General Foreman of Diesel Shop Operations Jose Jimenez will celebrate his 27th year with the Belt in October.
After eight years as a laborer and nearly a decade as a machinist, he became a foreman, overseeing the service track. As he takes on a new challenge, he’s hungry for more.
“The more things I have on my plate, the better I perform,” he said.
In 2020, Jimenez he won American Short Line and Regional Railroad Association’s (ASLRRA) Safety Person of the Year award after taking it upon himself to design and implement a risk assessment program that contributed greatly to enhanced safety performance.
“I didn’t do it for recognition,” he said. “I did it because I care about the people who work here. But it was awesome to receive the award.”
Jimenez, who called his co-workers “a tight-knit family,” will continue to emphasize safety and said communication is still the best tool to avoid incidents. He also believes that culture and attitudes have gotten better in the course of his career.
“We’re more safety conscious,” he said.
While ensuring the fleet runs well always will be of utmost important to Jimenez, he’s also committed to aesthetic enhancements for the fleet. He believes it’s a point of pride for employees to have a fleet that looks good. Jimenez also wants members of the community to encounter locomotives that represent that pride.
“Our locomotives are, in some respects, the face of our railroad,” he said.
Jimenez hopes his career trajectory sends a message to other Belt employees.
“Anyone can do it, as long as they put in hard work,” he said.