Fire and water damage. Crime scenes and trauma. Odor and mold concerns.
Fire restoration supervisor and facilities manager Gregg Veloza, who this July celebrates his 25th year with ServiceMaster Clean in a Wink, has seen it all.
Throughout the years, Veloza said one thing has remained the same: His desire to help others.
“That’s what this business is for, is to help people. To make money, yes, but to be considerate,” Veloza said.
He’s seen homeowners’ emotional side after a loss and also understands the practicality of what an adjuster needs to do. He tries to be helpful to both by asking the right questions, something he has learned through experience.
“He’s very people-oriented. He knows how to share his care and concern. He would listen to my stories [about my belongings] very intently and with compassion,” said Mary Enstrom, whose contents Veloza is helping to restore after a large house fire.
Veloza is IICRC certified not only in fire damage restoration but also in odor control and water damage restoration. He has earned certificates of achievement in everything from subrogation to carpet cleaning, and remembers training a particular new technician in 2002.
“I trained Butch [Mattson] as a tech to clean ducts. Now he’s the GM!” Veloza said with a laugh.
Some memories, though, are different. He remembers a job he completed for a woman whose husband had been killed, and the crews moved contents from her old home into a new one. He said that while some circumstances are more emotional for customers than others, there are processes crews need to follow each time – and that requires an eye for detail to make sure the job is done right.
A typical day for Veloza begins by lining out the fire restoration crews and readying ServiceMaster Clean in a Wink’s dedicated fire restoration center, keeping up with customer accounts and ordering supplies.
ServiceMaster Clean in a Wink also regularly hosts new ServiceMaster Restore franchisees for on-the-job training (OJT), and Veloza is able to share his experience and insight.
“I’m always buying or fixing or scheduling to fix. I always keep busy, moving,” said Veloza, who has been known to log 10,000 steps on his Fit Bit by mid-afternoon working in the shop.
A career highlight for Veloza was being named the national ServiceMaster Service Partner of the Year in 2005. Veloza, his manager and family traveled to Washington, D.C., where he received the award from corporate representatives. He also met President George H. W. Bush at the convention.
Veloza was presented the award and interviewed onstage in front of about 5,000 ServiceMaster franchisees and representatives.
“I was a wreck,” Veloza said of his nerves during the presentation. “The only thing that saved me were the lights, so I couldn’t see out into the crowd.”
Veloza hails from Fall River, Mass. and has lived in the Wichita area since 1973. He is married to wife Kim and has four grown children and one granddaughter.