Sheryl Dinger The Lee Group Staffing Newport News

“Always leave your company on good terms,” is advice Sheryl Mitchell offers regularly and more importantly, follows.

Twice she left The Lee Group due to life changes, and each time she’s been welcomed back.

“I’m actually working here for the third time,” said the staffing firm’s Payroll Administrator. “I’m not leaving anytime soon this time.”

Initially, Mitchell turned to The Lee Group for a temporary position in reception at a mortgage company. She left to give birth to her daughter and moved to Maryland and later Oklahoma before returning to Virginia. For a while, she was a stay-at-home mom until she decided to reenter the workforce in a field that always fascinated her.

The Smithfield native studied criminology in college, a career field that interested her because she favored giving people second chances. She spent two years at the Sheriff’s Office in Hampton, helping inmates find the resources that ranged from college classes to anger management assistance to Alcoholics Anonymous.

“I wanted to be a federal probation officer, but I never finished my degree,” Mitchell said. “I had a passion for helping people who wanted to make a change.”

The low salary and lack of promotion opportunities led Mitchell to reach out to The Lee Group again. She was hired as a Staffing Manager, prescreening candidates and ultimately interviewing and hiring for the clerical division.

She kept that position for three years until 2006 when she gave birth to one son and then another 15 months later. In 2011, she opted to return to work. Once again, she contacted The Lee Group, which hired her for her current role, the best fit of all.

“It’s very powerful to be able to help people change their lives. I like what we do as an organization,” Mitchell said. “What I like about this role is people want to get paid and they want to get paid correctly. It’s a huge responsibility — making sure that time is entered correctly and verifying information. Even though I don’t interact with people like I did as a staffing manager, I still affect their lives, and it’s ideally in a positive way because they get paid correctly.”

Away from The Lee Group, Mitchell is always on the run, keeping up with a blended family, which includes five children, her husband, Scott, and their energetic dog, a Rottweiler named Dexter. Two of the boys play football and another runs track.

“They keep us busy because we try to keep them active,” Mitchell said.

Mitchell has also recently discovered the joy that comes with keeping herself in good shape. Working with a personal trainer, she physically feels the best she’s ever felt. “I do more weightlifting than cardio,” she said. “It’s good for mental clarity. It’s win-win. It’s like breathing to me.”

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