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New Employment Security Commission manager at Mount Airy

September 10th, 2007 · No Comments

The N.C. Employment Security Commission’s new Surry County office manager is Bobbi Wessling, a 16-year ESC employee who previously was assistant manager of the office in Forsyth County.

Wessling succeeded Wanda Cooper, who retired after more than 30 years with the ESC.

A native of the Atlantic City, N.J., area, Wessling received bachelor’s and master’s degrees in vocational education from Rutgers University. She was a teacher for three years in New Jersey and for another three years in Oregon. Wessling left teaching to join Eastern Airlines, where she remained for 10 years, including five in the Training and Development Department, and lived in several cities including Boston and Miami.

Her husband also worked for Eastern until it closed. He joined Piedmont Airlines and they moved to the Winston-Salem area. She joined the Employment Security Commission a consultant in its Lexington office.

Wessling said the ESC offers more than just assistance with unemployment claims and new job information. It also provides information about other community agencies that can help unemployed people. In addition, she told The Mount Airy News, education is a big part of the ESC’s services, because many people who have not had to look for work for decades are having to learn the realities of the “new economy.”

“Losing a job can be just like losing a family member,” Wessling told the newspaper. “Layoff victims must go through a grieving process similar to that from a death, and the ESC is there to aid them in getting through it. We’re trying to help them know there is a light at the end of the tunnel, to keep them energized and keep them going.”

The ESC also helps local economic-development officials by providing labor and market information and other services that may help draw other companies to Surry County.

Wessling says what has happened with the large industrial employers in Mount Airy is similar to what she witnessed with the furniture industry in Davidson County. In both counties, and across North Carolina, manufacturers closed local industrial plants and moved production overseas or turned to foreign suppliers.

“One of the biggest issues right now in the country is replacement wages,” Wessling told The News. Also, she said, more workers may have to commute outside the county to for jobs.

Wessling oversees five full-time and two part-time employees at Surry County’s ESC office, 541 W. Pine St. in Mount Airy, and also two full-time employees at a branch office in Yadkin County. The local telephone number is (336) 786-4169.

Tags: Businesses · Economic development · Workforce

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