In early June, Debbie Polly joined our team as a tax specialist with more than 25 years of industry experience. Read more about this animal lover and licensed pilot who took a left turn while studying in college and it led her to IPS.
Welcome, Debbie. Tell us the story of how you came into the payroll industry by accident…
Debbie: “I received an associate’s degree in criminal justice from Waukesha County Technical College (WCTC), but didn’t finish up in pre-law at UW-Milwaukee. I worked for a lawyer for a couple years and discovered it was definitely not my thing. I got a job in payroll while I was in college. It turned out I didn’t like the law profession and loved payroll, which is how I ended up where I am today.”
“I love the tax side of things and much of what I know in that area is self-taught because I like to research and learn. Payroll is a constantly changing industry, but I’m pretty good at keeping up with the changes and adapting to new situations. I am also studying for my Certified Payroll Professional credential and hope to take the exam this fall.”
What do you enjoy most about working at IPS?
Debbie: “I have the opportunity to take on some new roles and all of my coworkers are incredibly helpful and encouraging. I learn something new almost every day since I started here and it makes my days really interesting. I love the fact that everyone has a positive attitude and they are all willing to work together to fix any issue.”
When you’re not at work, you enjoy flying. This isn’t a superpower, correct?
Debbie: “I have my private, instrument and commercial pilot’s licenses. My dad and my grandpa liked to fly, so I picked up the interest from them. It’s a freedom that few people can enjoy and you can see a lot of things not many others do. I initially wanted to fly for the military, but women couldn’t pilot combat jets at the time and I didn’t want to compromise. My license isn’t current, so I’d have to take a refresher test. It got to the point where it was either fly planes or spend time with my horses. I simply couldn’t give up my horses.”
In fact, you own three horses and like to participate in something called three-day eventing?
Debbie: “My horses are Osti (like the champagne), Peppy and Sebastian. Three-day eventing (or eventing) is kind of a niche sport. It’s basically an Iron Man competition for horses. Three different events take place over the span of three days. The categories are Dressage, Cross Country, (a timed obstacle course, which is my favorite), and jumping. Riding or even spending time with the horses is a great stress reliever.”
Are there any other ways you like to kick back and relax after a hard day as a tax specialist?
Debbie: “I’m especially close to my older sister and younger brother, and enjoy hanging out with the entire family. Along with my horses, I have a dog, Sydney; cats, Kia and Mr. Biggs; and a bunny named Finley. I bought my first house last year and I’m trying to master as many projects as I can. This summer, I’m redesigning and planting the landscape. My goal for the coming winter is to pull out carpet and learn how to lay hardwood floors.”