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NMJC Employee Receives Community Award

NMJC Employee Receives Community Award photo
Grace Osornio and Dr. John Gratton

2/4/2008 7:46:23 a.m. - Hobbs, NM. It was the last thing she was expecting to happen.

As the very first recipient of the Hobbs Chamber of Commerce's "Pride Award for Customer Service," Grace Osornio, who is
Administrative Assistant to the Dean of Counseling at NMJC, said it was "a total surprise."

The January 31 award presentation was made by Dr. John Gratton, the Chamber's Vice President of Community Development, who also happens to be NMJC's Vice President for Instruction. The award, which will be presented monthly by the Chamber, included a framed certificate, a pin, and a $50 gift certificate to the Black Gold Casino Restaurant.

"I couldn't figure out why all these people started to gather around my area," said Osornio, referring to her office space in the Ben Alexander Student Learning Center. "Because they were all smiling, I didn't figure it was anything bad, but I just couldn't understand what was going on. When they finally presented me with the award, I started crying. It's just very nice to know that people think of you that way. I like to treat people the way I like to be treated, and I always try to leave them with a way to reconnect. I simply say, 'My name is Grace Osornio. Please let me know what I can take care of for you.'"

A graduate of NMJC herself, Osornio knows what it once meant to be unfamiliar with the college experience. Because of that, she goes out of her way to be friendly and helpful to others who look a little uncertain when they enter the Student Center. According to her colleagues, who describe her as "wonderful," Osornio monitors the large, open area throughout the day and still manages to maintain her workload. When she sees someone who looks as though they might have a question, she flashes a genuinely warm and cordial smile and asks how she can help them.

Dr. Patrick Gorman, who is Dean of Counseling and who also happens to be her boss, agrees that she's open and friendly to all visitors. "She makes them feel welcome, and she not only answers their questions but anticipates the next thing they might need." Some even come back later and ask for her by name simply because she's made such an impression, he added.

When asked what she believes her secret is to providing high quality customer service, Osornio insists there is no secret, but is simply based on treating others as she'd like to be treated. "My philosophy is respect for everyone," she said.

Now that is true customer service.

To her friends, family, and colleagues, Grace Osornio offers a personal note of gratitude: "I just wanted to say a big THANK YOU for being so wonderful to me. I was really not prepared! I truly feel that I am where God wants me to be. It is also my belief that there is a reason why God wants you to have crossed someone's path and have such good people in your life. Again, I am very touched by the support you have given me and want to let you know that I appreciate you."

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