Difficult times single out individuals who are willing to go above and beyond to help others. Sam Zaldivar is one such individual.

Last year, Sam Zaldivar led others to work efficiently during a strenuous period. As the Warehouse Manager for the Facilities Services Central Stores and Health Science Center (HSC), Sam has incorporated his leadership and organizational skills to keep the school running. His time and dedication kept the campus safe during the pandemic, and he went well above his line of work to help Gator Nation.

The Central Stores Warehouse that Sam manages keeps the University of Florida (UF) facilities running. Each day, the Central Stores Warehouse supports the maintenance of all Facilities Services operational teams through the “procurement, receiving, inventory management and issue of supplies.” Sam oversees a team of nine people at Central Stores that execute these many functions, in addition to the extra work caused by Covid-19.

When the pandemic struck, Sam took on leading Central Stores to receive all incoming UF packages and distribute Covid-19 supplies throughout the school’s facilities. These are two significant changes to his workload, but Sam took it all on to help the school.

Central Stores became “central receiving” as of March 2020. Sam, along with Lisa Deal and other staff, worked to implement this new service. Through his management, the location received over a thousand packages for 76 different departments between April and July. Central Stores also coordinated with 425 other customers to pick up these materials. Central Stores is still functioning as the central receiving point for packages.

Sam single-handedly took on receiving, managing, distributing, and reporting all Covid-19 supplies for all UF departments. These supplies include masks, sanitizers, cleaning supplies, and more. Sam kept a detailed record of all supplies received and distributed and helped keep the school organized and on-track with handling the pandemic.

Katie Karwan, assistant director of Facilities Services, says that Sam was instrumental in maintaining the efficiency of UF’s departments. She writes, “His (Sam’s) focus on teamwork, solutions, and commitment to customer service made him a truly valuable resource to the University community during this time.”

While Sam’s contributions to the school are admired and esteemed by staff, he views his work as standard. He writes, “I honestly do not feel like I am doing anything above and beyond. I am just doing my part to keep UF safe during this pandemic. It takes all of us coming together to achieve greatness.” His humbleness and dedication to UF are what sets Sam apart from the majority and make his achievements exceptional.