2021 Member of the Year Winners

Since its founding in 1987, Park Place has remained devoted to creating an exceptional automotive purchase and ownership experience.  From numerous manufacturer and industry accolades to becoming the first-ever dealerships to be awarded the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award, Park Place Dealerships has created a culture of excellence that endures.  

“We have repeatedly evolved to stay at the forefront of the automotive industry. We want to highlight who we have been, who we are, and who we are becoming.” Tony Carimi, Park Place Dealerships Managing Director

Our purpose is “To create and province extraordinary experiences.” The core values help build and redefine the company’s brand:

Experts
Drawing on our experience to actively innovate with optimism and determination.

Exemplary
Leading by example with integrity and always doing the right thing.

Expressing Care
Respecting our team members, clients and community with a genuine spirit of serving.

Excellence-Driven
Taking ownership, anticipating needs and exceeding expectations.

Every year the company recognizes members who have gone above and beyond to create extraordinary ownership experiences every day. Our members are truly the X factor in Experts in Excellence.

Below is the 2021 Member of the Year Winners

Congratulations to our Managing Director- Tony Carimi!

Park Place Managing Director Tony Carimi has been named one of Dallas’ Top 500 leaders by D CEO magazine. Now in its seventh year, the annual publication is the culmination of six months of research by the editors of D CEO and includes 197 new names to the revered list which include Mark Cuban and George W. Bush. 

Along with their toughest challenges and strategies for success, leaders shared what they order at their favorite restaurants, their hobbies, passions, and what they’d choose as their walk-up song. Tony highlighted the amazing Members who come to Park Place every day to serve clients and the community. Congratulations, Tony! 

See below to read Tony’s full interview, which was featured in the D CEO December issue and contributed to the choosing of being in the 500 leaders by D Ceo. 

