TC at Work: Lois Osborne-Logan | Teachers College Columbia University

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TC at Work: Lois Osborne-Logan

Locking doors, opening hearts
Who She Is
Lois Osborne-Logan is a public safety officer at TC. Her duties include controlling access to the campus at public safety posts, supervising special events and providing general information for visitors and members of the College community.

Logan, as she prefers to be called, is also known as “the flower lady.” Every week, she brings in one dozen of the two dozen roses she regularly receives from her boyfriend to share their vibrancy and color with the TC community. “They’re not my roses,” she says. “They’re our roses.”

Road to TC
A native of Danville, Virginia, Logan moved to New York City in the early 1960’s and has been here ever since, drawn to the lively hum of city living. After a stint in a trucking company, Logan worked in management for many years at the Association of National Advertisers (ANA) travelling all over the country. “I lived out of a suitcase,” she says. “And I loved it. I don’t think there’s a single CEO I haven’t met.” After her husband died, she left the ANA and took four years off. When she decided it was time to get back to work, she didn’t know where to begin. Her twin brother had worked at TC before he’d passed away from cancer. His best friend, Wavely Cannady, also a longtime TC employee, suggested Logan look into a security position at the College. She replied, “But I don’t know anything about security.” To which Cannady responded, “You’ve locked doors, haven’t you?” Thirteen years later, Logan has made a point of touching every single doorknob on campus.

Best Part of the Job
For Logan, who spent the first eight and a half years of her tenure working the night shift, the best part of her job is the constant interaction it affords her with the TC community, including staff, students, faculty and visitors. A self-described “people person,” Logan can strike up a conversation with anyone; she especially loves meeting people of different nationalities, not to mention ages. On Halloween, since she was stationed in the safety booth on 120th Street, she wore a witch’s hat and goofy glasses, a costume she knew the preschoolers of Hollingworth would appreciate. “That’s one of my favorite spots,” she says of the booth, “because I get to see those kids. So cute.”

Logan is fond of her coworkers, who affectionately call her “country,” thanks to her Southern roots and her tendency to use “y’all,” a term of familiarity, with them. She’s even been related to one of her colleagues. Osborne, one of her three children, whom she calls “the love of her life,” currently works in TC’s Paint Department. Although they don’t chat often at work, they’ll occasionally pass by one another in the hall, and Osborne will wave, “Hello, Miss Logan!”

In Her Spare Time
Never one to get bored, Logan is an avid patron of the arts, frequently attending live theatrical performances. Recently, she saw “In the Heights” and “The Lion King.” In December, she has tickets to a performance of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. But her true passion, she says, is listening to music: “Jazz, R&B, pop—you name it, I’ll play it.” Some of her favorite artists include Aretha Franklin, Jennifer Hudson and Whitney Houston (particularly her earlier music). As well, Logan has always been “a fanatic” for Michael Jackson’s music; this past June, when news of his untimely death broke, Logan and her boyfriend went down to 125th Street in the rain, to join the crowds of people dancing and celebrating his music and life.

Did You Know?
A resident of Jamaica, Queens, Logan plans to retire in April 2010. That will leave, no doubt, a huge void in the TC community, which will miss her warm smile and big spirit. Although she plans to visit TC on occasion, Logan is already busy scheduling her retirement with all the things that bring her joy. She’ll continue her exercise regimen, which includes running around the track, jumping on a trampoline and doing three sets of sprints on the stairs at 120th Street. A seasoned traveler, she’s looking forward to visiting California, Louisiana and Delaware, as well as Las Vegas and Atlantic City. When she’s home, she’ll take advantage of all that New York City has to offer, including heading to the beach at the Rockaways on temperate days. “There is always something to do in New York,” she says, “even if it’s bird watching.”
Another hobby on her to-learn list? The art of bellydancing.
She adds, “I’m going to have fun. Remember, I’m the oldest teenager on the block.” 

Published Monday, Jan. 11, 2010