Dave Knapp Ford celebrates 30 years


By Ryan Berry


GREENVILLE — Dave Knapp Ford is celebrating its 30th anniversary of serving the Darke County Community. The Ford and Lincoln dealership has been located at 500 Wagner Ave., Greenville since 1994. On Friday, March 8, the dealership celebrated the milestone with an open house and a Darke County Chamber of Commerce ribbon cutting.

Prior to 1994, the building and lot where Dave Knapp Ford Lincoln had sat empty for several years. Knapp was looking for a location to bring a dealership and the offer he received from Ford fit into what he wanted to do. Knapp said, “It was an opportunity that Ford Motor Company had in this market to put a dealer in. It was a closed point for many years before that. They said, ‘Go check this point out,” and I came up and checked it out and it fit. The money fit, my investment fit and 30 years later…”

Knapp understands where the success of the business has come from. He attributed it to the relationships he has been able to build over the years. “What a great ride it has been. (I’ve) Built so many beautiful relationships with the dignitaries that’s in here, customers and friends and bankers, insurance company. I think life is about relationships. There’s no question about it. I think that we are living proof of that for being her for 30 years,” said Knapp.

Knapp has been in the automobile industry for more than 50 years and once again pointed to relationships as his reason for staying active. “(It’s) the relationships. The customer relationships, employee relationships, vendor relationships, local dignitaries, being seated in the community, it’s a payback kind of thing. It’s a circle of love. You’ve got to give back to the people that supported you.”

Giving back has been what Knapp and his team have done since coming to the community. He admitted that it wasn’t something that was part of his planning when he opened, but he chose early on to follow God’s plan. “I think it was God’s plan. I just followed His plan and that’s what. I just followed the Spirit,” he said. It’s not hard to see how Dave Knapp Ford Lincoln has touched many lives over the past three decades. He has been a supporter of several organizations by offering cars for a hole-in-one at golf tournaments or offering a car to a student who attended the After Prom. There are too many programs the company has supported over the years to list.

He called the past 30 years a “mist” and said that he was 42 years old when he opened the dealership. His sons, who are part of the company, are now 46 years old.”

To contact Daily Advocate Editor Ryan Berry, email [email protected].

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