Unsung Heroes: Debra Lango
Editor’s Note: This is the fifth installment in a series of profiles on GC staff members whose contributions are not often recognized as publicly as others.
Monday through Friday, Mrs. Debra Lango begins her workday by going to the Milledgeville post office and picking up any mail or packages waiting for GC. She returns to the office to put all of the information in the system, which notifies students if they have mail.
Depending on the scheduling of the rotation, some days she will go to each department on campus to deliver or pick up mail. When she stays in the office, she works the window, sells stamps and sends packages.
If students need a little encouragement to get through the day, they can always stop by the Mail Services Department on campus and visit Lango, who has worked at GC for 17 years.
Before working at GC, Lango worked for the Baldwin County Board of Education driving a school bus. But after hearing many positive stories about GC from her friends, Lango began driving a shuttle bus part-time for GC.
“A couple of friends told me about GC and what a good place it is to work, so I thought I would give it a try, and I really enjoy it,” Lango said.
After working in the Parking and Transportation Department, she transferred to Mail Services. She said that her interactions with students and her relationship with her co-workers makes her job enjoyable.
“I enjoy seeing and talking with students and asking them how their day or week is going,” Lango said. “Me and my co-workers get along really well.”
The native of Milledgeville has been married to her husband, Lonnie Lango, for 19 years. She has a son, 26, and a daughter, 8.
During her free time, Lango enjoys spending time with her family, working with her church, and being a member of the serve team for Kudzu, a college ministry on campus. Other interests of hers include running and working out at the gym, Bodyplex.
Growing up, Lango wanted to be a school teacher. She even took some education courses at GC. Although she did not end up becoming a teacher, she still gets the opportunity to work with students on a daily basis.
Along with the students, her family inspires her and keeps her motivated.
“If it wasn’t for my family and the students, I wouldn’t be here,” said Lango.
GC student Liz Ann Barnett also works in mail services and said working with Lango is always fun.
“We laugh all the time, and she makes it feel like it’s not work,” Barnett said. “She brings a smile every day when she comes in.”
Lango’s daily positive attitude does not go unnoticed. Co-worker Brandy Snider who has worked with Lango for about 11 years, explains what it is like working with her.
“She comes in every day saying ‘Good morning. How are you?’” Snider said. “She speaks to all the students with the utmost respect.”
Lango’s cheeriness even holds up through the repetitive mail duties that might seem monotonous to others, her coworkers say.
“Even if she sees someone or enters the same situation 30 times, she always treats everyone like it’s the first time,” Snider said. “She’s always very calm, cool and collected. Nothing ever gets under her skin. She is very good at her job.”
At the end of each day, Lango said she feels accomplished if she has been able to help and satisfy the needs of others.
“I want to have done anything and everything I could to help others,” Lango said.
She encourages students to do their best: “Don’t ever feel like you can’t do anything because you can do anything you set your mind to.”