MADISONVILLE, Ky. (4/23/13) - Lisa Berry, Store Manager of the Salvation Army, has been working for the company for five years. However, in May she will be saying good-bye to all her loyal customers and co-workers and be moving off to Texas to be with her husband.
“I’ve been here for almost five years, would have been five in June. I just love this job… love this job. I feel like I have been able to accomplish a lot since I’ve been here.” When Lisa first started, there were bags in the corner of the back room from the floor to the ceiling and no organization whatsoever. “I told everyone this would have to be the first thing we will have to take care of. So we got to organizing and over a span of two years, it took us to get rid of the mess,” stated Berry.
Lisa’s husband currently works for a food service company that provides food for prisons and in order to be closer to him, she will be moving down to Texas to join him. They were able to sell their home out in the country in just three days and also have been able to find a place where they will be living south of Dallas. “We actually started down there in Texas. My husband was a Corporal in the army for 30 years. I guess since we started out there, we will be ending there. We moved a lot when my husband was in the military. We have also moved several times with his new job. It just goes to show that life’s not set, things change and when things change you just have to roll with it and go on,” Berry also stated.
J.L. Graham, News Director of SurfKY News expressed, “I have had the honor of knowing Lisa for some time now, and am honored to have served our community alongside her. I’ve worked with a lot of good people in Hopkins County, but Lisa is one of the best. Hopkins County is losing an angel, but the Staff of SurfKY News truly wishes her the best. We thank you, Lisa, for serving the community, helping those in need, and just being a blessing to everyone. You will be missed, and never forgotten.”
Stephanie Pollard will be taking over Lisa’s position after she leaves next month. “Stephanie has been a cashier since I have been here. When I first started she was actually a volunteer while on the k-tap program but then moved into the cashier position. She is trying to move up in the world too and ultimately that’s what we want people to be able to do so they don’t need the assistance anymore. I actually recommended her to the majors next door, to at least give her a chance. She’s excellent. I feel confident leaving everything in her hands. I wouldn’t leave it to her if I didn’t think she couldn’t do it, but she can. She will do a fine job and will learn as she goes. I think it is a blessing I am leaving, so she can have this job. She has struggled and worked really hard in her life and I am glad to give it to her,” expressed Berry.
Stephanie Pollard, who will be replacing Lisa expressed, “There is a lot to say that won’t fit into one sentence. I’m trying really hard now not to cry, but she’s been an excellent addition since she has been here. She’s the best manager I have ever had from anywhere I have ever worked. And it’s going to be hard not seeing her every day when I get to work. And she will truly be missed.”
Over the course of the years, dealing with the public has been wonderful but has also had its setbacks. “Dealing with people in the public you have to be able to do that without upsetting someone. You’ve got to have a broad set of shoulders,” said Berry.
About 82% of income from the store goes into the building next door to help people in the community. With that money they are able to help someone who needs to pay an electric or gas bill, it helps pay for food and to provide for the soup kitchen. It also helps pay the running expenses, such as those who are on payroll. “This is where the sole amount of our money comes from except for the Christmas money. A lot of people are under the misconception that everyone here are all volunteers,” stated Berry.
Kassy Holmes, Social Worker for the Salvation Army expressed, ”Lisa is truly going to be missed. We have held back a lot of tears so far, but it’s eventually going to come out. I’ve worked with Lisa now for five years and I love her to death. She is a hard worker and has been dedicated to the Salvation Army and it’s going to be hard to do it without her. She’s been big help and not just as far as the store but for other things as well. She has big shoes that will have to filled and I am going to miss her tremendously.”
With the economy being as it is, things have really progressed in both Hopkins and Muhlenberg Counties. “The income of the store has also come up since we have become more organized. This job has really humbled me. There are a lot of people out there who need so much help. Some because of their own fault. Some who really didn’t have much of a choice and those are the ones we really feel good helping. I’m proud of what I’ve done here in these last five year’s. I wish I didn’t have to go but I do and sometimes life just takes you to different places,” continued Berry.
Shala Williams, another co-worker of Lisa’s stated, “She will be greatly missed. She was such a great asset to the community.”
“My most rewarding and favorite memory here, was when we volunteered for the Disaster Relief in Nashville, Tennessee when the Cumberland River flooded. We rode down there in the disaster vehicle for a week. We feed people, we helped them find clothing and we helped with relocating them. You talk about being humbled there. People were coming up to us to eat off a canteen truck alongside the road with debris everywhere because they don’t have anything else or anywhere to go. As a whole with the company, this was my most rewarding experience. Outside of that, I just loved being in the store. I absolutely loved it,” Berry also expressed.
SurfKy would like to thank Lisa for all that she has done with the community and we also wish her the best of luck in Texas. We know where ever she may go; she will be able to make a difference.
Photo Provided by Amber Mena
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