“I truly believe that what goes around, comes around,” says Ellen Braley, a dedicated, conscientious PSU employee who has been with Building Services since 1993. “Doing good for someone comes back to you again and again.”
In Braley’s case, doing good—both in her work keeping the University’s buildings clean and safe and in her service to students, faculty, and staff at PSU—has come back to her in the form of countless admirers across campus and the 2016 Distinguished Operating Staff Award.
Over the past two decades, Braley has become known as someone who takes great pride in her work and is always ready to lend a hand, regardless of how demanding her schedule is on any given day. From helping a stressed-out student find a lost backpack to unlocking an office door for a faculty member who has misplaced their keys, Braley takes every opportunity to help others. “Ellen treats others with great respect,” says Kathryn Melanson, administrative assistant for the Department of Social Sciences in Rounds Hall, one of the many buildings on campus that Braley tends to. “Everyone in Rounds adores her.”
Always one to stay busy and keep moving, Braley is just as active outside of work as she is on the job. At her home in Hebron, NH, she says, “I enjoy cooking and baking for friends and family, gardening, and spending time with my 12-year-old black lab Sadie, who’s blind.”
She also enjoys spending quality time working in the greenhouse that she and her husband Mark own and operate as part of Mark’s landscaping business. In the community, Braley volunteers on beautification projects and is an active supporter and fund-raiser for Keeping You, Me, and Memories Alive, a local nonprofit that assists those who are living with cancer.
As for being honored with the Distinguished Operating Staff Award, Braley is grateful but insists that for her, providing excellent service is part of the joy of working at PSU. “I appreciate being recognized for making a difference,” she says. “It’s very rewarding to make a positive impact for our students, faculty, and co-workers alike.” –Barbra Alan
Photos by Kaleb Hart ’11