Staff Feature of the Month – December 2019

Name: Melissa Raker

Role on the Project: Project Facilitator

My Story:  I was born in Heidelberg, Germany while my father was stationed there for the Army. When I was a still a baby, my mom, dad, sister and I moved back to his hometown in Estill County, Kentucky. I attended Estill County Public Schools until my high school years where I then attended Powell County High School.  I did leave this great state for 8 years and lived in Florida and Venezuela, but ultimately my family drew me to come back home to Kentucky.

I joined the Kentucky Army National Guard as a Motor Transport Specialist but spent 5 of the 6 years of my enlistment as an active duty Human Resources Specialist in the Active Guard-Reserve Program. After leaving the Army, I attended nursing school at Fortis College; only to realize I did not, in fact, want to be a nurse.   I am new to the world of fiber optics communications as I come from a very different background ranging from the military, to human resources, to medical management, but I have really enjoyed stepping away from those areas and having the opportunity to learn something new.

I am a very family-oriented person, kind of have to be with 5 kids. I have three boys and two little girls, ranging in age from 19 to 2 1/2 years. I am a huge advocate for adoption and sit on the Board of Members for a local adoption agency here in Lexington. As an adoptive parent of two young children, this is very near and dear to my heart. I spend most of my “free” time caring for and hanging out with my kids. In the little amount of spare time that I do have, I enjoy attending my eldest son’s band’s live performances, photography, watching movies, spending time outdoors and playing with my two German Shepherds.

Why I joined the Project: I joined the DBLLC in June of 2019. I had heard many great things about the company along with the Kentucky Wired Project. I have always enjoyed being part of a team and this sounded like a great one to become a part of as it is benefitting my state. I think it is so important that every county, be it a rural area or metro area, will all be affected positively by this project. The impact it will have on our communities will be enormous. By connecting state government offices, libraries, state police posts and community colleges will not only give the state a much-needed economic boost but will help in attracting new businesses to Kentucky, thus bringing in more jobs. The Kentucky Wired Project will also enhance our current healthcare and education systems while facilitating better coordination among first responders and enabling internet and cellular service providers to bring services to more remote areas of this great Commonwealth. It makes me proud to be a part of something so impactful.

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