From Chrome to Command Centers
This Special Service Vehicles Sales Specialist has High Standards
From an early age, LDV Sales Specialist Dan Schwabe was taught to do your best no matter what. To always give 110% in everything you do. And never quit. These life lessons have stuck with him throughout his life with nearly everything he does.
The 19 year employee has worked his way through different departments at LDV starting with the shop floor as a “Floater.” The Floater was exactly as it sounds: someone that would help on vehicle assembly as needed. He wasn’t part of a specific crew, just would lend a hand to keep a vehicle on schedule.
“I interviewed for a Mechanical Design position, but there wasn’t room for me initially. So I built trucks. This taught me a lot about LDV’s commitment to building the best and just how dedicated our crews are to that mindset,” said Schwabe.
He assembled vehicles for 13 months and moved into the Design department.
“I drew trucks for a long time. I loved it. Ultimately, we are great listeners. We have to understand the customer’s needs and make sure we can accommodate those,” Dan said.
Dan has also held a management role and hired several of the CAD designers that are still working for us today. He also has done some project management and sales support. All of these roles have proven to be a huge asset in his current position.
Today, he is working with customers on the front end as a Special Service Vehicles Sales Specialist. His customers are law enforcement, public works, utility and more.
“Since I used to design these trucks, I know what is possible. I can make recommendations to my customers to get them everything they need. I design their trucks like I would for myself. I want it to be the best we can offer as a company every time,” Dan told us.
Dan has built a lot of long lasting relationships with customers here.
“I gained a huge respect for law enforcement working here. Listening to their stories and hearing their situations out there. I want the truck we build for them to help. The same with utility companies. These trucks need to perform when called upon,” Dan said.
He has been involved in a lot of really awesome builds over the years but a few of his favorites include the New Jersey Transit Police mobile command center and the Eversource Energy specialty vehicles.
40 Years and Counting
Dan’s pride and passion for our custom vehicles started long before his employment here. He is the proud owner of a 1972 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme for, get this, 40 years.
“I have always loved cars. I enjoy working on them myself. I have been making improvements to my Olds the entire time I have owned it,” he told us.
Dan’s Cutlass is powered by a 455 Olds engine with a Turbo 400 automatic transmission and a posi-traction rearend. While the car has had a lot of updating over the years, it’s a driver. The classic Olds is a regular in our parking lot during the week but he also likes to take the car out for long drives with his wife and to local car shows.
“The car has taught me a lot about adhering to a budget, seeing a project through no matter how frustrating and working together with others. My buddies and I have spent a lot of hours wrenching on the car. I enjoy that time with them in the garage,” he told us.
Dan’s attention to detail and workmanship directly carries over to his role here helping his customers.
“Just like getting behind the wheel in my Cutlass, I want my customers to have that ‘wow factor.’ When they come to see their new truck for the first time, I typically stand back and let them take it all in,” he said.
Dan said several of his customers are gear heads also.
“I can talk cars all day,” he chuckled. “I love hearing about their projects or a really cool car show they attended. My customers send me photos of the progress they are making on a restoration. It’s a really fun part of my job.”
LDV is fortunate to employ a lot of employees that enjoy cars, motorcycles, racing and more. Watch for more employee features in the months ahead.