Even though our guiding principles are to Inspire, Empower, and Devote; this hasn’t always been the case.
Benchmark Trophy Center was started in 1980 by two gentlemen, Jerry Goldin and Charles (Charlie) Hall. These gentlemen built Benchmark Trophy Center like most business startups; with A LOT of hard work, determination, sweat, and probably some tears.
From 1980 to 2006 Jerry and Charlie built a reputable business. They served many big organizations in the Atlanta area and always looked for ways to give back to the community. Benchmark exists today because of the solid foundation these two gentlemen laid.
Jerry and Charlie provided earning and learning opportunities to many people, and in 2003 they did so for college freshman Matthew Jenkins. Matt needed a summer job, so Jerry and Charlie decided to give this young arrogant kid a chance. That summer was the beginning of the next 17 years of his career.
In 2006, after a long and successful career in the awards industry, Jerry retired. This same year Matt graduated college (while working part time at Benchmark). Jerry and Charlie offered him a full-time job with the promise of an opportunity to eventually buy the business.
For the next few years he worked full time. He was a young arrogant business graduate who had to gain the humility of learning the ropes by working his way up from the lowest position in the company. These next 9 years tested Matt more than he had ever expected. He worked hard and learned everything he could about the industry and running a business.
In 2011 Matt officially became a partner and then in 2013 Charlie unexpectedly passed away.
Matt was on the edge of breaking and was warned by one of his mentors, that if you are of faith, “God will get you on your knees. You can either fall to them on your own or God will break your legs to get you on your knees.” Guess which one of the scenarios occurred?
Too many stresses were building in a short period of time. Matt was pushing the growth of the company too fast, and facing the consequences of that decision. He was in litigation with Charlie’s heir and losing countless hours of sleep during its settlement. Finally, it all came to a head when he was given news that his grandfather had passed.
On an otherwise normal day in 2015, Matt was taken to his knees and brought face to face with the Almighty; and through His Grace, was shown the path to Forgiveness. Matt was spiritually reborn and developed the mantra of living and leading from a place of “Humble Excellence”.
Over the next three years Benchmark Trophy Center evolved into what it is today. This was a gradual process that took shape organically as we hired more dedicated and like-minded team members. We added a second location, and with the addition of many new services and products, decided to re-brand as simply Benchmark.
Although we are not perfect, Benchmark has become a company that believes in Inspiring, Empowering, and building Devotion; not only for our customers, but also for our team members. We live and breathe this through Our Core Values.