Two Time Winner of Presidential Meritorious Award

Nicole Greeson honored for improving workplace health and safety 

Nicole Greeson has had the honor of being a Presidential Meritorious Service Award winner twice. Photo courtesy of Nicole Greeson.
Nicole Greeson has had the honor of being a Presidential Meritorious Service Award winner twice. Photo courtesy of Nicole Greeson.

Name: Nicole Greeson

Position: Safety and health specialist in Duke's Occupational and Environmental Safety Office

Years at Duke: 9

How I got my job at Duke: My husband and I were living in Texas when he was offered a job in Greensboro. I went to a professional conference, and Duke was posting a job for exactly what I like to do. It was too coincidental to pass up. I interviewed during the conference and was eventually asked to come back for a second interview here at Duke.

What I do at Duke: In a nutshell, my job is to protect worker health and ensure a safe environment for faculty, staff, students, patients and visitors. We monitor a lot of areas for potential hazards such as noise levels, heat stress, air quality and chemical exposure. When someone reports an injury through workers' compensation, we review and investigate if appropriate to see if there is something we can do to prevent a similar injury.

To start a conversation with me, someone should ask about: My kids. I have 4-year-old twins, Michael and Mia, and a 6-year-old daughter, Brooke.

When I'm not at work I like to: Spend time with the kids. All three do basketball and also soccer. And Mia does ballet as well.

What I love about Duke: The campus. I get a lot of exercise walking on the job. My office is on Elba Street, and it is a 30-minute walk over to Finch Yeager on the other side of campus. But the campus is so pretty to walk around and with construction and the changing seasons, it changes from week to week.

A book I recently read: I don't normally read history, but I recently finished "The Last Romanov" by Dora Levy Mossanen. I learned a lot about Russian history.

A memorable day for me at work: I have received the Presidential Meritorious Award twice, in 2006 and in 2011. Both times, I got to meet President Brodhead. I've shaken his hand twice. It was an honor to receive the award the first time, and even more memorable the second time.

Something most people don't know about me: I started running in July 2012. I signed up for a 5K in Beaufort with my husband, who has been running for a couple of years. I figured I'd walk most of the way, but I ran most of it.

The best advice I have received: Never assume. There are communications issues in every relationship, whether it is with a person you know well or not. When you make assumptions, you can be interpreting very wrongly. It's better to ask for clarification.

My first ever job: I was a counter person in a mom and pop ice cream and frozen yogurt shop in Mt. Laurel, New Jersey.

My dream job: I love this profession and what I do now. Duke is such a diverse place with so many different things going on that we never end up doing the same thing every day.