In 1978, Marco Rico launched his 30-year Warner- Lambert/Pfizer career as a general warehouse employee in Elk Grove Village, Ill. Quickly picking up on the inventory process, Marco spent most of his career as a logistics coordinator in shipping and receiving. His goal: to get medical products successfully transported from point A to point B. In many thousands of pharmaceutical shipments, Marco never lost track of a single one.
“I was successful because I always knew where everything was. If you lose one thing, the whole operation is slowed down. I was able to add efficiency to the process by staying focused and working hard,” said Marco.
Taking Care of Details
In his first logistics role, Marco accounted for pharmaceuticals at the receiving dock. A decade in that role, Marco transitioned to the Drug Enforcement Administration department. While there, his team role was to account for every shipment by coordinating and taking inventory twice a day.
A large amount of teamwork was involved in Marco’s position; the efforts of loaders, drivers, and managers all had to be coordinated. “Working with many people is a challenge because of all the different personalities and working styles,” said Marco. “I tried to adjust myself to work at the level of every employee. I truly listened to them.”
When not at Pfizer, Marco further developed his people skills by working in a elegant French restaurant. “During 20 years at the restaurant, I held all positions – from sous chef to maître d. I enjoyed all roles given to me, learned a great deal and became very skilled in customer service and communication.”
In 2008, Marco retired from Pfizer. When asked what he was most proud of in his career, Marco said, “My attendance. I rarely missed a day and always said ‘yes’ to overtime. I was a good employee and tried to do my best every day I was there – which was a lot of days.”
“I wake up and go.”
Since retirement, Marco and his wife, Irene, spend more time together. They participate in a church program visiting with hospital patients to bring support and good cheer. Currently, they visit a 40-year-old woman who is terminally ill with cancer. “If she is down, we bring her up. We talk to her and try to get her in a better place. It is extremely rewarding for my wife and me. The experience definitely makes us closer.”
Marco is also a member of Knights of Columbus, a religious organization focusing on the ideals of Catholicism. In order to be a member, one must have an impeccable reputation, be knowledgeable about God, and be honorable. He has been a Knight for 42 years – since he was 18. “I find the work we do very fulfilling and enjoy helping people who are suffering. I’d rather give than receive,” he said.
Aside from his community service activities, Marco enjoys revving up his motorcycle engine. “I like to be busy,” said Marco. “I wake up and go.” He belongs to two motorcycle clubs, the Jersey Pine Cruisers and Back Road Riders. He has ridden to destinations all over the country including Lake Michigan and Missouri. He has even traveled to Canada. His dream destination is Alaska, and he now has time to make this ride.
“Since retirement, I have more time for my family and friends. I’m able to enjoy myself and share my happiness, not just with my family, but with everyone I know,” said Marco.