Our Team


Tamara Barendregt
President and CEO
With a degree in nursing and a B.A. in psychology, Tam founded this company based on needs she experienced firsthand. Throughout her career in the medical industry, Tam always felt there had to be a better way to provide effective communication in urgent care situations.

As a supervisor for two major hospitals and a home healthcare organization, Tam recognized that emerging technologies could provide for improved coordination of critical care teams; but that they could also improve the level of service sought by attorneys and other business owners.

Since 1986, Answer Excellence and its exceptional team of professionals have worked with our clients to learn how their operations need to function and then through the use of increasingly sophisticated technology and custom software solutions, we’ve precisely aligned their goals with unique solutions.

Well-respected by her peers, Tam is often called upon to provide executive leadership in industry organizations while Answer Excellence is now considered the premier model for communication services in the United States and Canada. As the recipient of a continuous succession of industry awards and accolades, Tam’s company has set the standards synonymous with outstanding quality.

Steve Bower
Director of Operations
Since joining Answer Excellence in 2005, Steve has dedicated himself to creating a work environment with an unwavering focus on superb customer service.  To provide that unsurpassed client service, Steve’s goals have included finding and developing the best possible team.

Having a best in class team comprised of individuals with the highest integrity, energy and a strong desire to learn has been rewarding for Answer Excellence.  Every year since Steve joined Answer Excellence, we have earned the ATSI Award of Excellence.

On winning the award, Steve said, “I am pleased our team has won the coveted award. It tells me that the time and resources we commit to training and coaching our front-line team has paid off and the result has delivered a superb customer experience for all of our clients. We are more than an answering service.  Our professional team, innovative solutions, and 25 years of operating experience will exceed your expectations!”

Picture of FiorellaFiorella Mejia
Manager of Operations
From coordinating the customized technology that supports individual clients, to managing payroll and invoicing, Fiorella has been a core member of the Answer Excellence team for over seven years. Recently promoted from her Supervisor of Operations position, Fiorella’s focus is on quality control.

While responsible for the guidelines and standardization of the tools used by the operators and staff, Fiorella is consistently proactive in her support of customer service. She ensures that our methodologies are preemptive and that procedures are in place to handle any eventuality.

Fiorella counts our success as a company as being due to the way we work together as a family. Along with many long time employees, Fiorella started working part time with Answer Excellence while she was in high school. Now filling a key position managing our operation, she contributes a unique skill set that keeps our day to day and long term goals on track. Fiorella continues to enable us to improve our quality of service by integrating the values that keep AE in the top ten of all answering service companies in the United States and Canada.

Picture of MelissaMelissa Thedford
Supervisor of Operations
A true liaison between our clients and their support teams, Melissa maintains the professional relationships essential to our understanding of our clients’ operations.

With thirteen years in the industry, Melissa is a trusted single point of contact for our clients. She began her career with Answer Excellence as an operator and worked her way up to shift supervisor. An essential component of our team since 2007, Melissa is now our new Supervisor of Operations. By putting not only our customers, but our employees first, she has empowered our staff with the tools they require to provide exceptional service.

With responsibilities that extend to the management of accounts and scheduling, Melissa facilitates a seamless operation across shifts to bring consistency to the coverage center. Having worked so closely with our clients for so long, she has keen insight into the history of their organizations and personnel to best provide the services they seek. Melissa’s insight and integrity have made possible her commitment to our company’s culture of teamwork and cooperation, and has in turn enabled our operation to thrive.

Picture of ValerieValerie Riddle
Trainer

Since she started her career with us as an operator in 2012, Valerie’s commitment has always been clear: we are not “just an answering service” – we represent our clients’ businesses to the outside world.

Back in high school, Valerie started her career in the fast food industry and quickly worked her way up to management. There she honed customer service skills and the attention to details needed to maintain inventories and adhere to standards.

Now a key member of our team, she takes great pride in running all the new hire orientations; from paperwork, to training, to introduction to our systems and software. Valerie is also HIPAA-Certified and serves as our HIPAA Compliance Officer.

As a former Answer Excellence operator, Valerie’s hands-on experience enables her to effectively step trainees through the nuances of complex accounts; so they gain confidence, but still feel genuinely supported.

Valerie says the best thing about her job is teaching people how to make the finest first impression as she continues to advance them to the next tier of excellence.

For More Information

Contact us and let our award-winning quality work for you, giving you peace of mind daily.

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Special thanks from our customers

"Answer Excellence answers our toll-free number 24x7. They make managing our business so much easier by taking orders on our website, handling inquiries, delivering messages, etc. We never worry about missing a call or order."
- Frank D., game designer and manufacturer
"Answer Excellence was the only company we could find who was able to provide the service that we require [fuel alarm monitoring]. We have been very pleased..."
- David C., manager
"I'm very glad I signed up with you... a real time saver and my callers appreciate always speaking to a live operator."
- Spencer G., electronic component distributor