By Diane D’Allessandro
CCC Journalism Program

EVESHAM – Jen Honovic grew up on Long Island, N.Y. She is a daughter to immigrant parents from Croatia.

She was a model high school student, played sports, was a cheerleader and was involved in many clubs.

She wasn’t always Whole Food Market’s community liaison and marketing specialist. She went to Villanova University and majored in communication with a eomen’s studies minor, honors program concentration and business concentration.

After Villanova University, Honovic became a special events coordinator at New York City Ballet. She was there for about two and a half years, then realized she loved food.

She decided to attend Pastry School at the Institute of Culinary Education in New York City. During her time in New York, she interned at Food and Wine magazine for a few months. She came to the realization that her newfound love for food wasn’t going to pay her rent in the expensive city. She started a job at the Starbucks regional office in New York and then was promoted and moved to the Philadelphia regional office in 2006. She then decided to go back to school and get into marketing.

Honovic will finish her master of business administration degree at Temple next January. She has a double major in marketing and international business. She worked at Temple Hospital in marketing for one and a half years.

“It was awful and seriously the worst work environment ever,” she said.

She learned more about marketing and what not to do as a manager while she was there. She quit and took her chances in the job market. She found her dream job at Whole Foods in June 2009.

At Whole Foods Market in Marlton, N.J., she not only serves her community by promoting in-store and outside events, she leads a team of five people. She is the leader of the demo coordinator, the store artists and the Green Mission team.

Another significant part of her job stems from donations and community support. Whole Foods Market donates 5 percent of its sales to local nonprofits. She pushes store sales, national promotions, one-day deals and contests. All of the national sales and programs are up to her and a corresponding department to team up and make it happen. She works with the customer service team on Whole Planet, back-to-school donations, 5 percent days and nickels for nonprofits. She uses social media to help spread the word about Whole Food Market events and has created a Facebook page, a Twitter account, along with Foursquare and Yelp, to reach the public.

She has gotten involved in the Marlton community and in business networking groups. She leads Value Tours, Girl Scout and school group tours and children’s classes.

Kris Walters, a customer who frequents the store, said, “Jen is so kind, she and Whole Foods Market donated food and gifts for our local charity event.”

During a store tour on Tuesday, Pat Smith said, “Jennifer seems to be everywhere in the store. Whether it’s setting up Karaoke in the cafe or taking orders at the holiday table, she does it all.”

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