Uftring Auto Group's Ambassadors Extend a Hand to Community | Edmunds

Uftring Auto Group's Ambassadors Extend a Hand to Community

PEORIA, Illinois — In giving, Uftring Auto Group is receiving.

Owner Gary Uftring was one of six dealers worldwide recognized by Ford Motor Company as a 2015 "Salute to Dealers" honoree.

Salute to Dealers is a Ford Motor Company initiative that identifies and honors dealer principals who are dedicated to giving back to the communities in which they live and work.

While Uftring himself has long been charitable, in 2011 he created the Uftring Ambassadors Initiative that has at least one employee, often two, at each of his six dealerships, dedicated to promote volunteer work in the community.

In February, Uftring Ambassadors are collecting healthy snack food items to make a trail mix for an area Boys & Girls Club.

"The snack is often their last meal of the day and it's just a snack," Uftring Ambassador Coordinator Vickie Lannie told Edmunds.

They're also helping The HOPE Chest thrift store, with HOPE standing for "Help Other People Excel."

"Our ambassadors do a lot for various groups, but donating their time is our main goal," Lannie said. "Time is everyone's most precious commodity."

Some of the groups that receive their time include those whose homes were destroyed in the November 2013 Peoria tornado, The Central Illinois Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired, senior centers and various local races and walks.

"Our ambassadors sometimes serve breakfast at a mission on Sunday to give others the day off," she said.

Uftring accepted the dealer award at a reception in late January preceding the 2015 NADA Convention in San Francisco.

Edmunds says: Being recognized as one of the top givers from a worldwide pool speaks well of Uftring and proves that charity really does start at the top.

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