A time of hope
An instant connection
Sheri also made a connection with the owner, Myrna Cooks. “I have never experienced that with any employer I have ever had. Although we had never met before, it felt like I had known her all my life. She is a no-nonsense employer who is committed to excellence but who also genuinely cares for her employees.”
Cooks felt the same way about Sheri. She had been working from home one day and was watching Ellen’s show when she saw Sheri for the first time. “I just knew she would be a good fit for our organization,” she said. She went on the show’s website immediately, and wrote that she would like to talk to Sheri about an old position that had been vacated and needed to be revitalized.
They needed an employee care rep that would work with nearly 250 people, acting as a liaison between their corporate offices and management. “Within five minutes of meeting her, I knew she would click with everyone,” Cooks said. “Sheri has a firmness and a genuineness that I know the employees will relate to. And I could tell that this woman really wanted to get back to work.”
Sheri was unaware of the positive response, and was waiting to hear from IMRG when the producers of Ellen called her again. They told her they wanted to check in with her, and asked her if she would be willing to make another quick trip out to Los Angeles. Sheri wasn’t about to turn them down — especially in this wild winter weather.
Earlier this week, viewers saw a newly energized Sheri bounce up on stage to great Ellen, who had become both a friend and advocate. This time, however, Ellen meant to do more than merely check in. There was a phone call from Myrna of IMRG waiting on the line. Myrna publicly offered Sheri the job!
A dream come true
Sheri didn’t have to think twice before accepting it was the call she had been waiting for, dreaming about, hoping she would get. But there was still another surprise in the works. Ellen presented Sheri with a $10,000 gift certificate to Neiman Marcus, so she could get her professional wardrobe in shape. That was beyond anything she dared hope for.
“The store is providing me with a personal shopper, something I have never had or ever dreamed possible,” Sheri said. “I would like to get business attire with at least one great hand bag and a nice pair of shoes I would otherwise have never been able to afford.” With the gift certificate, she can now afford several.
“‘The Ellen DeGeneres Show’ changed my life, which is now headed in such a positive direction,” she said. “In the year and a half since losing my husband and the two since losing my job, I had faith something better was in store for me. I had no idea that Ellen would be that catalyst, but I am so happy I sat down in front of my computer that day and told my story. I know there are many people in similar situations and my hope is that they never give up. There is no way to predict which road life is going to lead us down; but we can control the attitude we take toward adversity and know there is another road up ahead.”
By Lisa Johnson Mandell