Making a Mark: Army Vet Finds Goodness Plentiful at Brightmark

November 16th, 2023
Reading time: 2 minutes

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Work brings a renewed sense of shareable purpose

Chris Hillary just wanted to improve himself.

So when the Army came calling, Chris answered.

While living in Colorado, Chris picked up and joined the Army, where he was stationed in Texas. Chris was in the military for nearly nine years, including two tours of duty in Iraq.

He saw it as his way to set himself up for a good life and do something bigger than himself.

After his active duty in the Army was complete, Chris moved back to Colorado and found a job working for Haliburton as a maintenance technician. From there, he bounced around a few times before eventually landing a job in health, safety, and environmental with a company in Texas known for designing and building products used in construction and manufacturing.

But even that role came with aspects he didn’t like. Chris didn’t love traveling frequently, as It took him away from his family, and he didn’t view it as a role that would help him advance to the next level. So, he kept his eyes open for new possibilities.

“My job search at the time consisted of searching online for new roles,” said Chris. “When I came across Brightmark and their ‘Reimagine Waste’ slogan, it seemed promising, so I dug in to get more information.”

Chris was looking for what he had dubbed his “Three C’s”: Culture, compensation, and challenge. If he could find a job that offered all three, he would hit the jackpot.

Specifically, the company’s approach to circularity stood out as an unintended “C” that tipped the scales of interest, so Chris reached out about a position.

A few months later, he landed his new role as an HSE (health, safety, and environmental) manager at Brightmark, based out of Indiana.

Compared to other jobs where Chris just wanted to punch the clock and finish his day, Chris finds that he is excited to talk about his role at Brightmark around the dinner table with his wife and five kids. And he thinks Brightmark’s mission is starting to rub off on them.

One of the best parts about his role at Brightmark is the opportunity to remain close to his family, both geographically and physically.

“Katilynn, my daughter, works right alongside me as a part-time engineering intern,” says Chris. “Like me, she sees the technology we are working on and wants to be a part of something that will change the world.”

For Chris, there is also another benefit to working at Brightmark: he is surrounded by really smart people. That’s how you win.

Chris has watched how others within the organization handle themselves and strive to become better individuals. If everyone is pulling in the same direction, it can have a profound effect on how the company operates and its level of success.

“My time in the military showed me the value of being able to lean on your team when it counts,” says Chris. “At Brightmark, we are all moving toward the same goal, which makes it so much more enjoyable to come to work knowing you’re working to leave the world better than you found it.”

Man posing for professional headshot
Brad Marley

Brad is a lifelong storyteller who helps companies find their single source of truth. He works with brands in tech and sustainability to identify their most impactful narratives and ensure that messaging is weaved throughout their storytelling efforts. Brad brings more than 20 years of storytelling experience to bear as he helps Brightmark make its mark.

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