- November 2021
Years in Position: 5
Years at MSU: 5
Five years ago, Kate Altazan accepted the office associate position with the Extension Forestry program in Lamar County after a 15-year career in human resources at one of the largest companies in the world.
“Immediately following my retirement, I started playing around with various art projects and other fun things but after about a year, I found myself missing the interaction with people that I constantly had in my previous job,” Altazan said. “I thought it was a great opportunity to learn something entirely new and meet new people.”
In her role, she is responsible for coordinating the activities of the Firewise education program for multiple counties across the state. Administered through Extension, the program teaches homeowners who live in fire-sensitive areas about how to protect their property from fire.
Being part of a team and working with a diverse range of people is what she loves most about her job.
“In my experience, it is rare to find such a high degree of camaraderie across groups which is commonplace in this environment,” Altazan said. “Working with such diverse groups of people is very rewarding. Everyone works together toward a mutual goal and strives to deliver best-in-class service. This is what motivates me to be the best that I can be as part of the overall team.
“Being able to work with such wonderful and extraordinary people was the icing on the cake when I took this job. How can you possibly beat a great team of people in a very interesting field? I feel exceptionally blessed to have found this new work family,” she said.
In her spare time, she enjoys going junking with her family to discover lost treasures and fishing, even if there’s no bait on the hook!
She and her husband will celebrate 45 years of marriage this month.
“We have been blessed with three amazing and talented children, three awesome grandchildren and one great-granddaughter, all of which are the lights of our lives!” she said.