Representation Equals Success for Fort Carson Leadership Team

ServiceSource employs over 130 individuals through its AbilityOne® Program Food Services contract with the U.S. Army at Fort Carson, Colorado. The success of this sophisticated contract is driven by a diverse management team, including a wounded warrior and two individuals with disabilities who rose to management roles with ServiceSource, successfully exploring interests and elevating their careers. 

With a strong commitment to workforce development, ServiceSource fosters an environment that encourages upward mobility across all our AbilityOne contracts, as exemplified by three key leaders of ServiceSource’s Fort Carson Food Services Team. Dining facility attendants supporting the Fort Carson contract work side by side with military and civilian personnel staffing buffet lines and maintaining dining areas, dishware, kitchenware, and food service equipment for several sites on base.

Carlos Martinez, Division Manager

ServiceSource Division Manager Carlos Martinez oversees operations for the Fort Carson contract. Born and raised in Puerto Rico, Carlos joined the Army in 1996 to lift his family out of poverty. He rose through the ranks to become an Army dining facility manager overseeing culinary specialists and dining facility attendants at various posts including Iraq, Afghanistan, and Fort Carson.

While deployed in Afghanistan, Carlos sustained serious combat-related injuries and is a 100% disabled veteran. After a distinguished military career, Carlos wanted to work in a position where he could continue serving others. When he learned about the work of ServiceSource and AbilityOne at Fort Carson, he decided to pursue a leadership role.

Carlos has assembled a diverse and talented leadership team, including two individuals with disabilities who started as dining facility attendants on the contract and rose to important management roles with ServiceSource. “I wanted a leadership team with firsthand knowledge of the job requirements and the unique challenges faced by individuals with disabilities,” says Carlos.

Under his leadership, the Fort Carson team implements tailored accommodations for each AbilityOne participating employee, such as lightweight mops for people with mobility challenges and customized work settings that optimize productivity and comfort. Carlos also prioritizes employee growth and development, supporting individuals as they explore career interests and try out new roles to find the best fit. “I encourage people to make independent decisions while providing them with necessary assistance and guidance,” he explains.

The continued success of Carlos and his team, operating a contract of over 100 employees at the highest level of management at ServiceSource, exemplifies the value of our mission when put into practice. ServiceSource is committed to investing in our people and their career development to empower more teams of employees with disabilities to elevate their careers.

Christopher Ben, Area Operations Manager

ServiceSource Area Operations Manager Christopher Ben monitors quality control and compliance for several dining facilities at Fort Carson. He plays a crucial role in ServiceSource’s ability to provide the Army with quality dining facility services on a sustained basis. He began his career as a Dining Facility Attendant with ServiceSource in 2005 through a referral from the Colorado Division of Vocational Rehabilitation.

Christopher achieved significant milestones as an AbilityOne participating employee. He developed skills ranging from waxing and stripping the floor to managing inventory, scheduling, and computer services. He was promoted to shift leader in 2013, and with continued professional development, reached his current management position in 2022. Christopher earned various recognition awards over the years and grew his independence by getting a driver’s license and helping build his own home.

“It’s the best thing that could have happened for my family,” he says.

A father of three, including a son who has a learning disability, Christopher recognizes the value diverse experiences bring to the workplace and uses employees’ backgrounds and capabilities to inform his management approach. 

“Everyone brings something different to the table,” he explains. “My son teaches me things all the time. Understanding his experiences helps me better understand the needs of the people working on the contract, and vice versa.”

To address communication and productivity challenges some of the employees face, Christopher recently created daily checklists in a large font with visual cues that they can check off with dry-erase markers. “They have been helpful tools so far,” he notes. “The lists help employees remember daily tasks and make sure they are on the right track.”

Christopher’s journey demonstrates how the intersection of personal experience and dedication can drive impactful leadership, embodying ServiceSource’s mission to create truly inclusive communities. With managers like Christopher, employees with disabilities can contribute meaningfully and thrive.

Darron Worden, Area Operations Manager

Area Operations Manager Darron Worden fills an integral role on the Fort Carson leadership team, creating weekly schedules for more than 100 AbilityOne participating employees and tracking inventory for the contract. Legally blind, he learned of ServiceSource through an associate with the Colorado Business Program for the Blind. He was hired as an operations supervisor in 2005 and excelled as a leader. Darron earned a promotion to his current management role in 2022.   

“Transportation was kind of a barrier at my old job because I don’t drive,” explains Darron. “Carlos hired me and gave me the opportunity to prove myself. We navigate it together and take care of business.”

Before working at ServiceSource, Darron held various roles, including operating a food court in the McNamara Federal Building in Detroit. He is a big proponent of the ServiceSource mission to build inclusive communities for individuals with disabilities.

“People with disabilities can usually do the same things as everyone else, as long as they get the opportunity,” said Darron. “The best part of my job is watching our employees with disabilities grow and succeed on the job and out in the community.” 

ServiceSource is immensely proud of our entire Fort Carson Food Service team.  Under the leadership of Carlos, Christopher, and Darron we are confident that our AbilityOne participating employees and staff will continue to thrive as they deliver outstanding dining facility services to Army soldiers.