Name: Rebecca Biddle. But I go by Becky.
Tell us about yourself?
About your job: Director of Volunteer Services
Was it always in the same department? Yes
How long have you been employed at WHS? Almost six years
What are some of the new tasks you have taken on during COVID 19?
Wow, where do I begin? At the beginning of the shut-down, volunteers were unable to come in to assist hospital staff and patients. We thought it was important to keep the gift shop open, not only for staff to use, but for patients and visitors too. New duties included learning the entire gift shop operation. I can tell you the gift shop is very labor intensive from ordering, labeling, stocking, selling and financial reporting. While this assignment was new, we continued to keep the volunteer office running. There are many behind the scene things that need to be done each day. It could be fielding calls from current volunteers or from people who want to volunteer; assuring compliance metrics are met; scheduling interviews; or reaching out to vendors. It was never slow. As some restrictions lifted, the system felt it was important to have a permanent greeter at each hospital, seven days a week for 12 ½ hours each day. This is a new area that I am managing. Now that the volunteer units are back at both hospitals and at satellite locations, it is an extremely busy time in the office.
Education: I’m a graduate of Carlow University, both BS and MS degrees.
Hobbies outside of work: Genealogy is a favorite. I like chasing down details and building the stories of my ancestors. I am often in awe of the hardships they faced and persevered through. I think the quote is ‘standing on the shoulders of giants’ and am grateful for their life and experiences.
Family, pets, etc? I am married with three pets, all rescue (not the husband!). I believe in second chances!
If you could spend the whole day with one person (deceased/alive, someone you know or don’t know, celebrity, etc.) who would it be and why?
If this could be true, I’d have to expand it to my family that is no longer here. There are so many questions as you get older that you’d like to know, but my family isn’t here anymore.
What’s your best childhood memory?
Long, hot summer days bicycling with my friends from dawn to dusk. The biggest worry was about getting home before the conch shell blew…literally!
What do you love about your current job?
It is a very busy hospital and I learn new things each week. That pace of change keeps me on my toes and learning. I also like the interaction I have with patients, staff and our volunteers. The volunteers have a rich history of their own. Everyone has a story if you just take the time to listen.
What is something you wish you learned earlier in life or could learn now but just never got around to it? What is that something and why would you want to learn that skill?
My siblings and I grew up with music. One of my brothers is a professional musician and composer, and has played on Broadway for years. At four, I started to learn piano, sitting on phone books to raise me up to the keyboard. I fought those lessons every week for seven years. Maybe that’s part of why I am tenacious! However, in hindsight, I wish I would not have resisted so much and continued. Maybe I’ll do that again when I have time.
When you go out to a restaurant, do you tend to always order the same thing or do you always choose something different (and why)?
Life is an adventure—go for new things and exciting experiences!
What do you want people to know about COVID-19 in general and/or about the steps or safety at WHS facilities?
There have been so many changes to keep the patients, visitors, and staff as safe as possible. Wearing masks, installing protective barriers, and limiting visitors are all steps the hospital has taken to keep the community safe. While no one likes these new measures, we are all in this together. The goal is to all end this together.