Teresa Hannigan. “Everybody calls me ‘Tee’ ”
Director of information systems
The Parker Companies, 222 Drayton St., Savannah, GA
what the business does
It’s a network of convenience stores in Georgia and South Carolina.
how long with the firm
Married 31 years to Danny Hannigan, retired from the auto parts industry. One son, Chris, age 30, and a design, support and training specialist at Gulfstream.
“I have two black cats: Coco, the psycho female, and Midnight, who is the loving male.”
where she’s from
She’s a native of Selma, Ala.
Attended Mississippi State University with a major in commercial art. She learned the convenience store business and her computer skills on the job.
“I went to work for the Parker Companies when there was only one store that Greg Parker built in 1975 in Midway, Ga. It was an old-fashioned service station with a convenience store attached to it. There was someone who pumped gas, cleaned your windows and checked your oil.”
“I went to work there in 1977 as a cashier. I was 21. Greg also worked in the store … Eventually I became the store manager. In 1981 we opened in Richmond Hill, and I managed both stores for a while.
“In those early years we had no computers or electronic cash registers. We did the book keeping in the store’s back room in a daily ledger book. I did the bookkeeping — payroll, accounts payable, accounts receivable, the works.”
“We opened several more stores – in Ludowici, Hinesville and Claxton, (the Claxton store doesn’t exist anymore), two stores in Richmond Hill. And I became the company’s first district supervisor while at the same time I was also the marketing manager. In a small company, you wear all hats.”
Then, in the early ’90s, she “phased out” of her district supervisor job to become the company’s full-time marketing manager.
“By 2001, we had 19 stores. We had already implemented centralized accounting and now had computers and electronic point-of-sale systems in all stores.” By that time, Parker’s had stores in Chatham, Bryan, Liberty, Bulloch and Long counties.
“The next step in the evolution of the company was to implement a centrally managed price book and scan all sales at the point of purchase ... We now receive all merchandise delivery invoices electronically and scan all items sold to our customers so we know exactly what merchandise comes into our stores — and we know when we sell it. That kind of detailed history allows us to run limitless analyses to help us deliver what our customers want and expect from us.”
how many stores now?
Thirty in all — 11 in Savannah plus additional stores in Statesboro, Bluffton, Richmond Hill, Rincon and other locations.
“We continue to embrace new technology … LIFT interactive customer touch screen terminals, WIFI in the stores, mobile apps and social media to keep us in touch with customers.” The social media include Facebook and Twitter.
Also, “we offer the PumpPal program. It’s a membership club available to our customers to offer them special deals — discounts on gas and a convenient method of payment.”
why is Parker’s successful?
“We have a culture of integrity and a strong work ethic. We do the best we can at everything we do.”
“If it’s worth doing, it’s worth doing right.”
“Implementation of centralized scanning in all stores and providing the framework for gathering the knowledge we need to manage the business.”
“My wonderful son.”
A focus on “payment card industry data security,” a system of “checks and balances to ensure the security of credit card transactions.”
tips for other business operators
“Pay attention to the details.”
things to avoid
“Getting bogged down in the details. You have to be able to see the forest and not get lost in the trees.”
why the Savannah area works for us
“Savannah consumers appreciate and expect a good product at a fair price.”
company mission statement
“Our mission is to be recognized throughout Georgia and South Carolina as the pre-eminent convenience store operator in the region.
“The Parker Companies provide a premium shopping experience in a safe, friendly and convenient environment while selling guaranteed fuels (gasoline, marine and diesel fuel) and quality products at competitive prices.”
—Compiled by Lanie Lippincott Peterson