From helping employees onboard to managing payroll and benefits, Debbie Durham plays a huge role in coordinating the administrative functions of Akili, keeping everything in order! This week, we had the opportunity to learn more about this seasoned Akilian.
What’s your role at Akili and the most satisfying aspect about it?
I handle payroll and benefits here at Akili. I also set up our projects, so I have insight on who our clients are and what team members are on which projects. The best part is that I get to meet and interact with each and every employee that comes to Akili.
How did you become interested in your line of work?
I became interested in payroll and benefits kind of by accident. I was working for a small construction company while going to school, when the bookkeeper retired and I received on-the-job training while studying accounting. After school, I worked in accounting at a health club and then moved to payroll and benefits for a small cellular company that eventually grew into AT&T Wireless Services (yes, I was a proud owner of a brick phone). I left there and eventually followed our former accounting manager to Akili.
What about Akili made you decide to join?
I joined Akili because I loved the culture and they actually operated by and believed in their core values. And it hasn’t changed in over 20 years.
What’s a memory that stood out to you at Akili?’
The best memories of Akili are from the fun activities we have had since the beginning. Whether it’s community service activities, Stars games, paintball, Ranger games, chili cook-offs, Halloween contests, happy hours, or lake parties, there is always something to participate in! It gives everyone an opportunity to spend time both in and outside of the office to get to know one another and their families, which strengthens our bond at work!
In your opinion, what makes Akili different?
Here at Akili, employees have the freedom to do the job that they were hired to do. No one looks over your shoulder, but if you need help or guidance, someone is always there to help.
What do you enjoy doing outside of work?
Outside of work, I enjoy spending time with my family. My husband and I have three kids and three granddaughters. We like to travel, attend sporting events and make memories with the grandbabies!
What keeps you motivated?
I come from a family of educators, so what motivates me is that there is always something new to learn. Whether it’s work-related or personal, if you aren’t learning, you aren’t growing.
Tell us about some of the greatest advice you’ve ever received.
The best advice I’ve been given is to always be kind and do the right thing!