Employee profile: Justin ShipleyPublished by emzabinski on Wed, 2013-09-11 08:58
Justin Shipley is one of the few Grand Rapids State Bank employees who can say he moved south to Grand Rapids. Justin began his job as Systems Administrator at Grand Rapids State Bank on September 3, and he’s commuting on weekends from International Falls to Grand Rapids until he and his family find a home.
“I am excited for the opportunity to work here,” said Justin. “I grew up in International Falls and I love the area, but with the recent shutdown of two of Boise’s paper machines, the economy is a little questionable.”
Justin and his wife, Shae, have four daughters (Carissa, Nikki, Kailey and Ashley) ages 12 to 7. While they are all involved in school and extracurricular activities, they are also excited to move to Grand Rapids.
“They will miss their friends, but they know that moving to Grand Rapids is a great opportunity for our family,” said Justin. “I’m not sure if there is a ‘best’ time to move, but my hope is that moving them now won’t be as dramatic as it would be if we waited.”
Justin is moving into the role of Systems Administrator and he is half of two-person information technology department. Justin’s role includes assisting in keeping the bank’s computer network running efficiently as well as ensuring all the bank’s data is secure at all times. In addition, he and Andy Dehon tag-team the job of supporting the technology requirements of 60 internal customers (GRSB employees).
Justin has worked since he was in high school. His first job was a coordinator and then client supervisor for REM North Star, Inc., a for-profit agency providing residential services for adults and children with disabilities. He held this job until recently, and this income—along with his wife’s job as a nurse— sustained their family income. However, Justin always “messed around” with technology.
“My dad was a mill electrician at Boise Cascade, and he knew Windows NT and Windows 3.1 inside and out,” explained Justin. “As a young man, I always found this interesting, and I taught myself a lot. Eventually I became my dad’s IT guy.
“I earned an AA degree at Rainy River Community College,” continued Justin. “I was going to major in psychology, but unless I was prepared to go for at least a master’s degree, I couldn’t put food on my family’s table. Instead I took courses at Kaplan University, an online college, and earned a bachelor’s degree in IT with emphases in network administration and management of information systems.”
Justin and his wife, Shae, pieced together a couple of incomes while she worked on her degree in nursing.
“We took turns going to college,” said Justin, “so between studying, working and being parents, we were pretty busy.”
Justin is a Minnesota professional sports fan, although at times it’s not that easy (he really is a true fan). He especially likes rooting for the Minnesota Twins, although he was disappointed to see the team trade Justin Morneau, the former All-Star first baseman. Now that it’s football season, he will turn his attention to the Vikings.
“I have never worked in a bank,” said Justin, “but working at Grand Rapids State Bank gives me a chance to work in the field in which I majored. People here have been very nice to me, and this is a very pleasant work environment.
“I came from an organization whose clients depended on public funds,” added Justin, “and I worked for five years with a wage freeze thanks to cuts in State budgets. I am looking forward to working hard for a good wage.
“My wife has accepted a nursing job at Grand Itasca Clinic and Hospital, and we can’t wait to settle in to life in Grand Rapids.”
Shae and Justin Shipley; the Shipley girls ready for school: Kailey, Carissa, Nikki and Ashley.