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My 30th Anniversary at LBNL!

posted Dec 18, 2014, 6:24 AM by Tennessee Gock   [ updated Jan 10, 2016, 9:32 AM ]

Thirty years ago yesterday, December 17, 1984, I reported to my first job as an administrative assistant at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL), in Building 29 (currently the Guest House site), under the late Dr. Aloke Chatterjee who later became the Deputy Director of Life Sciences Division (formerly the Division of Biology and Medicine, aka Biomed). I also worked closely with ~10 scientists in the group. There was no Macintosh/Windows and no inkjet/laser printers; we were using a primitive Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC) PDP-11 processor and a Qume daisy-wheel printer. There was no Equation Editor either. Instead, we had to determine where to put the numerator and denominator and where to draw the line in between, and we had to type letter combination (code) to get Greek characters. It was called technical typing. It wasn't easy but it was fun and I loved typing scientific manuscripts. Eight years later, in the summer of 1992, I went to work in the Department of Energy (DOE)-funded Site Restoration Program in EH&S Division under the leadership of Dr. Iraj Javandel who was matrixed from Earth Sciences Division to manage our program. Twice, the former Chief Operating Officer David McGraw asked me to work as his Executive Assistant when he was the EHS Division Director. I declined because the Site Restoration Program was such a crucial project for the Lab and I felt it was important for me to stay with the program.  Fourteen years later in the summer of 2006 when the site cleanup program progressed as planned to the maintenance stage (we were told by DOE that our program at LBNL was the best among all DOE facility counterparts!), I went to work at the Molecular Foundry. Seven months later, in February 2007, the Advanced Light Source Division recruited me as an EHS Administrative Specialist 2 (a 2-step promotion). I got another promotion in 2011 to level 3, which is equivalent to the pay range of a Senior Administrator, although the nature of the work is different.

I love LBNL and have always been a top performer during my 30 years there. I built a strong bond with my supervisors which included two senior scientists. The only one bizarre experience was with a temporary supervisor who did not understand nor respect what I did, which was rather hurtful and demoralizing. But I am at the tail-end of my career and I just have tremendous gratitude for the privilege to work in such an amazing organization like LBNL where there are not only great science but many talented and wonderful people, not to mention the beautiful site on the hill with a million-dollar view of the bay area including the UC campus and the Golden Gate Bridge.

The statements in the image below were what my former supervisor Jim Floyd--the most visionary leader I have ever met and now the Director of EHS Division--wrote on my 2013 performance appraisal before he left our division almost a year and a half ago. I received an Excellent rating from him. I am forever grateful to Jim for teaching me a whole lot and for recognizing my qualities and allowing me to be myself. I am also in great debt to both Dr. Aloke Chatterjee and Dr. Iraj Javandel who treasured me and treated me like family.

Happy Thanksgiving 2013 -- Much to be thankful for!

posted Nov 24, 2013, 10:51 PM by Tennessee Gock   [ updated Nov 27, 2013, 10:30 PM ]

So far this has been an eventful year for me at work and at home. I don't want to go in details here, all I want to say is I am very appreciative of all the truly nice people who came to my rescue.  I am feeling all the love and blessings, which inspired me to do more good deeds. I believe the best way to repay someone's kindness is to pay it forward and do good deeds for others.

Thanksgiving is not a universal holiday (only celebrated in Canada in October and USA in November), but it is about being thankful for the blessing, so HAPPY THANKSGIVING, everybody! 感恩節愉快!

Have a good summer 2013!

posted Jun 25, 2013, 10:17 PM by Tennessee Gock   [ updated Apr 10, 2014, 4:01 PM ]

Thank you for visiting my website!  Can't believe we are already in mid. 2013!  It seems like yesterday when I was having a marvelous time in Hong Kong spending quality moments with my family and friends for a month in January! (Actually I left for Hong Kong on Xmas day 2012).  Our world continues to have good and bad moments.  America is getting worse having such a dysfunctional Congress and with the country so split, nothing gets done!  The world is not too much better, man-made and natural disasters everywhere.....well, rather than feeling frustrated and depressed, I want to still encourage people to stay focused on the most significant things in our life, and try to live a normal and happy life, for ourselves and for our family.  To me, health is the most important thing in life, even more important than our family, as we cannot enjoy the love from our family and friends if we don't feel well, and we may even become a burden if we get seriously sick.  So do yourself and your family a favor, have a balanced diet, exercise regularly, watch comedies and laugh often!  Will write more when I get more time.  Just too busy these days!  Good thing I always do stress management to keep myself sane!  Take care and be well, my friends!

