Once a month, for the next several months, we will introduce you to a member of The National List Team. We want you to feel as comfortable as possible working with us. Because most of our interaction is likely to take place on the phone, we think it might help you to have a mental and visual image of us. We’ll go in order of longevity. First on the list is Leslie Herr, Systems Administrator, who is just beginning her 13th year with NL.
Leslie is the youngest of 10 children. She was born and raised in a small ND town, population less than 200. Do the math. Her family comprised more than 5 percent of the town’s inhabitants! She admits that as the youngest child, she was spoiled. She attended the same school for grades K – 12, with the same 9 people in her class. “It was very small, but I enjoyed it because it gave me opportunities to be involved in everything—basketball, volleyball, track, speech, band and choir.” She obtained an Associate of Arts degree from Valley City State University. Later, she obtained her paralegal certificate from Interstate Business College.
Leslie was in the process of completing all the background checks and pre-requisites for applying for a full-time position with FEMA, when she happened upon the NL job posting. “It sounded like what I was looking for, and one of the people that interviewed me was a person I had trained with at my previous position. It seemed like a perfect fit.”
When I asked Leslie to tell me a little bit about what she does at NL, she replied, “I handle all technology for NL, both for our NL staff, our clients and attorney members, as well as customer service. The customer service aspect allows me to work with both clients and attorney members, including handling service matters, contacting members for potential new business, and discussing ways to enhance the “NL experience”. I strive to go the extra mile for our customers and clients to ensure they are happy with the services we offer.
“One of my favorite projects is coordinating our annual publication each year. I have been able to streamline our process, reduce costs, yet offer enhanced features for our users and maintain the needs of both the digital and print users. This goes hand-in-hand with my other major role of coordinating all of our websites: http://www.nationallist.com, http://www.CreditorsRightsLawFirms.com and http://www.NLAC.biz. My bosses – Jeffrey Zuck & Randy Nicola—have both given me the tools and motivation to make this a career and not just a job. They continually motivate me to work hard and live up to my potential. They embrace and support a work/life balance that is very important to me.”
Leslie has learned some things about the debt collection industry that she thinks most people don’t know. “The biggest misconception people have is that debt collection is simply about trying to get money from people who are running away from their bills. While that may be true to a certain extent, the economy has changed. More Americans now live paycheck-to-paycheck. The cost of living and of healthcare have greatly increased, while the wages of most Americans have not risen enough to meet all those changes. More and more debt is from healthcare costs or lack of healthcare, as well as from student loans – the cost of getting an education to make more money. Unfortunately, life circumstances (major illness, accidents, etc.) can make a huge impact on the debt the average person now has.”
Leslie has been married to her husband Don for about 14 years. She is mother to a 10-year-old daughter, Chantal, as well step-mother to her husband’s two adult children, Samantha and Devon. She is very excited to have two grandchildren from her stepdaughter Samantha – Jace (2yrs) and Emma (3 months).
When she’s not working, Leslie enjoys spending time with her family and friends. She loves to read and says she has “an addiction to books.” Her favorite thing about living in ND is the changing of the seasons. “Granted I am not fond of below-zero weather, but the grass and leaves changing color is very beautiful. I used to tell Jeff and Randy that I wanted to go to Hawaii someday. Now I am pushing for Bora Bora–much farther from the below-zero temps. I really enjoy smaller-town living where you don’t feel like just another body. You see people you know, traffic is less stressful, and yet there are still many opportunities for things to do. I view my position at NL as a career, and I truly see myself retiring from NL later in life—or as soon as I win the lottery!
By Leslie Herr, Systems Administrator, and Marti Lythgoe, Editor