Bear Necessities expands food options under helm of retail supervisor Jamie Garton

by Michelle Saport  |   

Jamie Garton, the retail supervisor for Bear Necessities (aka the Bear) in Gorsuch Commons, moved to Alaska in 2003 from Sparks, Nev. She lived in Juneau and then Fairbanks when she began her career at NMS. Transferring from Fairbanks with NMS in 2015, she quickly moved up to her current position at UAA.

With years of experience in retail positions, she takes her work on campus very seriously. Every day, she strives to meet and exceed the expectations of her customers on campus. She has listened to the students and made buying choices based on their needs and wants. In 2015, she launched a highly successful "green market" at the Bear that sells fresh fruit and vegetables. That same year she created an organic section where students can find an assortment of organic options in the grocery and frozen section-despite the additional cost of organic options.

In 2016, she expanded sushi and paleo options at the store. She also started a special coffee card exclusive to the Bear, offering customers the option to pre-purchase $25 worth of coffee at a discount. This new program has been a win-win for the Bear and its customers, resulting in increased coffee sales.

Jamie gives tremendous credit to her staff and says much of the success of the C-store is due to their feedback and hard work.

Regarding her new home state, Jamie loves the aurora borealis, moose in her front yard and driving through Denali. In the next five years, Jamie sees herself finishing college and applying her knowledge and skills in business partnership that serve her community.

This profile originally appeared in Seawolf Dining's newsletter.

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