2022 Dallas 500 Interview Q&A

  1. What was your first job, and what did you learn from it?
    •  Working for my grandfather’s oil distributorship in Odessa, TX.  He provided a front-row example showcasing the value of a client, the importance of relationships, and hard work.  
  2. What piece of advice has had the most significant impact on your career?
    •   “Seek humility before humility finds you.”  It is critical to understand your own capabilities in relation to others and the situations that you face.  Always surround yourself with passionate talent and leverage the group to evolve your organization while ensuring that the experience for your team members and clients that you serve remain the driving force.
  3. If you could have dinner with any two DFW business leaders, who would you choose and why?
    • Carl Sewell and Ken Schnitzer. In my 27-year career in the automotive industry, I have had the honor to work for and learn from two of the best.  Not just leaders in automotive but retail as a whole.  As time has progressed, you recognize the value of mentors and the importance of healthy competition that continues to push you and your team to enhance the experience.  In the end, your team and the consumers are the ones that benefit.  
  4. What are some of your favorite destinations/places to visit?
    • It is hard to beat Aspen in the summertime.  New York City also holds a very special place.  
  5. Is there a nonprofit cause that has special meaning to you? Please tell us about it.
    • Through Park Place Cares, we are able to provide a dynamic outreach program that supports over 250 organizations throughout the DFW area.  We provide all of our team members 5-days of paid volunteer time every year to support Arts, Medical Research, Advocacy, and Education.  We must pursue the highest standards of corporate responsibility in everything that we do by supporting and empowering our teams to improve the quality of life in the communities where we do business.       
  6. If you could give your favorite person any gift this year, what would it be and why?
    • Time and presence.  As we continue to mature, we recognize the true commodities of value to others and ourselves.  
  7. What’s your hobby/passion?
    • I love to run and exercise.  The “think” and recharge time is imperative. 
  8. What is your favorite DFW-area restaurant and what do you order there?
    • Homewood – Matt McAllister and his team do such an amazing and creative job utilizing quality ingredients while maximizing flavors and textures.   
  9.  What would people be surprised to learn about you (fun fact)?
    • I was a member of the Singing Cadets during my time at Texas A&M University  
  10. If you could drive one car for a day, what would it be and why?
    • That is the easiest question of all.  It would be a Park Place vehicle.  The badge stands for luxury and excellence which is exemplified in all of the brands that we serve.  
  11. What’s the toughest business challenge you’ve had to overcome?
    • Navigating the ever-changing challenges of the pandemic while working to ensure the safety of our team members and clients is always at the forefront of all the decisions that are being made. 
  12. What has been your/your company’s most significant success over the last 12 months?
    • Seeing Park Place’s team members unite and build a home in partnership with Habitat for Humanity.  This was Park Place Cares largest organizationally-combined initiative in our 34-year history.  We pursue the highest standards of corporate responsibility in everything that we do – and that includes supporting and empowering our team members to improve the quality of life in the communities in which we do business.     
  13. What is the most interesting trend you’re seeing in your industry? What’s driving it, and how does it impact your company?
    • Electrification.  In the emerging market of electric and hybrid automobiles, manufacturers that Park Place represent are rolling out new vehicles which capture the cutting edge of this rapidly evolving technology which will define the future of the automotive industry.   
  14. What is one thing you would change about Dallas to make it even better?
    • As Dallas continues to attract top companies and talent, we must ensure that we provide the necessary resources and strategy to focus on the development and education of our children.  Our public education system needs to match and be reflective of the nation-leading business environment that we have created.  
  15. As you enter your office, what would you choose to be your walk-up or theme song and why?
    • Don’t Stop Believing – Journey.  Every day brings opportunity and challenges.  The key is to have a clear focus on your purpose and values while owning the responsibility that you have to those that you serve. 
  16. What is one book you think everyone should read (or podcast everyone should listen to) and why?
    • Start With Why – Simon Sinek.  His comment of, “What if we showed up to work every single day to be better than ourselves?  For no better reason than to want to leave the organization in a better state than we found it?”  We must all be responsible stewards of our business.  The Park Place legacy is bigger than any individual and our leaders all understand the importance of protecting and evolving that legacy. 
  17. What is the biggest risk you have ever taken?
    • Allowing our leaders to take risks.  It was hard to let go and understand the possibilities and growth that is attained when you allow your team to try new things and new processes.  True growth does not come without failure and learning.  That failure is what creates improvement and innovation.
  18. Name one item on your bucket list.
    • To have the ability to experience and be a part of my daughters attaining their personal and professional dreams.  Their display of their servant heart in life and in their fields of Healthcare and Education provides a sense of pride that could not be duplicated by any other experience. 
  19. What has you most excited about the future?
    • Watching the growth of our teams and the individual accomplishments that are both personal and professional that our members achieve.  The legacy of Park Place is relationship-based.  Though trends, products, and technology will change, keeping focused on the fact that we are in the people business will ensure that Park Place is positioned for success for many years to come. 

Spotlight on Rutilio Anguiano

Rooty, as he’s known by his teammates, is a humble man. He’d rather talk about his co-workers than himself.

His teammates describe Rutilio as one of the most likable guys, and say, he goes out of his way to greet everyone with a smile. They describe him as a team player and a delight to work with every day. 

Bryan Martin, his supervisor, says. Rutilio is the ideal employee. He’s a pillar of integrity. Always has a positive attitude and is never late. That says a lot about a man who starts work every day at 7 a.m.

Rutilio joined Lexus Plano in 2009 as a car washer, and he loves his job. I love my team, he says. And, more than anything, I love my schedule. While he comes in at 7, he also leaves at 4 p.m.

When he’s not working, you might find him taking care of one of his kid’s cars. Rooty is married with three children: a son 27; and two daughters – 23 and 21. He likes to ride his bicycle and watch football (the Dallas Cowboys of course) and boxing.

He says Park Place is a good place to work. There are lots of opportunities for anyone who wants to grow.

Spotlight on Matt Overs: Technical Advisory Board Chairman

Although he was born in a small town outside of Philadelphia, Matt Overs considers himself a full-on Texan!! His family actually had a big influence on him. Most of his family has been in the automotive industry since he could remember. Particularly, his family has been in repair shops, which is why working at a repair shop came naturally to him. Before coming to Park Place, he used to work as a technician at a repair shop called Christian Brothers. He heard about Park Place when he was in high school. It was through an outreach program that Park Place had at the time. I guess Park Place stuck with him because he has been with the company for 10 years.

