This past week has been bitter sweet for Flow Tech, Inc. Our Accountant/Office Manager, Kim Welch, will officially retire as of July 1, 2019. Kim gave her retirement notice back in April, which was a shock to us all. Aside from being younger than most retirees, Kim has spent the last twenty years as an integral part of Flow Tech and it is hard to imagine the office without her. Today’s post reflects on her twenty-year career and highlights the celebration we had earlier this week in her honor.
A Twenty-year Career: Rome Wasn’t Built in a Day
Kim started with the company in 1998 when it was only a four person team. At that point Flow Tech was very old school and took orders by phone, pen and paper. Everything was hard copy and they still used Rolodex! Kim quickly took Flow Tech from the Stone Age into the new Millennium. She implemented a CRM system, and eventually, paperless filing. Although she was hired as an accountant she helped with many other tasks throughout her tenure. Kim aided in inside sales, HR, office administration and management, facility management, security duty, IT coordinator, marketing, back-up service coordinator, work therapist and of course, office Mom! As referenced in her 2015 employee feature she is a woman who wears many hats. Flow Tech would not have the reputation and would not be the company it is today without Kim Welch.
What She Means to Us
Our President, Rich Harper, asked everyone at Flow Tech to send him their thoughts or stories about Kim. With the help of Marketing Director, Nichole Petersen, they compiled everyone’s thanks into a photo book along with pictures of Kim throughout her years at Flow Tech. The theme of her “Wearing Many Hats” kept coming up. Kim has been a tremendous mentor to many of the younger employees and a terrific co-worker and friend. The following is a poem that Rich Harper wrote after reading everyone’s notes to Kim. We think it summarizes her career perfectly.
Now, it is the time for Kim to depart.
The next phase of her life is about to start.
Back in the late 90’s, when we were a 4-person team, we worked that paper and pencil grind.
Along came Kim to move us from there to keyboards and spreadsheets. Oh, what a find!
Those were the early days; we booked our jobs by writing.
She worked hard and built us a program, that launched us into booking our jobs just by typing.
Kim enclosed you will read, what you meant to all of us.
Not a surprise to see, in everyone’s eye’s you rate an A plus.
Allow me to share a sampling of these words that just states the obvious.
After I read them, I must admit, I felt somewhat envious.
She solves all my mystery problems at work, and she can do so many things. These are words from Jim.
He says it’s going to be lonely on his walks and bike rides, without his buddy Kim.
Paul Beley states, Kim has been the glue that has made this company stick and prosper.
I agree. But Kim, I speak from all who have worked with you, you really deserve Grammy’s and Oscars.
Mike Davis says you’re always pleasant and likes your can-do attitude
No matter the situation, everyone says you’re always smiling and always in a good mood
Brian Robinson nominates you for a lifetime MVP…. Most Versatile Player award.
Working with you here at Flow Tech Kim, has certainly been all our reward.
Tom Proietti says you drink too much………………….……. drink from the fountain of life.
Nichole Petersen says you do it all, from Accountant to IT Coordinator, and of course a Mother and wonderful Wife.
Paul Pranaitis proclaims that you exemplify the phrase: “There is no ‘I’ in Team”
And I’d like to add, and all you do is supreme.
The above and the enclosed are words from all those that have had the pleasure of working with you.
I feel most fortunate, cause I too, am one of those lucky few.
As we sit here in celebration thinking of you and we reminisce.
It’s unanimous Kim, when picking people to work and be with, you are at the top of everyone’s list.
Words alone, cannot express what you meant to this Flow Tech crew.
And we wish you nothing but the best as you depart with Brian, on your retirement rendezvous.
Although Kim self-admittedly is not a “party girl,” we couldn’t let her go without sending her off with a toast. On Monday, June 24, 2019, we booked one of the private rooms at the Market Grill for her retirement party. All employees were invited including retiree Dick Phelps and his wife Eileen. Also on the guest list were some other employees’ spouses along with Kim’s husband and son. We had a beautiful and delicious dinner, and presented Kim with her book and presents. It was a lovely way to celebrate her career. Below are some pictures from the party.
Enjoying the Next Chapter…
Kim plans to put on a new hat during retirement – the relaxation hat! Her husband, Brian, will also retire later this summer. Together they plan to travel, and stay active through biking, hiking and kayaking. They plan to spend time with their two grown children and other family and friends. Kim also plans to volunteer now that her schedule has cleared up.
We can’t imagine our work lives without Kim. Who will we go to when the printer stops working or we need help figuring out a budgeting question? She’s left some pretty big shoes to fill as well as many hats to be worn. Luckily, Kim was an integral part of the hiring and training process of her replacement. We’re very happy to welcome Patti MacDougall to our team as the new Accountant/Office Manager. Kim we wish you nothing but joy and happiness in retirement!
For more information about Flow Tech contact us today by calling 860.291.8886, by emailing us, or by visiting our website. You can also stay up-to-date by following us on social media: Twitter, LinkedIn, facebook and YouTube.
Nichole joined Flow Tech in 2013 as Director of Marketing. She leads our marketing communication initiatives including content marketing development, coordinating events and training, maintaining our digital presence and recruiting, as well as, some business development and office support. Nichole resides in Vernon with her husband Brian and son Roman. She enjoys hosting parties, cooking and lounging on the beach.