Cathy Miller has worked at Transylvania Vocational Services (TVS) consecutively for 25 years working in many different departments. Prior to her consecutive years, Cathy was previously hired at TVS in the 80s bringing her grand total to 37 years of experience.
Before coming to TVS, Cathy worked at the Brevard Music Center in the kitchen. She continued with her love of being in the kitchen as one of her many jobs at TVS.
Cathy’s first job at TVS was as a production worker making x-ray film boxes for the DuPont Company and loading them into large gaylords. Cathy has also worked in the kitchen, in the INTERACT program with Gwenda Schuler as her Supervisor, as a machine operator, and as a production operator as TVS has grown and evolved over the years.
“My favorite place to work is in production on line four packaging bakery mix and when we were packaging chocolate chips,” said Cathy. “I am looking forward to seeing new products and switching up my jobs around here.”
TVS CEO Jamie Brandenburg said, “We are blessed to have Cathy as a part of the TVS family for 25 years. Having employees with such longevity is part of what makes TVS such a special place to work!”
While the list of stories Cathy could tell about TVS would take hours, her favorite memories revolve around the company picnics, Christmas parties surrounded by families of coworkers, and the TVS award ceremonies.
“From all the picnics, I have a huge stack of shirts,” said Cathy. “I also really enjoyed going to the Source America National Conference in Atlanta. That was a good time.”
Other memories date further back to when TVS had a kitchen that served different food daily including: hot dogs, lasagna, or salad. “I miss working with past supervisors, Vera Harris and Era Byers, from the DuPont days,” Cathy said.
Becky Alderman, COO, has been on the journey with Cathy since the beginning of her career at TVS. “Cathy is one of the original employees,” said Becky. “She is a part of TVS that helps pass on our culture by quietly helping new people by showing them the right away.”
According to Cathy, Becky and retired CEO, Nancy Stricker “were like second moms” and claimed, with a laugh, that they would say that they raised her. However, Becky disagreed by saying, “We all raised each other, we had a lot to learn and it was so important that we all supported each other.”
Cathy is interwoven into the fabric of TVS and does have some advice after 25 years, “Be yourself, go by the rules and don’t get in trouble ‘cause it don’t take much to get into trouble.”
Her hobbies outside work include baking desserts, working in a garden, and crafting. Luckily, for fellow employees at TVS some of her passions show up at work.
“She has been so sweet to remember my birthday,” Becky said. “She always drops a little something off.” For Becky’s birthday a few years ago, Cathy created a t-shirt that made a funny play on Becky’s birthday falling on Tax Day.
“The company is blessed to have her,” said Becky. “I don’t know where we would be without her.”
For the birthday of Cathy’s best friend, Patricia Fisher, she made a Better Than Sex cake.
“She needs to open her own restaurant and bake,” said Pat.
Pat works in Housekeeping and has been laughing with Cathy for 22 years. “I remember Cathy telling me, ‘don’t get overwhelmed’ when I was first hired,” recalls Pat. “Back when we first started, we sometimes had to work weekends and we would be so tired that we would just laugh and then Vera would laugh, just making us laugh even harder.”
Cathy is a kind and gentle soul that you could call if you ever needed help.”
Operations Manager Mark Mulenex has worked with Cathy for 19 years. “Cathy always brings in pies and cakes for the guys on their birthdays, but she sneaks them in and leaves them on the desk,” said Mark.
Cathy has always been the person behind the scenes, never wanting to be the center of attention but also viewed as a mother figure on the production floor.
“She is always seen smiling and laughing when she is here and is missed when she has a day off,” said Mark. “She is strong and dedicated; a true TVS person ever since I’ve known her.”
Written by: Jenifer Welch