Happy New Year of the Dragon 2012

posted Jan 21, 2012, 11:09 PM by Tennessee Gock   [ updated Jul 7, 2012, 11:34 PM ]

I wish you all many many years of Good Health, Happiness, and Safety!!
祝願 大家以及你們的至愛 永遠健康、快樂、和平安!!

I also wish a better tomorrow for everybody on earth, a more peaceful world with less suffering, and more people start to help and care for others.

Long Time No Talk! 久違了!

posted Sep 22, 2011, 12:12 AM by Tennessee Gock

Hi, there!  It's been a while!  A lot has happened since I wrote my last post on December 31, 2010.  Life has gotten more and more difficult for everyone, with the poor and middle class people suffering the most.  There seems no light at the end of the tunnel.  The financial crisis is not the only problem, there have also been natural and man-made disasters. What are we going to do?  I always keep my good friend Jackie's advice in mind, which I would like to share with you: "Have faith that things will be alright."  I know it is easy said than done, but please remember two things: (1) Life comes in a package, good times and bad times, happiness and sorrow, failure and success, hope and despair.  It is impossible to have a trouble-free life, unless we are dead. (2) Do not waste time and energy trying to fix something you have no control over.  Before I end this paragraph, let me share my good news with you:  I got my long-awaited promotion as of August 1st!!  This made me very happy.  I hope you have happy things in your life too!

Happy New Year 2011!!

posted Dec 31, 2010, 10:04 AM by Tennessee Gock

To All who visit my website:  Best Wishes to you and your loved ones for the New Year 2011, and many more Happy & Healthy years to come!!  World Peace and A Better Life for All!!  祝願 世界和平、大家生活更美好!!

One Thousand Visitors on December 7, 2010!

posted Dec 7, 2010, 8:00 PM by Tennessee Gock   [ updated Dec 7, 2010, 8:16 PM ]

謝謝!どうもありがとう! Danke! Obrigado! Thank you all for checking out my website!  Please tell your friends and family about my website.  Give me feedback and suggestions!!  Write to me at  Look forward to hearing from you.

A Milestone -- 500 Visitors!

posted Jul 25, 2010, 10:39 PM by Tennessee Gock   [ updated Jul 25, 2010, 11:04 PM ]

Once again, I am thankful for every visit and I hope people who like my website will spread the word. I have recently added some quality jokes and inspiring reading materials in the Health & Wellness page, also some new songs and websites in Links (in Favorites page), etc.  Please check out the new stuff if you haven't done so yet.  I will continue to update my website with good information.  Please send me feedback and/or share your thoughts via  Muchas gracias!!

感謝大家的支持! 最近在“保健”頁加了笑話和好文章,又在“至愛”頁加了新的歌曲跟有趣的網站等等,有空請再瀏覽!我會繼續努力加插好資訊的! 請電郵到 給我意見或分享您的想法。 期待您的訊息!

Thank you!

posted Jun 29, 2010, 10:51 AM by Tennessee Gock   [ updated Jun 29, 2010, 10:59 AM ]

Dear All:

Breaking News!! :-)  As of yesterday, Monday, June 28, 2010, at 2:55 pm, 300 visitors came to my website.  I am grateful for the support received so far.  Will continue to upgrade my site to include more wonderful info and links.  Will talk to you again soon!

Welcome to my site

posted Nov 9, 2009, 10:59 AM by Tennessee Gock   [ updated Jun 13, 2010, 2:19 PM ]

I figure since I have a lot to share with people--my views, my writing, my art, and my love of design, music, and languages, etc., I should start my own website and blog.  So here I am.  Hope to hear from you!  Have a beautiful day :-)

我想既然我有那麼多東西想跟網友分享,是時候有自己的網站和部落格了。 我誠意邀請您瀏覽我的網站,並在我的
部落格抒發您的思緒和想法。 祝您百事可樂!



Tennessee Gock

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