For Charlton Ingram, working at the Southeast Plant Warehouse at 1700 Jerrold for the SFPUC as a Store Keeper and Senior Purchaser for the agency’s Wastewater Division is more than a job. He describes it as being part of a big family. He recalls the challenges he has dealt with since COVID-19.
“My job is to make sure staff can get the supplies they need to perform their essential duties. When the pandemic started to make its way widely, including the San Francisco Bay Area, things we use every day, masks, gloves, hand sanitizers, disposable coveralls were all in high demand. We had to work with the City family to make sure everyone had sufficient supplies and that also meant sharing some of the supplies we had.”
Ingram doesn’t take the responsibility he has as a storekeeper lightly. He says in his line of work, attention to detail is key.
“Within the warehouse, we do data entry, accounting, and determine where inventory should be stored. Every aspect of these tasks needs to be accurate to ensure inventory control. During the pandemic, we have been working extra hard to make sure we have everything staff needs to do their essential jobs.”
Ingram is set to retire in July. He says that over the years, he has seen how the inventory control industry has changed from pen and paper to something much more high tech.
“Everything can be done on an iPhone if you have the right software. It makes managing large volumes of inventory much easier to keep track of.”
Born and raised in San Francisco, Ingram says he can’t imagine living anywhere else. “This is home. I’ll never leave.”
Ingram served in the Navy as a ship serviceman and storekeeper. When he got out of active duty in 1981, he started working for City College, then for the City and County of San Francisco as a storekeeper. After 38 years, Ingram can still say he is thankful for the opportunities that allowed him to stay in the city he loves.
“Having the ability to retire gives me time to work on projects I haven’t gotten to, like restoring my 66 Mustang and projects around the house.”
Before shelter-in-place was mandated, one would find Ingram playing music to crowds of people as a local DJ. He’s passionate about music and loves the smiles he sees on people’s faces as he takes them back to the “old school.”
“We all have to deal with a lot during these challenging times. But one thing is for certain. Music will always be in my life no matter what.”
For some lasting words, Ingram has some advice. “Point yourself in any direction you want to go to and go for it!”