Floyd excited for the opportunity to lead ADRS IT department
A new face has stepped in to fill the shoes of recently retired Alabama Department of Rehabilitation Services IT Director Dave Rainey.
While her title is new, Beverly Floyd, who was previously a software development manager, is no stranger to ADRS. Floyd has been associated with the department since 1983 when her twin sisters began receiving services from Children’s Rehabilitation Service. She began her professional career with the IT department 19 years ago as an entry-level programmer.
Floyd said her experience with the department as the family member of consumers and her journey through the professional ranks provided a view from all angles of just how important her role could be.
“I grew up as a family member sitting in clinics, attending them, and being involved through that aspect,” she said. “I had a chance to see what this agency does at that level. That has given me a background that typically you would not have. Working myself up from the bottom gave me a chance to be exposed to the different divisions and an understanding of what they do and why they do it. It has been great, because it has given me a lot of insight.”
Her understanding of the importance of technology to consumers and ADRS employees keeps Floyd motivated to make sure she and her team supply staff with updated software and equipment.
“Our main goal is to provide the ADRS staff with the technology that they need so they can in turn help the clients reach their maximum potential,” she said. “If we are doing that every day, then we are doing what we are supposed to be doing.”
There are many goals moving forward, including increased security, but Floyd said the key is to make sure someone is always available to tackle any issues that arise. Cross training will be important to satisfy this need, she said.
“Our main goal in doing that is so that our staff do not see a gap in the service that we are providing to them,” she said. “That can, in turn, affect the consumer. We have already made some changes related to that to get more people involved so that we can have multiple people who have those skill sets.”
Floyd said growing through the ranks has helped to provide her with valuable experience as she has transitioned into a leadership role, with a volunteer opportunity within the last year also helping shape her approach.
Floyd led an ADRS United Way campaign in 2018 that included contributions from 277 people, an increase from 89 in 2017. The department met its goal for the first time since 2009 as well.
Floyd said her role in the United Way campaign helped shape her approach in her new role.
“I think one of the biggest things there was letting people know where we were along the way,” she said. “We were able to let them know how much money we were raising and the different entities that benefit. That definitely opened my eyes to some things I can apply on this side.”
Floyd, a resident of Opelika, serves as a pianist for her father’s church when she is not on the clock. She enjoys spending time with her family and is very involved in the community through volunteer efforts with the Citizens Police Academy and Opelika Fire Department. Her volunteer work includes spending time with children and adults with disabilities and their families.
ADRS Commissioner Jane Elizabeth Burdeshaw said is excited to see Floyd take the reins.
“Beverly understands and promotes the mission of this department, and I feel confident that she will lead this outstanding division well,” she said.
Rainey retired at the end of 2018 and plans to move to Blue Ridge, Ga. He joined the ADRS staff in 1995 just as the agency was beginning to blossom.
After traveling the world, Rainey said he was ready to find a more stable job so that he could spend more time with his family. ADRS provided a career destination.
“It was good to get in on the ground floor,” he said. “The situation was perfect.”
During his tenure, ADRS became one of the first state agencies to have an agency-wide email system, which quickly became an essential service.
Rainey said they were able to do a lot with a small workforce, including a switch to Windows and the establishment of their own wireless network. These projects and others were completed in a cost-effective manner.
“I’m really proud of what we were all able to do,” he said. “We’ve got a great computer services staff, and it keeps getting better and better.”
A major goal during his tenure was to make sure ADRS staff had the equipment and programs they needed to best serve the consumers, Rainey said.
“If there is a need and it is reasonable, we really try to go out of our way to satisfy it,” he said. “We are like HR (Human Resources) or Accounting or anybody else.”
The people of ADRS provided a wonderful work family in the IT department and beyond, Rainey said. The strong bonds he formed always motivated him to better serve their needs and never be satisfied if there were better options available.
“I always tried to do my best, and it just worked out,” he said. “I really appreciate the agency and the leadership that we have had. Good leadership sets you up for success.”