Although Charlotte's full-time employment with The Times began in 1974, her memories of the daily newspaper date back to the 1950s when Charlotte's father, Dick Brady, and mother, Frances Mae Brady, moved to Monett and Dick Brady began working as editor of The Times under long-time publisher Ken Meuser.
"My first memories of the newspaper are when it was located across the street from the fire department," said Charlotte. "The news department was upstairs and I remember them having to drop copy through a hole in the ceiling down to the proofreaders. They attached the copy to a string with a little clip."
Charlotte actually started working at the newspaper on a part-time basis during the summers of her junior and senior years in high school, doing proofreading, answering phones and waiting on customers
In 1965, Charlotte graduated from Monett High School as one of her class' Top 10 graduates. She went on to attend the College of the Ozarks in Point Lookout for two years where she studied vocal and instrumental music.
After working as a nurse's aide at a local nursing home, Charlotte accepted her first full-tine job with The Monett Times in 1974.
"Jim McGinnis (the publisher at that time) hired me to type news copy for the Shopper and to put the Shopper together," said Charlotte.
When Charlotte joined the newspaper staff, her father was serving as managing editor. Two years later, he was named publisher, a position he held until his retirement in 1989.
Over the past 34 years, Charlotte has been involved in almost every aspect of the newspaper business. She has done bookkeeping, typesetting, ad design and even served as the society editor for awhile and wrote a column titled "Signs of the Times."
"I even went with dad to football games and took pictures," said Charlotte. "I took the pictures from Monett's first football championship in 1977.
"The only thing I haven't done is run the presses and I wouldn't have a clue about that," added Charlotte with a smile.
In announcing her retirement, Charlotte explained that she wanted to retire at an earlier age than her parents did.
"I saw that my mom and dad didn't enjoy retirement very much because they put it off too much," said Charlotte. "I wanted to retire earlier so I could enjoy myself. When I turned 62 (on March 10), I thought it was a good time to take it a little easier."
She also added that she had worked for six different publishers over her career at The Times and "that was enough."
When asked about her favorite memories of working at the newspaper, Charlotte quickly answered "the people."
"It's like a family here," said Charlotte. "It seems like I spent more time here than anywhere else."
Charlotte also said working with her father, Dick, and brother, Charles, who has been a member of The Monett Times staff since 1979, was another rare opportunity,
"It was nice working with family because you can rely on them," said Charlotte. "And very seldom were any of us never here."
Although Charlotte has had opportunities to leave Monett for other pursuits, she has chosen to remain here.
"Monett is the only place I have ever thought of living besides Colorado," said Charlotte. "I like the safety of Monett. I like the fact that when I was a kid you could walk all over town. And I like the way the country looks. It's beautiful here."
As Charlotte contemplates retirement, she said she wants to enjoy her animals, which include four cats and two dogs, and also have time to pursue two of her favorite hobbies, reading and watching classic movies.
"I'd also like to be able to visit Colorado again and see some of my relatives and spend more time with my nieces and nephews in Monett," said Charlotte, who is also looking forward to going to bed and getting up in the morning whenever she wants after years of arriving at The Monett Times at 7 a.m. each morning.
Even though Charlotte will no longer be working for The Monett Times on a full-time basis, she has been filling in on a part-time basis for the past several weeks.