I am a secretary.
In my case, I’m secretary to the Board of Directors of the L.M. Montgomery Land Trust. In that capacity I do just as the dictionary says:
A person employed to handle correspondence, keep files, and do clerical work for another person or an organization.
I don’t consider secretary to be a pejorative term, and I’ve always failed to see why others see it this way.
Which is why Administrative Professionals Day confuses me. For the unintiated, this is the new term for what used to be called Secretaries Day, and it’s celebrated this year on April 24, 2002.
While I can certainly understand the transition from stewardess to the gender-neutral flight attendant and the utility of their simply being actors, male and female, I can’t understand why a secretary is elevated somehow by applying this hackneyed new title.
While my own secretarial work involves only a few hours a week, I am the beneficiary of of the efforts of many other secretaries who are at it full time. They are, without exception, a hard working and invaluable lot.
So whether by secretary or administrative professional or administrative assistance or personal private executive chargé d’affaires, I salute you all.