New Grocery Manager Good Guys

With more than 50 years of experience between them in the grocery business, Scott South and Darrell Guthrie have taken over management duties at Ray’s Market in Jacksonville. South and Guthrie have known one another for more than 20 years and have worked side-by-side at the Central Point store since 2005! The management shift was due in-part to structural and personnel changes related to the company’s Chapter 11 reorganization, which has included the closure of several area Ray’s locations. South and Guthrie transferred from the Central Point store in early December when South was named Store Manager and Guthrie Assistant Manager. Former store manager Terry Edwards is still with the company, now as manager of the Phoenix, Oregon store. The Jacksonville store employs 24 employees.

Scott South, 54, has been with Ray’s for 22 years, and started his grocery career as a bag boy at age 16. Scott and his wife Anne have been married for 34 years, have two children and three grandchildren and reside in Central Point. Since coming to the Jacksonville store, South has reorganized much of the store and increased his focus on offering more organic and specialty, “Trader Joe’s-like” goods. South reports that since taking the helm, the Jacksonville store has outperformed most others in the 42 store chain, with increased sales over the same time period in previous years. The growth in sales, he notes, is due to his commitment to offering customers more local products, increased employee morale and a commitment to delivering outstanding customer service.

Darrell Guthrie, 46, has been with Ray’s for 29 years, having started his grocery career as a “bottle boy” at age 17. In addition to having managed the Crescent City store for 10 years, he also served as head golf pro at Del Norte Country Club in Crescent City for two years and had a brief but successful commercial insurance career. “Big-D” as he’s known, returned to his Ray’s family after the economic downturn in the construction industry in 2008. When asked about his mission here in Jacksonville, Big-D smiled and said, “CS, CS, CS…Customer Service, Customer Service, Customer Service.” Guthrie resides in Central Point and has three grown daughters and two grandchildren. Interestingly, Guthrie’s mother, Connie, was a checker for Van Wey’s Market in Jacksonville for many years. (Van Wey’s became Jacksonville Market before being sold to Ray’s Market in the late 1990’s.)

South and Guthrie exude a good neighbor quality that is inspiring. Going forward, both say they and their team are committed to making the Jacksonville store better and better and serving the needs of the community. Both have been reaching out to local non-profits, including service clubs and Britt Festivals in order to become more active in the community and hope to do their part to make Jacksonville a better place for everyone!

Posted February 27, 2014