Cathy Virtz’s Multi-Generation Westminster Family Tradition

For nearly 30 years, Cathy Virtz has been working at our Penguin Random House distribution center in Westminster, Maryland, most recently as Shipping Manifestor.  Cathy recently shared her story with Igloo, covering her tenure with the company and how she has encouraged a number of her family members to join the ranks at Westminster – a true multi-generation family tradition.  Here is Cathy, in her own words. 

“I have been here at Penguin Random House going on 29 years.  I work in Shipping on Hahn Rd. in Westminster.  I came here in 1989.  I have worked in many areas … Shipping, A/R, Customer Service, Picking. You name it, I’ve worked it. “I got my daughter, Sherry Virtz, here right out of school.  She worked in a grocery store, banks, not having benefits. I put my foot down and told her, ‘Girl, you have got to get something steady. If you want a car and those designer jeans you have to have, you got to get a job.’ So I told her to come here.  Well, she did. Her words to me were, ‘Mom, if you think I’m staying here for any time you’re crazy.’ Well, she worked in the warehouse and kept coming to work. Loved the pay checks, loved the vacations, loved all the perks we have.  28 years later she is still here.  She is now in Sales.  Her title is Fields Sales Manager. So for someone who said, 'Mom I’m never staying here,’ she has sure has made a great career for herself.  She loves her job and the company. “Since her, I’ve had my granddaughter Brooke, who worked summers here while in college.  She is now a pastry chef.   My grandson Dylan worked here, too, but he moved on and now works for NASCAR.  My other granddaughter worked here as well and the experience helped her learn what she wanted in life. “I also brought in my niece Christina, who has now been here 5 years. She works in our Credit department.  She often thanks me for getting her to give Penguin Random House a try.  Prior to her time here, she also worked as a banker, with no benefits or vacation time.  Even though all of us have our good days and bad, she loves her job.  And we always look forward to getting a girl’s night out together at the wonderful Holiday Party. “Those of us in my family who worked here in the past and those who are still here  love what the company has done for us and the nice things we are able to have in life.”      

Inside the Westminster and Crawfordsville Open House Events

Our Penguin Random House distribution centers in Westminster, Maryland and Crawfordsville, Indiana both recently welcomed colleagues and their families to Open House events.  For a look at the informative, fun, and well-attended activities, read on. 

Our Westminster Operations Center held its first Open House in ten years for employees and their families on Saturday, June 10.  There was a turnout of 650 people, who enjoyed wonderful weather and took advantage of the opportunity to see our warehouse operations.  Walking at their own pace and guided by informative signs, maps and photos posted throughout the tour route, visitors were met by 45 orange‐shirted warehouse ambassadors who shared their operations knowledge and expertise.  One comment often heard was: “I had no idea this place was so large!”  Free books at the end of the tour were a big hit. Many thanks to the Westminster Open House Team and everyone who helped make the event a success.  And a big thanks to Dave Thompson, who took photos.  To view a gallery of Dave’s Open House shots, click here.     –Barbara Harden     Our Crawfordsville Distribution Center opened its doors for an Open House on Saturday, June 17.  The 646 employees and family members who participated was more than double the number of people who attended the previous Open House in 2013.   Everyone was given a tour through the Returns, Loose Pick, Full Carton, Service Area and Shipping areas.  Employees were working at stations to demonstrate and explain processes and workflow.  The event ended with a book giveaway, with each visitor receiving 5 free books.  Loud applause and big thanks to the Crawfordsville Open House team, including Human Resources Assistant Director Jerry Henderson, who took photos,  including the ones below.   –Jennifer Kennedy