Monthly Love Promise Retailer Winners 

5/1/2018

Spring/Summer 2018

Subaru retailers recognized in 2017 for the positive impacts they’re having on their communities.

Beardmore Subaru

Beardmore Subaru

Bellevue, Nebraska

Motor vehicle deaths among children age 12 and under have decreased significantly in the past decade, but even one is too many. That’s why Beardmore Subaru teamed up with Rachel Dysico, Coordinator for Safe Kids Sarpy/Cass, a class that teaches proper car seat and buckling techniques to parents and professionals, to help them organize quarterly workshops. “Rachel contacted me looking for an indoor space to host the event,” says Chris Fasbender, Director of Operations for Beardmore Subaru. “We said yes right away. It’s such a natural partnership.” Since July of 2016, the retailer and Safe Kids Sarpy/Cass have doubled the number of families assisted from the previous year. Yet some of the families who come to the Safe Kids events are lower income, and many don’t even have car seats on-hand. With the help of a grant from AAA®, Beardmore Subaru purchased an inventory of car seats that can be distributed to those in need. “To survive within your community, you have to take care of your community,” says Fasbender. “That’s what we live by.” The retailer is equally committed to taking care of its customers. “It comes back to the same thing,” he says. “We’re here to serve those who serve us. If you’re going to buy a vehicle from us or have your vehicle serviced, we want to make sure that you’re exceptionally taken care of, no matter what it takes to get there.” 

Brown’s Manassas Subaru

Brown’s Manassas Subaru

Manassas, Virginia

The freedom that the veteran men and women of our military have ensured us is something that Brown’s Manassas Subaru will never take for granted. “When Project Hero got in touch with us and asked if we would host cyclists for a lunch stop during their ride from Washington, D.C., down to Virginia Beach, we said we’d be honored,” says Patrick Hall, General Manager of Brown’s Manassas Subaru. In May of 2017, instead of having the event catered, Hall and his team put together a spread of home-cooked meals to be served in a festive, paradelike atmosphere for 250 riders. “It’s important for the community to know that we not only do business here, but we want to support the community around us,” says Hall. “It’s a two-way street, and giving back is so important.” Aside from their commitment to supporting charities and organizations around them, Brown’s Manassas Subaru is also committed to supporting their customers. “We’re always asking for feedback,” Hall says. “Whether it’s putting a changing table in the men’s bathroom or making improvements to our service facility, we’re open to any and all suggestions that our customers feel would make us a better Subaru retailer.” 

Capitol Subaru of Salem

Capitol Subaru of Salem

Salem, Oregon

For kids, reading is the fundamental building block to a bright future. That’s why Capitol Subaru of Salem has partnered with Scott Elementary School for a monthly bike giveaway to encourage literacy at a school where half of the students speak English as a second language. “We spoke with the principal and said, ‘Let’s create reading logs and donate two bikes a month to the top readers,’” says Brian Schindler, Director of Business Development for the retailer. “After the first month, 88 percent of the students hit their minimum goal. It was amazing.” For the 2016-2017 school year, during which the Books for Bikes program was implemented, the school reported a tremendous growth in student reading scores. “We love the program and have given 18 bikes away so far,” says Schindler. “It sends a strong message to the kids and the parents that reading is important.” For Capitol Subaru of Salem owners Scott and Carrie Casebeer, helping their community is at the forefront of everything they do. The husband-wife duo is equally focused on customer stewardship. “Our tagline is, ‘Your Way on the Parkway,” says Schindler. “Whether it’s an oil change or buying a new car, we want every customer to get the experience that they want – the best experience of their day.”

Carter Subaru Ballard

Carter Subaru Ballard

Seattle, Washington

Did you know that the typical passenger vehicle emits about 4.7 metric tons of carbon dioxide per year? When the team at Carter Subaru Ballard in Seattle learned that it took the lifespan of four trees to offset the carbon footprint of one year of driving, they sprang into action. “In 2008, we partnered with Mountains to Sound Greenway to start our ‘On the Road to Carbon Neutral’ campaign,” says Jennifer Moran, Executive Manager at Carter Subaru Ballard. “For every test-drive, we plant one tree, and if the car is purchased, we’ll plant an additional three.” Mountains to Sound Greenway manages 1.5 million acres of diverse landscape for wildlife and outdoor recreation opportunities. Over the years, Carter Subaru Ballard and their sister store, Carter Subaru Shoreline, have donated $1.6 million to purchase over 175,000 trees for the Greenway. “When we started this partnership, we made a commitment for as long as we’re in business,” says Moran. “When you’re committed to the environment, it has to be a long-term devotion. That’s why our staff and their family also help plant the trees that we donate.” At the cornerstone of Carter Subaru Ballard’s continued success is their commitment to customer service. And although they are the largest Subaru dealership in Washington state, Moran and her staff maintain a relaxed and laid-back atmosphere that customers appreciate. “We want to help change the perception people have of purchasing a car,” she says. “We want our customers to feel that they’re purchasing a commitment by us to help the community they live in. It’s that simple.”

