In the Findlay Automotive Group, one of the stronger elements of the company is its many longtime employees.
Count Dave “Soul Man” Biddle of Findlay RV among the employees who found a home with the company long ago. He has served in various capacities with the Findlay group selling new and preowned cars before jumping into the recreational vehicle business about 10 years ago.
“I started with Findlay in 1968,” said Biddle, a native of Omaha, Neb., who moved to Las Vegas in 1965 after a football career had taken him to the Canadian Football League in Montreal. “At the time there were very few African-Americans selling cars in Las Vegas.”
Biddle saw a photo of Findlay Automotive Group founder Pete Findlay and fellow prominent businessman James Cashman in the Las Vegas Review-Journal. Findlay then called Biddle, who had left his name and number with the Las Vegas Chamber of Commerce.
“Pete called me and told me to come see him at Findlay Olds on Boulder Highway,” Biddle said. “He hired me the same day and I became the top salesman before becoming used car and new car manager at Findlay Olds.”
Biddle said he will never forget Findlay, who moved his family to Las Vegas from Panaca, a small town about 180 miles north of Las Vegas, to open a used car lot in 1959.
“Pete Findlay gave me a huge break and I’ll forever be thankful for that. He was a wonderful person who gave so many of us a chance with our careers. Pete wanted a good day’s work from everyone, but I don’t think I have known of a more fair man than him,” Biddle said.
Biddle came up with the “Soul Man” nickname in about 1969. His photo and nickname became synonymous with the car business on billboards and in local newspaper advertisements.
Throughout the years, Biddle has sold Findlay automotive products including Oldsmobile and Toyota. He retired from the car business in 1997, but later went to work for good friend and Findlay Toyota General Manager Rich Abajian, who he refers to as a “prince of a man.”
Biddle retired again before being brought back into the family fold by Findlay’s son, Cliff Findlay, and Findlay RV part owner Michael Hohl, who put him to work at the recreational vehicle dealership.
“I went to Cliff and he told me to go to work at the RV store,” Biddle said. “The rest is history.”
Biddle said he loves everything about the RV business.
“People who buy RVs are really nice people,” Biddle said. “They’re established and they appreciate a quality product like the ones we offer at Findlay RV. They love to travel and they’re happy people. This is truly a wonderful job. In addition, the people I work with at Findlay RV are the world’s best fellow employees. I look forward to going to work every day.”
Findlay RV, at 4530 Boulder Highway, is headed by General Manager Reuben Figueroa. Further information can be found by calling 702-435-2500 or by visiting www.findlayrv.com.
Findlay Automotive Group has 28 new and resale dealerships in Utah, Idaho, Arizona and Nevada.