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Park Model Exec Delays Retirement

January 21, 2009 by   - () Leave a Comment

William R. Garpow, executive director of the Recreational Park Trailer Industry Association (RPTIA), has postponed his retirement. Along with it, the association’s planned move from the Atlanta area to Elkhart, Ind., also has been put off.
“The timing of my retirement is open again,” said Garpow, 67, citing the national economic recession as the cause. “`With the changes of the value of my property and my portfolio, I’m going to have to extend the number of years that I’m going to work.”
This comes at a time when reportedly RPTIA and the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) are in discussions about working more closely together and possibly merging.
Garpow has a perpetual contract with the association and intended to turn the reins over to his successor when he turned 70.
Garpow said that it doesn’t make sense for RPTIA, with headquarters about 30 miles south of Atlanta in Newnan, Ga., to move to Elkhart in the near future.
The association has established a cash reserve to hire a replacement a year before Garpow retires to receive training on the ins and outs of the park model business. “It is inevitable that I’m going to retire,” he said. “One way or another, they are going to need that money if they are going to replace me.”
Garpow has been the RPTIA’s only executive director since it was formed in 1993 as an off-shoot from the RVIA. The RPTIA represents approximately 50 park model manufacturers who account for nearly 90% of the industry’s shipments.

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