Summit Toyota

Senior Golfers Are Just Par for the Course
by Dan Miller
March/April 2016
Summit Toyota
In the Swing
Three members of Summit Toyota’s leadership team—(from left) Manager Emeritus Jim Fenwick, Sales Manager Mike Maloy and Dealer Principal Dan Pyle—pause for a photo on an Akron, Ohio-area golf course. The dealership has been a long-time supporter of Summit Senior Golf of Akron and its 500 participants, including more than 80 who are also customers of the store.
When Dan Pyle assumed ownership of Montrose Toyota in 2012, he not only changed the dealership’s name—to Summit Toyota—he also spearheaded the building of an Image USA II facility that was twice the size of the Akron, Ohio, store it replaced. But amid all the change, at least one thing remained constant: sponsorship of Summit Senior Golf of Akron (SSGOA).
 
Jim Fenwick, who had been the nonprofit organization’s president for nearly 20 years as well as the previous dealership’s general manager for 11, was greatly relieved.
 
“I could sense that Jim was a little concerned when I purchased the store,” says Pyle. “But I love golf, too. I have photo albums on my desk of when I went to Scotland and Ireland to play the courses there. When he saw the pictures, he asked me, ‘Are you going to continue with the seniors?’ And I said, ‘Absolutely!’”
 
Pyle’s passion for golf was part of the equation. But also were the business benefits of being in relationship with a community group that counts more than 80 of its 500-plus members as loyal Summit Toyota customers. That includes six of the SSGOA’s 11-member board, that now holds its meetings at the dealership—one of the many benefits of the increased square footage.
 
To further extend its reach, Summit Toyota displays vehicles at about half of the group’s 34 events, open to amateur golfers throughout Northeast Ohio who are aged 50 and older. That’s right in the heart of Toyota’s core Baby Boomer buyer demographic.
 
Fenwick joined the SSGOA when he turned 50. A few years later he was elected president. Now it’s become a key part of his life in semi-retirement. Another key part? Fenwick continues to spend his mornings at the dealership, helping to manage its customer relations department.
 
“Jim has been instrumental in helping me establish a footing here. He knows everyone,” says Pyle. “I love golf. But I love being a part of this community even more. We’re going to be here a long time.”
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