Safeway among corporations committing to giving veterans a job

BELLEVUE, Wash. -- More corporations are committing to giving veterans a job -- Safeway made a commitment to hire 1,000 veterans next year.

One of the 200 veterans already hired is Roger McGinness, who recently traded in fatigues for a shirt and tie as a store manager for Safeway.

"Going from a swamp in Georgia to a store in Bellevue is a hard transition," he said.

McGinnes was a Lieutenant when he chose to leave the Army. He ended up interviewing with Safeway at a military hiring conference.

"When I called my mother and told her about it, she didn't believe it," he said. "She said I didn't really know what I was doing, I needed to think about it."

He says he definitely surprised himself as well when he chose Safeway's 42-week training program. Safeway says it's an opportunity for it to hire proven leaders to run its stores or work in marketing, supply or logistics with the grocery chain.

For McGinness, it's good paying job that keeps him close to his kids.

"I usually cut off a slice of cardboard and make notes, like the bananas there are kind of thin," he said.

The challenges he faces here, are far different from the Army.

"Safeway is really a lot like the Army in structure where I am the commander and the department heads would be like my platoon leaders," he said.

So if the fruit's falling on the floor or the meat department needs restocking, he goes direct to that manager to get the work done. And the discipline when they don't, it's a little different.

"A little different, yeah," he said. "No pushups."

Certainly the job has its ups and downs, but McGinness says he thinks it is a great program for veterans.

McGinness is one of two store managers locally, who've gone through the program. The other one is in Tacoma.