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Hales retires from SVCC

After 31 years as the public relations director at Southside Virginia Community College (SVCC), Christie Hales has retired.

According to SVCC Human Resource Director Bethany Harris the position that Hales held was eliminated during the college’s reduction in force and will not be filled.

Hales officially left her position Jan. 31. She said she loved her job and time at SVCC and especially loved the fact that the college offered many opportunities to students over the years.

“I have been blessed to work with some great people, now friends, who are nice, funny, smart, and dedicated to the mission of SVCC,” Hales said.

During her time at SVCC, Hales attended 31 graduation ceremonies, one of which included her daughter Lannie. In addition, Hales said she has attended other completion ceremonies for nursing, truck driving, power line training, GED and diesel tech.

“I have taken probably more than 100,000 photos, written many articles, met so many successful students, laughed and cried and witnessed so much history over the years,” Hales said. “I enjoyed the many success stories of our students, watching people accomplish goals, make dreams come true, improve their earning potential, and embrace success.”

In her job as the public relations director, Hales covered many events, and one event that stood out to her the most was a Virginia Literacy Event.

“SVCC Adult Basic Education students were invited to read essays, and I was able to attend and photograph President George H.W. Bush and First Lady Barbara Bush as well as author Patricia Cornwell, and musician Bruce Hornsby,” Hales said.

Hales also spoke about the many changes she has seen.

“There have been lots of changes, from black-and-white film that had to be developed in a dark room, to digital, typewriters, faxes, computers, email, phones, Twitter, online, Google, and more,” she said.

Hales says leaving SVCC was bittersweet, and said she will miss her co-workers but will now be spending her time traveling with her husband Gil, attending church, and spending more time with her daughter.