The Civil Service Council will feature a civil service employee at Illinois State University each month to highlight an exceptional colleague and the outstanding work being done on campus! This month get a chance to learn about and applaud Sonny Garcia of Building Services.

What is your position on campus and how long have you been with the University?
I am a building service worker (BSW) foreman, a position that I have held since 2007 and I have been on the 11 p.m.-7 a.m. shift since 2010. I have been employed at Illinois State University since February 1993, so I have worked at the University for 28 years.  

What do you find most rewarding about your work?
The most rewarding aspect of my work is seeing the dedication and pride that my crew takes in their work. Especially since the pandemic hit and we were deemed essential workers, our crew has stepped up and made sure that the campus is safe and clean for all our customers.    

What are your hobbies or favorite pastime?
I like to read, write, meditate, exercise, and spend time with my two adult daughters. I am also very active in the community and volunteer. I have worked part-time for several social justice organizations on the local, state, and federal level.

What else would you like others to know about you or your time at ISU?
I would like to let the University staff, faculty, and student population know how great it is to be a part of the Illinois State University family. It is because of my employment at ISU that I have been able to pursue my passions, raise a family, and get my bachelor’s degree.

If you would like to share with us, please tell us how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected your work at ISU?
The pandemic has highlighted the importance of the work that our crew is responsible for. We have always known that our work is vital to the success of the University, but the pandemic has shone a light on how essential and vital our work is to the safety, health, and well-being of everyone who visits our beautiful campus.

More about Sonny from Michael Conner, Building Services Supervisor:
I have been Sonny’s direct supervisor for a little over two years and in that time I have learned to rely on him to provide our third shift employees with the supplies, equipment, and guidance needed to provide the services our customers across campus rely on each day. Sonny has been a stable fixture on the night shift for well over 10 years. He has a long association with the University, even beyond his duties as a building services foreman, as he is an ISU alum and his mother worked many years as a BSW prior to her retirement.

Sonny does a good job of communicating issues and needs that come up in the facilities he supervises, which includes the Bone Student Center, both dining centers on campus, the Kaufman Football Building, and the Student Fitness Center/McCormick Hall. With Sonny’s many years of experience as a building services foreman, if a situation comes up that he doesn’t already know the answer to, he certainly knows how and where to find the answer, and then works to resolve the problem. Sonny is a valuable part of the Campus Services team!