Michelle Ekeanyanwu is celebrating her 15th anniversary at TVS. However, her career at TVS well before 15 years ago, in 1993. “I worked production folding boxes for DuPont before being promoted to a Material Handler,” she reflects. “I started at TVS because I needed flexible hours. I was a stay-at-home mom with children in daycare. It was important to have a job that could fit into my life.”
Michelle came back to TVS again in 2000, once again working in production and as a machine operator. In 2008, Michelle returned briefly to production before being promoted to quality. She said, “Quality lets my abilities shine!”
As a level II Quality Technician, her responsibilities include checking labels, lot codes, pallet movements, and production counts to ensure the product meets and exceeds the customer expectations. “My favorite part of the job is catching the little things that might be otherwise missed,” she said. “I want to be here and do a good job – it feels good.”
“Ever since I have known Michelle, she has been a hard worker. She has great attention to detail and is at the top of all our protocols,” reflects Quality Director Dan Fisher. “She is always asking good questions and bringing up other thought-provoking ideas.”
One of Michelle’s favorite parts of the job is the SQF (Safe, Quality, Food) Sensor Evaluation Panel. At different points throughout the year, Michelle bakes a panel of products such as pancakes or biscuits and bakes another panel of the products with intentional mistakes such as including mushroom powder or adding extra leavening. “The best reaction was when I offered Jeni Welch an intentionally messed up biscuit,” laughs Michelle. “She was so shocked that I was going to give her something bad on purpose.”
As TVS has grown, so has Michelle. Over the past few years, she has focused on Dietary Supplements. “I am proud that I have learned all the quality aspects of encapsulation,” Michelle said. “This line was very different from our other areas and had huge packets of paperwork to fill out. I was really determined to learn and perfect this area.”
She has also obtained numerous certifications to continue advancing her career and expertise.
“I am so proud of Michelle’s hard work and growth, especially in the dietary supplement side of our business,” said Quality Manager John Safi. “In the last two years we have produced over 160 million capsules and 1.5 million jars and canisters of dietary supplements and Michelle has been the lead on overseeing quality inspections for our new automated lines. I look forward to seeing her grow at TVS for many more years.”
Michelle’s world of high quality continues to her home. She recently purchased a home and applies her quality skills to inspect the house. “I am so much happier with how TVS is moving forward with business and employee care – both at TVS and at home,” she said. “It is because of TVS that I was able to purchase a home.”
When not caring for her new home or cutting the grass, Michelle enjoys photography and taking weekend trips with her kids for short getaways.
It’s not always about working at TVS. Michelle reflects on Christmas parties with Santa Claus and bringing her children to other work events.
“I remember a celebration of life for Tamara Meadows years ago,” she says with a smile. “We released balloons in the back field to honor her life, and one of the balloons got caught in a tree. It was able to get itself free, just like Tamara’s dedication and hard work in real life. I remember thinking, ‘What other company would stop the day to celebrate life?’”
Looking into the future, Michelle hopes to see quality have a stronger presence in other departments and to keep perfecting, or home in on, what each product needs.
“My advice after 15 years at TVS is, hang in there. TVS gives you the ability to do more, move jobs, and use your abilities,” Michelle says. “I am very happy to be here.”