Horsey New Chair of RVDA Board: ‘Passion for Outdoor Rec’ – RVBusiness – Breaking RV Industry News

Nathan Hart, left, passes the gavel to Ryan Horsey. (Photo: RVDA)

LAS VEGAS – Ryan Horsey of Parkview RV Center in Smyrna, Del., was named the chairman of the RV Dealers Association (RVDA) board of directors for 2024 during the association’s annual meeting on Wednesday at Paris Las Vegas.

Horsey succeeds Nathan Hart of Walnut Ridge Family RV Sales in New Castle, Ind., who will remain on the board as immediate past chairman.

The entire new slate of RVDA officers for 2024 are Chairman Ryan Horsey of Parkview RV Center in Smyrna, Del.; First Vice Chairman Larry Troutt III of Topper’s Camping Center in Waller, Texas; Second Vice Chair Bob Been of Blue Compass RV in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.; Treasurer Brad Bacon of Pleasureland RV Center in St. Cloud, Minn.; and Secretary Lane Bell of Bell Camper Sales in Bartlesville, Okla.

New Board of Directors members are Travis Creech of Rex & Sons RV in Wilmington, N.C. and LaDonna Meadows of Tacoma RV Center in Tacoma, Wash.. They join Frank Roberts of Longview RV Superstores, Windsor Locks, Conn.

Also included are RV Assistance Corporation Chairman Jeff Hirsch, Campers Inn, Jacksonville, Fla.; RV Rental Association Chairman Scott Krenek, Krenek RV Center, Coloma, Mich., and RV Learning Center Chairman Jeff Pastore, Hartville RV Center, Hartville, Ohio. RVDA President Phil Ingrassia continues as a non-voting member of the board.

The 2024 RV Dealers Convention/Expo is scheduled for Nov. 11-15, 2024, at Paris Las Vegas.

EDITOR’S NOTE: The following is the transcript from the speech by Ryan Horsey of Parkview RV Center in Smyrna, Del., who was installed Wednesday as the chairman of the board for the RV Dealers Association (RVDA). Horsey is following in the footsteps of his fasther, Rick Horsey, who served as RVDA chairman in 1997-98.

Good morning . . .

For those of you who don’t know me, I’m Ryan Horsey with Parkview RV Center located in Smyrna, Delaware.  We are a family owned and operated dealership that has been serving our community and RV industry since 1968.

Now in our third generation of ownership, Parkview was originally founded as a preowned automobile dealership in 1968 by my grandparents Robert and Lucille Horsey.

These two individuals bred a legacy of culture filled with passion, dedication, and discipline for our customers, associates, and industry partners.

In the beginning Poppop would go to work as a General Sales Manager for Ford Lincoln Mercury and Mommom would put four kids on a school bus and then proceed to open the doors and the inventory at Parkview.

One of those children’s name that would become recognizable throughout the RV industry was “Rick Horsey.”  After the first year of operation, Poppop had the epiphany that RV sales could be more promising and decided it would be better to be in the RV business than automobile.

Not everyone shared the same opinion, especially teenagers growing up in the muscle car era.

Since 1968, we have experienced industry highs and lows leading us to believe how great this industry is and how much it has in store for all of us.  We continue the legacy today as a family owned and operated RV dealership focusing on a “Total RV Dealership Experience” with the belief of quality innovative products and services that foster lifetime relationships.

Our owners consist of: my father Rick Horsey, my sister Amy West and myself.  While it’s not enough to work with your father and sister daily, my brother-in-law Mike West is responsible for our Sales and Marketing.  My wife Joy Horsey handles the accounting, networking, Human Resources . . . and me.

Rick Horsey, left, with Ryan Horsey

In 1996 during the RVDA Convention, I remember being at a golf course near Minneapolis and being beside Mike Molino . . . who I will forever look up to . . .  and he asked:  “Do you think you will be a part of RVDA and become Chairman like your dad one day?”

I was 14 years old and the only thing I knew on the dealership level was how to pull weeds, take care of the guard dog, detail cars and RVs.  The only thing I could say was, those are some big shoes to fill.

Fast forward to today and it has been an incredible journey with impactful memories.

RVDA serves as a voice for RV dealers, providing avenues for dealers to improve in education, gain experiences, network together and work on improving federal and state opportunities through advocacy.

Parkview . . .  and the RVDA members I’ve come to know over the years . . . share a mutual outlook in the pursuit of excellence through working with other dealerships and industry partners to make our whole industry more effective.

