Variety Wholesalers honors long-term employees

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Variety Wholesalers, a Henderson, NC- based company which owns and operates a chain of retail stores including Roses, has honored two long-term employees who have spent nearly six decades with the store. 

Article by The Daily Dispatch (Henderson, NC)

Written by: By Sarah Mansur

March 21, 2015

Ruth Bartholomew and Pete Pegram each have spent nearly six decades as employees of Variety Wholesalers in Henderson.

They are two of 12 employees honored recently by the Henderson-based company, which owns Roses Inc.

Communications Director Mel Hanks said the total service of all 12 comes to 382 years.

“That is just an astounding number,” said Wilson Sawyer, chief operating officer of Variety Wholesalers, in a press release. “We are proud of all our associates, but we are especially happy that the ones we’re honoring have been so loyal and productive for so very long.”

The other employees celebrated for varying lengths of service between five and 40 years are Dot Inscoe, Rickey Owen, Debbie Taylor, Kay Ayscue, Candy Stevens, Mary Beth Boynton, Dave Stinson, Mike Burgess, Alex Ellington, and Kelly Currin.

Pegram and Bartholomew are the longest serving employees at Variety Wholesalers.

Bartholomew, 78, has been with the company in several different roles for 58 years.

She began in 1957 as a data entry employee when she was 20 years old.

Her title now is senior merchandise distribution specialist.

“Every boss I’ve had has been a good boss,” Bartholomew said. “I’ve not had a problem with anyone since I been here.”

Her daughter worked in the Roses Inc.’s offices before she had children.

And Bartholomew’s husband worked there for more than 30 years before retiring.

As of now, she has no plans to retire.

“We work but we have fun,” she said.

Pegram, 79, trails not far behind Bartholomew with 56 years at the company.

When he began working for Variety Wholesalers, the company sent him to New York City for four weeks for training.

It was his first plane ride and his first trip to the Big Apple.

His current job is working as a computer programmer in the accounting department.

Pegram said technology has changed drastically since he started his career.

“We went from punch cards to saving things on magnetic tape and disk storage,” he said. “Now, it’s all online. It’s all on the screen in front of you.”

He said he feels fortunate to have worked this long in the same company.

“I am fortunate to have been able to grow and learn here,” he said.


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