Andersen Staffers Make Quiet Exit
Waldron, Patrick, Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL)
Byline: Patrick Waldron Daily Herald Staff Writer
With envelopes filled with personal records and old pay stubs in hand, a dozen former Arthur Andersen employees waited to take their place in line outside the North Aurora branch of the Illinois Department of Employment Security early Wednesday.
Before stepping to the door at 8:30 a.m., several were greeted by former colleague Lori Biehl of Aurora and a box of doughnuts she placed on the back of a pickup truck.
"It's a tailgate party," she said, with a wry smile.
The group - all from Andersen's St. Charles training operations - kept an upbeat attitude as they waited to file their first claims for unemployment insurance just hours after their last day of work at the troubled auditing firm.
"The past two weeks have been an emotional roller coaster," said Carrie Anne Krall of Geneva.
These staffers, who primarily were involved in developing technology based training tools, survived the first wave of sweeping layoffs to hit the employees of the Chicago-based company April 8. But not the second one announced three days later that effectively cleared out the company's St. Charles office park and Center for Professional Education.
Looking back, most at the unemployment office Wednesday said they didn't expect to last long with Andersen. But what they hoped would be maybe another month didn't last the week.
"I don't think any of us were really surprised," said Christie Schneider of Aurora.
Schneider left work Wednesday and headed straight to a job interview with a major insurance company. She, like many of the former Andersen employees, called Wednesday's trip to the unemployment office "closure. …