The manager of Rapid City’s new Walmart started his career with the retailing giant at age 17, pushing carts in the parking lot of the store in Chadron, Neb., when it opened in 1998.
Andy Pfister now is preparing for the September opening of a highly anticipated second Rapid City Supercenter, where he will oversee a staff of about 300 in an around-the-clock operation on the city's south side.
Pfister, who is married with three daughters, has worked at six other Walmarts in South Dakota and Nebraska, including Rapid City’s first Walmart. In 2010, he led the Huron store to a regional store of the year award.
He said returning to Rapid City is like coming home.
“The citizens of Rapid City have always taken really good care of us, and likewise, we want to do the same for them,” Pfister said.
This month, Pfister is focused on hiring while working out of a temporary downtown hiring center. There has been considerable interest in the 300 jobs, he said, about half of which are considered full time at 32 hours a week and up. The store will have about a dozen salaried managers.
Walmart will take possession of the new store from the builder in August, Pfister said, adding that a grand opening ceremony will be held at 7:30 a.m. on opening day, before the store opens at 8 a.m.
Pfister said the store is designed with a rock facade to fit into the landscape, similar to some newer Walmarts in Colorado.
“There’s not many like it in the state of South Dakota,” he said.
Pfister said he has been enjoying assembling his staff while looking forward to opening day.
“It’s an honor to be here, really,” Pfister said. “It’s going to be a fun time.”