This week Joshua, Loreanna and I traveled to Louisville, Kentucky to do a unveiling of our First Commissioned build!
About a month ago, Scott Andrew who is the Founder and CEO of Columbus, Ohio based Retail Service Systems (RSS) visited the FSD Hot Rod Ranch looking for a “Rugged Truck” to use as the corporate Mascot. RSS has been ranked as one of Inc. Magazine’s 5000 fastest growing companies for several years and has several branded businesses that it franchises throughout the United States.
Scott shared that one of his franchise businesses “BoxDrop” (with over 350 locations) would be holding their annual meeting the second week of January in Louisville, Kentucky. He also shared his vision for a “Rugged Truck Mascot” to be unveiled during this event. He explained that RSS referred to their business owners as “Rugged Entrepreneurs” and was in the process of authoring a book entitled “The Rugged Entrepreneur”.
He wanted a “Rat Rod” type vehicle with loads of corporate identification for RSS, BoxDrop their other franchise entities. Well, even though we have a full shop at the FSD Hot Rod Ranch with a expert team (who have many years of combined restoration and build experience), we have never agreed to an actual build of a specialized vehicle. However, as a “Rugged Entrepreneur” myself, I just could not pass up this opportunity.
Fortunately, we located the perfect Rat Rod (a 1939 Ford Pickup) which could be built into the corporate vehicle Scott was looking for. Our shop manager, Jeff Allen and his team of Dan Belanger (wood working) , Lee Ash (Mechanic), Federico Monjaras (mechanic) and Ray Aviles (detailer) worked tirelessly to complete the job on time and to insure it was the quality vehicle Scott requested to represent Rugged Entrepreneurs everywhere.
Josh, Loreanna and I each participated in the design process as well as helped source parts and materials. Additionally, we coordinated with several outside vendors (Mikey Ayers @ Pinstriping by Mikey, David Green @ Swamp Daddy Airboats and James Lindhurst @ Boathouse Upholstery) to create the 1939 Ford “Rugged Entrepreneur” build.
On Monday evening Keith McCracken (our shipping driver), Josh, Loreanna and I headed to Louisville … and … we could not have been treated nicer by Scott, his wife Daphene and the whole RSS team. On Tuesday evening, RSS rented the whole “Old Forester Bourbon Distillery” in downtown Louisville for about 120 of their top Rugged Entrepreneurs and kindly included the three of us as their guest, An incredible tour and dinner ensued with Donovin Darius (a retired 10 year NFL Jaguars player. author and entrepreneur) being the keynote speaker. While we were at the dinner, Keith brought the “Rugged Entrepreneur“ 39 Ford into the Gault House Ballroom (convention host hotel) and covered it with it’s custom black cover.
The following morning, 600 RSS and BoxDrop participants arrived for the morning session of the convention … along with … a camera crew from Fox’s TV show “Trending Today”. After welcoming remarks, Scott requested that the top BoxDrop business owners (who had attended the dinner the previous night) all come to the front of the ballroom and make a semi-circle behind the covered truck. Josh then showed a short video that he had prepared about the build … and … at the end the lights went down, the truck was uncovered, the lights came back up … and … THE CROWD WENT WILD!!
Josh, Loreanna and I want to thank Scott and his team for this opportunity to build their company mascot representing something so important to RSS… and … for the incredible reception we received by all the participants of the RSS BoxDrop Convention. This is a experience we will never forget!!
Check out the FULL Video of the Rat Rod Build Process!
This 1939 Ford Pickup was a Modified by the FSD Hot Rod Ranch (Eustis, FL) to be a symbol and mascot for the Rugged Entrepreneur.