Working in Clark County: Jason Hutcheson: Customer Representative

By Mary Ricks, Columbian news assistant

Published:

 

Jason Hutcheson thrives on changes to his work schedule and working long hours helping customers at Clark Public Utilities. He is happy when he can help senior citizens or people in need pay their bills using one of several assistance programs offered by the utility. "It's a great place to work," Hutcheson says. "I love this job."

Name: Jason Hutcheson, 360-992-3000.

Job/employer: Senior customer representative at Clark Public Utilities for about 14 years.

Age: 38.

Professional background: A district manager for The Columbian for about five years before he was hired in June 1999 as a customer service representative at Clark Public Utilities.

Education: Graduated from Evergreen High School in 1994 and attended Clark College for a couple of years.

Residence (community): Heights.

One word to describe yourself: Ambitious.

How you got this job: I saw an ad in the paper, sent in a résumé, had an interview and was hired.

Most rewarding part of job: I like being able to help customers pay their bills using some of the assistance systems in place through Clark Public Utilities. I like to get them the appropriate help.

Most challenging part of job: I have been on the Power Line Team at the Operations Center since 2003. That means I work three 12-hour shifts a week, which can include weekends and holidays. I also fill in for vacations and when someone is sick. My job requires I have a flexible schedule. I can get a call at any time saying I need to come to work, and I might be there for 12 hours. This typically happens when power lines are down or other situations when the power could be out. I am constantly changing schedules.

Personal/business philosophy: I want customers to get all the information they need in an efficient manner. When people call asking for help, or just asking questions, I want to have the answers for them.

Favorite moment of my job/career: It makes me feel good when I can get assistance for families or senior citizens who really need help to keep their power on.

Something you would like to do over: I started this job when I was young, but I wish I had started working here earlier. It is a great place to work.

Best feature of my community: I think the community leaders seem to be improving the downtown area. Every year there seems to be something new with different activities in the parks, such as the Brew Fest and concerts in Esther Short Park.

What would make your community a better place: My community would be better if we had more people volunteering and taking part in mentoring programs. Many volunteer activities don't require a lot of time.

Favorite restaurant: Beaches.

Hobbies: I like going to estate sales, auctions and working in my yard. Lately, I have gotten into genealogy.

Volunteer activities: I am a Lunch Buddy. It only requires one hour a week and the child thinks it is a very cool thing.

Favorite travel destination: Las Vegas and New York City.

Most interesting play/movie/arts event: I don't see many movies, but I had a free airline ticket and wanted to use it. A friend of mine is a big Philadelphia Eagles football fan, so I suggested we fly to Philadelphia in early December when they were playing the Detroit Lions. We bought ninth-row seats to the game. It snowed before the game and steadily throughout the game. Boy, it was cold, but we stayed to the very end.

One thing you want to do this year: I hope we (Clark Public Utilities) get all the bugs worked out of a new outage management tool we are working on. Customers would get calls from us, sometimes even before they knew there was a problem, telling them what is going on and how soon we expect to have it fixed.

Something you want to do within five years: I would like to learn to play a musical instrument, probably a guitar.

Person you'd most like to meet: Conan O'Brien.