Richland 1’s Larry Richardson goes from “one year” to 44 years, now retiring
Mr. Larry Richardson, an employee for Richland County School District One, has been the “man behind the curtain” for many years.
Richardson works as the Digital Education Technician, maintaining the district’s local cable channel 1303. He fills the channel with school-friendly programs, and community-related information.
The job has changed drastically over the years, but he said he has stayed happy throughout it all by adapting to the technological advancements. Now after nearly 44 years, a change will be taking place in Richardson’s life, as he steps away from the channel and begins his years of retirement.
Richardson began working for the district in 1974 as a media clerk, out of high school. In that role, he inspected 16 millimeter film strips that were sent out to the schools. He said he surprised himself staying as long as he has, because his original intention was only to work for a short time. “My plan was to work here one year, then I was going to go into the Navy,” he said.
“But hey, I got here and I don’t know if I got comfortable or what, but it seems like I went from one year, to retirement.” He said it just seemed like this was where he was supposed to stay.
His plan for retirement has been a well-thought out process, according to Richardson. “It’s been a slow, progressive build up, each year I’ve been getting a little closer.” He also mentioned that he was able to sit in on the interviews for the people who applied for his position. He said he feels good about the “young man” coming in to replace him. “He sounds like he knows his stuff,” said Richardson.
There are a few suggestions Richardson has for his department. He said if it were him, he’d try to continue their process to going fully digital. There are VHS tapes from SCETV that still need to be converted. He said the biggest advice he can give to his successor, is to go with the flow of technology.
“Things are gonna change, so embrace it. Don’t fight it, and you’ll get along much better,” he said. If his replacement enjoys the job as much as Richardson has, it’s likely he will do just fine.
“I have a piece of paper in my cubicle saying if you pick a job you like, you’ll never have to work a day in your life, and that’s what I feel like has happened to me,” he said. “I really have enjoyed it.”