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Where I Came In

The new guy reflects on a historic change made after only three days on the job.

By Tim Woodruff, Web Designer

Posted Oct. 18, 2017

When you think of the field of agriculture, you probably don't immediately think of web design. Neither did I. As a designer from Georgia, I had no idea my skill set could promote the big picture of solving great agricultural challenges.

It all started with a simple online job listing, which led to a phone interview with the communications managers at what was then called the Noble Foundation. Just a few days later, I was on a plane headed to Ardmore, Oklahoma, by way of Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport.

From the moment my plane landed, I noticed the friendly professionalism that we refer to here as the Noble Experience. The entire process impressed me greatly: from the driver who took me to Ardmore and bought my dinner to the resident manager who showed me to my hotel room at Noble's Conference Center to the interview the next day where I met so many great people.

I had prayed God would show me if this was the right place to work. In return, I had the most comfortable interview experience of my life. I went home eagerly wanting to work at Noble, and I'm thankful they chose me.

The first day was exciting. I was able to meet so many kind people. The friendliness I first experienced in my interview proved to be genuine and real. Getting to work with great people who perform their craft well is one of the best experiences in the world.

As I went through orientation the first two days, I realized the communications team was preparing for something big. Phrases were mentioned that caught my ear. Announcement. ARO. Name change. I could tell something exciting was about to happen.

The mystery and excitement was unraveled at the all employee meeting on my third day of work: the Noble Foundation was about to become the Noble Research Institute.

I, as a brand-new employee, experienced the history of this moment in a way that few others have. I watched as our president paid tribute to the Noble Foundation's rich legacy and spoke of the changes in the future. As the Leadership Team explained what this transition would mean for us, I saw the employees enthusiastically rally behind them in support of this new endeavor. Being an agricultural research organization (ARO) will mean we can more effectively accomplish the goal set by Lloyd Noble over 70 years ago: to better mankind.

While I don't have much experience with where Noble has been, I've been thoroughly impressed with what we have accomplished, and I'm excited to see where we will go.

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