In October of 1997, a teenager started working a part-time cleaning job at a Hy-Vee store. Over the years, he worked his way up from a part-time stocker to management. Now, Dale Mitchell is the new Store Director at the Webster City Hy-Vee.
Mitchell came to Webster City from Kansas City where he has spent most of his life. However, Mitchell said he's no stranger to Iowa or to towns this size. He was born in Davenport and has worked in Perry. Before coming to Webster City, Mitchell was the second-in-charge at a Kansas City Hy-Vee store. He visited Webster City with his wife, Amy, after finding out he would be directing the local store. Through his visit and research, Mitchell said he was impressed with the community.
"I think the town has a really good core. There are some really nice functions of the community like the schools, the library, it's just kind of that friendly family atmosphere."
Before first coming to Webster City in January, Mitchell said he also did some research on the employees at the Hy-Vee location. He said the store is in good condition and recently had renovations. However, he was most impressed with the collective experience of the employees at the store.
"There are employees that are here that have been here and with Hy-Vee longer than I've been alive. That's awesome because there's so much experience here," Mitchell said.
Mitchell has been busy since moving to Webster City. Since he began work as Store Director, Mitchell said he's met many community members. While he's been meeting with local organizations and service groups, he's found out a lot about the community through the customers that come to Hy-Vee for breakfast.
"They kind of let me know the ins and outs of what's going on and they seem to really know a lot of people in the community," Mitchell said.
He said the Hy-Vee wine club has been another good store venue for him to get acquainted with local people.
On top of learning about his new store and community, Mitchell has been busy with the recent birth of his daughter on Feb. 7. MaryAnn is Dale and Amy's second child. Their first is Joseph who is 19 months old.
"They'll be running around Webster City before long," Mitchell said.
Through getting to know his new store, job and community, Mitchell has been doing a lot these past few weeks. He's looking forward to meeting more people in Webster City and managing a store that he said has served the town well for a long time.
"Hy-Vee has been in this community for many years. There's been a standard and culture of customer service. I've challenged my group to continue that and make sure we're giving the best service possible and we're also making the next generation of Hy-Vee executives," Mitchell said. "I want to help the people in this store in Webster City be a part of the future of Hy-Vee."