When asking Betty Smith what she does in the water department at Salem’s City Hall, it’s quickly evident the question should be rephrased to what doesn’t she do.
The 85 year old woman is a Salem transplant, originally from Borden, who moved here 18 years ago.
Now, she calls Salem home and works part time for the city.
“I open mail, process checks for posting, wait on customers at the window and the counter, file all new accounts, verify the bank account, answer the phone,” she said, asking her co-workers, “What else do I do?”
Office manager Carol Brough answered, “She runs this office!”
Smith began working in the water department a year ago July 18. She was in a training program through Express Works and when her time with the program ran out, she was hired on part-time in June.
“It gives me something to do to keep the walls from closing in!” she said. “And I get to work with three very nice people.”
Brough said Smith does a great job in the office and they miss her when she isn’t there.
“She’s such a big asset to our office,” she said, adding that Smith’s work is always accurate and spot on. “It’s a very busy office and we all have to do our job in the same manner. We never have to worry about her work.”
Smith said she enjoys every minute of her time in the office. She is there Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
“I feel blessed to work here,” she said. “I think it’s best to stay active. If I wasn’t here, I’d be sitting with my feet propped up, feeling sorry for myself.”
Brough said that while Smith feels blessed to work with them, they are even more blessed to have her.
“She’s just a jewel!”