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Getting to Know Melanie Anderson with the Department of Veterans Affairs

Getting to Know

Share This is highlighting hardworking people who make our local businesses a success. Every Sunday, we’re Getting to Know YOU!

1. Name, job title and company Melanie Anderson, RN Case Manager for the Department of Veterans Affairs, Community Based Outpatient Clinic here in Idaho Falls

2. What does your company do and what are your responsibilities? I am a part of a care team comprised of an MD, an LPN, a Medical Support Agent and myself. We manage care for over 1,000 veterans at any given time.

3. Where were you born and when is your birthday? I was born in Salt Lake City on June 21, 1967. Side note: the staff mixed me up with another baby. Heads rolled and this is when they started taking footprints of all newborn babies.

4. How long have you lived in eastern Idaho and what city do you live in now? I first lived in eastern Idaho when I started school at Ricks College (now Brigham Young University-Idaho) and went through the nursing program. I returned to Pocatello a few years later. I met my first husband, then we left the state for six years to start a home health agency. We returned to eastern Idaho in 1998 and have called this home since.

5. Tell us about your first job after high school/college. I started my nursing career working at a hospital in Payson, Utah on the medical-surgical floor. They started to float me to the ICU and I loved it. From there, I moved to SLC and worked in a cardio-thoracic unit which I absolutely loved. However, an allergy to latex ended my ability to work in the hospital setting. It was then I decided to try home health nursing so I could control my environment better.

6. What is the best business decision you’ve ever made? To actually start the business instead of always working on starting the perfect business. Perfection when starting a business is a lofty goal that usually results in feelings of failure.

7. Tell us about your family. My husband and I have 10 children between the two of us. They range in age from 44 to 17. Christmas can be chaotic, but life is never boring. Steve has six children, two biological and four adopted. I have four children, two biological and two adopted. Sixty percent of our offspring do not share our DNA. Half of our adopted children came from orphanages in Eastern Europe.

8. Tell us about a movie or book that has inspired you the most in life. This is such a hard question for me because I love books and movies. The best business book is “Rich Dad Poor Dad.” My favorite fiction book would have to be “Gone With The Wind.” I have read it three times, the last time was during finals week of my first semester of nursing school! I am obviously a creative procrastinator! I also love anything written by Brene Brown. In terms of politics and self-government, I would have to say my favorite is “The Federalist Papers.”

9. Tell us about a lesson you learned from a mistake you made in your career/business. When I owned my home health agencies, I learned to make decisions after I finished being mad. Making decisions while still in my mad spot were never the best decisions for anyone.

10. What is a goal you hope to accomplish in the next 12 months? Is survive an ok answer? I hope for more growth on my terms. I want to spend more time with my husband, and I want to get my greenhouse in the backyard working for me to extend the Idaho growing season.

11. What is one piece of advice you have for someone who wants to do what you’re doing? Make sure you are well-capitalized if you want to start your own business and go for it. You will never succeed if you don’t try.

12. If you could do it all over again, what would you do differently? In “Rich Dad Poor Dad,” he advises strongly to listen to the professionals you surround yourself with — accountants, attorneys, financial planners, marketing staff, etc. I wish I had followed their advice more closely when I had my own business.

13. Where is your favorite place to eat in eastern Idaho? This is really unfair. There are so many awesome places to eat! Right now I would have to say the Eastern Idaho State Fair!

14. Tell us something surprising about yourself. My dad was a crop duster from the time I was 9 years old. I did my first solo flight when I was 16. I later put a rush on it and got licensed the summer between high school graduation and going to Ricks College. The next summer I learned to fly a taildragger. Now that is really flying!

15. How do you like your potatoes? I don’t think I have ever met a potato I didn’t like, but creamed new potatoes and peas fresh from the garden is a treat for anyone.

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