• Claire Ebersole, editor

East Says Goodbye to Jan

As everyone knows, East is a sizable school that takes many people to keep it running efficiently. Jan Gruntzel has worked at East for 22 years and many people say she basically keeps the building running. Sadly, Ms. Gruntzel’s last day is Nov. 20 as she is retiring.

“I’ve been the Administrative Assistant to the Principal the entire time,” Gruntzel said. “I first started with Katie McHenry, then Ken Thiessen and now Sara Richardson.”

Being at East for so long, Ms. Gruntzel has learned the in and outs of the building, even some secret spots that most people don’t know about.

“I didn’t realize that the Credit Union of America was started on the 3rd floor of East campus,” Gruntzel said. “There are many interesting hidey holes beyond closed doors. We have many antiques around East that many people never see because it looks like a simple door that might be used for storage.”

Being the Assistant to the Principal, Ms. Gruntzel does many daily tasks that without her doing so, class would not happen and problems would not be solved.

“I like to call myself a Logistical Coordinator,” Gruntzel said.

She looks at teachers who need substitutes, reads emails all day and when someone has a problem she finds the person who can fix it and lets them know what needs to be done. She also speaks with the engineers if teachers are having trouble with room temperatures.

Ms. Gruntzel’s favorite memory from East is helping arrange for the Secretary of Defense, Robert Gates, to give the commencement speech for a graduating class.

“I was late for an appointment one day and I said I was sorry, but I was on the telephone with the Pentagon!” Gruntzel said.

Ms. Grunztel's hard work all these years is deeply appreciated by everyone and she will be missed greatly.

“I will miss everyone who works here,” Gruntzel said. “I feel like they are my family.”


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