The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not represent our advertisers

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Auto shop owner donates his $2.5M business to nonprofit

BALTIMORE (AP) — Vehicles for Change, a pioneering Maryland nonprofit, has received foundation grants and corporate sponsorships, but no gift ever looked quite like this: a fully functioning auto repair business.

Jerry Greeff’s unusual donation of his One Stop Auto Repair garage came with a request to keep alive the $2.5 million-a-year business that he has operated in Waverly with his wife, Pam, since 1991.

At 64, Greeff said his wife encouraged him to leave behind his taxing 12-hour days at the shop and concentrate instead on the family’s commercial real estate interests.

“My wife said it was either her or the business,” Greeff said.

The shop — on the site of the old Talbott Motors Co. that later became a Ford dealership on Greenmount Avenue — was transferred right after Christmas to the nonprofit, which fixes donated cars and awards them to low-income families at minimal cost.

All that was missing was a giant red bow.

Martin Schwartz, the organization’s president, said he was happy to oblige Greeff’s request. Not only will the 18-year-old nonprofit keep the shop — with its familiar red-brick storefront and 17 lifts — open, it will use the property as an extension of its re-entry program in Halethorpe, in which dozens of ex-prisoners are trained to become auto mechanics.


No comments: