A Family Connection at Store 2789

Celebrating You

Pharmacy manager Kerline Lajoie honors her father with heart and purpose.

As a child, Kerline Lajoie followed her father around so closely that he nicknamed her his “little shadow.” Many years later, she is still following in her father’s footsteps. 

Her father, Leon Duval, is a retired maintenance associate who worked at Store 2789 in Boynton Beach, Florida — the same store where Kerline is now pharmacy manager. Coincidence? Not quite!

Kerline explains, “My father is a people person.” Though English isn’t Leon’s first language, he mastered the art of building community. “He’d get to work an hour early to have coffee with all the associates. Everyone knew my dad — he was kind of like the mayor!”

Leon’s strong work ethic earned him multiple Associate of the Month honors. He even caught the attention of Greg Nazareth, health and wellness director for Market 108.

In a Workplace post, Greg shared, “Every time I would go to the store, he would always seek me out and find me if I didn’t see him first and was so proud to show me pictures of his grandkids on his phone.”

When Kerline entered pharmacy school, Leon asked Greg if Walmart had an opening for his daughter. He mentioned it each time Greg visited the store. When Greg finally interviewed Kerline in 2016, he saw her personality and potential — and hired her immediately.

“I love my job!” Kerline shares. “I have such a great opportunity to serve a big population, and that's what I love about it: To be able to make those connections with people gets me up every day because no two days are the same.”

Planting seeds with patients

In many ways, she’s living proof that a strong work ethic and love for your job are family traits. “Every day, I ask myself, ‘Am I doing enough? If my mother or father were given this opportunity, would they do better?’” Kerline shares. “They sacrificed so much for me, so every day, I go to work and do my best.”

Kerline always wanted to be a teacher, a passion she now incorporates as a pharmacist. “I educate patients on why taking their blood pressure or cholesterol medicine is important,” she explains, adding that most people haven’t ever had someone take the time to explain it.

“Establishing relationships with people is like planting a seed,” she says. “You put it in the ground, water it and provide the right environment for it to grow. Eventually, you get to harvest the fruit.”

“I find that people will be a little bit more open to you if they know you care,” she notes. “I love that my job provides the opportunity to truly facilitate better healthcare delivery to those people who are receiving it from me.”

Inspiring the next generation of pharmacists

Married with a 14-year-old daughter and a 6-year-old son, Kerline’s life is full. Add caring for a large, diverse patient population, and it can get hectic! “Even on the most chaotic days, I always find that moment where I can truly say, ‘This is the right job for me’,” she says. “If you love people, and you get to serve them — what else is better? It truly makes me happy.”

What might the future hold for Kerline? “I’m big on advocacy; I want to continue to grow my impact,” she shares. “I want to help create the next generation of pharmacists who are willing to be resilient, grow, and adapt to change so we can continue to provide excellent care."

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