Yes, there is that other Dave Barry, an American author and columnist, who wrote a nationally syndicated humor column for the Miami Herald from 1983 to 2005. But the Dave Barry that has mattered to Clover since 1988 is a school route driver. And so it goes without saying that he has also mattered to thousands of schoolchildren and their parents over the years.
“They cheer me when I wheel in the chocolate milk delivery. Mothers and their children wave to me when I drive down their streets.” From working at Clover, Dave says: “You become friends with people. They invite you to picnics and parties. They let you know about the birth of their kids.”
Dave’s first year was spent doing all kinds of odd things––from working in the freezer to special events. After year one, he began as a route driver and twenty-eight years later remains excited about Clover and where it’s going. “I like the rebrand and the growth.” And then he quickly adds, “I’m looking forward to the end of October. That’s when our new flavor of eggnog comes out.”
From Santa Rosa originally (where the “weather was better and the traffic was worse”), Dave is a Certified California Naturalist and confesses that he has always been a “nature nut.” He teaches children about nature, covering topics like watersheds, what it is to be local, about the climate and terroir, ecosystems, and the importance of realizing that “we are all interconnected by and through nature.”
Dave’s longevity with Clover is not unusual. “People stay here a long time because they feel good about the product. You can go home at the end of the day and feel good about where you work. You know you’ve done an honest day’s work.”
“There are several generations of families here,” Dave explains. And then he cites an example of a father, three sons, and a daughter––all currently working at Clover. “That’s five in just one family.”
From the quality of the product to the company culture, Dave accounts for Clover’s success as follows: “It’s a collection of like-minded individuals,” and explains that Clover is a company with an old-fashioned family atmosphere where management treats employees “good” and helps them to evolve by paying attention to them as individuals. “They remember who they are and where they come from.”
Asked after twenty-eight years what was been his most rewarding his time at Clover, Dave replies without hesitation, “I met my wife here. That was the best.”