Job: Fare Collections Specialist (Vault Puller), Heywood Garage
Years of Service: 18
How did you come to work at Metro Transit and what do you do?
I started as a bus operator in 2001 and I’ve been a vault puller for almost 11 years now. As a vault puller, I extract safes out of the fareboxes when buses pull into the garage. In an eight-hour day, I’ll pull more than 100 vaults. They’re heavy, so you have to do it the right way and take care of yourself. I’m tall enough that I don’t have to get on the bus – I can just stretch and reach the farebox.
What do you like about what you do?
I worked the extraboard at every garage so I get to see a lot of people I used to work with as an operator. In a lot of ways, going to work is like going home. There’s no stress. Often, I’ll play music – old school rap, R&B, anything that makes people stop what they’re doing and snap their fingers. I don’t drink coffee, but people think I do. I’m an extrovert. When I go to work, I want to have fun. While I like the interaction, I also try to work as efficiently as possible. I know when operators pull in, they’ve had a long day and they just want to get out of the bus as quickly as possible. I’ve been there, I know how that feels.
Tell us a little about your background and how you came to work at Metro Transit?
I’m originally from New York. After moving to Minnesota, I worked in the freight industry and for the Minnesota Vikings, supervising players before games. I came to Metro Transit so I could spend more time at home and it’s all worked out. Everyone is so busy nowadays that it’s easy to take things for granted. I take small steps, look at what’s around me and find the good it.
What are your favorite activities when you’re “Off the Clock?”
I’m a big family guy. I have four kids, eight grandkids and come from a family of 12 brothers and four sisters. A lot of my family lives nearby and we do a lot together. I like to bowl, go deep sea fishing, travel and am a big sports junkie. I always have people over to watch Vikings games in my garage, which has two big-screen televisions, a bar and is decked out in Vikings gear.