Q&A with Debbie Clark

Feature editor Francis Salazar sat down with Allen High School employee Debbie Clark to ask about her life as a security guard in Allen

Francis Salazar, Feature editor

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How do you come in every day with such a happy attitude?

“Well first of all, I’ve been in education over 20 something years, so I was a school teacher school counselor and I have a passion for education and students. I do have two other jobs besides this, I do criminal justice, I’m an investigator and I’m a security officer on weekends. I work for an investigation company. I have two degrees, two bachelor’s degrees in criminal education and to start off to work in Allen that has to be a security position because I’ve been out of school districts for four years, but I’ve been doing criminal stuff. I have a passion, [I’m]energized, I love people, I’m a people person. I love students, I love everybody and the key to education is whatever it takes to keep [students] to get to school here, that’s what I’m willing to do.”

What exactly is your job?

“I’m a security officer; I protect and I serve, meaning I [greet] the parents, greeting the community, helping the community, safety for children, safety for staff and serving the community. Protect and serve, answer all calls, work the front door, answer radios, stop fights. We do everything, anything that a security officer can do to protect and serve.”  

What did you do before Allen?

“Once again before coming here I worked for ICE, or for Homeland security as a background investigator, and I was a contractor but my contracted ended. I was off work for about four months. I was ready to come back just because. I came back into school districts, I can do anything but I came back to school districts.”

Do you travel a lot? Where’s the most beautiful place you’ve been?

“A lot, I love it. Belize was my last place, then my next place going to be Greece. I’m going to take a cruise. I’ve been to Russia, I’m married to an Italian, so I travel a lot, when I get the time.”

Why do you think it’s important to have a happy attitude?

“In order to have a happy attitude, you want someone to respect who you are. I just won employee of the month here. I went to the board meeting on Wednesday. I don’t like to be around negative people, I’m a positive person, so if you want to be  positive all the time, so people can look at you and respect who you are, for me to only be here for five months and you have people here for years, I won employee of the month for the whole entire school district, and at Allen high school. Being happy is, I’m a happy camper, I’m a happy person. I don’t like anything negative around me, I don’t like gossip, I don’t like being stressed out, I’ve been there, done that. I’m going to be 50 years old, March 8th I’ll be 50. I’m just a happy camper, no matter what. I love people, I love myself, I love my life. I’m just happy.”

What have you learned from doing this job?

“I can’t say I’ve learned anything new because I’ve been in education, but what I’ve learned is the difference with the kids is the behavior.I’ve learned a lot in that area, different set of students.”

Did you know you went viral on Twitter and Instagram? How did that make you feel?

“I didn’t even know that I went viral until the kids told me the next day because I don’t do social media. I was all over the [internet], less than one hour, over a million views. Even the parents at the games said, “Oh, you’re famous!” Not yet. Not yet. I don’t consider myself as famous, I consider myself as a tool, because some of the kids said ‘Where was she last year? I would’ve loved to come to school.’ Some of these kids look forward to coming in this door every morning to shake my hand, to start their day. They’ll be in very bad mood and that’s not me at all. I’m a happy person. I have my days too, but I try not to let show it.”






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