Our dealership has been involved with RVDA since 1992.  During Dad’s travels to various destinations for the association, Amy and I would hear him talk about how the industry was working together to grow the business and better serve customers.

Relationships such as the ones with: Mike Molino, Ronnie Hepp, Jerry Greer, Larry Greer, Bill Thomas, Tom Stinnett, Dan Pearson, Jeff Hirsch and Phil Ingrassia continue to inspire volunteers to serve our industry through RVDA.

During the past few years, I’ve been gratefully blessed to learn from some of the best minds in the later era of RVDA.  Mike Regan, Ron Shepherd, Chris Andro, Mike Pearo and Nathan Hart.

Thank you all for the countless unspoken lessons of passion, resolve, networking, advocacy . . . and leadership.

The year 2020 taught us adaptability . . .  while unprecedented growth forced us to adopt a mindset of out of the box thinking and innovation.

This growth had adventurers flocking to the outdoors using RVs as the vessel to forge new experiences.  Now we are experiencing pre-2020 demand and some economic headwinds, while dealing with unprecedented demand in fixed operations.

As Nathan mentioned, that’s why our industry initiative on RECT is needed now more than ever.

With the support from our major Dealer Management Software providers, the industry has made significant improvements in our reporting.

Perhaps the greatest proponent of these different factors are the dealers . . .  where consumers purchase these amazing machines.

Our customers rely on the sales departments to initiate the adventures, and the service and parts facilities to experience positive memories to foster generational relationships.

For dealers to maintain this initiative, it begins with training and best practices on our DMS systems to increase proficiencies.

We need to align our skills and knowledge with all stakeholders involved from the grass roots of the dealership all the way through our manufacturer, supplier, and distribution partners.

The Recreational Vehicle Training Institute – R-V-T-I — and the Mike Molino RV Learning Center are two of our industry’s greatest resources.

Both provide an avenue for RV dealers to start or continue a path of education in RV repair and fixed operations service management that can not only assist our customers but increase a dealer’s overall effectiveness.

Through RVTI, our technicians receive technical theory, practical experience increasing their overall effectiveness and promoting a stronger culture.  The is produces relationships where all stakeholders win.

At the RV Learning Center, fixed operations associates learn best practices for parts and service associates.  They can obtain certification in the role of their departments and forge empathic relationships with customers.

This sets up our service and parts department to be more efficient . . . and exceed customer expectations.

I encourage everyone to stop by the RV Learning Center and RVTI booths this week to establish . . .  or rekindle a relationship with these amazing avenues for improvement.

The greatest passion I share with our family and friends is the love I have for outdoor recreation and RVing.

RVs allow us to break away from our daily regimen and be present with our loved ones . . . but most importantly ourselves.

RVs are the ultimate way to explore the outdoors and the biggest common denominator of these explorations are the memories made through RV travel.

The impact of these memories are why we are a big part of the outdoors.  The passion of outdoor recreation by way of RVing empowers me to want to share how our customers can live out dreams they never imagined possible allowing them to discover a new version of themselves or discovering a flame from within.

Recently, Dad made a trip to visit Mount Rushmore with our extended family Larry Greer and Cindy Jones.  He had a snag early in his trip and stopped by the manufacturer for assistance.  They surpassed his expectations by remedying his concern and got him back on the road that evening to continue making memories while seeing Mount Rushmore, the Badlands and everything between Delaware and back.

The expression was priceless and emotional for both he and I and something I haven’t seen in him for a while.  It’s these experiences that will not only keep him RVing but it’s experiences like these that will allow our customers to have multi-generational relationships in the RV industry.

The key to these experiences is for all of us to support our industry initiative for RECT improvement and work toward the long-term impacts of its results.

In closing, I would like to thank God for the lessons of our past that continue to propel us into the future by allowing us to experience his present.  None of these passions equate to my love I have for this next group.

Thank you to our family back home in Smyrna for your continued support and the passions we share in making our dealership one percent better each day.  Dad, thank you for laying the blueprint on how to serve others before yourself, for the many pearls of wisdom you’ve shared on principles, values, being a better father, husband and above all a better Christian.

To Joy, Riley, and my children back home Ramsey and Samantha thank you for your unwavering support and inspiration.  Amy, Mike and Paige thank you for your countless support.

Howard and Jen, thank you for providing me with an avenue to discover my passion to help others find their voice and for the best lesson of adaptabilty: “Every lock has a key, we just have to discover the key that opens the lock.”

Thank you for all for your infinitive love, ambition, support and strength that continues to inspire me to become the best version of me to not only serve RVDA or Parkview but on how to become a better person and Christian overall.