Dewey Griffin Subaru

Dewey Griffin Subaru

Bellingham, Washington

Dewey Griffin Subaru doesn’t just lend financial support to the causes it cares about – it rolls up its shirtsleeves and gets involved. “We have partnerships with organizations that we use our relationships to help, rather than just throwing money at them,” says Allen Meyer, the retailer’s General Manager. “That’s why, in the past year, we’ve donated over 7,000 pounds of fresh salmon to Bellingham Food Bank, our local Meals on Wheels organization, and individuals throughout Whatcom County.” When Dewey Griffin Subaru caught wind that the local food bank was running dangerously low on provisions, they decided to do something uniquely Pacific Northwest to help out. “We know the owners of a fish processing plant,” says Meyer. “It was the height of the salmon run, so we got in touch, negotiated a good price and had them flash freeze the fish so the food bank could store it all.” In 2017, Bellingham Food Bank served more than 180,000 people food valued at more than $7.1 million. When the team at Dewey Griffin Subaru isn’t using their creative problem-solving skills, they’re working with customers to create one-of-a-kind sales and service experiences. “We have a lot of new amenities, including an enclosed delivery area for those cold, Washington state winters, on-site car wash for anyone who buys a car from us to use, and a campus park with a walking trail,” says Meyer. “From customers to nonprofits, relationships are a large part of the success we’ve experienced over the years.”  

Employees from both Faulkner Subaru Harrisburg and Faulkner Subaru Mechanicsburg help pack food at Hershey Middle School, the packing headquarters of Cocoa Packs.
Employees from both Faulkner Subaru Harrisburg and Faulkner Subaru Mechanicsburg help pack food at Hershey Middle School, the packing headquarters of Cocoa Packs, a nonprofit that runs a weekly food assistance program for students K-12.

Faulkner Subaru Harrisburg

Harrisburg, Pennsylvania

When Doug Jones and his team at Faulkner Subaru Harrisburg learned that one in five Derry Township School District children face hunger issues, they immediately sprang into action. “There’s an organization 10 miles away from us in Hershey, Pennsylvania, that provides food to kids in need,” says Jones, the retailer’s President. “It’s called Cocoa Packs. When we went to see their operation in January of 2017, we started partnering with them right away.” Established in 2015, Cocoa Packs is a weekly food assistance program for K-12 students – providing kids with nutritious breakfast, lunch and dinner items on the weekends, holidays and summers when they are not able to access school food programs. “We’ve supported Cocoa Packs in any way that we can, from donations to volunteering to sponsoring monthly fundraisers such as Heart4Hunger,” says Jones. “It’s one thing to give nonprofits and charities money, but it’s another to see your employees take ownership and volunteer their time every week to help put packages together for the kids.” The retailer shows the same dedication to its customers. “We do whatever we can to make our customers comfortable while they’re here,” says Jones. “Our lounge is stocked with snacks and a cozy fireplace. We also have 40 different loaner cars, a complimentary shuttle that runs all day long and a brand-new concierge service that makes service visits a cinch.”

Faulkner Subaru Mechanicsburg

Faulkner Subaru Mechanicsburg

Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania

When Central Pennsylvania high school student Hunter Wilt decided to take part in Bike & Build, an organization focused on building affordable housing around the country, he was tasked with raising $5,000 for supplies. “I had never raised money before,” says Wilt. “My mom had recently purchased a Subaru from Faulkner Subaru Mechanicsburg and noticed how involved they are in paying it forward to the community. We took a leap and asked if they would be interested in helping.” President Doug Jones and his team responded with a resounding yes. Bike & Build is a Philadelphia-based, service-oriented nonprofit that engages young adults to raise money and awareness for affordable housing through cycling trips around the country. Wilt chose to ride the Northern United States (NUS) route, which took him on a four-month journey – some 4,160 miles from Portsmouth, New Hampshire, to Bellingham, Washington. With the contribution of Faulkner Subaru Mechanicsburg, Wilt’s cross-country biking trip was a success. “He’s a great kid, and we were more than happy to help out,” says Jones. The retailer is just as focused on creating exceptional customer experiences. “We have a state-of-the-art building here in Mechanicsburg,” says Jones. “We offer a concierge service here as well as at our sister store in Harrisburg. It streamlines all service appointments for the customer. I like to say it’s like visiting a five-star hotel rather than a roadside motel!”

