Sheri Shoemaker isn’t quite sure what her title is. But come this weekend, it will have the word “retired” attached to it.
Shoemaker, who has served as a secretary and assistant in the Yukon Parks and Recreation Department for the past 18 years, is stepping down to spend more time with her two adult sons and four grandchildren, as well has her husband, O.V., who also recently retired.
“I have four grandkids. They are growing up fast and I want to spend more time with them,” she said during a recent interview. “I’m lucky, they all live close.”
She and O.V. also plan to do a little traveling and possibly some volunteer work.
The couple already do some volunteer work, helping with Mobile Meals and other programs.
“We do a little bit of everything,” she said.
Over the years, Yukon’s parks and recreation department has seen substantial growth. Much of that growth has come at the hands of Director Jan Scott and Shoemaker, who have been friends for more than two decades.
The two worked together in the Edmond School District before joining the city.
Shoemaker said she’s going to miss interacting with the residents of Yukon, as well as the dozens of events that the department hosts each year.
“We have a lot of events, maybe more than any other city in Oklahoma,” she said.
Among those events are the Festival of the Child, Taste of Yukon, Freedom Fest and Christmas in the Park.
All draw hundreds and thousands of visitors to Yukon.
And while she will miss the events, it’s her co-workers she said she will miss the most.
“I love the people I work with,” Shoemaker said. “The city is a really good place to work. I feel that (city manager) Mr. (Jim) Crosby, (assistant city manager) Tammy (Kretchmar), they not only care about the citizens, they really take care of the employees. They are really fair and treat them well.”
And while she said will miss the work, Shoemaker said she is looking forward to her future.
“I don’t think it has hit me. It’s going to be a big, big change,” she said.
But she also knows there will be opportunities to stay busy.
“I’m going to miss the friends I’ve made here,” Shoemaker said.
Scott said it will different when Shoemaker is no longer sitting at her desk.
“It will be different because we worked together at Santa Fe High School and our boys went to school together. It’s not just someone you work with. It’s someone you are friends with,” Scott said. “It will be very difficult.”
Scott said when Shoemaker joined the staff, the facilities were limited. Only the community center was in place. Then came the Jackie Cooper Gym in 1999, followed a few years later by the Dale Robertson Center.
“We’ve all kind of grown up in the job, so we’ve kind of made our own polices as we’ve gone along,” she said.
Scott said that while Shoemaker’s official title is secretary, she is much more than that.
“She’s been a part of it. She’s done dual duty —doing office management and recreation. … Sheri likes doing the events. She’s a people person,” Scott said.