Matt has had various roles at Park Place. He started as a technician and stayed in this role for two and a half years. Then, he was a technician leader for three years. After that, he became a shop foreman, which he has lasted 5 years in. One of the things he enjoys the most about being a shop foreman is being able to develop his own strategies to fix a problem. Recently, Matt has become chairman of the Technical Advisory Board. Being a part of the Technical Advisory Board means providing insights on the strategies that help contribute to solving problems. “It is satisfying when you can find the hard problem, and you can actually fix it,” he says.

Career growth has always been in his vision. Maybe in the future, he hopes the company opens an executive position as a technician director. He says, “One of the biggest challenges we face is the integration of full-electric vehicles into traditional workshop equipment and repair processes. I think the company would benefit from an executive-level position that oversees technical directives.”

A great moment he experienced within Park Place is being Coach of the Year in 2016. This moment was so dear to him because you have to be voted to become Coach of the Year. “It is not easy to impress your peers,” he adds on.

Although he says he is an introvert, he has an adventurous side to him. He has a passion for mountain biking. Especially, anything with two wheels. He has a dirt bike and a street bike. A fun fact is that he takes a yearly trip to Colorado. He loves going to a place called The Chicago Basin in Colorado. When he is there, he enjoys his time mountain biking, rafting, and hiking.

One advice he would give a new hire is “Everybody is approachable, so ask questions.” He brags about the Park Place culture. “Park Place has worked a culture of members helping each other.” He truly believes that you have the power to solve problems. His quote to others would be “Listen First.”                    

Seantrel Sloan: Porsche Dallas Technician Wins Awards For Restoration in Porsche Challenge

 

Park Place Porsche Dallas technician Seantrel Sloan, 26, recently completed a year-long restoration of a 1990 Porsche 911 Carrera 4 Targa, one of only 1,500 Targa 964s in existence. The rare sportscar (number 90) was restored as a tribute to the family’s father, who was only the second owner of the vehicle.

When the client asked Park Place to help restore the car, no one imagined it would be chosen as the top restoration in the Area, then the best in the Porsche Cars of North America South Region. Sloan and the car traveled to Indianapolis for the Porsche Sportscar Together Festival September 10 – 12, where his work finished as one of the top three cars in the country in the Porsche Classic Restoration Challenge national championship.

“I’m proud and honored to represent the brand,” said Sloan. “The skills and training I got from Park Place prepared me to do the quality of work I put into the car.”

For nearly 20 years, the 911 Carrera 4 Targa had been stored in a garage. When the car arrived at Park Place Porsche it had vacuum leaks, multiple oil leaks, aged rubber hoses, fouled spark plugs, and carbon tracked distributor caps and rotors. All of these were replaced and updated, along with new cylinders, machining the cylinder heads, replacing the radio with a new Porsche Classic Communication Management system (PCCM), paint correction, and some interior restoration.

“We were given the opportunity to participate in the Porsche Classic Challenge with our client’s 911 C4 Targa in Dunkleblau – ‘Dark Blue’ in English,” said Porsche Dallas General Manager Patrick Huston. “Being able to feel the performance during its first test drive, compared to how the car would barely move when we first received it, was well worth our efforts to make the car like new again.”

One of the biggest challenges of the restoration was sourcing parts for the 30-year-old sports car. The competition required all parts to be original manufacturer’s parts. Porsche Dallas Parts Specialist Keith Jones rose to the challenge, literally tracking down parts from all over the world. Shop Foreman Steven Taylor helped keep the project on track and even helped Sloan mount the engine back into the car.

The 2021 Porsche Classic Restoration Challenge saw nearly 40 dealerships from around the U.S. take part by giving Porsche sports cars expert attention. Teams of certified Porsche Technicians and the official catalog of 60,000 unique Porsche Classic Genuine Parts were enlisted to return the cars to their former glory. Represented in the competition were Porsche 356 models from as early as 1956, five generations of the 911, transaxle models like the 944 and 928, as well as modern classics such as the first-generation Boxster. After months of diligent work, documentation, and check-ins, cars judged to be regional winners moved on to compete in the August semifinals in each of the three U.S. Porsche sales areas. 

Sloan’s love of the Porsche brand began when he was just eight years old. “My grandfather bought me the “Need for Speed” video game dedicated to Porsches. I learned everything about every car in the game. And I fell in love with the brand…the heritage…the tradition. Every single car that I’ve touched in the shop, I’ve driven in the game. And now I’ve had the opportunity to drive those cars with my own two hands and feet. To be a Porsche Classic Tech, and keep these cars on the road today, is an honor.”

