March 20, 2015
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Winn-Dixie No. 551 Service Lead Laura Rothrock (right) was presented the Community Service Award by Okaloosa County Sheriff Larry Ashley (left).​

Laura Rothrock is a service lead in the customer service department at Winn-Dixie No. 551 in Niceville, Florida. She’s worked at the Niceville location for 17 years and has learned how to spot when a customer is getting scammed.

“Typically, scammers target the elderly,” said Rothrock. “In this instance, it was an 86-year-old woman who said her great-grandson needed money wired to get out of a Dominican Republic jail.”

Rothrock said the woman’s great-grandson needed $900, and told her not to call his parents because he wanted to tell them himself.

“I thought about just telling her I wouldn’t make the transaction, but was afraid she’d go somewhere else to send it,” said Rothrock.

It took some convincing, but the woman agreed to speak with local police and her great-grandson’s parents before she sent the money. She learned her great-grandson was safe in his college dorm room – not in the Dominican Republic.

“I really hate to see the elderly taken advantage of,” said Rothrock. “I work to make sure that it doesn’t happen.”

Rothrock was honored with a Winn-Dixie award to show appreciation for her great customer service, and the Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office recognized her with the Community Service Award. But for Rothrock, providing great customer service and interacting with the customers is one of her biggest motivators.

“The customers are my favorite part about this job,” said Rothrock. “We have some great customers. They come in, joke with you, laugh with you – they make your life brighter when they come in.”

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