What a privilege it is to be the President and CEO of Goodwill Industries of San Diego County!  When you read this article, I will have been in the seat about a month, starting as CEO on March 16, 2018.  I have worked for Goodwill San Diego for over 18 years and there are many reasons why I am excited to lead this great organization, but nothing is more exciting than improving the lives of the people we serve.  I have witnessed the power of work first hand, how a job can change a person, a family and our community.

This month we are highlighting our Veterans Program, which supports veterans and their families in San Diego County. We began the program in 2014 and since its inception, we have served 916 members of the veteran community.  We provide job search assistance and are able to connect them to a wide variety of support services needed to find and keep a job, such as training, certifications, transportation, childcare, food, clothing, and shelter.  Most important, the program coordinators provide encouragement, hope and an empathetic ear.

All of us in San Diego County love our veterans!  We are proud that 227,000 live and work in our communities and we are thankful for the contributions they make every day.  Goodwill San Diego is dedicated to helping veterans who need assistance find satisfying and sustainable work.  It is an honor to serve those who served us.


Together, we make good happen,

Toni Giffin

President and Chief Executive Officer

Core Values: Credibility • Creativity • Collaboration


Our Veteran’s Program is running strong under Operation GoodJobs 3.0 (OGJ).

We fund the Veterans Program through the sale of donated goods and a matching grant from The Walmart Foundation (administered by Goodwill Industries International) spread over 5 states and 10 Goodwill regions.  OGJ 3.0 is designed to serve 5,000 unemployed or underemployed veterans and their family members.  The program connects them with job training, placement services and wrap around supports to help advance their careers.

Goodwill Industries of San Diego County has participated in two versions of the program; OGJ 2.0 from 2014-2017, and the current OGJ 3.0 from 2017 through 2020.  Some outcomes:

OGJ 2.0: Over 300 veterans served with 240 finding jobs and 75 earning some form of industry credential.  OGJ 3.0 (to date): Over 151 veterans served with 80 finding jobs and 14 earning some form of industry credential.

In addition to serving veterans at Goodwill venues, we also assist them at two San Diego County funded Military Veterans Resource Centers and are active in most Veterans Coalitions and Committees throughout San Diego County.  In May of 2015, Goodwill was recognized for its service to veterans seeking employment by the Employment Development Department and the California Employer Advisory Council.


Edgar first came to Goodwill in June 2017. At that time, despite having a supportive family and military background, Edgar was having difficulty finding a job.  He had no income or car, he was sleeping on his brother’s couch or in his sister-in-law’s spare room.  Edgar quickly enrolled in the Veteran’s Program at Goodwill (after finding them through the 2-1-1 site dedicated to veterans) and was hoping to get back into the hotel industry, where he had experience and a career he loved.  With Goodwill’s assistance, by October 2017 he had received an offer of employment from the 4 Points Sheraton in San Diego as a Lead Houseman.  Edgar now has a place to live, his own car, and he’s back in the career field that he loves. 


New Via Segundo Outlet

Last fall, we continued to move forward in our quest to improve efficiency, reduce costs, and grow revenue with the purchase of 2383 & 2388 Via Segundo in San Ysidro.

The property consists of two industrial buildings.  The building located at 2383 Via Segundo is being redeveloped as our new Aftermarket Outlet facility.  The goal is to increase revenue by growing the Outlet Center from approximately 4,500 square feet to 16,261 square feet of sales area.  The new location also features an indoor sorting area of approximately 5,035 square feet.  Improved product movement and a more efficient handling area are intended to decrease costs and increase product flow.  All of these features and more provide safety and convenience for the shopper.

The warehouse building located at 2388 Via Segundo will be a centralized textile processing facility and distribution center, providing prepared clothing to our 24 Retail Stores in San Diego County.

Construction on the Outlet and Distribution Center began in February 2018 and is scheduled to be complete by mid-April 2018.  Our Grand Opening is scheduled for May 2, 2018 at 9 am.  These projects will improve the economic viability of the surrounding community.

Soon, we will begin construction on our new Employment Center that will replace our current San Ysidro clothing Outlet on Front Street.  This center will provide residents of the South Bay and San Ysidro with job readiness training and employment assistance.

We have been a part of the San Ysidro community for 20 years.  We are very grateful for their support.  We are excited about the expanded services we are providing and the impact they will have on our community members.

Downtown Retail Store

The Downtown San Diego Goodwill Retail Store located at 16th & J opened in December 2016 with 3,387 square feet of retail space, and created twenty-three jobs. It is located near the IDEA District, Makers Square, and New School.  The urban live-work-create and sustainability focus of the area is embodied by this Goodwill location.  Breaking from Goodwill’s current design model, and maintaining reuse and repurpose ideas, it boasts concrete floors, modern urban accents, and fixtures from a closed big-box retailer.  We also converted large wooden spools previously used for electrical cords into display towers.  16th & J is focused on excellent customer service, great finds and a positive experience for the community.