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By Chelsea Lenamond 

Galveston ISD is proud to announce January’s E3 Employee of the Month, Building Engineer Barbie Ray.

Ray was hired in August 2017 as a custodian. She was then promoted to Building Engineer in April 2018 and has been in that role at Burnet Elementary School since. This year she has also helped out at Parker Elementary School.

Read more about Ray’s passion for her job and Galveston students in the Q&A below.

What is your favorite part of working in schools?

I absolutely love the students and staff at Burnet; they are family. I have been helping at Parker to ensure that the students and staff are receiving everything they need. The team at Parker has been so wonderful to me as well. Although this has been a challenging year for all of the district because of COVID-19, I really feel we have all pulled together to make it happen!

I love my job! I love to clean! I'm so grateful for my job with the facilities department. We are a good team.

I absolutely love the interaction with the students, to see the smiles on their faces brings me such joy. I randomly pick a class and then bring them pizza and cupcakes. On occasions, I bring treats to all students. They are so grateful and always greet me with a smile and hug. We touch their lives in so many ways. I observe how the Burnet teachers are with students and it's incredible to see the bond.

What is your favorite memory working at GISD?

I was scheduled for surgery in October 2019 and the students and staff really outdid themselves with a beautiful “Get well soon” banner, gifts, food, money, and gift cards to take care of me for the three weeks I was out. During the time I was out, someone checked on me daily. That meant so much to me. I can hardly describe it.

What is your favorite thing to do outside of work?

I love spending time with my two girls. Jordyn is 21 and in her second year at the College of Mainland and Chloe is 17 and a junior in high school. We all three have a busy schedule, but we make time for each other and sit around the fire pit, eat, talk, and make wonderful new memories. I have incredible neighbors who are so much more than just neighbors; they are my family. I really enjoy the time with them. They all bring so much happiness to me.

Below is the description of why Ray’s nominator chose her for E3 Employee of the Month:

“She is amazing. If we get a report of a positive COVID case, she will show up at 6 a.m. to deep clean a room. I was working on a Sunday and had my office windows open and she rode by the school and saw the windows open so she immediately circled around to come back to make sure nothing was wrong! She is so positive with the staff, always greeting them and smiling. During our ribbon cutting ceremony for the gym she spent countless hours cleaning the gym. She wiped and shined down every inch of that gym. During Christmas she bought gifts for a student who was afraid Santa would not visit him. She is such a caring and giving individual as evident by her day to day work ethics she lives by.”


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