With limited time to prepare, the City of Fontana's Information Technology Service Desk Team was tasked with determining how more than 200 city employees were going to work remotely due to the State of California's stay at home executive order.
The team of six made it happen, all the while continuing to provide technical assistance to more than 1,000 employees.
The Service Desk Team is comprised of Kurt Wagner, Jeffrey Saludares, D.J. Johnson, Dylan Mansfield, and Marcus Valdivia, all led by the exceptional IT support supervisor.
Without missing a beat, this team worked quickly to pull and distribute resources to ensure staff members could do their jobs effectively and efficiently without being in the office to continue serving the public.
"I know it's their 'job' to be helpful; however, during these crazy times, they have done everything in their power to ensure we, as a staff, can be successful and continue our daily duties," said a coworker.
The team members have been selected as the City of Fontana Employee Spotlight recipients for the month of April based on nominations from their peers.
• Kurt Wagner has been with the City of Fontana for 13 years and will be celebrating his 40-year anniversary in the IT field this September. As senior technician, Wagner oversees the maintenance and repairs for the city and library phone systems and phones. He also provides IT support for all city staff and vehicles. The best aspect of his job is "the smile or gratitude from a user after I get an application or hardware issue resolved for them so they can get back to work," he said. On a normal day outside of work, he spends his free time outdoors, traveling, completing home maintenance projects, and going to the movies.
• IT Technician Jeffrey Saludares has also been with the city for 13 years. As a technician, Saludares is responsible for providing installation and maintenance of the city’s computer hardware, software, and telecommunications systems. "It's rewarding to solve an issue and see your colleagues continue with their day," he said. Before COVID-19, you could find him spending time with his family, hiking, out at the beach, or at Disneyland. During his free time now, he's still spending time with his family, as well as shopping on Amazon and watching Netflix, Hulu and Disney+.
• D.J. Johnson spent four years with Fontana's Community Services Department before switching gears to spend another four years now with the Information Technology Department. As the desktop systems specialist, Johnson is responsible for keeping the city's computers up-to-date and secure. He assists staff with their technology needs and ensures they are comfortable using that technology. "I enjoy trying out new technology in hopes that others will find it as useful," he said. As a foodie enthusiast, he enjoys traveling near and far to try out new restaurants.
• Dylan Mansfield has been an intern with the IT Department for 10 months. In his role, he assists with setup and installation of a variety of equipment, as well as helping with any technology issues that arise. He said his favorite part of his internship is "getting to experience new technologies with coworkers who also enjoy upcoming technology." For fun, he plays PC games and enjoys watching movies.
• Marcus Valdivia has also been an IT intern for 10 months. Valdivia is responsible for administering and monitoring hardware for staff throughout the city. He also helps with updating technology and other applications. "I really enjoy being able to provide solutions to any technical issues someone may come across, as seeing them excited to be able to work again brightens my day," he said. In his free time, he is playing games, trying new food, and learning the latest on software-related topics.
Through their efforts, the City of Fontana has been able move vital meetings to the virtual realm, including the meetings of City Council, Planning Commission, and Parks, Recreation and Human Services Commission. From creating extra conferencing accounts to setting up a remote access connection that didn't exist for employees previously, the Service Desk Team has met and exceeded every challenge that has come its way.
In a time of crisis, the City of Fontana is determined to continue serving and meeting the needs of the residents and business community. This would not be possible without the technological support, dedication, and utmost care of the Information Technology Department Service Desk Team.