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Britni Ross takes over as new Haakon School District 27-1 business manager

Britni Ross officially started the position of Haakon School District 27-1 business manager on Wednesday, August 27.

The last day for outgoing business manager, Jackie Longbrake, was Friday, September 12, and the Board of Education approved the 2008-2009 budget during their monthly meeting on Monday, September 15.

Ross did have almost three weeks of tutoring from Longbrake. Within her first full week, Ross spent three days in Sioux Falls in Accounting System Training learning the specific computer software that the Haakon district uses. The board had actually been fine-tuning the proposed budget for several months. But, Ross still felt like she was in the deep end of the pool right away.

"She's catching on very, very well," said Longbrake. "This can be an overwhelming job when you start from scratch, but Britni is very capable of handling it."

"I was planning on getting back into the business world," said Ross. "Opportunity knocked a little sooner than I was ready, but I couldn't pass it up."

Ross graduated from Kadoka High School in 1996. In 2002, she graduated from National American University with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Financial and Managerial Accounting. In January of 2003, her husband, Slade, and she moved to Philip.

"Our first son, Spencer, was less than a year old and I planned on staying home with him ... and after Taylor was born, with them," said Ross. "I think Slade is excited about the overall experience of me having this position, but my home dynamic has changed a bit since I'm not there all day. But, Spencer loves kindergarten and Taylor loves daycare. Spencer is excited to come see the office, which he has not done yet. He's excited that I work right here at his school, but after about seven years, that outlook may change."

Ross still holds her independent bookkeeping accounts which she has handled over the past few years. The accounting clientele include individuals, businesses and organizations in the Philip area. She also belongs to many community organizations. She is a council member of the Friends of the Library. She is a member of the Philip Health Services, Inc., Auxiliary. She is leading her second Financial Peace Class, this time as co-facilitator. Ross is also a Session Council Member at the United Church and is one of the Education Committee directors. She let someone else take over her responsibilities as a Release Time instructor this year after she accepted the business manager position.

Superintendent Keven Morehart said, "We're very excited about Britni being here. She's got some big shoes to fill, but she's going to do a fantastic job."

Lisa Schofield said, "As Administrative Secretary, I'm basically Britni's go-to person. We have been and will be working very close together. I think she'll do a wonderful job. She's doing great."

"It's not strictly accounting," said Longbrake. "You handle a very wide spectrum of job duties. Everyday I have told Britni to take a deep breath, relax, it'll be fine. She is catching on very well."

Ross said, "That is probably the overwhelming part, all the little stuff. I wake up the first thing in the morning and think, 'I have to ask Jackie this and that.' You never know what's going to come through the door, but I'll figure it out."

Already a professional voice answers the phone with, "Business office, this is Britni."