CONNIE R. GARD

Connie GardNot wanting to live at home anymore, Connie R. Gard was recruited into the U.S. Navy in 1954, which allowed her to teach computers at a junior college in Santa Rosa, California, where students would come up to her and say that she got them interested in computers. After serving three years, she became the office manager of Anchorage Drug Supply in Alaska from 1963 to 1967. She then served as the assistant operations manager at Sonoma County Data Processing from 1969 to 1995. During this time, she consulted for Chips & Bits Micros in Santa Rosa from 1984 to 2001. When Ms. Gard was working for the county, she didn’t realize it at the time, but she was really fighting for women. She went into the computer services as a key punch operator, which were all women and there were no women in any management position. She got promoted very quickly out of there into the control section, and wanted to be a computer operator, but there were no women there. She fought and eventually got it. From there, she became a working supervisor in the computer room, and later was promoted to the assistant manager of all computer services.

Currently, Ms. Gard is the property manager of Rancho Cabeza Mobile Home Park since 2001, managing 150 mobile home spaces with residents aged 55 and up. In this role, she is on-call 24/7. If things are happening, she needs to get security and the police, if necessary. If people are sick and need help, she has to get it for them. They have a pool that she has to tend to, and makes sure everyone is swimming safely. They also have a meeting once a month, and they ask that everyone look after each other. In addition to this tenure, Ms. Gard was the president of the Wine Country chapter of the Western Manufacturer Association (WMA) from 2004 to 2018. Attending WMA classes for learning how to take care of parks, she goes every year and goes to other parks to hear what they do to keep up. They also have a clubhouse where people can have parties.

Prior to the start of her professional career, Ms. Gard pursued a formal education at Santa Rosa Junior College, studying accounting and business management at the school from 1958 to 1960. She then attended Greenes Business College, earning a degree in 1966. From there, she went on to matriculate at the System Science Institute in Los Angeles, where she attained an additional degree in 1980. Additionally, Ms. Gard is a certified property manager as of 2016.

Outside of her primary trade, Ms. Gard maintains involvement with numerous organizations related to her field. She served as treasurer of the Data Processing Management Association from 1981 to 1983. Likewise, she was active with the National Association of Female Executives and the American Management Association.

Moving forward, Ms. Gard hopes to participate in volunteer work. She wants to keep working to have the extra money, as well as to support the homeless and animals. Ms. Gard advises other women in her profession to care about each other as women and support each other. She had a couple of women that she really admired; one was a county supervisor and the other was a judge. One thing she really enjoys about women is they will share with each other. Men have it easier, so women have to stay together and help each other get further.

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