Flatirons Subaru

Flatirons Subaru

Boulder, Colorado

Caring for a critically ill child is one of the most difficult challenges a family can face. Every little bit of assistance can help to ease the burdens and allow families more time to spend with their child. That’s why organizations like There With Care exist. “It focuses on families that have kids going through a crisis, usually cancer or another sickness that forces them to be in the hospital,” says Brian Scaglia, Marketing Director for Flatirons Subaru. “When we toured the campus and learned about what they were doing for families, we decided to do anything we could to help out.” Throughout 2017, the team at Flatirons Subaru banded together to support There With Care families. The retailer shopped for groceries and prepped meals for families, donated a car, underwrote signature events and pledged $60,000 to support the organization’s various programs. “Helping our community and those in need are a huge part of what we do,” says Scott Crouch, Owner of Flatirons Subaru. “We consider our customers to be a part of that community. That’s why we’re constantly thinking of new and better ways to run our retailer. It aligns with everything we think is important.” 

Hanson Subaru

Hanson Subaru

Olympia, Washington

Nobody should go hungry, or wonder when their next meal will be. It’s that simple. That’s why Hanson Subaru, located in Olympia at the southern end of Puget Sound, has been hosting a community food drive for more than a decade. “A friend of General Manager Vince Hanson, who is involved in the Senior Action Network, mentioned to him that the Senior Nutrition Program at Senior Services for South Sound could really use some help,” explains Sales Manager Rob Little. “From that day on, we started helping in all the ways we could.” Each year, Hanson Subaru holds a food drive from October through December to help fill “Blizzard Bags,” which are delivered to homebound seniors in Thurston and Mason counties. What started as filling a couple of minivans with food has grown every year. During the 2016 and 2017 food drives, the retailer packed a 27-foot U-Haul full of food, helping fill 350 Blizzard Bags and stocking the Senior Food Bank. “There is a real need to help the elderly, because sometimes they are forgotten,” says Little. “That’s the last thing we want. There are several people at the center that used to be customers or vendors. That helps put things into perspective.” With customer service at the forefront of everything that Hanson Subaru does, it’s easy to see why they were named one of the 2017 Love Promise winners. “Besides the normal amenities of snacks and internet that we offer our customers, we also give them personal pick-up and drop-off service and provide their dogs with special treats,” Little says. “We just make them a part of the family.”

Landers McLarty Subaru

Landers McLarty Subaru

Huntsville, Alabama

It’s no secret that Landers McLarty Subaru loves dogs. The North Alabama-based retailer is a constant champion of man’s best friend. From raising funds to help save an American pit bull terrier to providing first aid kits for the Huntsville Police Department’s K-9 Unit, every four-legged furry friend is as important as the next. “We provide support in more ways than just financial,” says Carmelita Iglesias, Marketing Director for Landers McLarty Subaru. “We create relationships where our charities can reach out to us at any time with anything they might need.” For the Greater Huntsville Humane Society, this support came in the form of helping Brinkley, a 2-year-old dog that needed life-saving surgery. “When the Humane Society called me, they told me that she had a collar embedded in her neck from being tied to a tree all her life,” says Iglesias. “Once it was removed, the scar began to close in on her throat, and she needed emergency surgery.” Landers McLarty Subaru had 48 hours to raise $2,250, which it did, helping to give Brinkley a second chance at life with her new forever family. For the Huntsville Police Department, Landers McLarty Subaru was instrumental in securing K-9 first aid kits, which are stocked with life-saving medical supplies for local police dogs. “I realized that these dogs are placed in harm’s way every single day,” Iglesias says. “From being stung by a bee or even shot, they get injured just like officers do. Yet, there are no ambulances for dogs, and they have to wait until the crime scene is cleared to receive medical attention.” The retailer stepped up and donated enough kits so that each K-9 team had one. Even as they’re going above and beyond for community canines, owner Frank Williams and the Landers McLarty Subaru staff is focused on creating a customer experience brimming with amenities, including a VIP pick-up and drop-off service. “We’re always looking for ways to help make our customers feel at home when they come for service or to purchase a new car,” Iglesias says. “Sometimes, it’s as simple as listening to what your customers want.”

