For five years, Andrea Cooper has served as the accounts receivable clerk for the Oregon-Idaho Conference, when not sharing her creative and humorous gifts with her colleagues as well.
Cooper is leaving the Oregon-Idaho Conference office in June as her family will be relocating from Portland to Phoenix for her husband’s work and to be closer to family.
“The weather is going to be a little bit better,” said Cooper, who is from Colombia. “But I’m going to miss the big, giant trees.”
She’s also going to miss her colleagues, and in turn will be missed by her colleagues.
Cooper holds a degree in accounting. After meeting her husband Mark when he was a military contractor in Colombia, they moved to Florida for eight years. She held part-time jobs doing tax preparation while raising their two young children, now 13 and 15. But when it came time for her husband to relocate to the Portland area, Cooper was looking for more work.
Through an online advertisement, she heard about the Oregon-Idaho Conference needing a temporary clerk to work in the accounts receivable department. She applied and within three months the “temporary” was removed from her title.
“It was just the perfect job for me,” Cooper said. “And I liked the people. Someone is always trying to help you.”
But the accounting background isn’t the only gift she brought to the office. On a whim, when one of her children asked her to paint a tiger on his face, Cooper discovered her artistic ability and a way to earn extra income when not working for the Conference. During one of her first Halloween parties on staff, Cooper offered elaborate face painting for her colleagues – from butterflies to Spiderman to foxes.
When someone on staff pointed out an angel figurine that was, well, not looking too good, Cooper took it home and painted it and brought it back to the office looking a little more heavenly than before. She’s also a competitive Crossfit athlete who always amazed her colleagues with stories and photos of her seemingly unending strength.
When colleagues were out of town attending Annual Conference, typically Cooper and fellow accounting staffer David Sneed stayed working at the Conference center offices to make sure business still ran smoothly. They would joke about throwing their own parties while everyone else was away.
“There was always a little bit of mischief,” Cooper said.
As for her colleagues, they say this:
“Andrea was such a joy to work with because, even though she was always professional and supremely competent, she kept things light and funny. And, for me, that’s what I will remember most about working with her – the fun and funny times,” said Sneed, who is the accounts payable clerk for the Conference.
“Andrea is a pleasure to work with, and I enjoy her professionalism, sense of humor and style,” said Meg Kau, human resources specialist for the Conference.
“Andrea is a lovely person with the excellent quality of maintaining her sense of humor even in stressful work situations,” said Sandra Reinemer, assistant treasurer/controller for the Conference.
“I’ve appreciated Andrea’s steadiness and competence in the work she has done, learning and implementing new systems, and caring well for that which is in place. She is quick to laugh and her artistic abilities are amazing,” said Rev. Dan Wilson-Fey, Conference treasurer and chief benefits officer.
Wish Andrea well in her new adventures by signing this Kudoboard.