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Employee Spotlight: Joseph

00268 Joseph Lancaster Employee Relations Blog Profile 300x320 1

Every Goodwill employee has a story behind their experience working for the organization, and many might agree that working at Goodwill is much more than just a job. But for some, it’s also given them a second chance at life.

Joseph, a material handling supervisor at Evergreen Goodwill’s Ballard location, pointed to a photo of his daughter resting on a window sill as he recalled his struggle with addiction – something he’s battled tirelessly to overcome.

“She got taken away from me from CPS about six years ago,” Joseph said. “So, when I came here, I was in a very dark place.”

Joseph has since reached sobriety, staying clean for the past five years. During his time working at Goodwill, Joseph linked arms with the organization’s network of support to not only further his education but also apply for grants to pay for things like rent, clothes and furniture – all helping him to reunite with his daughter.

“This company has helped me get into an apartment, and then helped me learn how to be a material handler, to a material handler lead, to a material handler supervisor,” Joseph said.

Joseph first worked at Goodwill several years ago at a location in Wenatchee. Working there for less than a year, he described his experience in that short time as one that resonated with him.

Flash-forwarding to 2017, he found himself applying for work at Goodwill once again, landing a job as a material handler in Edmonds. Joseph said the experience not only gave him the chance to start building a new life for himself, but he also established a group of colleagues that has become a second family.

“They’ve seen me go through a lot. I’ve lost my parents [while working] here, they helped me through my recovery, helped me get my kid back. I mean, yeah, it’s a family here,” said Joseph. “And now, I have transferred to Ballard to make my family bigger.”

Goodwill is also where a budding relationship between Joseph and his now wife took form.

“Goodwill’s the reason why I got married,” Joseph said. “You know, I found my love here, too.”

As he worked toward his professional goals, Joseph took Goodwill management training classes to help him develop his career.

“The programs, the job training programs … It’s a good stepping stone for a lot of young people, middle-aged people, people that are trying to get back on their feet,” said Joseph.

But for people willing to put in the time and tenacity to drive forward their career, Joseph said the opportunities available at Goodwill are seemingly endless, and he challenged others with the organization to not be afraid to speak up.

“You can grow in management, you can grow into retail, you can grow into marketing, you can go to new goods, anything’s possible. All you literally have to do here is ask,” Joseph said. “Always take that chance, don’t be scared – the Goodwill will not let you fail.”

Joseph is now looking to continue furthering his career at Goodwill and hopes to one day run a warehouse, managing donations.

“I take every day [as a] new challenge, and every day is a new victory,” Joseph said. “I could have chosen any other job, but I chose this job, and honestly this job chose me.”

                                                               

If you or someone you know is interested in finding a career at Evergreen Goodwill, visit evergreengoodwill.org/jobs-at-goodwill.

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