Welcome to the CAS Staff Spotlight, a column featuring members of the CAS staff. For this spotlight, we are proud to introduce you to Ashley Givens.
- What do you do at the CAS?
I am one of the Administrative and Customer Support (ACS) representatives here at the CAS. I am most likely one of the first people that members and candidates will talk to when they contact us. First impressions are important, so I want to make sure that people know they are in good hands and that the CAS has their best interests at heart. ACS supports not only candidates and members — we support the entire staff with whatever they need.
- What inspires you in your job, and what do you most love about it?
The people I work with — the CAS is the best work environment I have ever had. When I first started, everyone on the team was super helpful and patient with me. There are endless possibilities with the training offered that gives my position more depth and allows me to gain more skills in my position. You should be fully comfortable in the position you are in and the organization that you work for. I love that our team gets together monthly for social events, giving us the opportunity to catch up on what is going on with each other and share stories of our families and important life events. I look forward for this culture to continue and cannot wait to see what the years bring.
- Describe your educational and professional background. What do you bring to the organization?
I have been working since I was 14 years old, starting my first job as a camp counselor. After high school, my career path led me to full-time positions at a law firm, a travel agency and Maryland’s Prince Georges County. Customer service was the first skill that I ever learned, and I believe it is a very important one. You learn to have patience with others and empathize with different situations whether they be good or bad. I feel that I bring a kind of positivity to the CAS that is unbiased and accepting. I’m grateful that as a child, I was able to meet and interact with people of all different backgrounds and walks of life. This taught me to accept people for who they are. I always want to treat people how I would want to be treated. That is one of my life’s mottos.
- What is your favorite hobby?
I love to spend time with my friends and family. I also like to bake and make resin art. It is therapy for me.
- What would your colleagues find surprising about you?
I am proud to say that my grandmother, Nannie Mae Hawkins, has her name in gold as a memorial to her at the National Harbor in the Oxon Hill/Fort Washington, Maryland. This makes her the first and only African American to be honored at National Harbor. She came up with the idea for developing the National Harbor and worked with Prince Georges County council members and the landowner, Milt Peterson. National Harbor is home to the MGM Hotel and Casino, the Capital Wheel, Gaylord Resort and other fine establishments. I am proud to be a part of that legacy.
Also, CAS Graphic Designer Sonja Uyenco and I graduated together from Oxon Hill High.
- How would your friends and family describe you?
They would describe me as a crazy ball of loving energy who is always honest, takes her relationships very seriously and who absolutely loves love! I want everyone to be happy and know that they are important, and they matter. My friends and family know I will always have their backs and treat them with respect.