Sloan grew up in Dallas, graduating in 2013 from Duncanville High School. He worked as a car washer/valet at Park Place while attending UTI Universal Technical Institute (UTI) in Irving to receive his automotive technician certification, graduating in 2014. Then he served two years of active duty in the U.S. Army, most of which was in Pyeongtaek, South Korea as a petroleum specialist for aviation and ground vehicles. After being honorably discharged as a Specialist E-4, he returned to work at Park Place Porsche Dallas as a technician. He currently lives in Lancaster, Texas.

Park Place Porsche Dallas, one of only two Porsche Exclusive dealers in Texas, is located at 6107 Lemmon Avenue near Love Field. The dealership has been honored as a Porsche Premier Dealer 20 times by Porsche Cars North America.

Park Place Dealerships was founded in 1987. For the past 34 years, the company has been engaged in the community through its support of the arts, medical research, children’s advocacy, and education. Park Place Dealerships employs more than 1,400 members and operates two collision centers, an auto auction, and eight full-service dealerships representing luxury brands including Lexus, Mercedes-Benz, Porsche, Volvo, Jaguar, Land Rover, and Sprinter Vans. For more info, visit parkplace.com.

Kendall Richards Leads Veterans on Their Last Ride

JLR SEM Kendall Richards swore he’d never go into the car business. “My dad owned a VW Audi dealership, and I wanted nothing to do with the family business,” he said.

After graduating from Hillcrest High in 1980, Kendall got his undergraduate degree at Stephen F. Austin. Then he enlisted in the U.S. Air Force, where he spent seven years as an air traffic controller, the last three as an instructor.

“I served on the Honor Guard at Keesler AFB in Biloxi, Mississippi,” he said. “It was a very special duty, but I thought I was done with that part of my life when I got out.”

While in the Air Force, Kendall got his MBA from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. After working in IT at EDS, he moved into the mortgage banking business until the economic bust of 2008, when a friend suggested he consider Lexus Plano.

“I can do this for a while until something else comes along,” he thought. He steadily rose up the ranks from Sales Consultant to Internet Sales, Finance Director to New Car and Pre-Owned Sales Manager before moving to JLR a year ago.“

A friend’s dad knew I liked to ride my Harley, and he asked if I’d be interested in joining the Patriot Guard Riders,” explained Kendall. The Patriot Guard Riders is a volunteer nonprofit that ensures dignity and respect at memorial services honoring fallen active duty military, first responders and honorable discharged veterans.

“I was hooked from the first mission!” he said. “The majority of our rides are at DFW National Cemetery, but this one was a service for a 95-year-old World War II vet at a little country cemetery in Savoy, Texas. When his kids and grandkids got up and spoke, it made me want to be a better dad, grandfather and friend.

For the past year, Tuesdays have been Kendall’s day off. “The ride captain leads the mission,” he concluded. “I’m the first guy they call for a Tuesday funeral.” And that’s just the way he wants it.

GARY VENNER INDUCTED INTO CARROLL ISD ATHLETIC HALL OF HONOR

Gary Venner, Park Place Jaguar-Land Rover DFW general manager, was recently inducted into the Carroll ISD Athletics Hall of Honor for achievements in baseball, track, and football. He graduated from a class of only 53 students at Southlake High School in 1976.

Other Class of 2020 Hall of Honor inductees included:

  • Shannon McGowan, Class of 1977, Track & Field
  • Shelly Adamcik, Class of 1999, Volleyball/Track
  • Jessa Vacek, Class of 2001, Track & Field
  • Doug Strickland, Fan/Supporter
  • Justin Leonard, 2004 – Present, Cross Country Coach
  • 2004 Golf Team

“I’ve been part of some very successful teams,” said Venner. “I was catcher at Ranger Junior College in 1978 when we won the NJCAA World Series. There was not a single player good enough to carry the team and win that title. But together we achieved something remarkable.” 

Venner also played baseball at the University of Texas, where his team finished fifth in the College World Series in 1979. He was drafted by the Texas Rangers in 1980. He played and coached four seasons for minor league clubs in North Carolina, Colorado and Iowa.

