Cam Clark Ford wins Salute to Dealers award for giving back to community
By: Allison Chorney
| Posted: Thursday, Feb 13, 2014 11:28 am
Cam Clark, of Cam Clark Ford, is being honoured by Ford Motor Company as one of six Ford dealers worldwide selected to receive the Salute to Dealers award for community contribution.
“This award would likely be the highlight of my career with Ford,” Clark said.
The award recognizes dealers who have gone above and beyond when it comes to giving back to the community.
Clark was selected because of his philanthropic initiatives, which includes contributions to the Calgary Stampede Rodeo Committee, Alberta Children’s Hospital Cancer Unit, Kids Cancer Foundation of Alberta’s Camp Kindle, the Airdrie Boys and Girls Club, Stephen’s Backpack Society, the Airdrie Food Bank, The Ups and Downs Society, Airdrie and District 4-H Clubs, Rocky View Schools Division (RVS) and others.
Clark said all the organizations he supports are important to him but he is most proud of the partnership with RVS.
“I think the connection with Rocky View Schools Division, both in the Mechanics Program and the Community Learning Centre are both very close to our hearts,” Clark said.
Cam Clark Ford has had a 14-year long partnership with the RVS Mechanic Program, which has resulted in a successful automotive technician-training centre at Cam Clark Ford for RVS students. The program allows students access to a state-of-the-art learning site, access to the Cam Clark Ford site, industry standard tools and equipment and instruction supported by Journeyman staff and has resulted in nine former students now working full-time at the dealership.
The partnership with the Airdrie Community Learning Centre will result in a new centre that will provide youth afterschool activities and programming.
“Youth in our community are our future leaders and future businesses,” Clark said, adding the centre – which is still in the conceptual stages – will give kids a place to go and keep them active and out of trouble.
“Cam Clark Ford is a tremendous friend of education and supporter of Rocky View Schools,” said RVS Superintendent of Schools Don Hoium at the Feb. 6, board of trustees meeting.
Cam Clark Ford relationship with Kids Cancer Care Foundation of Alberta’s Camp Kindle has resulted in the dealers support of the annual Charity Golf Classic in support of the organization, the purchase of maintenance vehicles for the camp including a new skid steer tractor that was given to the camp this Christmas.
Kids Cancer Foundation of Alberta CEO Christine McIver said the tractor was greatly needed at the year-round camp.
“It means we can deliver our programs to kids with cancer in a safe and aesthetically pleasing environment,” she said.
The tractor came from Clark calling McIver and asking what he could provide for the camp for Christmas.
“He doesn’t try to buy something that is nice but is something that we need,” she said. “The fact that he asks us that and listens is really, really vital.”
McIver said the organization is grateful for everything Cam Clark Ford does for them and added Ford “picked the right guy for the award.”
Though Clark will receive the award and a painted portrait of himself featuring a montage of the philanthropic and volunteer activities he’s involved with, he said the award is not his alone.
“The way we look at this award is a dealership award,” Clark said. “We’ve got a lot of loyal employees that are committed to volunteering.”
Cam Clark Ford has been in Airdrie for 28 years and Clark said he is fortunate to live in a community like Airdrie and it is important to him to give back.
“A community like this in Alberta has a lot of pressures,” he said, adding if the city is to remain a place people want to live and work, it is important organizations like the ones he supports are in place.
Cam Clark Ford was one of 81 nominees for the Salute to Dealers award and one of 8,500 Ford Motor Company dealers worldwide that are eligible for the award. The dealership is also the only one in Canada selected for this year’s honour.