Nate Wade Subaru

Nate Wade Subaru

Salt Lake City, Utah

When Nate Wade Subaru in Salt Lake City, Utah, catches wind of community members in need, they act swiftly. “Nate Wade has been in business for 50 years,” says Carli Claflin, the retailer’s Outreach Coordinator. “We wouldn’t have been here that long if it wasn’t for support from the community. We feel like it’s our job to give back for everything that’s been given to us.” Founded by Nate Wade, Nate Wade Subaru is the oldest exclusive Subaru retailer in the United States and boasts an impressive roster of longtime employees, many of whom have been part of the team for more than 25 years. “This concept of charitable giving and community service has continued on through our current owner, Kirk Schneider,” says Claflin. In 2017, Nate Wade Subaru was named the winner of two Love Promise awards, one for their work with Free Bikes 4 Kidz and another for making a wish proclamation come true for Make-A-Wish® Utah. For the first Love Promise accolade, the team at Nate Wade Subaru spent two nights in the holiday season assembling 100 bikes for underprivileged kids in the area. “We had the bikes all set out in our showroom and the kids came in to pick out their brand-new bike, complete with taillight and helmet,” says Claflin. “It’s such a cool experience. Some of these kids have never had a bike before.” Later in the year, Nate Wade Subaru made 15-year-old Kendell’s wish to be famous in New York City a reality. “We sent her to the hair salon with her friends and then had them all come to the retailer, where our staff acted like paparazzi, snapping photos and such,” says Claflin. “We sent them on a New York-themed scavenger hunt around the store and even had a local magazine come and interview Kendell. We also got to share the news that Make-A-Wish would be making her dream of a family vacation to Manhattan come true.” Nate Wade Subaru shows equal commitment to every customer that walks through their door. “We never want our customers to feel pressured,” says Claflin. “We make sure that they know we’re always listening while educating them about our community outreach and everything else going on with our retailer. That’s important to us.”

Patriot Subaru

Patriot Subaru

Saco, Maine

Sometimes, a helping hand is all that’s needed for a lifetime of success. When Adam Arens, Owner and President of Patriot Subaru, learned that the mission of Habitat for Humanity® is to not just give homes away, but to help families build stronger foundations for the future, he and his team jumped onboard. “Habitat builds homes and makes them affordable for people rather than giving a handout,” explains Arens. “Once I understood that, we started a partnership with Habitat for Humanity of Greater Portland.” In 2016, Patriot Subaru donated $45,000 for a new 13-home build in Scarborough, less than 10 miles from the retailer’s Saco, Maine, location. Construction began in the spring of 2017, and Arens and his team were on-site swinging hammers to help build dream homes for their community. “The focus of our retailer is rather simple,” says Arens. “It’s to serve. Whether it’s our customers, our community, our families or each other, we are here to serve.” From hanging drywall to hosting pet adoptions, Patriot Subaru isn’t afraid to get their hands dirty. They’re also committed to going above and beyond when it comes to the customer experience. “We’re continuously investing in our customers and evolving our sales process,” says Arens. “Rather than fit our customers into the same box every time, we ask them where they are in the car-buying process and custom tailor their experience around that.”   

Reynolds’ Subaru

Reynolds’ Subaru

Lyme, Connecticut

For Reynolds’ Subaru,  inspiration comes from their community. “My first goal is to stay as local as possible,” says the retailer’s CEO, Kathryn Wayland. “I want our actions to impact our customers, our customers’ friends, our employees and other people we know in town.” Last summer, Wayland heard that Caroline’s Miracle Foundation (CMF), a local nonprofit that grants mini-miracles to children with inoperable brain tumors, needed assistance with a few projects, so she enlisted the help of her team and got started. “CMF was started by the parents of Caroline, a little girl who passed away in fifth grade from a brain tumor,” Wayland explains. “I contacted them and asked how we could help.” Reynolds’ Subaru staff and Caroline’s family got together one evening in June 2017 to make 32 no-sew blankets for the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, where Caroline bravely fought her illness. “We worked in teams, with some cutting fleece and others tying the ends to secure the blankets,” says Wayland. “Even though she’s not with us today, Caroline still impacts our community and beyond.” Community and customers, Wayland says, are always on top of mind at Reynolds’ Subaru, which is part of a family business that dates back to 1859. “We just built a brand new facility, with the design focusing on customer experience,” she says. “We have a beautiful deck off the back where people can sit and look out over the water. We want our customers to look forward to visiting us because they feel at home here.”

