Georgia Branch Associate Spotlight hero
Associate Spotlight

Georgia Branch

Business Development Manager
Geismar, LA

“I’m 67 years old. I could have retired, but I stayed here because I really want to make a contribution, to our location and to Ferguson as a whole. And I feel like I’m still doing that every day. Plus I get to do what I love, talking business with people who have become my friends over time while working with a fantastic group of people here at Ferguson. For me, it’s living the dream!”


Throughout her 45-year career, Georgia has seen a lot of change — not the least of which is the changing role of women in the industry. And she’s proud to have been part of that change herself. Georgia graduated from Louisiana State University with no idea about what she was going to do. When she took a clerical job at a small local pipe, valve, and fitting company, it turned out to be the start of a long, successful, and rewarding career.

At the time Georgia got that first job after college, attitudes about women in the industry were very different. She says clerical jobs were the only job for women. Georgia did every clerical task you can imagine, but soon realized she wanted to do more. Motivated by her interest in pricing and price books, she took the initiative and started studying those price books to learn about products. With her new knowledge, she wanted to shift to inside sales — but, because she was a woman, it was not allowed. Luckily for Georgia, that company was bought and the new owner disagreed with holding her back. So she made the jump. It certainly wasn’t easy blazing new trails as a woman in inside sales, but Georgia never gave up.

Georgia came on the scene at Ferguson 6 years ago, bringing with her deep knowledge of the business and a powerful network of industry contacts, both of which she built herself over the past 45 years. Though she was hired for outside sales, it soon became clear business development was a better fit, allowing her to leverage her industry relationships throughout South Louisiana to help make Ferguson more well-known. Today she has the title of Business Development Manager — a title that would have been unheard of when she first started out. Her boss is also a woman.

Considering all Georgia has learned, experienced, and seen over the last four decades, when she gives advice you know it’s time-tested and proven — and worth listening to. She says communication, listening, and attention to detail are critical to putting your best foot forward at work. She advises to always respect your colleagues and the chain of command because you never know whether you might be calling on one of them in the future, or even whether you’ll work with them again at another company — so make sure your bridges stay intact! Most of all, she encourages people to never stop learning. She says she still learns something new every day. And after 45 years, that’s really saying something!


questions and answers
Questions & Answers
Would you rather be the funniest or the smartest person in the room and why?

"Smartest - absolutely. Because it would give me the ability to communicate with lots of different types of people on different topics and different subjects. I wouldn’t abuse it, I would use it to everyone’s advantage."

If you could have an unlimited supply of one thing, what would it be?

"Chocolate-covered donuts. I take donuts from time to time to customers, I can resist any kind of donut EXCEPT a chocolate-covered donut. Friends would be another one. People can trust and lean on.. And they can lean on me."

What is something you're planning on doing the next year that you've never done before?

"I’m going to Scotland! One of my passions is traveling. I’ve been fortunate enough to have gone to Europe a few times. I even took a trip to Isreal which was the trip of a lifetime. So many things I saw there that I will never ever forget."

What is your favorite food?

"Any kind of salad. I fix salads at home and when I go to a restaurant. There are so many variations on the theme that I don’t think I will get bored with it."

What is your biggest kitchen fail?

"Well, I love to cook. I don’t cook fancy meals. I like to put things together that make sense. But recently I tried to make some homemade bread but it was the nastiest gooiest thing inside. It was a total disaster and I don’t think I will try again. "

If you were a pair of shoes, what would you be and why?

"Boots. Good lookin’ comfortable boots. I can go see customers in boots. Go out to dinner in boots. Go out on the town in boots."

I like that if you had any skill, what would it be and why?

"What I have thought about for years is that I would like to paint. Probably watercolors. And at some point in the not-too-distant future, I would like to try."


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