After more than a decade at the Effingham Herald, family will be keeping Debbie Neidlinger at home.
The Herald’s mainstay and longtime sales representative has retired — even working an extra week after her retirement officially started.
Neidlinger started as a part-timer 14 years ago but it didn’t take long before she was full-time.
“Debbie was wonderful,” said Karen Tanksley, former publisher of the Herald. “I hired her part-time 14 years ago, but she caught onto everything quickly. People in the community know her and love her, so that was a plus for the Herald. She worked hard. She cared about the paper.”
Neidlinger’s value to the company also caught the notice of those higher up in the Morris Multimedia chain.
“Debbie has been a wonderful employee,” said Joe McGlamery, vice-president of Morris Multimedia. “I can’t even imagine what it’s going to be like without her, but we understand her need to retire in order to be a caregiver for her mom. Her knowledge of our operation, her connections in the community will be difficult to replace. We are most appreciative of the almost 15 years she has given to this company. We have benefited from her dedication and her loyalty.”
Neidlinger will devote more time to her family in her retirement. She has two children, Glenn and Leah, and she and husband Barry have six grandchildren.
“I look forward to spending more time with my grandkids,” she said.
Herald General Manager Kim Dennis said the company is interviewing someone to take Neidlinger’s position.
Tanksley not only valued Neidlinger as an asset to the company but also as a person and a friend.
“She is a really sweet person,” she said. “I enjoyed working with her. Working with her was a pleasure.”
Tanksley retired last April, and she’s already dispensed post-career advice to Neidlinger.
“I promise you she will find herself busier than she thinks possible,” she said.