Windham Southeast Supervisory Union
When we arrived, Jean Gilbert, also known as Jingles, was in the midst of dipping an employee’s hands in paraffin wax. Lavender and mango lotions, hot towels and scalp massagers were scattered about two tables. Though it was her day off, Gilbert said she had chosen to come in and recognize staff by caring for their hands because it was National Employee Appreciation day.
Gilbert, who serves as the administrative assistant to Frank Rucker, the business manager and Paul Smith, the curriculum and instruction director, says her primary focus specific to employee wellness is emotional health. Gilbert has been the driving force in promoting VEHI PATH activities for the past 15 years. “She is the person who organizes the SU-wide wellness committee meetings, marshals support for activities and serves as the cheerleader for all of our wellness events, “ said Smith. “Above all Gilbert constantly brings her humor to work to help us all stay sane and de-stressed. “
Gilbert does her best to promote happiness within the Windham Southeast Supervisory Union office. “I have always had plenty of energy. I wake up happy, and prefer to remain happy,” she said. In late February, Gilbert sponsored a Hoppy Leap Year luncheon serving foods frogs would eat, including imitation frog eggs and a variety of salads. Most recently, Gilbert organized a three hour event chock full of a variety of wellness workshops open to all employees. Over 100 people participated in Zentangle, knitting, line dancing, hula hoop and preparing healthier foods at the Brattleboro Elks Club. One of the employees described the event as a breath of fresh air.
For several years, Gilbert was quite active in the Brattleboro community, serving as a member of the school board because she wanted to do the best for students and taxpayers and on the local hospital auxiliary. She absolutely loves Christmas, accentuated by the themed trees in various rooms in her home, including a clown tree, a Victorian tree and a Barbie doll tree.