John Skvarla, secretary of the N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resource, responded to a former water quality employee who sent him a "Dear John" email when she took early retirement.
To recap, Susan Wilson told Skvarla she couldn't work at DENR anymore, and attached at "Take this job and shove it" YouTube video to her email.
"Between your inappropriate mission statement, the dismantling of the Division of Water Quality, and HB74 (along with a few other gems from this session's NCGA), I see no reason to continue here - because my own mission - to assist all citizens and protect those that don't have a voice, would be compromised," she wrote in part.
In his reply, Skvarla said maybe it's a good thing she left.
If you truly believe that distrusting our fellow citizens made you a good regulator, I think it quite appropriate we part ways.
I find that most people want to do the right thing if given the time and resources to do so. That goes for the regulated community and our employees. When I started at DENR I wondered how hard building a culture of customer service would be. The more I met our employees and learned about their expertise and passion for their work, the more I realized that most want to be helpful but weren't being recognized, rewarded, or in many instances allowed to be consumer centric.
We have made great progress in a short amount of time because the vast majority of DENR employees have embraced the customer service attitude that is crucial to our success. We have seen the signs of progress by the many comments from customers and from your former co-workers taking the time to show interest in what customers are doing and respecting their experience and expertise. Rest assured that treating our customers with respect - respecting their time, their passions, the resources that have put into their projects - is no smokescreen. It is the grease that turns the twin gears of protecting the environment and growing the economy. It is the right way to run any organization and the right way to live one's life.
But this philosophy and approach is not for everyone. I wish you luck in your retirement - or you new endeavors.