“I worked off season selling cars,” explained Venner. “I was making more money in the car business than I was playing professional baseball. I spent the next 18 years at Hudiburg Chevy before joining Park Place in 2003. I was named General Manager of Lexus Plano the next year. Then I was GM at Lexus Grapevine from 2007 to 2014.” 

In 2005, Venner was part of the team that helped Park Place Lexus win the Malcolm Baldrige Award, the nation’s highest presidential honor for performance excellence. Park Place Lexus was the first automobile dealer to ever win the prestigious award. 

“Winning the Malcolm Baldrige Award was a high point in my career,” he said. “It’s not what I achieved, but what we achieved together as a team that makes me proud. Just like in athletics, I’ve made life-long friends working in the car business; both with the people I’ve worked with and the relationships I’ve been blessed to cultivate with clients who I now consider friends first.” 

Venner served as president of Park Place Dealerships from 2014 – 2017, but he missed the one-on-one interactions at the dealership level. He returned to Lexus Grapevine as GM, then in 2019, he became GM for Park Place Jaguar-Land Rover DFW in Grapevine.

“I reached the pinnacle of the career ladder and realized it wasn’t what really made me happy,” he explained. “I love the day to day operations of the car business. I always have. I enjoy working with my team to achieve our goals while helping them grow as individuals. Most of all, I love helping clients realize their dreams when it comes to their car ownership experience.”

Gary is married to Kayla Venner, a former second grade teacher at Southlake Elementary School. In November, the couple will celebrate 40 years of marriage. They raised their children (Morgan, 31, and Colton 27) in Colleyville. 

Park Place Jaguar-Land Rover is located on the south side of East State Highway 114 in Grapevine. The dealership has been the recipient of the Pride of Jaguar Retailer Excellence Award for the past three years in a row. Park Place Dealerships has been named among the “Top 100 Places to Work” by the Dallas Morning News for the past nine consecutive years. Park Place Dealerships also ranked in the top 10 for corporations in Dallas/Fort Worth and was named the best company for training.

Park Place Dealerships was founded in 1987. For the past 34 years, the company has been engaged in the community through its support of the arts, medical research, children’s advocacy and education. Park Place Dealerships employs more than 1,400 members and operates eight full-service dealerships representing luxury brands including Lexus, Mercedes-Benz, Porsche, Volvo, Jaguar, and Land Rover. For more info, visit parkplace.com.

Dallas Mercedes-Benz Team Wins National Competition, Places in Top 15 Worldwide

DALLAS (May 19, 2021) – Park Place Motorcars Dallas recently was crowned the best Customer Experience team in the country during the Mercedes-Benz Global Customer Experience Challenge. The team included Motorcars Dallas team members Darren Densman, centralized diagnostic technician of Kaufman, Texas; Brian Johnson, sales experience manager, of Dallas; Alfonso McClurg, master technician, of Dallas; C.J. Harper, service manager, of Heartland Texas; Matt Overs, Shop Foreman, of Mesquite; and Erik Bohdan, sales experience manager, of Dallas.

Mercedes-Benz teams from across the country competed online in various quests focused on connectivity. By proving their expertise, the Motorcars Dallas team finished first to win the National Championship. The Park Place Motorcars Dallas team then went on to place 14th worldwide out of 889 teams and 4,830 participants from 25 countries in the Global competition.

“This is a tremendous honor for our team,” said Tony Carimi, managing director of Park Place Dealerships. “As an organization, Mercedes-Benz is known as ‘The Best of the Best.’ It certainly applies to this talented group of professionals who are committed to working together and delivering only the best for our clients.”

Mercedes-Benz USA recognizes only the top 22 percent of its dealerships with the Best of the Best Award. That means only one out of five dealerships receive this esteemed award. Park Place Motorcars Dallas has been awarded this prestigious honor more than a dozen times.

Park Place Motorcars Dallas, located at 6113 Lemmon Avenue near Love Field Airport, has 350 members; more than 50 who have been with Park Place for more than a decade; 40 have 15 – 20 years tenure; 16 have 20 – 30 years; nine have served 30 or more years, and two people more than 40 years. 

“I’m very proud of our team,” said Park Place Motorcars Dallas General Manager Robert Morris. “This achievement is about our members, and what they do every day to earn trust through honesty and hard work. Our team continues to find innovative ways to deliver an outstanding client ownership experience.”

