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Gene Bradley Named the 2020 Employee of the Year

As staff members gathered, socially distanced, in the central activities area of Shriners Hospitals for Children — Salt Lake City, excitement was in the air. As voted on by staff members from the pool of 12 Employees of the Month from the year, the Employee of the Year was about to be announced.

After Chief of Staff Kristen L. Carroll, M.D., announced the winner of the Blake A. Carroll scholarship, the moment had arrived. Gene Bradley, maintenance engineer, was announced as the 2020 Employee of the Year. As employees clapped and cheered, the humble Gene, who had just joined the group moments before, stood smiling under his mask, shaking his head with folded arms at the back of the room. But he was soon prodded to join Hospital Administrator <ahref="https:>Kevin Martin and Human Resources Director Beverly Valletta at the front of the room.</ahref="https:>

Kevin joked that part of the reason he was Employee of the Year was the reason he was late to the assembly. Gene had just returned from a visit to his doctor. “He literally sacrificed his body this year for this job,” said Kevin. “He just returned from a doctor’s appointment after having recovered from fracturing his arm from working down in the boiler room. In addition, earlier this year, he lacerated his leg trying to redo some of the brick pavers outside. He just doesn’t stop.”

Beverly added, “Always with a smile on his face!”

Before starting at Shriners Hospitals for Children over two years ago, Gene had worked in landscape and construction since age 15. Additionally, he has had his own handyman company for almost seven years.

As part of the engineering team, Greg spends his days working both outside and inside of the hospital. He cares for the hospital grounds and building while mowing, edging and trimming the lawn; blowing off the hard surfaces; trimming bushes and trees; and performing sprinkler maintenance and repair. He also oversees the big job of snow removal and ice melt in the winter. He ensures the grounds are kept garbage-free, and oversees and helps with any outside projects.

Among the engineering team is Gene’s friend Tyler, the plumber on the team, who he has known since he was 3 years old. Now the two work side by side as Gene helps Tyler with many of his duties including boiler valves, leaking pipes, faucets, toilets and hospital emergency drills. He also helps with electrical, HVAC, building maintenance and office remodeling. “I basically help any one of these great guys with whatever they need help with and in turn they are there if I need help,” said Gene.

Gene loves working at Shriners Hospitals for Children. For the most part, he is met with a friendly reception and can tell staff members are happy about the work they are engaged in. “I have never worked at a place with so many people who do amazing work,” said Gene.

Reflecting on the other 11 nominees for Employee of the Year, Gene is shocked that he was the winner. “I was in the running with some great people who, in my opinion, deserve it more than me,” said Gene. “It means a great deal to me knowing that I was recognized by so many for my hard work and efforts to help out.”

Greg Rushforth, engineering director, appreciates that Gene is an incredibly hard worker and is willing to help everybody and anybody. “He always wants to help in everything we do!” Greg cited the Shriners Hospitals for Children core values of teamwork and respect are embodied by Gene. “Whether he’s helping our team or anyone else in the hospital, every request is met with the same amount of enthusiasm.”

“Helping who, where and how I can is just what I do,” said Gene. “We all work hard and strive to achieve the mission here at Shriners Hospitals for Children. I love working here, so if Shriners Hospitals will have me, I am looking forward to working here for many, many more years.”

Gene’s proudest accomplishments are that he has been with his wife, Vanessa, for 34 years, and their three children, Dakota, Trevar and Madayson.

Gene with two other staff members

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