After 28 years of service, the Christian Opportunity Center (COC) bids farewell to its Maintenance Coordinator, Charlie McMillian, as he embarks on a well-deserved retirement. Charlie has been integral to COC, contributing significantly to the organization’s mission and ministry.

Charlie’s journey with COC began in 1989 when he started working part-time for Mahaska Vocational Service, a subsidiary of COC. Although he initially resigned in January 1994, fate had other plans, and he returned to the organization in March 1995, taking on various roles, including driving a bus route from Knoxville to Pella. Over the years, his involvement in maintenance grew, eventually leading him to a full-time position in 2009. When his supervisor retired, Charlie assumed the role of Maintenance Coordinator.   Reflecting on his unexpected career at COC, Charlie stated, “No, I never planned on having a career at COC. It just worked out that way, and I do not regret it.”

Charlie expressed that what he will miss most about working at COC is interacting with the people supported by COC. He also highlighted his positive relationships with contractors and vendors, who generously supported COC’s mission. Despite the challenges of the job, Charlie shared that these relationships and the people he worked with made it feel less like work on most days.

As he looks forward to retirement, Charlie shared that he learned long ago not to make plans, preferring to remain flexible. Charlie plans to stay active in ministry, aiming to be an example that leads others toward the Lord. He looks forward to motorcycle trips and other adventures, embracing a slower pace of life.

Reflecting on his experience at COC, Charlie takes away the thoughtful realization that he served a purpose. His work mattered and played a crucial role in fulfilling COC’s overall mission and ministry. He leaves with a deep respect for the direct support staff and understands that a fulfilling career goes beyond a big paycheck and retirement plan.

Christian Opportunity Center thanks Charlie for his years of dedicated service and wishes him a joyful and fulfilling retirement. His tenure at COC will undoubtedly leave a lasting impact on the Christian Opportunity Center for years to come.