Park Place Dealerships was founded in 1987. For the past 34 years, the company has been engaged in the community through its support of the arts, medical research, children’s advocacy and education. Park Place Dealerships employs more than 1,400 members and operates eight full-service dealerships representing luxury brands including Lexus, Mercedes-Benz, Porsche, Volvo, Jaguar, and Land Rover. For more info, visit parkplace.com.

Spotlight on Henry Ortiz: Getting Better All the Time

Dallas-born Henry Ortiz grew up in nearby Euless, graduated Trinity High (Go Trojans!) in May 2006 and like most grads, wondered what to do with himself. His job at a local Tom Thumb grocery store was okay for the moment, but in his quiet, determined way, he aspired to more. Much more.

So when a customer casually mentioned that Park Place Mid Cities was hiring just down the road, he jumped. A month later, he was a parts runner with the parts team, learning and absorbing everything around him, focused on achieving his goal – working his way up to a service technician role and becoming a master of all things Mercedes. 

“Seemed like a good idea at the time,” he chuckles.

He took advantage of a transfer opportunity at Motorcars Fort Worth, where he met his new boss and mentor, Diki Terry, who was serving as Assistant Parts Manager. And when Terry was asked to serve as Parts Director at the newly-opened Park Place Motorcars Arlington store in October 2015, she asked Henry if he’d like to join her team.

He couldn’t say “yes” fast enough.

Now, as Parts Manager (he was promoted in the summer of 2018), he’s still saying “yes” – happily – to service techs, to parts customers around the metroplex, to the occasional client who wanders in and, of course, to Terry, too (hey, she’s the boss). See her Spotlight here.

“Henry is a great asset, not only our department, but to Park Place Arlington as well,” Terry says. “He provides an outstanding client experience to both our internal and external clients. He’s quick to jump in to assist in all areas and he’s a great mentor and leader to our team. Henry is passionate in caring for our members and our clients. He’s knowledgeable and shares his experiences with others to lead and develop them in their career.”

“She’s famous for her daily 15-minute tune-up meetings with our staff,” he says. “It’s a great way to identify and solve whatever challenges we face that day. On the rare occasion when she’s not here, we do them ourselves.”

Ortiz has no regrets about sticking with parts instead of pursuing a service tech role.

“From day one, it was clear that the company was interested in my professional development by extending opportunities to me,” he says. “I could’ve gone the tech route, but I felt super-comfortable with the way things were rolling. The whole management team is really invested in making growth investments in our team members. Where else can you find that?”

Along the way, he’s also been able to indulge his curiosity about the many technicalities of Mercedes engineering. “My parents had a late Reagan-era Mercedes and even though I was just a kid, I knew it was different from everything else: really solid and built to a different standard of quality than anything else.”

When he joined Park Place, he was immediately enrolled in, and continues to attend, various and sundry Mercedes certification course. “There’s so much history behind the brand,” he says. “After all, they invented and patented the first automobile more than a hundred years ago. There’s just so much that you might not know unless you own one and take the time to look into it. Fantastic vehicles.”

Although he works primarily behind the scenes, he remembers one pre-owned client who he helped with exceptional service. She decided that she wasn’t all that crazy about her wheels, and Ortiz helpfully stepped in with several recommendations that raised her satisfaction level to a perfect 10.

“After that, she’d stop by now and then and we’d always have a nice chat,” he says. “On one visit, she mentioned that she was expecting, so I got her a little Mercedes stuffed bear to say congratulations. She sent us a handwritten thank-you note about how blessed she felt to have friends at our store. It was a really sweet moment for all of us, since we don’t often get a chance to build relationships directly with clients.”

Speaking of families, Ortiz and his wife Veronica have two boys, Jude and Liam, and recently welcomed a baby girl, Emry, in January. But it’s his first-born’s name – Jude – That reveals his respect for a certain well-known classic British band from Liverpool.  

“I play a little piano and guitar and a few years ago began noticing that all the songs I really liked are Beatles tunes, especially ‘Hey Jude,’” he says. (Ortiz plays a Fender Stratocaster and a Gibson Les Paul-style, which speaks volumes to those in the know.)

