Longtime Redbirds facilities worker recognized
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - With every performance, production, or event, there is a behind-the-scenes presence that makes sure everything runs smoothly.
For the Memphis Redbirds, that presence for the last 20 years has been Spencer Shields.
“From working on toilets to making sure the lights in the scoreboard are up, he never took a day off,” said Shields’s older sister Marie Holley.
Shields started at AutoZone Park in 2002, back when the park was still a new addition to Downtown Memphis.
He worked his way up to Facilities manager seven years ago, but as Holley tells us, the promotion never changed his hands-on approach to the grounds of the park.
You have him to thank for the grounds switching from Redbirds to 901 FC games.
“He loves doing it for people, and I love seeing that,” Holley said, tearing up.
Saturday evening, the Redbirds recognized Shields for his 20 years with the organization, giving him a bat signed by the entire 2022 Redbirds roster and a jersey.
They even let him throw the first pitch.
“This is definitely a different view than I’m used to seeing,” Shields said. “It means a lot for me. (The Redbirds) are a good organization to work for, especially to recognize someone who’s been with the company for 20 years. A lot of companies don’t do that.”
Holley told us Shields was inspired by their father, who was also a facilities manager, working for several casinos in Mississippi.
Neither Shields men went to college but worked their way up with hard work.
“To see him come as far as he has and for the Redbirds to recognize him was huge,” Holley said. “I’m so proud of him.”
“He works very hard, and he doesn’t cut corners,” said Shields’s son, Nathan. “He does the right thing when nobody’s looking.”
Nathan plans to graduate from the University of Memphis with a degree in Civil Engineering.
When asked if his dad’s inspiration had anything to do with the field chosen, “100%,” he said.
“I’m definitely proud to have the Shields name,” Nathan said.
In total, we’re told Shields has walked roughly 50 million steps in his 20 years at AutoZone Park.
With a much-deserved recognition, he says he’s excited to continue working for the Redbirds in the years to come.
Spencer Shields here’s to another 20 years!
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