At Murray Chevrolet, auto parts are all in the family
MURRAY Chevrolet’s longest serving staff member has retired — but, he says, he will be back. Fred Swift had been a fixture in the parts department for 42 years prior to his retirement at the end of December. He started at the dealership fresh out of high school in 1973 — when the dealership was still Carter Motors. (The Murray Family acquired the dealership in 1994.)
“I started as a driver,” he recalls. “After a short time, I was working in shipping and receiving. Six months later, I was moved to the front desk.” For the past 22 years, he has been the parts department manager.
“I have loved it here,” Swift says of his time with Carter and Murray. “It has been an amazing ride. I have been able to go all over the world thanks to General Motors and I have seen huge changes over the years, that has been one of the features that has made this industry so exciting.”
Swift notes he led a department that has been remarkably stable in terms of staffing. “Half of our staff of 18 have been here for more than 20 years,” he says. “As a team, we have won many awards.”
Fred Swift’s successor as parts manager at Murray Chevrolet is his daughter, Rachel, who is also a longtime employee of the dealership. Rachel Swift also started working for Murray Chevrolet fresh out of high school. After a couple of years, she left the industry and tried the hotel business and the insurance industry. “Dad invited me to come back here after I took maternity leave,” she says. That was about eight years ago.
Rachel is expecting an easy transition. “I have always been a car girl,” she says. “I have known the guys in the parts department all my life. And I will have my dad around to advise me.”
You read that right. Fred Swift is looking forward to spending a couple of months down south, then returning to Murray Chevrolet as a part time consultant. “I think that Rachel will be a great manager,” he says. “I have all the confidence in the world she and her team will continue to successfully grow the business. She has a great staff to work with.”
Retired Murray Chevrolet parts manager Fred Swift, with daughter Rachel, who is the dealership’s new parts manager.