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50 years with GardaWorld: Employee Ron Johansen still making a difference

By: Kelly Madey
September 23, 2014

Over the past 50 years, Ron Johansen, a good humored, part-time employee, and professional gold prospector out of Fresno, CA, has been making a name for himself at GardaWorld. From Driver/Messenger to Branch Owner and back again, Ron’s filled many roles and has been part of numerous procedure changes, including the introduction of computers.

Pctured here: Ron Johansen with Fresno Branch Owner Felix Quintero

 

Over the past 50 years, Ron Johansen, a good humored, part-time employee, and professional gold prospector out of Fresno, CA, has been making a name for himself at GardaWorld.

 

From Driver/Messenger to Branch Owner and back again, Ron’s filled many roles and has been part of numerous procedure changes, including the introduction of computers.

 

As we mark his 50th anniversary with our company, Ron’s colleagues tell us his impact, both past and present, can be seen on a daily basis. “Ron has mentored many people here in Fresno and has a real knack for hiring the right individuals. In the past few years we’ve had four 35+ year employees retire, all of whom were hired by Ron during his time as Branch Owner,” said Julio Magana, Senior Manager, Northern California and Nevada.

 

“He is a huge motivator for the people here,” echoed current Fresno Branch Owner, Felix Quintero. “Over the years managers have asked Ron for his advice and ideas and he’s always been enthusiastic about sharing with us. He’s inspired a sense of confidence and collaboration amongst the management team here. “

 

Ron started as a Driver/Messenger in 1964 before becoming the Assistant Branch Owner a year later. He became the Fresno Branch Owner in 1967 where he stayed until 1989, until he wanted to go back to being a Driver/Messenger. Ron retired in 1998 but stayed on part-time and has been doing the short route once a week for the past five years.

 

“When I first started, we had two trucks and two local runs between Bakersfield, CA and Fresno, CA, working out of a two car garage,” Ron recalled. “We didn’t have our own vaults so we had to go to every bank in town.”

 

“It was hard work back then. We had cloth bags half filled with coin and no machinery like fork lifts. It was nothing but back power. Plus, there were no computers so everything was on paper, or in your head, like the routes we all knew like the back of our hand,” he said.

 

After all these years, Ron’s learned a thing or two and offers this advice to those just starting their career in our industry; “It’s a full-time job. Get in there, be on time, do your best and you’ll have a job for life. It’s a physical job so it’s important to take care of your health. Be alert and always be cautious.”

 

When asked why he’s still working at age 79, Ron said simply, “I come in now to see the guys. It perks up my week.”