UPS Founders’ Day celebrates past and present
As a 32-year UPSer, Dan McMackin has experienced his fair share of Founders’ Day celebrations. In this blog, he reflects what the day means to him.
By Dan McMackin, UPS Public Relations Manager, on 8/26/2011
On Aug. 26, UPSers around the world will celebrate Founders’ Day by commemorating our company’s beginnings on Aug. 28, 1907, and honoring our long-serving employees who have reached a five-year milestone.
I started at UPS when I was still a kid of only 17. And 32 years later, I’m still here, becoming what some call a “cradle-to-grave” UPSer.
On Founders’ Day, I’m reminded of another UPSer who started at age 17: Jim Casey. He not only started at age 17. He started UPS at age 17! And then he spent his entire life working at UPS – into his 90s. A recent Investor’s Business Daily feature
highlighted Jim’s life – his long tenure, humble management style and unyielding devotion to customer needs. Jim set a tone that still permeates the hallways, boardrooms and loading docks of our 1,800 facilities.
One of those who remembers Jim is my co-worker Gene Reilly, known affectionately by all as “Geno,” who will mark his 40th year at UPS this month. Gene actually spent time chauffeuring Jim to and from his Manhattan apartment back in the 1970s when UPS was based in Greenwich, Conn. Geno’s version of a limousine was, in fact, an old Checker cab converted for personal use. Talk about humble!
Another recently retired UPSer who knew Jim – and Detroit like the back of his hand, I might add – is Marty Peters. Marty drove for 63 years and is the longest-tenured UPSer in our history – next to Jim, of course. I’m sure Marty knows exactly what day Founders’ Day is, having retired on Aug. 28 at the age of 87. Happy Founders’ Day, Marty! The man has a heart of gold, and, like Jim, he’s humble to a fault.
Some here say that being a UPS driver, which I was for several years, keeps you humble. Drivers represent the foundation of our culture. They connect people with the things they need to live their lives and run their businesses. They even perform occasional acts of heroism like pulling people out of submerged cars and returning bags of money to their rightful owners. In an age of uncertainty, their humility and heroism are two reassuring attributes.
On this Founders’ Day, there will be thousands of UPSers celebrating milestones of 20 years or more: pilots who keep our air network running, mechanics who keep our fleet running, package handlers who keep our hubs running and our management team that keeps the business running. And all 400,000 employees will pause to honor longevity and a singular focus – our customers. We will raise a cup of coffee and a piece of cake to both these milestones and to a culture centered on serving others.