In The Spotlight
Marlene Jordan is at home with women in transition By Enelly Betancourt, Staff Writer email@example.com
When Marlene Jordan contemplated the idea of attending college at age 47, a co-worker at Armstrong World Industries offered the best advice she ever got.
"She told me to live my dream. She said no one else could do it for me,'' Jordan says.
"I'm glad I listened to her.''
Jordan retired from Armstrong in 2006 after 32 years. The last seven of those years she attended HACC, Central Pennsylvania's Community College, as a part-time student. She later transferred to Millersville University where she earned a Bachelor of Arts in psychology.
In November, Jordan, 61, became director of the residence program at YWCA Lancaster's Kepler Hall.
The residence program offers safe, affordable housing for low- and moderate-income women and their children for up to two years during transitional periods in their lives.
"I am responsible for ensuring that things run well at Kepler Hall,'' Jordan explains. "I also coordinate the rental space for individuals who are interested in renting one of the rooms at the YWCA."
The best part of her job, she says, is when a resident obtains employment or permanent housing.
"Or when they tell me that something I said had an impact on them," Jordan says.
Family: Three sisters, two daughters, one grandson, one granddaughter, and one grandson on the way. I can't wait.
Residence: Lancaster city.
When I want to relax: I listen to music or go out and listen to my cousin, DJ Cool La, spin "old-school jams."
Favorite vacation spot: Jamaica.
Plans I have for the future: Retirement and Jamaica, Jamaica, Jamaica!
My hobbies: I don't have any real hobbies, but I like to line dance.
Growing up I wanted to be: Rich. However, that has not happened and I don't have a problem with that.
My culinary specialty is: Tuna fish macaroni salad. I'm not that great of a cook ... that distinction goes to my oldest sister, Regina.
Someone I admire: My mother, Marcella W. Jordan, who was a strong, phenomenal woman. Also, my Uncle Donald, who is the most unselfish, giving human being I have ever encountered.
Favorite movie: I have enjoyed many of Tyler Perry's movies. Classic movies would have to be "The Sound of Music" and "The Wizard of Oz.'' Of the more recent movies, I would choose "The Green Mile'' and "The Shawshank Redemption." Oh, and I can't forget about the "Star Wars'' trilogy.
Best books I ever read: [Are by] authors ... Isaac Asimov, Dean Koontz, Clive Cussler, Sidney Sheldon and Jackie Collins.
If I had one day left to live: I would divide up all my worldly goods and hope that the gates of heaven will be opened for me.
Something you would always find in my refrigerator: Plenty of space.
Favorite food: Soul food. I also enjoy Chinese food.
Songs that can always make me dance, especially when no one's around: "Wobble" and "Cupid Shuffle.''
My most treasured possession: My health.
Three things I could not live without: Family, music and vacations.
One word that describes me: Honest!
If someone wrote a book about my life, I would like the title to be: "Life Doesn't Happen, You Do."
I regret: Regrets are negative emotions that drain the self. I can't undo what has been done. Therefore, I attempt to learn from my past misdeeds, provide myself with positive self-talk and strive to be a better person. I believe that one's energy can be better spent on making a better tomorrow, which is in one's power to do, if one is willing.
Words to live by: Place others before yourself.n