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In honor of the Express Employment Professionals' 25th anniversary, the Express Clydesdales will be in Athens from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday, Dec. 4 at Trinity Valley Community College. Athens Fire Department will be present with a toy drive for Toys for Tots. This is an outdoor event and will abide by local government protocols for safety.

Express Employment Professionals, one of the top staffing companies in the United States and Canada, was co-founded by Bob Funk and has grown to employ nearly 600,000 people around the world.

“The Tyler office is celebrating its 25th anniversary and we are celebrating our opening,” said Kelly Jenkinson, Athens director of staffing. “We bought the Work Co. office in July and since we have opened, we have doubled.”

Jenkinson says they have doubled the companies they hire for and also have placed 63 people locally in spite of the pandemic. Between Tyler and Athens they offer employment for 200 companies.

“We look at families impacted, what we are trying to do is impact 5,000 families by finding 5,000 individuals jobs and this year we have paid 3,000 so far,” Jenkinson said. “We have been extremely fortunate to see the diversity in our market here, in spite of some companies shutting down and the oil field, COVID has had an impact, but we have not seen as big of an impact as other companies have.”

Funk visited the Canadian Western Agribition in Saskatchewan Canada, which is a livestock fair. While there, he fell in love with the beautiful black and white Clydesdales. Funk saw it as an opportunity to bring something special home to Oklahoma. They have become hosts to thousands of visitors each year at home and as a traveling team of good will ambassadors. The Clydesdales have been used as a branch of their marketing team since 1998.

Funk expressed has a deep respect and admiration for the horses.

“I respect and admire these gentle giants and enjoy seeing kids’ sense of awe when they are up close to these majestic animals,” Funk stated on his website.

The company’s motto is “to help as many people as possible find good jobs by helping as many clients as possible find good people.”

You can plan a visit to the ranch by visiting its website at expressclydesdales.com.

If you are in need of local employment, please contact 903-675-9269. Applications are accepted from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday at 303 S. Prairieville, Athens, or email kelly.jenkinson@expresspros.com.

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