Come Aug. 20, Dwight Jones will celebrate 20 years with Sentry Management Inc.’s Baldwin Park team.
Jones, who serves as maintenance supervisor, is tasked with planning, organizing and providing supervision and oversight of the daily maintenance operations in the community. This includes the Baldwin Park Residential Owners Association Inc., Baldwin Park Joint Committee, Inc. and Baldwin Commercial Owners Association.
“It’s been a lot of years, and I think each year, I learn something I could use the next year to help me continue to grow in my job,” Jones says. “Overall, I think the No.1 lesson I learned from the very beginning is patience. I think patience has helped me be the professional I am today and has contributed to the longevity of my job here.”
JACK OF ALL TRADES
The first buildings in Baldwin Park broke ground in 2003, after the 1,100-acre Naval Training Center, two miles from downtown, closed in the mid-1990s.
Jones started with Baldwin Park as the only maintenance employee in 2004.
Being a brand new property, the job yielded a slew of challenges. Everything was new to Jones, and he had to figure out how to fix and handle projects as they came up.
Although the work kept him constantly occupied, Jones says he enjoyed the hard labor.
As the development expanded and more people moved to the area, the workload and demand grew.
He began to develop a schedule to keep up with tasks such as making sure inspections are completed and contacting vendors.
“We try to stay consistent and organized,” he says. “That’s been the key to being able to maintain everything. Now we know how the residents like things. There’s a standard. You have to set a high standard for yourself and for them.”
Eventually, Jones’ team expanded to include six other employees who work under him to help maintain the community centers, mews areas, pools, playgrounds, parks and more
In looking for employees, Jones says he searches for hard working individuals who are humble, can take constructive criticism, are self motivated and carry pride in what they do.
“We try to make sure we have some knowledge in every aspect,” he says. “Even though the vendors have their different expertises, we make sure we can judge if what they’re offering to do is what is best for the community. We also try to save as much money as we can for the property. It keeps us very busy.”
One of Jones’ favorite moments so far in his career with Baldwin Park is when he was recognized for his hard work by being presented with the Sentry Management Maintenance Associate of the Year award in 2007.
Jones says the people are what has kept him in his role for nearly two decades.
“I love working with people such as Susan (Comisky) and Stacey (Fryrear); I’ve been so fortunate to work with a group of incredible people,” he says. “When you have someone that can help you grow in your role and continue to do what you do and give you some freedom to use your abilities, then you have a good experience and great opportunity.”
PATH TO SUCCESS
Jones grew up with his seven other siblings on a farm in North Carolina.
“What inspires me about my work is what inspires me to work hard; my parents, brothers and sisters have always been an example of hard work for me,” he says. “I try to imitate them, and my wife and I have this thing where our yearly reviews are report cards, so I must bring a good report card home.”
Jones says he visited Orlando once for Walt Disney World and fell in love with the climate.
He has now been in Orlando for about 24 years and resides on the east side of the city.
Although Jones says he originally wanted to be a contractor for the property, as time passed, he realized how much he enjoyed his role.
Jones’ favorite aspect about the Baldwin Park community is the people.
“A majority of the people on this property are very, very nice,” he says. “I’ve had the opportunity to kind of get to know some of them over the years. They’re just really kind people.”
Jones plans on staying with Baldwin Park, as he says there is still more growth to come.
In addition to his passion for the work, Jones says he enjoys the freedom he has to participate in hobbies and activities outside of his job.
He loves watching sports such as basketball where he cheers on the Golden State Warriors.
He and his wife, Sangeeta, enjoy Disney and the beaches, as well as spend time with their boxer, Hughely.