Choice Mindsets

Choice Mindsets

Amy Butler, Utility Clerk, Village of South Lebanon:
“When you add me to your phone contacts, just label me “Wonder Water Woman.”

Our friend Amy from South Lebanon offered to text this selfie to us, and she wanted her name in our phone’s contact list to be memorable. And we agree: when you’re a municipal utilities clerk, you really are a kind of superhero, keeping track of all of those thousands of gallons of water day in and day out.


The selfie, in case you were wondering, was taken during our annual Loveland Charity Cup event. The theme? Top Gun. The winners? Deerfield Township/MSA Design. The generosity of our clients and friends? AMAZING. At the end of the night, our clients and friends blew our goal out of any utilities clerk’s water by raising $8,210.68 for Sweet Cheeks Diaper Bank. That means Sweet Cheeks can provide about 63,160 diapers to help keep over 1,200 children in the Cincinnati area in clean, dry diapers. We think everyone can agree that those are some incredible superhero stats!


Amy, we agree you’re a “Wonder Water Woman.” Without great utility clerks, we’d guess a lot of our communities would be like ducks out of water, up a creek without a paddle, and in deep water all at once. And without watering anything down, our great clients and friends like all of you have truly helped a wonderful organization do great things. For that, thank you!

Brittany Clinehens:
“You can never have too much Caray!”

While adding a new employee to the website (side note: meet land surveyor Chris, pictured lower-right above), we accidentally doubled Choice One Controller Caray Schmiesing’s website profile. Perhaps we can fool people into thinking we now have a legit set of clones? Indeed, double or triple names are nothing new around here.

If we’re going to double anyone here, doubling Caray would be a great idea. As the company’s controller, Caray processes payroll, pays the bills, and makes sure our accounting is spot on. Yet this wouldn’t be the first attempt at doubling a Choice Oner. We have already covered how two Kayes are better than one. And we did once consider cloning Jeff Puthoff, but then realized all that would get us is a 90s mullet* and awkward clown feet.

It’s no surprise that Brittany doesn’t mind double the Caray, double the fun. Whether she’s double-checking the payroll or simply doubling her smile on our website, the more Caray the better! And now we finally understand why she needs her van jump-started TWICE every time she leaves the lights on.

*This week we started celebrating 25 years of Choice One fun! That means we can wish Jeff Puthoff a happy anniversary of cutting his mullet when Choice One was founded.

Jacqueline Huelskamp:
“Nothing like working in someone’s armpit.”

Meet Jacqueline Huelskamp, a landscape architect, hobby photographer, and our newest employee. She started less than two weeks ago, and already we’re asking her to take on a rather daunting task: edit engineer Jake Bertke’s photo for the company Christmas card. Cross your fingers that she doesn’t run screaming from Choice One because of this initial task—we’d like to keep her around!

We don’t always give newbies such challenges in their first two weeks, but we do require a few things of a new hire at Choice One. Naturally, they must look good in green. They have to learn the difference among all the Jeffs, Brians, Ryans, etc. And they have to agree to be in a Mindset, even if it’s without much real choice. (So far, so good, Jacqueline. Just don’t forget to buy doughnuts with your first paycheck.)

Jake may be our resident “water model,” but that doesn’t necessarily mean he’s simple to Photoshop. We’re sorry for the taxing task in your first days as a Choice Oner, Jacqueline, and hope that future tasks involve more plantings and greenspace and less… armpits.

Kecia Flaute:
“I feel like our lives are incomplete without these fanny packs.”

Remember the fanny pack, popular in the late 80s/early 90s? Well, we heard they’re making a comeback. And some of us at Choice One, like graphic designer Kecia, feel like we need them in our daily lives.

Think of the usefulness! Choice One engineers missing their shirt pockets could keep a pen, their phone, AND a calculator all together in one convenient place. Hungry Choice Oners could keep a steady supply of snacks literally at hand. Kaye couldn’t forget her purse if she had a Choice One fanny pack handily attached to her waist. And if Craig Eley had a fanny pack, he would have autographed headshots immediately available for adoring fans (the Ohio Transportation Engineers Conference IS just around the corner…).

Naturally, if a Choice One-branded fanny pack were to exist (and clearly it should), it would be super bright green, hopefully sparkly, and really, really cool. Because we know for sure that nothing says really cool like an engineer in a glittering, lime-colored waist bag full of spare change, signed photos, and mini-muffins.

Nick Selhorst:
“First thing in the morning I only moo at people. I’m incapable of forming words at the start of the day.”

Not all of us can be morning people. Especially not engineer Nick Selhorst. And especially, ESPECIALLY not before his first cup of coffee.

Shall we observe other first-thing-in-the-morning habits of Choice Oners? Jeff Puthoff unlocks the doors at 4:59 am. Holly Fannon opens the blinds. Brian Barhorst turns on the ambient office music (1980s hairband rock, as of this writing). Brian Goubeaux tries to fit his lunch into the refrigerator. And Kecia Flaute does anything but moo—as our resident morning person, she greets everyone with an awfully cheerful “Good morning!” BEFORE she even has caffeine!

Don’t panic, with a little coffee and “friendly” prodding, Nick wakes up, forms real words, and gets his work day started. Add a few red Starbursts and perhaps a free doughnut, and you might even get a legitimate “good morning” from him. And if you still get a “moo,” at least be glad Nick’s awake enough to have made it out of his bathrobe.


Inquiring Mindsets want to know:
“How do you decide which of your green Choice One shirts to wear each day?”

Nick Selhorst, Project Manager

“The one with the least amount of random pen marks on it and least amount of coffee stains.” Have you not been using your Sippy-saurus Rex, Nick?

Kyle Siegrist, Designer

“I simply think, ‘Which one is Matt going to wear?’ and choose any other shirt. Understandable. You don’t want to look like a nerd.

Troy Niese, Project Engineer

“All but two things in my closet are Choice One green, so I just reach in there while half asleep and pull whichever one comes out first. One of these days I might show up wearing a Detroit Lions jersey, and you’ll know that I was really tired while getting dressed.” And, Troy, you’ll owe us all lunch for not wearing green.

Kecia Flaute, Graphic Designer

“Will the office be cold or REALLY cold?” Mike G. asks himself the same thing every morning, Kecia.