“So Veronica and I decided, hey, Jude! All his teachers would sing it to him, because everybody on the planet knows the song. He’s probably sick of it,” Ortiz adds with a grin. 

Did they ever consider that Emry might be a Lucy instead?

“For about a minute,” he laughs.

On the Fast Track with Anam Ali Hashambhai, Park Place Marketing Director

It’s an oft-quoted inspirational maxim – “Find a job you like and you’ll never work a day in your life.” Variously attributed to Mark Twain, Confucius and your local HR motivational poster, it’s been repeated so frequently that it’s become a tired cliché.

 

But when you meet someone who loves what they do so much that they accomplish feats far beyond the mere mortal, that old platitude springs vigorously to life.

Say hello to Anam Ali Hashambhai, Marketing Director for Park Place Dealerships. In her quiet yet determined way, this Dallas native and SMU grad (BBA) seems to be everywhere at once, without seeming to break a sweat, much less ever losing her cool.

To her credit, she laughs at such an over-the-top description. She does, however, admit to being “probably more of a planner than is really necessary, but it’s just how my mind works.”

The ability to plan her work, then work her plan, serves her well at Park Place – the company’s 11 dealerships account for dozens of marketing and community projects every month. Organizing is a trait she picked up in her youth, when she took an active role in her family’s entrepreneurial enterprises during summer vacations. “I was always creating flyers, ads and posters, anything that promoted our businesses. It was lots of fun because family was always around, easily 20 or more at any one time. I still lean on them for a lot of help and support,” she says, adding with a laugh that “sometimes I feel like I have four moms!”

During and after college, she kept her creative hand in at the family businesses and interned at several local companies, including Southwest Airlines and Park Place. That’s where she met Kara Connor and the two got along like the proverbial house on fire.

“I was an intern and then a temp for Kara, who was most recently at Motorcars Arlington, and now she’s back on our corporate marketing team,” she enthuses. “She’s a real mentor as well as a great friend.” (Here’s a recent Spotlight on Kara.)

Quickly recognizing Anam’s relentless work ethic, Park Place hired her in 2013 as their full-time Experiential Marketing Manager. Her role required her to build and maintain more than 300 partnerships and sponsorships while developing new and innovative ways to create exceptional client experiences.

A good part of that development work involved expanding and consolidating the company’s community outreach programs. The result – “Park Place Cares,” an umbrella initiative focused on four philanthropic areas: arts, education, children’s advocacy and medical research.

In August 2020, in recognition of her hard work and community commitment, she was named Park Place Marketing Director. But she’s quick to point out that any credit for her success goes to her “awesome” marketing compatriots and to the company’s team members, “because they always pull together during thick or thin.” 

“I’m incredibly proud of our 1,400 members and their dedication to community volunteerism, especially during these unsettled times,” she says. “We’ve expanded our holiday season gift donation efforts with the Community Partners of Dallas, and we’re helping build a home with the Dallas Area Habitat for Humanity. We’ve also teamed up with the After-School All-Stars (ASAS) to provide Dallas ISD students and a local charter school with free backpacks filled with supplies. And that’s just for starters. It’s our duty and honor to help those in need.”

Hard-working as she is, the old adage about “all work and no play” still rings true. To a point. She and her husband Aamir run a real estate side-gig that takes up what free time she has. But it’s something she absolutely adores.

“Renovating homes is a lot of work, but it’s so much fun,” she says. “I love designing but I’m also pretty handy with power tools, and can patch up walls with the best of them!”

They also enjoy cooking together. “Thai food every day, my absolute favorite without question,” she says. “We also love Indian curries and of course, our standby Tex Mex.” She also confesses to being an avid meal planner – natch – and spends most Sundays prepping meals for the week.

While cooking, she listens to her two favorite singers of the moment, Jana Rae Kramer and Kelsea Ballerini. “I guess I’m into country girlie music,” she laughs. “Is that even a genre? I just made it up. Guess that’s why I’m in marketing!”

What’s Anam’s favorite thing about Park Place? “I love the people and the relationships we’ve built. Serving the community and curating the client experience reflects on our brand and I really and truly love making that happen.”

“Anam’s passion and care for our communities and members exemplifies the Park Place spirit while setting the bar high for all to emulate,” says Tony Carimi, Managing Director of Park Place Dealerships. “She truly defines and creates unparalleled experiences!”