Octavio Molina emigrated from Mexico in the late 1980s in search of a job. He found one at the Anaheim Convention Center.
“When I came to this country, the Anaheim Convention Center is the one that gave me an opportunity to work,” said Molina, 27.
Because of his dedication to that job, which he has held for seven years, Molina has been selected as the center’s Employee of the Year.
“It’s a beautiful thing that’s happened,” said Molina, who was chosen from more than 1,000 full- and part-time employees. “I thank every one of my co-workers for nominating me.”
The City Council today will honor Molina for his achievement.
“He loves his job. He likes working with the people, and he’s a very unselfish type of individual,” said David M. Meek, manager of the convention center. He described Molina as honest, helpful, caring and self-effacing.
In August, Molina was named employee of the month by his peers, making him eligible for the annual award.
“When it came time to select among the 12 employees, we had some good candidates, but Octavio stood out because he’s such a genuine human being, a person who really cares about his job--and his fellow employees,” Meek said.
Molina, whose hometown is a small village in the state of Veracruz, said when he first started working at the convention center he spoke no English.
“My co-workers helped me [learn] the English language,” he said. “I work with a wonderful group.”
Molina was first assigned to clean the center’s halls after events and set up furniture and other equipment in meeting rooms and exhibit areas.
His responsibilities now include making sure that equipment such as floor scrubbers, electric carts, fork lifts and other cleaning devices is properly maintained and ready to go when work crews come in.
Molina said he continues to study English and has earned a certificate in automobile tune-up through the local occupational program. He hopes eventually to attend college and earn a degree in automobile mechanics. In the meantime, he said, he will keep his convention center job.
“I’m very, very happy there,” he said.