Guided by Empathy and Compassion
Laura Cedidla, a technician who also works for the Sacramento Housing and Redevelopment Agency (SHRA) and has known Hamilton for 10 years, says that when Hamilton goes out of his way to help a resident, it’s not the exception to the rule, it’s the rule itself.
Cedidla nominated Hamilton for an AFSCME Never Quit Service Award, which recognizes public service workers who go above and beyond the call of duty in serving their communities.
“It was just so great to see his empathy and compassion for our residents,” Cedidla says. “He’s beyond amazing. He has incredible compassion and respect for others, especially people of lower income or less education. He treats everyone as equals. … We get customer service feedback, and it’s clear that our residents have great respect for Alex.”
Hamilton, who won a Never Quit award, has worked at SHRA for 22 years. For 12 of those years, he’s worked in maintenance, which he says is “the talent that God gave me.”
With a gift for figuring out how things work, he fixes everything from plumbing to electrical to appliances. But sometimes he comes across a person or a situation that moves him to go even further.
Like the time he helped a low-income client who helped others.
“She doesn’t have much of anything but she always helps others. This one time I saw her making a huge pot of oatmeal to feed her cats because she couldn’t afford cat food. So I went to the ATM and came back with a hundred dollars. She was very grateful,” Hamilton says.
His generosity comes from an awareness that things could’ve been different for him, too.
“But for the grace of God it could have been me in housing, hoping someone helped me with my problem,” he says.