Rick Curia

President / CEO of Ken Nelson Auto Plaza

Our community is phenomenal. There is a sense that we are all in this together and I think it all goes back to my days at Sauk.

How has Sauk enhanced your life?

You can’t really place your finger on any one thing, but I have to believe with the [Human Resources] class, it was more the confidence that it may have given you with communicating with people and I think Don [Burton, SVCC Professor], just opened up the opportunities, the endless opportunities that are entirely up to you, and we are given them, and it is what you do with them when you receive them. And I don’t know if I can put my finger on it, but I have to believe that [Don] is part of the success that we have been able to experience.

It’s SAUK. It’s Don. They made me realize the importance of People. You know, I’m tough on employees because I want to get out of them what I think they’re capable of doing. Employees are our biggest asset, by far our biggest asset. To keep employees for fifty years in an organization, for thirty or forty years even, and we are not just talking one or two, it is very comforting to know that these people have stuck with you and I think they see the passion, commitment and dedication that was learned from Don and Sauk Valley. If I would not have attended Sauk, and not attended Don’s classes, who knows where we’d be.

Our Community is Phenomenal. There is a sense, that we are all in this together. […] I think it all goes back to my days at Sauk.

We have been blessed in business, with friendships and family and there is nothing better than giving something in return. It’s just a mutual understanding that you give back, not for accolades or to get something in return, but you are getting something in return. You’re getting a feeling, a wonderful wonderful feeling.

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