The amazing people behind Extra Space Storage are the reason why we’re a leader in the self storage industry. Without their hard work and dedication, we wouldn’t be where we are today as a company. That’s why we wanted to take a moment to highlight some of the team members who’ve been with us for 25+ years. From their humble beginnings to their roles as company leaders today, these exemplary employees have embraced our core values of Integrity, Excellence, Innovation, Teamwork, and Passion.
Frank Almarez, District Manager
Frank Almarez interviewed at Extra Space Storage as a West Coast Regional Trainer 25 years ago. After his initial interview, he started noticing more self storage facilities on his daily drive. He realized that maybe self storage was a larger industry than he thought. He was excited about joining the industry leader, where he saw an opportunity for growth in this business. Almarez currently works as a District Manager in the greater Los Angeles area.
“Extra Space Storage has been a big part of my personal growth,” Almarez said. “I have been fortunate to work with and learn from some amazing people and have built life-long relationships. So, in a sense, it has been like my second home.”
Almarez feels the most accomplished when he sees employees on his team succeed at reaching their goals. It doesn’t have to be anything huge; small wins lead to big wins in the end. Almarez considers his work to be a “people business.” Whether it’s helping a customer or a team member, he says working side-by-side with his team and being part of their development and success is his favorite part of the job.
Richelle Harding, Store Manager
Richelle Harding started her storage career at Storage USA and joined Extra Space Storage during a company acquisition in 2005. Despite the challenges of being acquired, Harding looked forward to joining Extra Space Storage because she wanted to be part of a growing, successful company. During that transition period, she learned valuable lessons on how to deal with change, which have been advantageous in her career. She now says she loves the challenge of any significant change that comes her way.
Harding works as an on-site storage facility manager in El Cajon, CA. Accomplishing team goals and making customers happy keeps her job fun and motivating. “My favorite thing about Extra Space Storage is our team,” Harding said. “Working with great coworkers and upper management makes coming to work worth it. It’s especially satisfying when your coworkers can create a positive and fun work environment.”
Harding’s fondest memories at Extra Space Storage have been the Sales Rallies, particularly the fun skits and the District Vice President costumes, which will forever be etched in her memory. She says her husband often tells her to “be serious” when she goes to big meetings, which makes her laugh—he’s obviously never been to an Extra Space Storage Sales Rally!
Celso Quinonez, Store Manager
Twenty-five years ago, Celso Quinonez was working next door to a Storage USA facility. He was so impressed by the store manager, Terry, that he eventually joined the Storage USA team. When Storage USA later became part of Extra Space Storage, he stayed on during the transition and has loved working here ever since.
“Keeping the property clean and in order gives me a sense of accomplishment,” Quinonez said, who works as an on-site Store Manager in Silver Spring, MD. “That leads to more rentals, which is my favorite part of the job.” More rentals can also lead to the challenge of an occasional upset customer. However, with 25 years of customer service experience, Quinonez says he can use his expertise and charm to ease the situation.
Some of Quinonez’s favorite memories over the years have been meeting Extra Space Storage leaders like founder Ken Wooley, former CEO Spencer Kirk, current CEO Joe Margolis, and Chief Marketing Officer Samrat Sondhi. The fact that top leaders take time to meet with employees at events like Town Hall meetings has been meaningful to Quinonez.
“They treat us like family!” Quinonez added. “That’s why I am still working at Extra Space Storage. I feel happy that I have that kind of support here.”