Kevin Jones (BSFCS ’05) wears red and black proudly everywhere he goes. Whether he’s at work or home, people know he is a Georgia Bulldog by the passion he exhibits. Kevin currently serves as the senior procurement manager at RaceTrac where he has been instrumental in connecting his company with the University of Georgia.
A first-generation college student, Kevin was attracted to UGA because of the school’s reputation and the variety of cultural scenes in Athens: music, food, football, Greek life and the arts. Athens is a special place that offers something for everyone, a perfect complement to the university.
Upon graduation, Kevin started his career with Kauffman Tires before serving in the United States Army for five years. After his years of service, he went to work for McMaster-Carr, during which time he earned an MBA. The program prepared him for his position at RaceTrac, where he has been for the last four years.
In his early days at RaceTrac, Kevin noticed the company was hiring across the state and region for supply chain positions, but not from his alma mater. He was determined to change that. He knew the supply chain program at UGA was growing and the students graduating from the program were experienced and knowledgeable. It was clear the supply chain program was striving to become a prominent program in the state, and he wanted to see more red and black at RaceTrac.
RaceTrac provides a collaborative, light-hearted and family-like environment. Working in an open space allows access to senior executives at the company and creates a ripple effect of fun. The company operates cross-functionally, overlapping departments and opening the door to innovative ideas. Because of the welcoming culture of the company and the inter-connectivity among departments, Kevin knew it would be a great learning environment for supply chain students.
While attending last summer’s UGA corporate alumni event, Kevin connected with UGA’s Office of Corporate Relations who introduced him to Marty Parker, director of the UGA Supply Chain Advisory Board. The advisory board serves as the primary point of contact between industry and the UGA Supply Chain program, ensuring that the supply chain curriculum meets the needs of employers, providing speakers for classes, and connecting employers to bright talent. Kevin joined the board on behalf of RaceTrac to create a pipeline of supply chain talent from UGA.
“Investing in the university as a company representative is what I should be doing as an alumnus, in my opinion,” said Kevin. “I believe that by supporting UGA with time and financial generosity, a company or individual is investing in future employees.”
Kevin encourages current students to take advantage of networking and experiential learning opportunities, including internships, while also enjoying Athens and all the city has to offer. For those who have just graduated, his advice is timely, “Give yourself grace. It’s not going to be perfect but failure is part of growth.”