Patty Wolfe Sheppard is in the City Spotlight for June
Patty Wolfe Sheppard absolutely loves facing the day to day challenges that working for the City of Jacksonville brings. “I love interacting with people and doing everything that I can to help them out with whatever need they may have,” says Sheppard. “I may not always be able to fix their problem, but I want them to know I’ve done everything that I can. Everything that goes on in the city comes through the mayor’s office. This is the best job I’ve ever had. Mayor Smith is an amazing person to work with. He may not always take my advice, but he always takes the time to sit down and listen to whatever I have to say.”
Sheppard has been employed off and on with the city of Jacksonville since 1989, working in the court and city clerk’s offices. She has worked in the mayor’s office since January 2005 when she replaced Dot Norman. “I was trained by the best,” says Sheppard. “I learned so much from her. She taught me to be loyal to the office not the person. She had been secretary to several mayors.” Sheppard’s main duty is managing the mayor’s calendar, but every aspect of the workings of the city comes through the mayor’s office. All departments come under the mayor’s office. “All our department heads get along really well, says Sheppard. “We respect and value each other’s opinion. I think that is pretty special.” Sheppard attends all city council meetings and work sessions. That is something she implemented when she came on board as the mayor’s secretary. “I like being hands on and seeing for myself what’s happening, not relying on someone else to tell me,” says Sheppard.
Sheppard is the daughter of the late Gary and Imogene Wolfe. She grew up in Piedmont, graduating from Piedmont High School in 1983. She then attended Jacksonville State University graduating in 1986. Sheppard has two children, Paige, 26, and Ethan, 23. Daughter Paige has blessed her with two grandchildren, Kyker, 5, and Jaxon, 2. “My grandchildren are my life,” says Sheppard. “They are my passion. My fun time is playing with them.” One of her favorite hobbies is working in the yard. “I actually love cutting my grass with a push mower,” says Sheppard. She also enjoys traveling, spending time with family, and going to racing events with husband Rett. “I love watching my grandson Kyker take in all the sights at the races,” says Sheppard. “I enjoy watching him as much as I do the event.” Sheppard has been married to Everett ‘Rett’ Sheppard since Nov. 25. “We’re still newlyweds,” says Sheppard. He has four children, five grandchildren and one on the way. He is a Construction Superintendent with RA-LIN and Associates. Patty and Rett reside in Piedmont and attend First Baptist Church of White Plains. “I love, love, love, my church,” says Sheppard.
According to Mayor Johnny Smith, "Patty is a dedicated city employee who is truly concerned about city government and how well it serves the citizens of Jacksonville. She can be firm, but has the ability and desire to make employees, council members and citizens feel comfortable and appreciated when they come to the mayor’s office. Patty does an excellent job as the executive secretary in the mayor’s office."
When asked about the most favorite part of her job Sheppard explained, “It is always different. There is never a boring moment as you deal with something different every day. It can be frustrating at times, but it is always rewarding. At the end of the day you feel like you’ve accomplished something. I have met some precious people and made many wonderful friendships here.”
Sheppard is not sure yet about retirement plans, but after she does retire, she would like to travel and mostly spend more quality time with her family. “My mom lives next door,” says Sheppard. “I like that.”
As for being chosen for the June spotlight, Sheppard replied, “I feel truly honored to be recognized by my peers in this way.”
Thank you, Patty, for the fantastic job you do for the City of Jacksonville.
Photo & Story by Anita Kilgore