My Story: Constance Potor
After I graduated high school, in a very rural part of Georgia, my intent was to study psychology in college. Well, that quickly changed to studying “education and teaching,” which then changed to business, changed a few more times, and then went back to psychology. My associates degree ended up being general studies because I just could not decide on what “I wanted to be when I grew up.”
I remember. It was 1998. I was working with Waste Management as a secretary to the general manager and completing tasks such as payroll. One day, the general manager said to me, “You would be good at safety,” and I asked, “Why?” And he responded, “Because you care, and are good with people. Would you like to learn?”
I remember my first lesson was inspecting the maintenance shop, and I was so intrigued by the amount of chemicals and power tools.
What motivates me to keep going?
When I was dating my husband and we left his house to go on a date, his mother would say to us, “Don’t forget your happy home.” The first time I heard this, I said to him, “What was that about?” He shrugged it off and said, “That’s just my mom.”
My first injury case was a welder who burned his ankle. I went along with him to the clinic. When he was leaving to go home, I walked him to his car, reminding him of the doctor’s instructions. As I was saying good night, I tapped his car, and as I turned to walk away, I said, “Don’t forget your happy home.”
I surprised myself, as this was the very first time I said those words, and it hit me what my husband’s mother meant, and I wanted to continue that message – and my passion for safety grew.