EDMOND — Nancy Nichols has worked for the past 40 years and is ready to retire after 28 years with the city of Edmond.
“I have never, not worked,” said Nichols, Edmond's city clerk and director of governmental relations. “I don't know what it will be like.”
Nichols has been a lobbyist for the city since 1994. She plans to contract with the city four months a year so she can continue lobbying after she retires Dec. 21.
Nichols first worked temporarily for the city as a Kelly Girl after the oil bust in the 1980s. She was hired full time in 1984 as deputy city clerk. She was promoted to city clerk in 1994 and took on the duties of director of government relations the following year.
Nichols' list of accomplishments at the city is lengthy.
She initiated the customer service training program for the city.
“We were not treating our customers as we should,” Nichols said.
The city clerk also headed a group of 100 residents who prioritized 18 projects the city should accomplish with the 1/8-cent sales tax passed in 1996. Five years later, voters made the capital improvement sales tax permanent.
“That really showed that they trusted us,” Nichols said. “We did what we said we would do.”
She was the first city employee to have a desktop computer. Nichols had oversight on the project when the city became self-insured in 1990 and started the wellness program that exists today.
Nichols led the way in the city's fight to get Congress to forgive a $10 million debt the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers claimed Edmond owed on water payments at Arcadia Lake.
One of her last goals was to get the city's cemetery records online. That has been accomplished, so she decided it is time to retire.
Nichols plans to travel and spend more time with her family.
“My love for public service and for my city will always lead me back to doing whatever I can to help keep Edmond the wonderful, progressive city it is today,” she said.