for the training. I became the Postmaster effective September 26, 2013.

“I am extremely proud to be part of this organization. I work in a Post Office in the middle of miles and miles of wheat fields and cattle. It is a unique situation and not suitable for everyone. I love that i learn something new every day. I know that I can most likely find an answer and usually it’s only a phone call away. Every single person I have asked a question of has been willing to answer my question and pass along their own experiences and knowledge. I have been encouraged to call anytime, have been given guidance and advice and have often been given the tools to help me figure things out on my own. I appreciate the confidence and support I have received from the very first day.

“There are so many parts of this job and I still feel like there are questions I didn’t even know to ask. Each day is a challenge and an opportunity. All new employees need to know that help is just a phone call away. If we don’t have an answer right then, we can find out where to find it; don’t be afraid to ask the question!”

Postmasters Run in the Martinez Family

Melissa Waterman, Josh Martinez, Joe Martinez and Matt Martinez.

Melissa Waterman, Josh Martinez, Joe Martinez and Matt Martinez.

When Josh Martinez was recently named Postmaster at Annandale, MN, the appointment came with what may be a unique opportunity.

Josh, along with his brother Matt (Gibbon, MN) and sister Melissa Waterman (Rockford, MN) took the oath of office administered by their father, retired Tomah, WI, Postmaster Joe Martinez.

Joe says that he always encouraged his children to at least consider a postal career and especially encouraged them to look at management opportunities because “that’s where you can put what you’ve learned as a craft employee to work, to really make a difference.” To see where his three kids are today was a special moment for the proud dad.

“A real once in a lifetime opportunity,” he said. “To be able to swear in my three kids, I could hardly believe it.”

In addition, Matt’s wife Kimberly is Postmaster in Gaylord, MN, and Melissa’s late husband, Tim Waterman, was Postmaster at Maple Grove, MN. “We’re just one, big, happy postal family,” Kimberly Martinez says.

Summer Vacation Photos

Harvey1

Wheaton, MO, Postmaster Markeeta Harvey and her husband had the opportunity visit Duluth, MN, for a vacation in September. On the way back, they stopped in the town of Wabasha, MN, where local residents celebrated “SeptOberfest.”

Unique decorations were displayed across town, including wheat stalks made with plastic water bottles and eagles made from pumpkins & squash that adorned the National Eagle Center.

“We were able to enjoy a presentation about eagles and the rescued eagles they have there,” said Harvey. ”They brought one of the rescued eagles in for us to observe them feeding it. The view of the Mississippi River was grand! I had the opportunity to stop in and mail a package from the post office there and it was a very nice place.”

Harvey2

eagle

water at wabasha

 

Summer Vacation Photos

A Post Office exhibit inside a museum at Crazy Horse National Monument, SD.

A Post Office exhibit inside a museum at Crazy Horse National Monument, SD.

During her summer vacation, Phoenix, AZ, City Carrier Chris James visited a variety of locations across the Western Area with her husband.

Besides the panoramic views of majestic landscapes throughout the land, James also took the opportunity to visit many interesting and historic postal-related locations.

A mail coach located inside the "Days of '76" Museum, Deadwood, SD.

A mail coach located inside the “Days of ’76” Museum, Deadwood, SD.

Outgoing mailbox located at The View Hotel in Monument Valley, AZ, the only hotel located inside the Tribal Park. All views face east with views of the Mittens Buttes.

Outgoing mailbox located at The View Hotel in Monument Valley, AZ, the only hotel located inside the Tribal Park. All views face east with views of the Mittens Buttes.

Outgoing box at the 76,000 square foot Wall Drug Store in Wall, SD.

Outgoing box at the 76,000 square foot Wall Drug Store in Wall, SD.

A "mile high" mailbox located near Custer State Park, Black Hills, SD.

A “mile high” mailbox located near Custer State Park, Black Hills, SD.

Summer Vacation Photos

Young 1

In the photo above, Sioux Falls, SD, Operations Support Specialist Keith Young along with his wife Carol and daughter Jessica visited Glacier National Park and went horseback riding up sleeping man mountain during the 4th of July week.

In the photo below, Seattle District Operations Program Specialist Steve Arstad and wife spotted this interesting tree on the side of Highway 395 in California while returning home from a driving trip to Reno. There was no explanation for the shoes at the site.

Arstad

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