By Leah Sander
SILVER LAKE — For the third time, Kerlin Motor Co. of Silver Lake has received the President’s Award from Ford.
On Wednesday, June 23, Ford Motor Co. Detroit Regional Manager for Sales and Service Mike Murphy presented Kerlin owners Rick Kerlin and Valerie Warner with the award at the business located at 9944 SR 15, Silver Lake.
Among those present for the event were Kerlin staff and Kosciusko Chamber of Commerce representatives.
Kerlin previously won the award for 1993 and 2014, said Kerlin. This award is the 2020 one as it dates to the previous year.
According to a letter presented to Kerlin from Ford, “The President’s Award is only presented to those top-performing Ford Dealerships that exhibit quality business practices and Ford’s core principles.”
“The amazing part is, we have 3,100 Ford dealers that represent our product throughout the U.S. … and all of them are wonderful partners for Ford. But only 10%, only 300 dealers, win the President’s Award and we recognize the top dealers based on their customer satisfaction of how they treat our loyal owners, sales, as they finance vehicles and most importantly how to keep those vehicles on the road,” said Murphy during the award presentation.
Kerlin cited his staff in helping win the award.
“Just great employees taking good care of the customers,” he said. “You know we just try as hard as we can everyday to do the best we can for our customers and that’s basically what the award is.”
Kerlin and Warner are the third generation to run the business. Their grandfather Russel Kerlin started the company in 1927.
Warner noted their 88-year-old father Ted Kerlin still comes in to work at the business.
“It makes me feel proud that we can do this in honor of Grandpa,” said Warner, getting tears in her eyes. “I’m happy and pleased to do this for Grandpa and for our dad too. It’s 94 years, you know Grandpa survived the Depression and all the wars, so to be able to continue and earn this award is just amazing.”