Pillar Moment: Jesus Almodovar and Jose Vazquez

Our pillars are the foundation of everything we do at Millwood. They represent our dedication to our customers, team members and God. They are the embodiment of the ideal qualities that we all strive for at Millwood, in both our professional and personal lives. Trust, servitude, discipleship and integrity are the characteristics we hope to instill in all team members across every location and department. Today, we are taking the opportunity to highlight two of the many team members who go above and beyond when representing Millwood.

Jose Vazquez and Jesus Almodovar both started at our Alburtis, PA facility as pallet repair workers who were able to rise through the ranks to leadership positions. Both of these team members have troubled pasts and needed a second chance. They found success at Millwood. Jesus is now a line lead at our Tunkhannock, PA facility and Jose is a supervisor at Alburtis.

Jose was living in a halfway house after leaving prison when a friend referred him to Millwood. He was hired five days later. Through hard work and dedication, he was promoted to supervisor. Having worked on the line previously helps him build rapport with the team members he supervises.

Before prison, Jose was the general manager of a flooring store for 20 years.

“There, it was all about business, it was never about the people who worked there,” Jose said. “Here, they accepted me based on my integrity and my work ethic, not what my past may have said about me.”

Jose said it was liberating to work somewhere that allowed him a second chance without judgment. In addition to his professional success, he now has a house, a car and has recently gotten engaged.

“Millwood has given me the platform to be able to make a difference not just in my life, but for my sons also,” Jose said. “They have given me the ability to show my sons that if you keep working hard, good things happen.”

Jesus, who also started in pallet repair and rose through the ranks, came from a difficult background as well. After dropping out of school at 15, Jesus took to the streets and was unable to keep a job longer than a few months. 

Jesus expressed appreciation for Millwood’s willingness to allow him to grow professionally, as he was promoted to a line lead at Tunkhannock. 

“It just blew my mind,” Jesus said. “These people were letting me move up and helping me move up.”

Jesus tries to serve as an example to his fellow team members that hard work and commitment can turn your life around. 

“In two weeks, I’ll be closing on a house,” Jesus said. “I was barely able to keep a room before. That makes me want to work harder.”

Jesus says that working at Millwood changed his life for the better in many ways. 

“Working here saved my life,” Jesus said. “With the help and support they gave me, it gave me a chance to do something.”

These team members’ stories show that no matter what your background is, you can find success and a second chance with hard work and commitment. Millwood is blessed to have Jesus and Jose as a part of our family, and we thank them for all that they do each day to make Millwood a better place.

Jose and Jesus shared their testimonial on our YouTube channel as well. Check out the video below to hear them tell their story.

Author: Jessica Chizmar