I have no idea how many people I have worked with over 38 years but I’ve likely forgotten more than I remember which is due to a combination of my forgetfulness and the fact they were not very memorable.

Today Joyce Howells will leave WOBM after 15 years as our receptionist and I guarantee you I won’t forget her.  After pondering it for a while Joyce is retiring to spend more time with her husband Bob and will pursue some other interests with the extra time she’ll have.

Joyce has truly been the unsung hero of our operation ever since she arrived on the scene when our offices and studios were located in Bayville.  She is the first line of defense, the person who answers, screens and directs phone calls, hands out prizes to our many contest winners, makes sure we have everything from copy paper to toilet paper and most importantly the glue who often holds things together.  New employees and those like me have counted on her for just about everything and she manages to come through time and time again with a smile and attitude that has made her a pleasure to be around.

I have told Joyce on more than one occasion that she should write a book on the strange phone calls and even stranger visits she gets from listeners who think she has the answer to every question, even those that have nothing to do with our company.

Only recently did an elderly woman call her during a severe thunderstorm and ask Joyce if it was okay for her and her dog to come out of the bedroom where they had spent the past hour or so in fear over the weather.

Like in every case that woman found a caring and comforting voice on the other end because Joyce does not know any other way to be.

Sure we are disappointed at her departure but delighted that she will have more time to “smell the roses” as clearly she is one who deserves it.  She can also count on the fact I will call her at some point with a question that only she can answer.

As she leaves we welcome Katie O’Keefe to the “front desk” and while she’s more like a daughter than the mother Joyce was to many she’ll make a great addition to the WOBM family.

Joyce, thanks for everything and enjoy the next phase of your life.  Before you leave please make sure we have plenty of toilet paper.