November '18

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rv-pro.com November 2018 • RV PRO • 63 sustainable manufacturing, corporate and social responsibility, culture and values, quality and construction and commitment to its customers. "Our team is the No. 1 thing that makes us different," Rees says. As of mid-September, she had chosen Eric Sharp, a 30-year industry veteran, as her general manager; Chris Bowers as produc- tion manager; John Gallagher, a one-time Forest River manager, as sales manager; and Pam Bowden as sales coordinator. Two other women, Lindsey Espiritu and Natalie Naquin, who worked for Rees in Chicago, round out the team at present. "As you can see, another nice feature of East to West is the great female-to-male ratio," she says. "We have a wonderful team that has been so patient and willing to work so hard through the challenging start-up phase. I also certainly need to recognize the plant and production people as they have worked so hard to make this dream a reality. "As a team, we think outside the box, which will further dif- ferentiate us in the future," she adds. "You'll hear in the industry: 'We've been doing it this way for 30 years.' So, I'm always thinking: 'That's great ... but how can we do it different that hasn't been done for 30 years?' That's our mindset and philosophy." Rees started out in 2017 as an independent manufacturer. In July of that year, her father purchased the two-building man- ufacturing facility sitting on 12 acres on County Road 7 that ultimately became East to West's temporary plant. "I never really thought about selling at the beginning, but it was presented to us that it would be for the best for my team in particular and for the brand to be part of a larger company, such as Forest River," Rees says. "Now, he (dad Pete Liegl) is my boss. The team at Forest River welcomed us with open arms. That's been really helpful for my team and me. Before, we were on our own. This really is a benefit to us. If I had to sell to anybody, Forest River would have been my only choice." For now, Rees is doing all of East to West's brochures and materials. She produced a 10-minute video that became available in August showing Della Terra's key features. In tandem with her sales team, she also reaches out to dealers to develop a relationship with them. It's not all that difficult because Rees has come to know many of the Forest River dealers over the years. Della Terra models are equipped with extended drawers beneath the dinette. Order your new A/C, Heat Pump seal today! -No Leak 1 Pc. Design -Weather Resistant EPDM Rubber -Adhesive Backed For Easy Installation ROOF TOP A/C, HEAT PUMP GASKET! Includes 2 leveling pads rv.steelerubber.com 800-230-6378 NEW!

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