The Awake family: Meet Jesse
At Awake Window & Door Co, we believe in our team. Everyone plays an important role in building beautiful window and door products, but that’s only a small part of who they are. We want you to get to know them. Their dreams are bold. Their stories are real. And we’re grateful, as a company, to be building a future together.
In this article, we’d like to introduce you to Jesse. Jesse has performed several roles at Awake from building and equipment maintenance to shipping, to a more recent role of assisting in our storeroom. Throughout the day, Jesse ensures every fastener, corner key, and operator is readily available for our manufacturing team to build efficiently. Jesse’s great attitude and listening ear have been a great addition to the culture that we’re creating… a workplace where people are proud of what they do and feel supported in work and life.
Let’s meet Jesse…
Awake: Jesse, how long have you been at Awake and how did you get connected to us?
Jesse: I’ve been at Awake a year and a handful of days. I heard about Awake right after I lost my last job. I created an account through AZ @ Work and was told by the gal there that she thought I’d be a good fit for Awake. There we go…
Awake: Why is the mission at Awake important to you?
Jesse: It’s important to me because recidivism is ridiculous in this country. Somebody outside of government and law enforcement and legislation needs to do something. Even if we could reduce it to a small amount… these are people’s lives.
You know, everyone has their line they draw before doing something extreme. I, myself, have been in situations… not that I’m going to go back to enlist in criminal behavior, but… ways to get money start to cross your mind when you need it.
I still see it first-hand. Life has its way of putting you in a case of the “F it’s” if you know what I mean. When a man’s in that position, it’s only a matter of time before he is back into criminal behavior or on drugs because, you know… “F” it. It’s like there’s no other option.
Awake: What worked for you to rebuild your life once you got home?
Jesse: What worked for me was God… number one. And my daughters… number two. Falling in love with my daughters again, I realized they deserve the best dad. I had the greatest motivation.
So, when I first got out, my first job was with a taxicab company. Then, I had a job for about ten years installing garage doors.
But I’ve never had it like I do at Awake. With Awake, it seems like every single piece of my life is supporting me. Your employer doesn’t usually care about the other things that are going on in your life. Awake does.
Awake: Can you tell us a little about your experience in prison?
Jesse: Well, my first experience on a prison yard was down in Buckeye. I was getting my clothing, so we were all in a line and I remember thinking the only difference between the inmate and the CO working behind the counter was the color of their shirt. They both had full-sleeve tattoos, tattoos on their necks, and they were joking with us about what was going to happen when we got into our cells.
I mean… it was scary a little bit. You look at that and think, “So who do you really go to? Who’s protecting you?” I mean, the officers are there to protect you, but you’ve entered some kind of hardcore style of living.
For me, prison is also where I began serving God. I did a three-year sentence, and in prison, you can focus on one thing and you get pretty good at doing that one thing. So I focused on God. And when I listened to him, I didn’t hear “You deserve this,” I heard, “I love you” and “I miss you.”
You don’t hear that from anyone else when you’re in there. That kind of breaks a guy down.
Awake: What are you most proud of in your life?
Jesse: Well, my girls. I’m extremely proud of both of my girls. They have grown up to be better than I could have ever raised them to be. They happen to have very good moms, but my girls are better than their parents.
And the fact that I’m still sitting here… not behind bars. I’m proud of that. There have been some close calls. There have been several things that happened where it looked like there was no way I could fix it. But I’ve been told that you need the impossibility because that’s when you see God.
So when there’s no hope… I need to get my feet out of bed. I need to get my pants on. I have to believe doors will open and here I sit.
Awake: What’s the future look like for Jesse?
Jesse: For me… Jesse and Awake… our futures are combined because there’s huge potential for me and huge potential for Awake. Since working here, I have a drive again and I believe I’ll be able to serve Awake in different capacities. I love imagining that – getting myself to a place where I could be used for big things. I don’t know any details; I just think I’ll be doing even bigger things here at Awake.
I mean, even with just the crew that we have here right now… and our killer owners… Awake is changing lives. That’s saving the world.
We have no idea how big this thing can get.
If you are interested in a life-changing career with Awake or know someone that may be, please click the link and find out more information: Careers – Awake Window & Door Co. (awakewdc.com)
For more information regarding our social mission check out: Mission – Awake Window & Door Co. (awakewdc.com)