Subaru Pacific

Subaru Pacific

Hawthorne, California

Investing in the future of our youth pays dividends for years to come. That’s why Subaru Pacific General Manager James Hartzberg and his team chose to invest in the kids at Harbor Teacher Preparation Academy (HTPA), a high school in the Los Angeles Unified School District. The school is in an area of Southern California that struggles with gang activity, and some of the students who attend HTPA don’t possess the basic needs many of us take for granted. “These kids are going to school and trying to better themselves, but they don’t have notebooks and pencils – or even food for lunch,” says Hartzberg. “We knew we needed to help.” Subaru Pacific held a school supply drive, donated a $1,000 gift card from Costco for peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and sponsored a field trip to Warner Bros. Studios. “I like to think that the right organization shows up for us, and we show up for the right organization,” Hartzberg says of the retailer’s commitment to community service. Subaru Pacific’s customer service commitment is another important aspect of the retailer’s success. “We believe that car buying shouldn’t be stressful, and our staff really talks the talk and walks the walk. They’re able to connect with the customers and build relationships that become friendships.”

Subaru of Wichita

Subaru of Wichita

Wichita, Kansas

According to Volunteers of America, over 670,000 Americans are homeless and 48 million people go hungry every night. The team at Subaru of Wichita is determined to do their part to change those statistics. “We heard about an event called A Night Under the Stars, where Wichita State University students spend 24 hours with the homeless, feeding them, giving them haircuts and outfitting them with cold weather gear,” explains Noah Taylor, Marketing Director for the retailer. “We reached out and told them that we’d love to help.” In the winter of 2017, the team gathered donations of over 75 pairs of shoes, 200 jackets and long-sleeve shirts, 300 toothbrushes and 75 pairs of pants. In addition to securing an indoor venue to cook hot meals for the homeless, Subaru of Wichita staff stayed out all night with the students and helped distribute clothing until the wee hours of the morning. “There will always be people to sell vehicles to,” says Taylor. “Everybody will always need vehicles. It’s a business that’s been around for a long time and will continue to be around. What changes is people. They don’t want a brand that just sells to them. They want a brand that takes part in their community.” For the folks at Subaru of Wichita, creating long-lasting relationships is a top priority. “It’s one of the biggest purchases of your life,” Taylor says of buying a vehicle. “We want you to love the experience and tell your friends and family about how we put the customer first.”

Tri City Subaru

Tri City Subaru

Somersworth, New Hampshire

A 34-mile scenic roadway that stretches across New Hampshire and runs through the White Mountain National Forest, Kancamagus Highway is known for having some of the best fall foliage viewing in the country. “I have childhood memories of swimming in the mountain river and sliding down the rocks,” says Jordan Plante, General Manager at Tri City Subaru. “When we decided to get involved and volunteer, I thought, ‘What better than that region?’” Plante contacted the Saco Ranger Station and offered to help. Tri City Subaru was tasked with cleaning up a 6-mile stretch of road. On a beautiful sunny day in July 2017, nearly a dozen staff members took to the great outdoors and collected more than 30 bags of trash before enjoying a BBQ lunch – and a refreshing dip in the crisp Swift River. “We’re a family-owned business that started 50 years ago,” says Plante. “Over the years, we’ve earned a reputation for outstanding customer service, long-term relationships and community involvement.” It’s the customer-service aspect of Tri City Subaru that has helped make them such a successful retailer. “Establishing trust with our customers has gotten us this far,” says Plante. “One way we continue building relationships is by being involved in the community. Whether it’s sponsoring a sports team or cleaning up litter, we’re happy to help.”

World Subaru

World Subaru 

Tinton Falls, New Jersey

It’s been nearly five years since World Subaru made a decision to help fight childhood cancer. And in 2017, Executive Manager Joe Wajda and his staff took their commitment to the next level through their support of the 4th Annual 5K Rook Run & Walk. The run and walk draws thousands of participants and benefits The Valerie Fund, a nonprofit organization that provides care for children with cancer and blood disorders. To support the event, World Subaru held a raffle for a new 2018 Subaru Forester, raising more than $53,000 for The Valerie Fund. It was a true team effort, with approximately 65 staff members and their families participating. “There are a lot of ways that we can make a difference,” says Wajda. “But we decided to hone in on childhood cancer, which is a cause that’s very important to us all at the store level.” Located on the east coast of New Jersey in Tinton Falls, World Subaru has been matching people with the perfect Subaru since 2001. “Our customers know that they’re coming to do business with people they trust,” Wajda says. “They know that we pay it forward and make an impact in our community. It’s not just about the next car deal.”