Laurie Nutting – Help Desk Supervisor

Laurie Nutting admits to not failing well. It’s important to her to do a good job with whatever she is faced with. When the NSD Help Desk supervisor has a problem, she wants to find a solution, and when someone needs help, she’s passionate about making sure she doesn’t leave them hanging.

After almost 19 years troubleshooting tech issues for staff, parents and students, she admits she still doesn’t have all the answers. But the years have honed her “tech brain” in ways that allow her to successfully find solutions for most problems that come her way.

“You don’t need to have all the tech knowledge to work here,” she said. “But you do learn the right questions to ask and suddenly you’re so much better at the job and at helping people.”

Helping people – changing their experiences in positive ways ­– is the best part of her job and what keeps her going day after day. She also really enjoys the people she works with.  

“We’re very collaborative here,” she said. “We’re a team and we find success by working together. When we solve a tough problem, there are lots of high fives.” 

Getting excited about tech successes wasn’t always in the cards for Laurie. Growing up in Yuba City, California, and then moving to Kuna at age 14, she was a studious kid who was active in dance, sports, tennis and cross country.

“I was always focused on individual sports, not team sports,” she said. “I’ve always wanted to make it or break it on my own.” 

She worked hard in school to get good grades and was, mostly, a responsible kid. 

Having shared that she came from a strict and hardworking family, “The only bad thing I ever did was to sneak out of the house one time when I was in high school,” she said. “I only made it to the front yard before I felt bad and knew how much trouble I would be in. 

She has fond memories of several then-Kuna staff members, who at some point also became Nampa School District employees.  Karla Reynolds, her former English teacher, was one who really stood out for her.  

Following high school graduation, she attended College of Idaho on a tennis scholarship and also joined the swim team. After changing majors a couple of times, she realized she hadn’t really found a life path that felt right. So, when the Nampa Rec Center was being built, she applied there, landing the only full-time job in the aquatics Department. She taught swim lessons, oversaw the lifeguards, and conducted water aerobics and adult swim team workouts. She also taught first aid and CPR to city employees.

Following the birth of her second son, she left to be a stay-at-home mom. To stay involved, she worked part-time as a swim instructor and dabbled in teaching gymnastics at the beginner levels.

She later added two girls, twins, to the family, for a total of four kids (now ages 27, 26 and 23). Following a divorce a few years later, she raised them mostly on her own – an accomplishment she’s understandably proud of. 

“My goal was that I wanted my kids to be kind, hardworking, honest people,” she said. “And they are. I am so proud of the adults they have become. Easy to get along with. Accepting. Non-judgmental. And they are thoughtful. “Mean” is my least favorite attribute about how some people can behave!”

Her role model is her dad, with whom she was “crazy close” until his passing at the age of 84 from Parkinson’s disease. “His values for everything were amazing. That’s where I learned to work hard and figure things out. And I taught that to my kids.” 

“He always had a lot of faith in my abilities,” she continued. “He had a gift for being able to judge someone's character and had zero tolerance for people’s shenanigans.”

She continues to set a good example for her family and her colleagues, mostly recently by becoming a Project Management Professional. She and colleague Jerry Fleming both passed the difficult exam on the first try.

“Project management made sense to me; it is my “thing” because I’m good at organizing and the process feels natural to me.”

Life is still evolving for Laurie. In December 2022, she married husband Leon, whom she had known for 8 years and been together with for the past 5½. The couple shares their home with two older dogs – a golden retriever named Gus and a mixed breed named Sunshine 

Outside of work she is more of a homebody and enjoys the simple things – she and Leon er try to visit their favorite place, the Oregon coast, at least once a year. She also thinks Ireland would be a great vacation destination because it’s so green and gorgeous 

If she had any superpower, it would be to fly. “I’ve had so many dreams of flying. It’s one perspective of the world you just can’t get. It’s not the same as an airplane.” The closest experience she can liken it to is the sensation of soaring down a mountain road on a motorcycle.

After a lifetime of learning who she is and where she wants to go, her advice to the rising generation is to be who you are and be confident in what that is.