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I am PSTC - Steve Plant

After 37 years, Peach State Forest Park's Senior Service Manager Steve Plant is retiring.

Parts & Service

I am PSTC - Steve Plant

I am PSTC - Steve Plant

After 37 years of dedicated service, Steve Plant, the Senior Service Manager at Peach State Truck Centers Forest Park, is retiring. His journey in the trucking industry has been nothing short of remarkable, filled with passion, dedication, and a relentless pursuit of excellence.

Steve's journey in the world of trucks and engines began at a young age. Growing up with a father who was a mechanic, he was exposed to the world of engines and vehicles. He worked alongside his father, fixing old cars and learning the intricacies of engines, and the lessons he learned from his father stayed with him throughout his career.

At the age of 13, Steve began working at a car shop in Jonesboro, GA, where he swept floors and washed parts. It was here that he learned the basics of auto repair and maintenance. He then moved on to W.W. Williams, where he worked on Detroit engines and remanufactured components. This experience laid the foundation for his career in the trucking industry.

In 1986, Steve joined Peach State Truck Centers Forest Park, then known as Atlanta Freightliner, as a second-shift technician. Over the years, he worked his way up through various roles, including lead technician, foreman, and warranty manager. He played a key role in the growth and development of the dealership, which started with just two rows of bays and expanded into a thriving business.

"What made Steve Plant such a great manager is the fact he dedicated 37 years working his way through the service department to where he is today,” said Dawn McRae, Peach State Truck Centers Warranty Manager, who has worked with Steve for over 16 years. “It was these years of service where he had the opportunity to work in all the positions of the service department. He has literally walked in the work shoes of everyone he managed! His experience allowed him to manage with notable empathy. It was his empathy that sets him apart from the rest."

One of the highlights of Steve's career was his involvement in the Elite Support initiative, a continuous improvement program launched by Daimler Trucks of North America (DTNA). Steve was part of the proof of concept for this initiative and played a crucial role in implementing it at Peach State Truck Centers Forest Park. The program focused on improving efficiency, cleanliness, and profitability, and Steve's efforts were instrumental in its success.

In addition to his technical skills, Steve was also known for his mentorship program, which he started soon after becoming the service manager. He formalized the program, which involved tracking progress, monthly meetings, and DTNA training. This program helped new hires fast-track their learning and contributed to the overall success of the company.

As Steve prepares to retire, he leaves behind a legacy of hard work, dedication, and a commitment to excellence. He is proud of the team he has built at Peach State Truck Centers Forest Park and is confident that they will continue to thrive under the leadership of Amber Sanes, who will be taking over as Service Manager. 

"It’s not just a job to him, he genuinely cares about the shop and everyone in it. He takes a lot of pride in Forest Park, you can hear it in his voice as he reflects on his career and what he has built,” said Amber. “Steve has been an amazing mentor. With as much experience as he has, he is always able to provide insight on anything I’m needing help with. He has allowed me to grow into the role and find my way, but also ensured he’d never let me fall. Sometimes, his advice came from his mascot [Elsa, from Frozen]. He’d ask, ‘What would Elsa say?’ and I knew that meant it was time to let it go.” Amber continued, “When people think of Forest Park Service, they think of Steve Plant, because the success of this department has always been tied directly to his success throughout his career.”

In his retirement, Steve plans to spend time with his family, travel, and work on his collection of antique engines. He is grateful for the opportunities he has had and the support he has received from DTNA and Peach State Truck Centers. His dedication to his work and his commitment to his team will be remembered and celebrated for years to come.

Dwayne Bethune, Thomas Bus of Georgia Service Coordinator, shared his thoughts on Steve's retirement: "This is going to be tough not having him around. He’s an inspiration and a motivator. I learned patience from him and getting a thicker skin, not taking customer stuff personally. I couldn’t ask for a better manager and boss and all around good guy."

As Steve Plant embarks on this new chapter in his life, we wish him all the best and thank him for his many years of service and dedication to the trucking industry.

"I admire and appreciate watching his career grow from working under the trucks and repairing them to warranty manager and then to eventually running Forest Park,” said Mandy Elzey, Steve's daughter and Peach State Truck Centers McDonough's Service Shop Foreman. “It's impressive. He went through a lot of changes with the company. The man has enjoyed his job – I don’t think he’s ever dreaded going to work. He’s been very happy in his career."

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