What do you do?
Chris Donahue

Where do you work and what is your title?
       I drive a school bus for District 11. I also own a small tree-maintenance company called Steller Tree Care, which is named after the mountain blue jay that lives near here.
What do you do there and/or what are you responsible for?
       As a bus driver, Iím responsible for providing my students with a safe, comfortable trip between home and school. With my tree company, I handle just about everything from accounting and advertising to the actual work of pruning and removing trees.
How long have you been doing this kind of work (total)? How long on the Westside?
       This is my third year as a bus driver and owning my own business. Iíve had bus routes on the Westside the last two years Ė this year an after-school activity route to Midland Elementary and last year routes to West Elementary, West Middle and Coronado High. Iíve worked in urban forestry in Colorado for more than 20 years and I spend a lot of my time working on the Westside.
What do you like best about it (other than quitting time)?
       I like how each day is an opportunity to have a positive impact on the students Iím responsible for. Iím a tree-hugger, and I love working outdoors, but I think itís meeting all the different, friendly people that I like best about my second job.
If you could change one thing (other than pay), what would it be?
       Itís fun to work in two different fields, but once in a while I wish I had larger blocks of time to spend on one or the other.
What part of your work did your training/education never prepare you for?
       Thereís good training at D-11 but I had never worked with children before, so I wasnít really sure what it would be like or how Iíd do. Itís been a satisfying challenge Ė I think my students have helped me grow as a person at least as much as Iíve helped them with their school day. I actually fell into the field of forestry when I decided to work outside for a while. So I began learning on the job and attending workshops. With continuing education, experience, and good groups of co-workers over the years, itís become a nice, satisfying career.
What makes working on the Westside special?
       Thereís a lot of creativity that people have on the Westside with their homes and landscaping. Going about my tree work, Iím able to see a lot of attractive results from those efforts.

ďWhat do you do?Ē is a regular feature in the Westside Pioneer. If you know someone who has an interesting job on the Westside (but doesnít live here), he/she might be a candidate for this column! If you know someone who might qualify, give us a call at 471-6776.