Steve Peterson, vice president for sales and marketing at Ron Lewis Automotive Group, has been with the company since 1976. But compared with Strouss?
“I’m still the rookie,” he joked.
He’s watched over the years as Strouss built a following, both from customers and other employees at the dealership.
“He’s really smart and he’s really nice, which is a great combination,” Peterson said. “He’s always treated other people the way he wanted to be treated. You can’t fake that.”
On Oct. 30, Strouss finally got his big celebration, and Peterson finally went from “rookie” to elder statesman.
Strouss received proclamations from the city of Beaver Falls and the state of Pennsylvania, handed out by the mayor and a state representative.
“Seeing Quentin’s drive, positive attitude and integrity in action day after day, decade after decade, served as an inspiration for our team at Ron Lewis Ford,” Gwen Lewis, co-president of Ron Lewis Automotive Group, said in a statement. “He is one of a kind!”
Mark LaNeve, Ford’s head of U.S. marketing, sales and service — who happens to be a Beaver Falls native — sent along a gift. In a statement to Automotive News, LaNeve noted that Strouss’ “impeccable sales record and reputation speak volumes.”
Strouss also was given a $500 gift certificate to buy shotgun shells for trap shooting at the local sportsman club, where he imagines he’ll spend more time. He also plans to walk his dog, a 3-year-old bluetick beagle mix named Jake, and might even start exercising.
But after working long hours over a long career, there was one thing in particular he was looking forward to doing for his first act as a retired salesman.
“I’m going to throw the alarm clock in the wastebasket,” he said. “I’m getting tired of hearing that thing every morning for 67 years.”