After 45 years of dedicated service to TVS, COO Becky Alderman retired on October 2 following a surprise retirement celebration that honored her hard work, friendships, and impact throughout the community.
“Using the mission as her compass, Becky always lead TVS, its mission, and its people to a better place,” said TVS CEO Jamie Brandenburg.
In 1975, Becky was hired as the Program Director after graduating from UNC – Chapel Hill with a degree in Sociology. Over the years, Becky had been promoted and grown into the Chief Operating Officer (COO).
“I never planned to do the work I’ve done, but was unexpectedly led to TVS and have never looked back,” Becky said. “What I hope is the key accomplishment in my career, achieved through years of small and large actions, is helping to increase the stature of people with disabilities and other challenges in our community.”
Her determination and hard work have been some of the leading factors in helping grow the company into what it is today with contracts with the USDA, DLA Troop Support, USAID, and other commercial businesses.
It has also led for countless success stories assisting adults with disabilities and other barriers to employment find jobs, both in the community and at TVS.
“Becky’s dedication and perseverance are evident in all the lives she has changed, including mine,” said Lauren Hayes, Human Resource Director. “I am thankful to have worked beside such a great role model.”
Just before Becky’s last day, TVS held a surprise retirement party in her honor. The spacious company cafeteria was transformed with floral lanterns, balloons, a large cake, and the smiling faces of coworkers, families, and community members. Becky is not an easy person to keep a secret from and it took everyone to help keep Becky occupied while the party planning committee finished decorating and welcomed Becky’s family, friends and other special guests.
The event definitely caught her off guard as she was greeted by cheers and almost endless applause when she entered. After the shock, Becky was presented with a lovely gift basket filled with various gifts and a celebratory shirt for her 45 years at TVS. A special treat was a personalized photo album/memory book complete with personal wishes for a happy retirement from dozens of TVS team members and other close colleagues. Following this, a series of special awards were presented to Becky.
Celebrating her achievements one award at a time, Lauren Hayes presented the first award, a SourceAmerica Certificate of Recognition.
TVS has been a member of the SourceAmerica network for 20 years, beginning with the contract for packing instant non-fat dry milk for USDA. Source America’s mission is to protect and increase employment opportunities for people with disabilities by collaborating with policymakers in the U.S. Congress and other Federal government leaders and connecting them with goods and services from their member NPAs.
In a farewell to Becky the SourceAmerica Product team said, “We are so thankful for all of the support you have given to people with disabilities, TVS, and SourceAmerica.”
The next award was a Certificate of Appreciation from the Mountain Area Workforce Development Board, presented by Derrick Edwards, the Business Services Representative for the Land of Sky Regional Council, for Becky’s many years of engagement with the Board.
The Mountain Area Workforce Development Board is a partnership of private business executives and leading workforce development organizations in Buncombe, Henderson, Madison, and Transylvania County. The purpose of is to provide policy, planning, oversight and funding for local workforce development programs and address any workplace issues as they emerge.
The last award of the day was the most significant and memorable. Brevard Mayor Jimmy Harris surprised the group by presenting Becky, on behalf of North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper, The Order of the Long Leaf Pine award.
This prestigious award is among the Governor’s highest honors, reserved for persons who have made significant contributions to the state and their communities
through their exemplary service and exceptional accomplishments. Becky was nominated by her husband, Jim Alderman, with letters of recommendation from close friends and colleagues.
The celebration was not all awards and public figures.
The No Limits artists performed a new song, “Rise Up” by Andra Day, in sign language outside of the TVS building. The Life Skills group presented Becky with a handmade piece of artwork. The acrylic art piece was framed and the floral watercolor image contained the names of all the Life Skills participants and the Direct Support Professionals (DSPs) that work in the program.
As one of the last events of the day, TVS held a Flowering Cherry tree planting ceremony out front near the road. The tree represents all the growth that Becky has cultivated for TVS and is a reminder to continue to grow the mission through the many seasons ahead.
The bittersweet celebration was a beautiful way to celebrate all the achievements Becky has accomplished in her career. As she begins a new chapter in retirement, enjoying her garden, traveling, and spending time with her family and friends, TVS wishes her the absolute best.