CEO Andy Page delivers lunches to essential staff working on campus during COVID-19 pandemic
A sunny March morning could have been an ordinary day on the ORAU Main and South campuses, except that these are extraordinary times.
While most of ORAU’s employees have transitioned for the foreseeable future to a telework workforce in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, about 80 employees are deemed essential personnel and still work on site in areas like IT support, security, facilities management and the NIOSH program.
Andy Page, president and CEO, wanted to connect with those employees, so he and a small team from the Communications and Marketing Department delivered boxed lunches to them on Thursday, March 26.
“During times of crisis like this, it’s very important to keep the human touch and keep connected with people,” Page said.
Employees expressed surprise and gratitude for their lunch. While most of the lunches were delivered to cubicles or offices, Ben Havlik in Safeguards and Security received his lunch while parked in the patrol truck.
“This is another fine example of taking care of each other at ORAU. This truly shows how much we are like a family here,” Havlik said.
As he delivered the lunches, Page asked each employee how they were doing and told them we would be back – meaning the employees working from home will return to campus eventually.
“In times of uncertainty and times of crisis you need to be transparent and honest about what you’re dealing with, but you also have to have some bounded optimism. Things will get better. We will get through this together. We are coming back to work at some point.”
Page added that ORAU will be stronger in the long run for this experience.
“We will have learned some new things about teleworking and flex schedules and how we adapt to changing situations,” he said. “I think that’s going to make the company more resilient and stronger.”
ORAU CEO Andy Page delivered lunches to essential staff working on campus during COVID-19 pandemic on Thursday, March 26, 2020.
ORAU provides innovative scientific and technical solutions to advance national priorities in science, education, security and health. Through specialized teams of experts, unique laboratory capabilities and access to a consortium of more than 150 colleges and universities, ORAU works with federal, state, local and commercial customers to advance national priorities and serve the public interest. A 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation and federal contractor, ORAU manages the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE) for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE).