by Chris Kenrick
Palo Alto Online Staff
The U.S. Census-taker who knocks on your door this spring just might have an M.B.A., or even a Ph.D.
Silicon Valley’s high jobless rate has created a wealth of talent to staff the 2010 Census, which is now on final countdown to Census Day April 1.
By that date, every U.S. resident should have returned the 10-question form they’ll receive sometime in mid-March. If one hasn’t mailed back the form, one of those ultra-qualified census workers will be knocking on the door.
Jim Kamenelis, a longtime Silicon Valley IT director, is one of those with ample qualifications. An experienced IT manager who was looking for work after a failed startup, Kamenelis was hired by the Census Bureau in the summer of 2008 to help ramp-up to the big count. He expects his job to end this September, he said.
Kamenelis said he has tested about 15,000 local applicants for census jobs, which are on-again-off-again depending on tasks at hand. He has also managed a variety of preparations, such as updating addresses and maps, required for the upcoming count.
"There’s an incredible pool of capable people available right now," Kamenelis said.
"It’s amazing how many talented people we hire — we have lawyers, business executives, a lot of retired military, and one lady here is a Ph.D. in computer science.
"These are a lot of accomplished folks who, for whatever reason, are unemployed and this is the best thing available to them."
You heard it here first folks. Another reason why the Bay Area is special? Another reason why the next decade is going to rock for this fine valley?
We’ve got the best census takers and workers in the WORLD! Just think of all the innovation these PhD’s, JDs, MBAs, and military folks will be able to add to the census process. I bet all the other cities in America are just drooling with envy as to how lucky we have it.
Without a doubt, we are surely going to have the best counted census in the world right here in the Valley. Congrats!