By: Duane Blankenship | Category: Other | Issue: August 2014
Tulsa Shock Mascot, Volt, poses with Goodwill employees at the grand opening of the new retail store on Southwest Boulevard. (L to R): Joe Davis, Star Barley, Volt, Store Manager Jaime Monroe, Kristin Payne and Michelle MacKool.
Goodwill Industries of Tulsa celebrated the grand opening of its new “Route 66” Southwest Boulevard retail store in early July. The new store is located at 3110 Southwest Blvd., just south of Goodwill’s offices and former retail store.
Goodwill President David Oliver provided a historical perspective of how Goodwill arrived at this point. In 2002, Goodwill completed an expansion of the existing headquarters facility at 2800 Southwest Blvd. and felt it would be enough space to accommodate the organization well into the future. “But, thanks to the foresight and strategic planning of an outstanding board of directors, and the unwavering commitment of Goodwill’s staff to grow our mission, the future came much sooner than expected,” said Oliver.
From 2002 to 2013, Goodwill has experienced exceptional growth. A total of 21 million pounds of donated items was collected and processed last year, an increase of 63 percent; total store sales increased by 160 percent; the total number of individuals served in Goodwill training programs and Job Connection Program increased by 673 percent; the total number of individuals Goodwill assisted in job placement in the community increased by 408 percent; and total wages paid to employees with barriers to employment increased by 160 percent.
The new store represents Phase I of Goodwill’s total project. They will be remodeling the space at existing headquarters that was formerly occupied by the retail store. They will also add much needed training rooms for new initiatives such as collaboration with Union Public Schools to offer GED test preparation classes at Goodwill, plus collaboration with United Way to offer free tax preparation services. They will also expand the space available for processing donations and improving the convenience for donors dropping off items.
“The result of our incredible growth,” said Oliver, “was that we needed to expand and had the opportunity to purchase this site located so close to headquarters. By developing this property, Goodwill was able to expand our presence on Route 66.”
Store Manager Jaime Monroe is filled with excitement about the new facility. “It’s a beautiful store with an art deco influence throughout, and it’s full of merchandise at incredible Goodwill prices,” she said. “And we are so excited to be partnering with the Tulsa Shock WNBA team for our grand opening celebration.”
Regular store hours for all 11 retail locations are Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. and Sunday from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Goodwill Industries of Tulsa no longer sells furniture in any of their retail stores. Furniture may be purchased at the Goodwill Auction, located at the north end of the parking lot at 2800 Southwest Blvd. The Auction is held at 8:30 a.m. Monday through Friday. For further information about the Goodwill Auction, visit www.goodwilltulsa.org.
Furniture donations are accepted at the attended donation center at the south end of the Goodwill headquarters facility at 2800 Southwest Blvd. This donation center is open with an attendant on duty 24 hours per day, seven days per week. This is the only donation center where furniture can be dropped off for donation.
Goodwill Industries of Tulsa is a non-profit agency that provides work opportunities, job training and support services for people with disabilities or other barriers to employment. The revenue from the sale of donated goods helps to fund Goodwill’s training programs and services.
For more information, contact
3110 Southwest Blvd. Tulsa, OK 74107
Blankenship graduated from the University of Oklahoma and has enjoyed a lifetime career in advertising. He started his own advertising business in 1993 and enjoys creating graphic art and writing. Hobbies include hunting, fishing and pencil drawings. Duane and his wife, Janice, have been married over 50 years and are active in their church and community. He has been a contributing writer for Value News/Values Magazine since 2005.