Goodwill of Colorado’s Anthony Martinez’s Inspiring Journey Highlights the Impact of Local Community Support

Martinez to Share His Story at the National Campaign Kickoff Event with Grammy-nominated artist Jordin Sparks

Denver and Colorado Springs, Colo. – July 10, 2024Goodwill of Colorado’s retail regional manager Anthony Martinez will take part in the kick-off of a national campaign called “New Lives,” highlighting the stories of local Goodwill team members from across the country. The campaign demonstrates how items donated to your local Goodwill of Colorado help people in your community transform their lives.

Today at 3:00 p.m. Mountain Time on the Meta/Instagram account @goodwillintl, Grammy-nominated recording artist Jordin Sparks will host a live-streamed event from a Goodwill store in Brooklyn, New York. Sparks will perform her music and moderate a panel discussion including Martinez and two other Goodwill team members or participants who have benefited from the programs that are made possible through your donations and shopping.

As a child, Anthony was adopted by a Colorado Springs family but struggled to fit in with his siblings who were his parents’ biological children. As a teen, this dynamic manifested itself in illegal activity and multiple arrests.

Eventually Anthony was convicted of a felony and sentenced to 20 years in prison.   However, while incarcerated, he became determined to take responsibility for his past actions and turn his life around. Anthony devoured every book about leadership he could find and resolved to put his learning into action. Due to good behavior, Anthony was released after serving 10 years. Being a justice-involved individual with no job history, finding employment was incredibly difficult but so important in ensuring there was no return to prison.

As a fair chance employer, Goodwill of Colorado provided Anthony the hand up he needed and hired him to sort donations part-time at one of its stores in Colorado Springs. Anthony made the most of this opportunity and worked his way up, being promoted to shift supervisor and eventually manager of the top-performing store in Goodwill of Colorado’s footprint. Now a decade after his release, Anthony is a Goodwill regional retail manager who trains and mentors his colleagues to be their best. “Goodwill not only changed my life but saved my life,” said Anthony. “They have put so many resources in front of me, put me through so many different classes and continue to offer different coaching and executive training to help my career.”

Most people know Goodwill as a place where they can drop off donations and give their items — from their once-loved jeans to their vintage jewelry — new lives. Some know Goodwill as a place where they can find unique treasures and that thrifting helps keep items in circulation and out of landfills. What some do not know is that Goodwill is the leading workforce development nonprofit network in North America, and that Goodwill of Colorado provides job training and placement services that empower people to build new lives right here in our Colorado communities. Goodwill’s new television spot, “Last Day – First Day,” illustrates the cycle of a donation, following how everyday donations fund the workforce development programs that improve the lives of our neighbors throughout Colorado.

In 2023, Goodwill of Colorado helped 40,505 local individuals get placed into jobs. “Each year, Goodwill helps thousands of Colorado residents in our local communities gain the skills they need for a job, a better job, a career,” said Karla Grazier, President and CEO of Goodwill of Colorado. “We are so proud of Anthony and grateful for the support of our local community. It is because of your support that we can provide programs to Coloradans that help change lives for the better every day.”

About Goodwill of Colorado

Goodwill of Colorado helps transform people’s lives. We are a registered 501(c)3 organization providing career placement, education and training, and community programs for nearly 150,000 Coloradans each year—including military veterans, seniors, and individuals who have a personal or economic barrier to employment. For more than a century, Goodwill has supported Colorado communities and through our commitment to sustainability annually diverts more than 208 million pounds of donated items from Colorado landfills. Learn more about our impact here and follow @GoodwillColorado on Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn.    


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