Education

For 43 years, she was Rock Hill schools' 'voice and face.' People called to hear her.

'Voice and face of Rock Hill school district' retires after 43 years

Shelby Sapp, who served with the Rock Hill school district for 43 years, is retiring. Sapp worked at the front desk in the district office. School district employees say she was the face of the district and had a smile for everyone.
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Shelby Sapp, who served with the Rock Hill school district for 43 years, is retiring. Sapp worked at the front desk in the district office. School district employees say she was the face of the district and had a smile for everyone.

No matter how bad a day someone might be having, all he or she had to do was walk into the Rock Hill school district office to be cheered up.

That was thanks to district receptionist Shelby Sapp. On Wednesday, the district celebrated Sapp's dedication to education and her retirement after serving 43 years with Rock Hill schools.

"She's truly been the voice and face of the Rock Hill school district," said Carol Hershberger, who works in adult education. "If you were having a bad day, all you had to do was speak to her."

After working at Belleview Elementary School, Sapp joined the district office in the early '80s, said Joe Gentry, district superintendent from 1980 to 1992.

"I was tremendously impressed by Shelby's happy demeanor," Gentry said. "The reason some people said they called the district office was to hear Shelby's happy voice."

Sapp was the first face district visitors would see. She was the voice on the other end of the line when someone called the district.

"You're going to be hard pressed to find anyone in the community who does not know who she is," said Superintendent Kelly Pew. "She makes everybody, it doesn't matter who they are, feel valued. We will miss her."

Gentry said Sapp would greet everyone with a smile and a positive message.

"I can't think of anyone that could have done any better job as a school receptionist and person who set the tone for the district," he said. "She was a counselor on a secretary's salary."

Randy Bridges, a former superintendent for Rock Hill, said he uses a term from his grandparents to describe Sapp.

"Shelby is just good people," he said.

Bridges said Sapp played a role in the education of children in the district.

And Sapp said she loved every minute of it.

"The 43 years I've spent with Rock Hill schools have been wonderful," she said. "I’ve never regretted not one day coming to work. It's family, and I'm going to miss them terribly."

Amanda Harris: 803-329-4082
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