Meet Your Local Project Wear and Share Enthusiast

From his tattoos to his Harley Davidson tee, you might think Marty Tilley is a rather tough guy. But there is more to him than meets the eye. Marty is a warm-hearted person who cares deeply about his customers and his community.

Marty owns and operates J&L Cleaners, a small but thriving dry cleaning establishment in West Knoxville. Marty also drives a school bus for Knox County Schools. His days are full from picking up and dropping off students in the mornings and afternoons to managing his business in between. Though he’s busy, he loves his work; his eyes light up when he talks about providing reliable services for his community.

What makes Marty’s day great? “Knowing we provide a service. We like to think it’s a good quality service, at a fair price” he explained. “When I lay my head down on my pillow at night I have a clear conscience.”

Marty helps load donations that he has collected at J&L Cleaners for Project Wear and Share. 

Marty helps load donations that he has collected at J&L Cleaners for Project Wear and Share. 

To Marty, it’s second nature to give back to his community, which is why he’s a long-standing partner in Project Wear and Share, Goodwill’s annual collaboration with regional dry cleaners.

Project Wear and Share is a clothing drive designed to raise awareness about Goodwill’s vocational services while providing many opportunities to donate unneeded clothes or linens. Donations are sold at Goodwill's retails stores to generate funding for job training programs for individuals with barriers to employment in East Tennessee.

“It comes back to treating others the way you want to be treated,” he said. “That’s the whole point of it.”

Marty is a great asset to his community and it shows in his work and his daily life. We thank him and all of the participating Project Wear and Share dry cleaners and customers for helping us change lives, one job at a time.

Getting ready to throw out your old clothes? Donate them instead! There are dozens of dry cleaners participating in this year’s Project Wear and Share. There may be a location closer to you than you think! 


About the Author

Samantha is enjoying her time as an AmeriCorps at Goodwill and continues to look forward to each day. She is also waiting on some official spring weather!