The Evergreen Awards
The Evergreen Market’s annual Holiday party is something that each employee looks forward to. This year, we added a very special new component we called The Evergreen Awards. We have the best staff and they deserve every ounce of recognition. The Evergreen Awards allowed us to spotlight some of the rockstars that make up the best staff in cannabis– team Evergreen. It is not lost on us that the success of our dispensaries hinge upon our floor staff. Our friendly budtenders that service the Auburn, Kent, Federal Way and surrounding areas are the reason our customers choose to come to Evergreen Market. Even as far as Puyallup or Covington, people choose us because of our dedication to connection and the customer experience.
The Evergreen Awards had a simple premise, the winners were voted on by their peers and during the ceremony were recognized by their managers and given a special trophy (okay, they were bongs) to symbolize the appreciation their team has for them. The store specific awards included the Values award, the THC award, and the Cannasuer award. With as many killer employees we have, the most difficult part was to only pick one winner per category.
Our first award was the THC award. This award recognizes excellence in customer service. Without our guests there is no business, no Evergreen Market. The crew members that take the time to make each visit to our Auburn or Renton pot stores an experience of positivity and impact are who set us apart. They are one of the big reasons our customers choose to shop with us.
The Cannasuer award was given to the person on staff who never stops increasing their cannabis knowledge. These individuals stay on top of new industry and cannabis information, they share their knowledge with the people around them with enthusiasm, and they challenge others to step their game up.
The Values award was designated for the eternal team player who stays late, covers shifts, and picks up slack wherever possible for the sake of the team. As a company, our values center around passion, integrity, respect, and community– these individuals embody all four daily.
And the winners are…
THC Award – Ashley Chapman
Ashley is a welcoming face to everyone that walks into our Auburn store located by the Iron Horse Casino. She has a gift for making people feel comfortable and accepted. Her customers appreciate her friendly presence and dedication to providing them with a positive experience.
Cannasuer Award – Tara Clark
Even before joining the Evergreen Market family, Tara’s voracious appetite for knowledge was a defining trait. Tara soaks up cannabis information like a sponge and uses it to keep the people around her engaged and informed. She’s a true asset to our team and valuable resource for our Auburn, Federal Way, and Des Moines area customers.
Values Award – Lena Rhodes
Lena shines positivity over the Auburn Evergreen Market store. From affirmations on social media raising up her team, to smiles and support on shift keeping the vibes good. Lena is in it for the people right alongside her and has earned the respect and appreciation of her peers and management.
THC Award – Ema Waggoner
Ema is sunshine personified. She always provides a positive attitude and encouraging word to anybody that walks into our North Renton weed store near Renton Airport. She’s pretty easy to spot too, just look for the big smile. Whether coming from Seatac, Skyway, Burien, or Newcastle Ema makes sure that each customer’s trip to our stores is worth it.
Cannasuer Award – Peter Pham
Before moving into his role of Assistant Inventory Control, Peter earned his cannasuer status at our South Renton location. His clear commitment to cannabis and enthusiasm for everything encompassing the plant continued over with his move to our North Renton weed store on Rainier Ave. If you’re lucky enough to catch him in between taking care of inventory and get a recommendation, you’re guaranteed to be picking up some fire.
Values Award – Jon Hart
Jon treats his team like family. He’s the bringer of laughs and source of support for the crew at our North Renton weed store location. His uncanny ability to diffuse tension and bring people out of their funk is invaluable. He hustles to keep things running smoothly even if it means a sacrifice of pushing his break back or going the extra mile to make a positive impression.
THC Award – Briee Kooken
Briee’s magical ability to connect with our customers is astounding. She regularly is mentioned by name in reviews
by customers blown away by her attentiveness and sincerity. She sets the tone for service in our South Renton weed store located near Ikea. Whether it’s a guest having a rough day finding solace in an exchange with Briee or a new customer who (thanks to her) is now a lifelong Evergreen Market shopper.
Cannasuer Award – Samantha Johnston
Have you ever talked to a comic book collector about comics? Or talked to an artist about art? That’s what talking to Sam about weed feels like. Her passion for cannabis oozes from her as soon as the conversation starts. Sam makes it easy to celebrate all things pot and make sure you leave with the choicest of buds after a visit to the South Renton weed store.
Values Award – Mikey Mullen
Aside from the founders themselves, Mikey is Evergreen Market’s longest standing employee. He’s a diehard member of the family that guides our new hires through training. Mikey makes time for anybody whether it’s a quick high five or an attentive ear to vent to. There is nobody on the Evergreen team that Mikey doesn’t embrace into the culture and make feel welcome. It’s no wonder that he’s become a part of what makes our South Renton weed store filled with good vibes.
IC of the Year – Ashley Marshall
Ashley is the Inventory Control Specialist at our North Renton weed store near Skyway. She has been with the company for 3 years and worked her way to IC from being a budtender/cashier. Evergreen has been her home since coming on board, and the company wouldn’t be the same without her. She’s carved herself out to be a leader among the company veterans.
Educator of the Year – Elan Gratrix
It’s hard to believe there is enough time in the day for Elan to do everything that she does. Between trapeze, beekeeping, yoga, and just finishing up her degree, I am fully convinced there is nothing this wonder woman can’t do. She makes us proud as an educator by taking the time to really dig into what the needs of the customers at our North Renton weed store are. She has been a value to our outreach program and a great help with assisting with the marketing department.
Assistant Store Manager of the Year – Dylan Buhl
Dylan organizes the sales floor and runs his shifts with efficiency and service as his top priorities. He is a remarkable leader and fantastic mentor to his crew. Lots of Evergreen employees find him to be a comfort and safe space to come to while maintaining respect for him as a manager. He does an important (and difficult) balancing act of being both an authority on the floor and a friend to the rest of the staff. Dylan has worked at multiple stores, but is currently home at our North Renton weed store.
Store Manager of the Year – Jason Strain
Jason Strain has spent time as store manager at all three of our locations, but is currently the captain of our South Renton weed store down the hill from Valley Medical Center. Jason (or Jstrain, as we call him around the office) believes in leading his team with positivity. He would rather give the benefit of the doubt over jumping to conclusions which leaves his crew feeling safe and looked out for. If you get the chance to make this man laugh, take it. Jstrain’s laughter is a real treat.
EPG Member of the Year – Marty Smith
Marty has played multiple roles while Evergreen Market has become the first class weed store that it is today. He currently wears the title of Compliance and Facilities Director, making sure that the stores each have the hardware and safety measures that they need (plus so much more). He’s been vital to the building and opening of both Renton weed stores, our Auburn store, and is currently hard at work getting our fourth pot shop ready to open in Kirkland. Marty is the man ready to be whatever the company needs him to be and couldn’t be a better choice for the first Evergreen Partner Group member of the year.
Our team drives our success. Congratulations to all of our 2018 Evergreen Award winners!
If you’re interested in joining our team, scroll to the bottom of the page and click ‘Careers in Retail Marijuana’ to see what job postings are available at our Auburn or Renton weed stores!
Written by: Nikki Marangon
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