Farms, factories & films
New trail manager has diverse history
April 06, 2011 - Juliane Bagley grew up on a farm, spent half of her life working in the manufacturing industry and most recently, has been helping promote Michigan's burgeoning film industry.
Now, she's the new manager of the Polly Ann Trail.
"I've been training for this job all my life, basically," said Bagley, a 36-year-old lifelong resident of Attica in Lapeer County. "Everything I've done in my professional career and in my volunteer efforts will be perfect for this job."
Last week, the Polly Ann Trail Management Council voted unanimously to hire Bagley as the new manager. She will be paid $18 per hour and work up to 60 hours a month.
The job is a dream-come-true for Bagley.
"All my life, I've been interested in nature, the outdoors and conservation," she said. "I've always wanted to work in the conservation field. I wanted to be a DNR officer when I grew up, but that didn't quite work out."
Bagley is quite familiar with the trail.
"I use the Polly Ann Trail up here in Lapeer all the time," she said. "I snowshoe in the wintertime and my family and I hike it in the summer, spring and fall."
The 14.6 miles of Polly Ann Trail that runs through Orion, Oxford, and Addison townships is developed and maintained unlike the trail that runs through Lapeer County.
"It's pretty rough up here. There's a lot of work that needs to be done," Bagley noted. "But it's a really nice, rustic trail up here, too."
Bagley, who's a 1992 graduate of Imlay City High School, brings a variety of life and work experiences to the trail manager position.
She grew up on a 180-acre farm in Attica and in 2007, became certified as an advanced master gardener through the Michigan State University Extension Master Gardener program.
"I've always been interested in gardening," she said. "My grandmother and my mother had beautiful cottage gardens."
Professionally, Bagley spent 19 years working in the manufacturing industry.
"I started at the bottom running spot-welders when I was 18 and basically, worked my way up through the ranks into (making) professional office decisions within the manufacturing community," she said.
Her office experience is vast and includes quality, purchasing, material control, accounting, program management, customer service, vendor management, policy and procedure manual writing, cost control and training.
Like many Michiganians in the manufacturing industry, Bagley was laid off in March 2010. Her last position was as program manager (packaging) for Osiris Innovations Group L.L.C. in Auburn Hills. There she was responsible for all aspects of a multimillion dollar, international sales program.
Following her layoff, Bagley put a lot of her energy into volunteering with the Lapeer-based Made-In-Michigan Film Society, which every October hosts a film festival at the PIX Theater.
She started volunteering about six months prior to last year's festival. She helped promote the event and get the community involved. As a result, festival attendance was up.
"We almost had a sellout crowd at the PIX," Bagley said.
In December 2010, the film society unanimously voted her in as president.
"I didn't work with them very long, but they thought enough of me to elect me as their leader," Bagley said.
She believes her experience with promotions, marketing and generating community interest will be a great asset as takes the reins as trail manager.
"One of my goals is to get involved with the community, get to know them and try to get people excited about the Polly Ann Trail, which is a great local resource," Bagley said. "I want to try to get them as excited as I am."
Her first job will be to make sure the trail's website is up-to-date and its social media presence is active.
"That's how people communicate these days – on the internet through Facebook and Twitter," Bagley said. "I'm going to be updating our Facebook page quite a bit with pictures and happenings on the trail."
She also plans to coordinate a "Meet the Manager" trail event in which "the community is invited to come out and join me on a walk."
Bagley plans to be a regular fixture on the trail.
"I'm going to be on the trail a lot," she said. "I'm going to make an effort to walk the trail as often as I can., take pictures, tell people what's going on. I'll say hi to anyone I see and introduce myself."
CJ Carnacchio is editor for The Oxford Leader. He lives in the Village of Oxford with his wife Connie and daughter Larissa. When he's not busy working on the newspaper, he enjoys cigars/pipes, Martinis/Scotch, hunting and fishing.