by Arlyne Nava

Introducing Lilia At RAFT Store

Meet Lilia Mata Vazquez, an engagement coordinator who’s been with RAFT Store for 17 years.  When Lilia and her sister were both job searching through an employment agency, her sister was placed first. That’s when a coworker of Lilia’s sister mentioned to the manager, “Since Lilia’s sister was known to be a hard worker then it was likely that Lilia would be as well.” With that, Lilia was able to get a position at RAFT.  Lilia started processing items at the warehouse and is now an engagement coordinator at the RAFT Store. (Visit the RAFT Store in person and online: ).

Why Work At RAFT Store?

Though working for 17 years at the same job is quite a commitment, Lilia continues to be enthusiastic. She was asked “What motivates her to wake up everyday and show up at work with so much enthusiasm?”  Her reply was, “I love RAFT. I love what I do, I love it, I love it , I love it. It’s always something new. It’s the best feeling knowing it’s something to help out teachers, that’s my main motivation. It’s something I love to do.”

 Some of Lilia’s most memorable moments working at RAFT have always been the Back To School Sales. She remembers a few years before COVID there was a huge line wrapping around the building as if it was Black Friday at Walmart just to get in. The check out lines were also quite long. Members had to wait more than two hours in order to reach the cashier. Then suddenly the register system shut down. Employees acted fast and came up with fun games and activities for people to do while they waited. She realized after that beautiful moment she loved her position even more. Although there could be very fun moments, Lilia was asked if leaving RAFT ever crossed her mind or if it was ever a thought. 

“ I never really thought about leaving… Yes, during 2019 I had to take a year off due to personal reasons, but when I was given the opportunity to come back I always thought about coming back to the RAFT Store.”

RAFT has always been her passion and where she loved to work. Reflecting on experiencing great moments at RAFT Lilia mentioned how COVID has impacted it. The biggest change was that teachers and all members had to make appointments to shop. Naturally this slowed down shopping  but safety comes first. Though most RAFT staff members were required to work from home, the RAFT Store staff continued working in person. They did have a few days off when  COVID was announced but after those few days they returned to work and never stopped. The last question Lilia was asked was “What advice would you give a new RAFT employee?“ Her reply “There’s no other way for me to say this, working at the RAFT Store is the best job you can ever find!”  Please join us and check out our open store positions.

Assistant Retail Store Manager

Store Associate

RAFT Store Interior