Meet the Staff – Linda Follmer

When you first meet Linda, you might miss her subtle wit, but she does make you feel comfortable when talking to her. She speaks clearly and concisely and these qualities have been an asset to her role in the Content department for the past 16 years. As Content Manager, Linda is the liaison with manufacturers in the AutoQuotes catalog. She is the point of contact for manufacturers to ensure their products have the wanted presence and accuracy in the AutoQuotes catalog. Linda’s role is key to keeping the AutoQuotes catalog up-to-date and content rich.

Linda, being the dynamic person she is, wrote her own article! Enjoy a glimpse into her life in her own words.

Now, how did Linda find the then small company, AutoQuotes, 16 years ago?
Linda: We were new to Jacksonville and I was telling my neighbor, the legendary Gerry Brock* about how much I disliked working in auto loans and she said, “Why don’t you apply at AutoQuotes? I don’t think we’re hiring right now, but you never know.” Since it wasn’t auto loans, I decided to check it out. They weren’t looking for anyone at the time, but I sure am glad they gave me a shot anyway. It was love at first spec: “Dinner Fork, 18/0 stainless steel, Windsor.”

16 years is a long time, what has Linda’s experience been like at AutoQuotes?
Linda: In these 16 years I have seen many program versions. I continue to be amazed at how quickly technology is moving and how we are moving with it. I’ve also witnessed promotions, emotions, demolitions, transitions, renovations, and innovations. Without hesitation, I can say through it all, this company has stood tall, strong and honest in its mission.

Life is short to be serious all the time. Have fun, be silly and don’t be afraid to make a fool of yourself on occasion!

 

Anthony Manzano & I pose for a picture at an AutoQuotes 5K after party.

Tell us a little a little about Linda:
Linda: I was born & raised in Duluth, Minnesota. Unlike myself, my four Viking-esque brothers have committed themselves to the frozen tundra. Although
beautiful, it is far too cold for me. Either my Swedish blood is thinner than theirs, or they simply have a greater appreciation for Lutefisk. I will pass on the biting cold weather and aromatic lutefisk, and take the oppressive heat of Florida, with some Florida Blue Crabs and fresh squeezed orange juice, thank you very much!

Love & Marriage:
John and I have been married 30 years, and have been blessed with three amazing children. We are also the proud grandparents of twin granddaughters who are the most amazing, long-legged, bendy, twisty, girls full of inspiration, energy, imagination, and laughter. I thank God every day for them. We spend a lot of time together, singing, dancing, being silly, and making doll clothes out of duct tape, socks, old pillow cases, or whatever is lying around.

Seeing the world:
My husband retired from the Marine Corps over ten years ago and has been with Sysco Foodservice Jacksonville since then. Collectively, we spent a total of nine years in Japan between Yokosuka and Okinawa, and we would live there again in a heartbeat. We loved the culture, the food, the traditions, and the people. We love to travel and have been to such places as Guam, Hawaii, Korea, England, Philippines, Mexico, Canada, and all across the United States. We have also lived in California, North Carolina, and have settled into Jacksonville, Florida for the past 17 years. In addition to our careers, we also own a landscaping business which employs our son and six other amazing young men.

My husband and I love cruising and have gone on about a dozen or so Caribbean cruises. Most recently we took the whole family on a Caribbean cruise to the Bahamas, St. Martin, and St. Thomas. Our next cruise is Alaska in May, and we can’t wait! It’s a bucket list dream that I am not going to take for granted. It is sure to be amazing.

What it’s all about:
Besides work and traveling, I am passionate about being a part of the praise & worship team at church. I also have a heart for helping those who have lost loved ones, particularly those who have lost children. When you lose a child as I have, you learn that there is not usually much anyone can say that helps a whole lot, which is understandable. But the treasured gift I have been given is that I can now share my testimony with others of how God has poured out a peace that surpasses all understanding onto a broken-hearted, cynical Minnesota girl, and how He has that peace for anyone who asks for it.

When tragedy strikes, we reflect on what is important and how short our lives are. We tend to ask ourselves what we’re doing, and why. My epitaph will say nothing about how great I wrote specs or how I was a whiz in Excel, but it just may say that I loved Jesus, loved my family, and loved to help people. I know one thing for sure, it will not say that I loved Lutefisk.

*(Gerry Brock was a key employee of AutoQuotes and helped make the catalog what it is today. Her many years of experience in the foodservice industry was a huge asset to us. She retired a few years ago, but her footprint is still here.)

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