It doesn’t take much convincing for Car-Mart associates to volunteer to help in their communities. Krista Jimerson, General Manager at Shawnee, Okla. is no exception.
Krista jumped at the opportunity for Car-Mart to partner with Sparky’s Off Road to collect water and Gatorade for local fire departments. The “Making It Splash” event will be held on June 22 at four Oklahoma Car-Mart locations, including Shawnee, Poteau, McAlester and Muskogee.
“Car-Mart is not just about selling cars and collecting money,” says Krista. “It’s about our communities. Our customers work and live where we work and live. If it wasn’t for the communities, we wouldn’t be here, and we want to do all we can to make our communities better.”
Krista, a life-long volunteer, knows what it’s like to be down on your luck. Many years ago, she found herself as a single mom homeless for 11 days with her two children. It was a humbling experience, but that’s behind her now. So, when people and community organizations come knocking, it’s easy to say ‘yes.’
From food drives to toy collections at Thanksgiving and Christmas and throughout the year, Krista’s Car-Mart lends a helping hand. “We’ll actually help our own customers who are in need,” says Krista, while adding that she and her staff develop lasting relationships with their customers and learn about their families and children. They know when to step in with an extra bag of groceries or gas money.
“We’ve done a ‘pay it forward’ event where we drove around town and handed out gifts and gas cards, plus toys and food to families. That was great,” Krista says. “It’s very humbling.”
The vibrant Krista also serves on the hospitality team at her church where she greets people with her smiling face every Sunday. “We don’t know people’s story. It just might be the only smile they see all week,” mentions Krista. “It’s better to give than receive.”
“Rockin’ it at Car-Mart”
Krista is thrilled to be a Car-Mart associate. Her neighbor suggested she apply for a job at Car-Mart. She went to the local dealership to pick up an application – in her ‘loungy’ pants. “I know, I know,” laughs Krista, who adds she didn’t plan on completing the application on-site. That visit landed her a two-hour interview with the General Manager (GM) and a telephone interview three days later.
In her conversation with the GM, she was asked where she saw herself in five years. Krista’s response, “I’ll have your job someday,” Krista says. “And, now, here I am rockin’ it!”
Krista joined Car-Mart as an Account Representative in August 2015. That December, she became a Manager in Training (MIT), then Assistant Manager in July 2016. And on January 1, 2018, she became the GM in Shawnee.
For Krista, the best part about working at Car-Mart is its focus on its associates. “The company is family oriented and very helpful with family issues. It doesn’t get much better than that,” says Krista.
Speaking of family, Krista’s family is about to get larger. She just became engaged to Jason, who has four children. Krista has three children, plus two grandchildren. Krista and Jason are looking to tie the knot on February 20, 2020. That would be ‘oh two, two oh, two oh, two oh,’ she says.
That’s ‘rockin’ it!’