Godbey, 21, started as a porter at the Honda dealership about 1½ years ago, happy to land a 9-to-5 job after working in a restaurant. Initially, Godbey thought she wanted to work in sales, but soon learned she liked hands-on work more. She has moved up twice already, first as a technician in Honda Express Service and now as a team leader there, where she has been recognized by Burkhart for her consistent selling of income-generating services and products, such as engine or cabin filters.
"I learn something new every single day, which is what I love about [the job]," she said over sounds of oil being pumped into a nearby vehicle.
Her advice to women who may be interested in working as an express service technician: "It's basic needs and it's basic information that everybody should know. And it's not as hard as it looks."
And her colleague Kennedy, 21, who had changed her own vehicle oil and helped her father on vehicles, said she likes "gettin' dirty."
"Dirt don't hurt," said Kennedy, a two-year dealership employee who started as a porter and moved up to an express technician. "It's what I always say."
Jenkins said interest among women to work in the dealership has been gradually growing, including for service roles.
"It's really not about man or woman, male or female. It's about your capability," said Jenkins during a visit last month at the dealership, not far from the Fort Campbell Army base in Kentucky. "It's really just more about capability and awareness and willingness for any role."
Jenkins, 38, began working in the dealerships at age 12 in the role of "supreme filer" and has been full-time since college. Today, she oversees two dealerships, a detail center and collision shop, and 261 employees.
The company moved from downtown about four miles away in 2016 into new dealerships. They feature views into the service departments, vehicle delivery bays, a room for nursing moms, children's areas with an Xbox and stadium seating for movie viewing, and a fenced and padded playground between the two stores.
Polite and courteous, Jenkins says "good morning" to employees and greets a customer waiting in the Ford-Lincoln lounge. The customer had two small dogs with her, and Jenkins offered them treats from the nearby welcome desk decorated for Halloween.
Jenkins said hiring technicians has been a challenge and word-of-mouth referrals have been key. Burkhart has had several customers apply after seeing women working on vehicles in the service lane. Burkhart, a Jenkins & Wynne employee since February 2002, said there were just two females in the Honda service department when she became service manager in January 2017. She said technician jobs pay well, with an entry-level technician able to earn about $40,000 a year, while some techs make around $80,000.