Twenty years ago, Doreen Payne came into the hardware store in Millbrook to help her brother Ron Hewitt put the retail outlet together having just purchased the Pro Hardware from the Olan family. She will be leaving next week, having stayed on seven years longer than her brother. At first Doreen didn’t commit. She kept her other part-time job at Fabricland for the first 15 of those 20 years, shuttling between Millbrook and her other job and residence in Peterborough.
When she arrived, she helped organize the store, stocking shelves and serving customers. Her brother insisted that staff were independent, and Doreen soon learned the answers to most questions customers might ask. More recently she has been responsible for receiving, which requires extensive use of the computer. It’s the only time her fingers touch a keyboard. Doreen does not own a computer and does not do email, even though she has several grandchildren. The seasonal shelves at the front of the store are Doreen’s responsibility, and require re-merchandizing several times a year.
Seven years ago the hardware store was sold and converted to a Home Hardware, and Doreen stayed on with Mike to work with Dave and Nancy Britton who manage the store. Doreen was mortified to miss the first three days of work with her new employer after fainting at the breakfast table the day she was to start, but her new managers soon appreciated her valuable contribution. She is a well-liked and dedicated staff member who will be sorely missed when she retires this month.
Retirement plans are centred around her family and catching up on some home projects, reading and crafts that have been neglected over the years. Congratulations, and enjoy your well-earned leisure! KG