Fourlane Ford expansion hailed by Ford Canada

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INNISFAIL – When the president and chief executive officer of the Ford Motor Company of Canada makes a commitment to come to Innisfail it’s no small thing.

Yes, it’s a big deal as there are 427 Ford dealers across Canada, and for the town’s award-winning Fourlane Ford dealership to have the company’s head man in town, it’s both an honour and a huge feather in its cap.

“One of the things I have enjoyed the most is working with the dealers. This kind of thing is really special and tonight is a great night for me. It is a privilege and an honour to be here,” said Mark Buzzell, the auto company’s top executive.

Buzzell came to attend Fourlane Ford’s renovation celebration, an evening event on April 5 that featured food, plenty of beverages, entertainment and a charity casino fundraiser for Central Alberta’s Ronald McDonald House.

The expansion project cost in excess of $2 million, added 3,200 square feet to its Main Street business and will now offer customers unparalleled service. Not that it wasn’t providing that before. Fourlane Ford has won the company’s President’s Award for outstanding customer service 22 out of the 24 years it has been in business.

“It’s a beautiful facility. I just had a chance to tour the whole building and there was a lot of thought that went into the details,” said Buzzell, who has been with the company for 27 years. “For any customer that comes here they are going to have a great experience. It’s really special for the people that work here too; a place they are really proud of and they did a tremendous job.

“I think it is a statement by the (Denham) family on how important it is on the investment they are making into the community,” he added.

Jeff Denham, dealer principal and general manager of Fourlane Ford, added that the renovation investment also created a lot of jobs for locals, who like everyone else have been impacted by the recession.

“It was a major investment with a local contractor Allan Johannson, who just did a tremendous job. We had lots of local subcontractors in here doing the work, and to put back into the community,” he said, noting his business sponsors the Innisfail Eagles, Innisfail and District Food Bank, the Christmas Bureau, as well as minor hockey, lacrosse and baseball.

“It is just our privilege to do business here and to give back to the community, which has supported us as it has, has been a privilege and a pleasure.”

And when the night was over $720 was raised through the charity casino. Fourlane Ford matched it, and the Ronald McDonald House in Red Deer will be getting a check for $1,440.

It was a gesture that pleased Buzzell, whose famous auto firm has made supporting the community a big part of the company’s culture in its more than 100-year history.

“I think it (renovation project) is a statement by the family on how important it is on the investment they are making into the community,” said Buzzell, who noted the high quality of staff at Fourlane Ford. “Facility is great, but at the end of the day it is the people inside of it. That is what makes this place especially great.”

Mark Buzzell, president and chief executive officer of the Ford Motor Company of Canada

“I think it (renovation project) is a statement by the family on how important it is on the investment they are making into the community. Facility is great, but at the end of the day it is the people inside of it. That is what makes this place especially great.”

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Johnnie Bachusky

Johnnie Bachusky joined the Innisfail Province as editor in 2013. He covers Innisfail and Red Deer County news, police, crime and municipal politics. He is also a photographer and columnist.