The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) is over $12 billion in debt. That is known. People have heard about possibilities of rural post office closures and consolidations, as well as first class mail taking one day longer for delivery.
But, this time of year, walking into the post office with a box full of presents and home-baked goods, all that people experienced was a crowd of people and a long wait.
According to a USPS press release, 16.5 billion letters and packages are expected to be delivered between Thanksgiving Day and New Year’s Eve, making this season by far the busiest time of year for any post office.
In this holiday hustle and bustle, a brave woman stepped up to take the role of post master at the Pagosa Springs Post Office.
Deeanna Keller, without hesitating, took the position, and according to the Pagosa Springs Post Office employees, she stepped into the role with grace. Living in a hotel, recently arrived back to her former home town, trying get settled in, receiving a promotion, Keller admits that “it’s been a little bit hectic.”
Her employees, though, say she’s handled it well.
“During this time of season when it could be really hectic, she has hung in there as part of the team,” says longtime employee Angel Gonzalez.
“She’s increased morale in the office two-hundred percent,” Gonzalez continued, adding that, in his opinion, employee efficiency and customer satisfaction both have also increased.
“Pagosa Springs should be really very happy to have her,” said Gonzalez.
Keller started her career with the Postal Service in 1993 working as a clerk in Ignacio. After nine months, she was transferred to Pagosa, where she continued to work as a clerk.
“I started pursuing management positions,” Keller said. Her first was as officer-in-charge (OIC) in Chromo. From there she went to Sheridan Lake and kept on working her way through management. Every step, every position, Keller said was one full of learning.
Her first postmaster position was in Victor, near Cripple Creek.
“I learned a lot about the mining community there,” Keller said, adding that she also learned how to manage a post office.
For the last four years, Kelly was working as a postmaster in Rocky Ford. In October, she came back home to Pagosa, and was OIC at the post office. When the postmaster position was offered, she applied. On Dec. 17, she became the official, new postmaster of the Pagosa Springs post office.
“I’m excited about being back home to work,” Keller said.