She began her career in 1939, in the final years of the Great Depression.
Her first position in 1939 at Skinner’s was to assist the purchasing agent.
Mrs. Doris Tanguay: But back then, everybody did a lot of jobs. You know, actually, people didn’t have titles. I worked for the purchasing agent, but some of the secretaries—it was on the second floor of the office. Down on the first floor there were a couple of ladies that were real elderly who were secretaries, and they left when the Skinners, Uncle Joe and Uncle Will, [Joseph and William, Jr., sons of the founder] died. But if somebody needed a secretary, my boss would offer me. You know, “She’ll do it for you.” Because I did shorthand. So, I got kind of passed around that way. But there were several of us that could run the switchboard. We were trained, and we would have to take turns, a week at a time, to go in at seven o’clock in the morning and run the switchboard from seven to eight, when the regular operator came in. And then we would take it over at noontime while she was out to lunch. So there were several of us that could do that.