Tonya Sheets tries to stay positive while helping people in tough spots

Tonya Sheets tries to stay positive while helping people in tough spots


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LANCASTER – Tonya Sheets is all about having a positive attitude.

“I love inspiring people,” she said. “I love to try to help anybody at any time that I can. This life that we live, unfortunately, is such a negative environment anymore that I honestly make it my daily job before anything is to put positivity out in the environment.”

Sheets works at Fairfield County Clerk of Courts Branden Meyer’s office as a deputy clerk and works with the domestic relations court in divorces, dissolutions, protection orders and on emergency cases and more. In many cases, people are acting as their own attorney and are dealing with unfortunate issues.

Sheets said computer skills, customer service skills and patience are three virtues that serve her well on the job.

“I say patience because our floor is such an anxiety floor,” she said. “Nobody ever wants to be on our floor because our floor tears lives apart. It tears families apart. You have emergency cases where kids don’t even know where they’re going the next day.

“If someone’s filing for divorce, obviously the other party is usually not wanting that or not expecting that. There’s a lot of blindsides on our floor. We’ve seen babies come in addicted to drugs and the grandparents have to come in and file for an emergency because the hospital contacts them.”

Sheets said she and her co-workers try to make the department as positive as possible in spite of all the hardship they see.

“I can’t tell you how many babies I’ve held on that floor or children I’ve tried to play with because our floor is just not a happy floor,” she said. 

Sheets said she tries to keep the sadness away from her home life.

“If I gain anything out of it’s how precious life is,” she said. “With my children, you just appreciate the lifestyle you have or you try to teach them to be so much more appreciative compared to what other children have and don’t have. But it does pull at my heartstrings because I try to help anybody. There’s been times when customers have left that I’ve cried in the bathroom. It’s heart wrenching. It’s so sad.”

Sheets has one daughter and one step-daughter.

Sheets been on her job for 15 years and experienced the foreclosure explosions from about 2008 to 2011 as the housing market collapsed.

“It was very sad,” Sheets said. “I hope it’s not going to go that route due to COVID. But it’s very said. So many people trying to make ends meet or if they have the loss of a job. The foreclosure rate is sometimes is just skyrocketing through the roof.”

Away from work, Sheets enjoys spending time with her children.

“I love watching them grow into young ladies,” she said. “But most of all, I strive that they make a positive impact on the world in whatever they can do.”

jbarron@gannett.com

740-304-9296

Twitter: @JeffDBarron

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