Expert Spotlight: Diane Solitaire
Patience and persistence are Diane Solitaire’s biggest virtues. Diane is now BPUB’s materials/warehouse manager, but her success has been decades in the making.
On June 7, Diane celebrated her 40th work anniversary. She began her long career at BPUB as Secretary I in 1979 and took a step higher every opportunity she got. Diane is now one of the most successful, longest-tenured employees at BPUB, and says there’s never a boring day.
Born in Harlingen and raised in Brownsville, Diane is the daughter of two retired teachers, who, among many lessons, taught her to do her best.
“Both being teachers, they made sure I always did my best and I didn’t want to disappoint them,” she said. Therefore, Diane did exactly that. She graduated from Homer Hanna High School and the University of Texas at Brownsville and received a bachelor in business administration.
Diane and her husband are also parents to very successful daughters in the field of medicine. Initially, Diane wanted to become a pediatrician, but life took her in another fruitful direction.
Perhaps her talent for keeping checks and balances helped her achieve so much in life. Diane’s first job was a newspaper route. Her mother drove the car around the neighborhood as she threw them out the window. At the end of the week, Diane would retrace her steps collecting the money from the newspapers she had sold. She turned most of the money into The Brownsville Herald office, but she pocketed around $10-$15 a week. For a young Diane, that was plenty.
As the current manager of purchasing and warehouse, her favorite part of the job is the interaction with people and the challenges she faces daily. “Preparing and reviewing specifications makes me knowledgeable about most of the projects BPUB is involved with.” And there are plenty!
After four decades, her department along with a few others will soon move into the new service center yard on FM 511. This is also one of Diane’s greatest career achievements at BPUB.
“I am very excited about the move to the new service center,” she said. “There have been several times when I was told BPUB was looking for a new location for the warehouse and field crews, but it never happened. Seeing how quickly the walls went up, it’s very exciting!!”
As one of the leaders of the New Service Center Yard project, she was honored to be able to stand with a shovel at the groundbreaking ceremony. “It felt very special!”
Diane’s new office will be closer to her home in Brownsville, so she can’t wait for the big move-in day.
On her time off, she enjoys reading, sewing and trips to the movies, but most importantly quality time with her family. In fact, she has two families. After retirement, she hopes her family at work will remember her as a passionate leader who always found a way to contribute her knowledge and skills for the betterment of the company.
For now, Diane will continue sharing her knowledge and expertise with incoming staff in the hope that they also enjoy working at BPUB after 40 years.