While many Amgen colleagues find themselves house-bound due to the COVID-19 pandemic, a few are out battling the virus on the front lines. Among them is Brendan Bolger, a utilities technician at Amgen’s Rhode Island operations site and an active member of the Rhode Island Army National Guard.
As part of his state’s response to the novel coronavirus outbreak, Bolger was activated in late March and deployed to T.F. Green International Airport just outside the state capital of Providence. His mission was to support the health department’s efforts to enforce the Rhode Island Governor’s order requiring all travelers arriving at the airport to self-quarantine for 14 days. That order was intended to help the government better identify and track new cases of COVID-19 entering the state. Bolger has been working 12 or more hours per day at the airport, and with luck he’s been able to take every eighth day off.
“It’s hard being away from work,” Bolger comments, “but this activation will help our local communities in the state to prevent the virus from spreading and infecting more people. Being part of this mission means a lot to me because it reminds me of Amgen’s own mission of serving patients and meeting the needs of every patient, every time. In the same way, we in the Guard are putting every civilian first, every time by helping to keep them safe from the virus. I admit that sometimes it’s scary being on the front lines of this battle. But I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else, if only because my being here doing this job means someone else doesn’t have to.”
“This is exactly the sort of response I would expect from Brendan” says his Amgen supervisor, Utilities, Engineering and Maintenance manager, Beneker. “Brendan joined us only last November. I remember asking him during his interview, ‘what attracts you to Amgen?’ He told me about how much he values the National Guard’s mission of serving others, and about how Amgen’s mission of serving patients reminds him of what he likes most about the Guard. Brendan has been a great fit with our team since day one. We’re all tremendously proud of what he’s doing, and we trade texts with him almost daily to just check in, ask if he needs anything, and make sure he’s doing alright.”
“While many ARI [Amgen Rhode Island] staff have made good-natured complaints about being ‘stuck at home,’” Jason adds, “Bolger is out in the middle of all this – and that helps the rest of us keep in perspective the frustration we sometimes feel about not being able to get out of the house as much as we would like!”