When Doris Seabrook heard that DTE was hiring meter readers and looking to add diversity to their workforce, she answered the call. When someone told her she should take an office position, she insisted on being in the field as a meter reader. 43 years later, Doris has held many field and leadership positions in our company and is honored to be recognized as a Trailblazer this year. 

Every year during Black History Month, our company’s REACH (Respecting Ethnic & Cultural Heritage) employee resource group honors DTE employees for their exceptional leadership and mentorship, acknowledging them as trailblazers for establishing pathways of success for others to follow.   

Doris has a tentative date scheduled for her retirement, and she’s ending her career as a general supervisor of EFO COE. She will miss the people at DTE, the events such as the Trailblazers, assisting other organizations and customers. She looks back fondly on her time in the field, finding creative ways to read meters when there were barriers in the way, checking in with the Dispatch Center on a payphone in the middle of the night, and ensuring that she left customers with their lights on.

Doris went into leadership after she and a co-worker decided they didn’t want to be old ladies walking up to customers and answering questions about why they didn’t have power. During the creation of the STORM application, Doris worked on the process and training for the STORM application which was a new dispatch process for Wire-Downs and Service Restoration. Due to her knowledge and field experience, she was pulled in to assist with the large group of service reps to assist with making sure they received the correct training and mentoring, and she created mentoring sign off sheets. She began covering for the supervisors in the Detroit region when they were unavailable. After a temporary assignment as a Field Leaders for the Southfield region, was promoted to the supervisor position in Detroit.   

For younger people in our company who are working their way up, she says to learn as much as you can. “Don’t think that because someone that is younger or has less experience that you will not be able to learn from them,” she says. “Be willing to work on special projects, which can be great learning experiences. When you are placed in a role that you are uncomfortable take it as a learning opportunity. And always keep your integrity.”

Doris is married with five beautiful daughters and 13 grandchildren. REACH recently celebrated Doris and this year’s other Trailblazers Henry Sapp and Rodney Cole, with events in Detroit and Grand Rapids.

“The 2024 REACH Trailblazers Awards event was exceptionally captivating,” says Denise Sampson, REACH Steering Committee Member. “It was an honor to celebrate excellence and the success of three phenomenal people. The Trailblazer event demonstrated the theme successfully “Rise Up & REACH New Levels.” Thank you to everyone that attended and supported the event at both locations, in the Downtown Detroit headquarters and Grand Rapids.”