The Customer Profile featured in this blog post is Cooper Service of Orland Park, Illinois. Cooper Service is a full-service auto and truck repair facility, with light-duty and heavy-duty towing and recovery capabilities.
Don Cooper is the 2nd generation owner of the business. Don’s father, Paul, started the business in 1956 as a Conoco-Phillips station on West 159th Street in Orland Park. The business was named Paul’s Conoco until about 15 years ago, when the name was changed to Cooper Service, Inc. It was also about that time the business changed locations, and moved to its present address at 16400 South 104th Street in Orland Park.
Cooper Service boasts 16,000 square feet of space. This includes 11 service bays, with overhead cranes in each bay, and an entrance and lobby area roughly the size of the original location.
No job seems too big, or too small for Cooper Service. Their services include complete auto and truck repair, computer, mechanical and electronic diagnostics and repair, and a heavy-duty and light-duty towing and recovery program. It has three tow trucks and an onsite mobile service truck.
“Our #1 goal is when a customer’s vehicle leaves here, their problem is fixed,” Don Cooper said. “Cooper Service invests in the facility, tooling, equipment and personnel training to make that goal a success.”
Speaking of personnel, Cooper Service is staffed by 10 associates, including four ASE-Certified technicians. The company encourages their employees to further their automotive education, as it helps determine their pay level. Cooper will pay for additional employees’ education, depending on the subject of the seminar.
Cooper Service has been an installer of JASPER® quality remanufactured gas and diesel engines, transmissions, differentials and diesel fuel components since the 1950s. “Product quality is #1,” said Don Cooper. “Our customers are happy with JASPER components. If there ever is an issue, it is taken care of quickly and professionally.”
“Cooper Service continually invests in whatever it takes to do the job right for the customer,” added Don. Whether that be in the tooling, facility improvements, or the training of our employees.
The future for Cooper Service is to continue to grow and invest in the business, and to continue to provide the best service for their customers.
Jasper Engines & Transmissions kicked off a business simulation project with Loogootee High School (LHS) in Indiana.
Since the beginning of the program, at the start of the 2016- 2017 school year, the program’s intention has been to introduce high school students to LEAN principles, and life skills, that will better prepare them for future career opportunities. The program is a partnership between JASPER, the DirectEmployers Association and Loogootee High School.
“Since early last year, JASPER created a curriculum that challenges students to collaborate with one another, and use creativity in solving problems,” said Mark Balsmeyer, JASPER® project administrator. “One of the classrooms at Loogootee High School was upgraded to mirror the facilities at our Power Drive location.”
30 students were enrolled in the initial program. They receive training and support from three primary volunteers from JASPER, three teachers from LHS, and one primary manager from the DirectEmployers Association. “The kids have done a wonderful job of using the tools they’ve learned and in getting involved,” Balsmeyer said.
JASPER standards are introduced to students, in order to mimic conditions that represent current hiring requirements. These include: getting to class on time, wearing a grey T-shirt, name tag and tucking in their shirt. “These are simple standards that sometimes get taken for granted,” said Balsmeyer.
JASPER volunteered to teach two periods, once a week, in order to share business standards with students. These simulations included: creating intuitive work, practicing Continuous Improvement, creating standards, career opportunity identification and safety awareness.
“These simulations help to prepare students for future career decisions and to open doors to potential job opportunities at JASPER,” added Balsmeyer. “All of this continues to promote JASPER as the Company of Choice for our Associate-Owners.”
Bill and Jane Johnson during a recent visit at JASPER's headquarters.
Bill Johnson, Jr. of Lexington, Kentucky, bought a remanufactured JASPER engine in the fall of 1974 for his 1965 Chevy Belair. The 230ci ‘Turbo-Thrift’ inline six-cylinder continues to deliver mile after mile performance, totaling approximately 120,000 miles, 43 years after its installation.
Bill, and his wife, Jane, were at Jasper Engines & Transmissions May 2nd for a walk-through tour of the Wernsing Road facility. Johnson is a member of the Vintage Motor Car Club of America. The group was participating in the first leg of a “Lewis & Clark” tour between New Albany, Indiana, and St. Louis, Missouri when they stopped at JASPER.
Johnson’s mother purchased the car new in 1965 for $2,600.00, and gave the car to her son during his sophomore year in college. Originally a daily driver, the Belair is now considered a ‘Hobby Car’. Johnson drives the car on antique car tours across the country. It’s most recent trips include the summits of Mt. Evans, the highest paved road on the North American continent, and Pikes Peak, both in Colorado. “It’s been driven down to the southern end of US 1 (Key West, Florida), Times Square and Cape Cod.”
“It’s been a flawless engine that’s still getting us down the road. I would buy another JASPER product in a heartbeat,” Johnson said.
Have you ever contemplated why we as humans are so innately compelled to volunteer? Generally speaking, we volunteer because we want to make a difference, or give back to a cause in which we have some sort of sentimental connection. For others, volunteering provides an opportunity to develop new skills, or to grow an existing interest. Whether it's giving their time or money, JASPER® Associates have always risen together to support others in need. And now we have a new opportunity to make a difference for a local family.
Recently, on April 22nd, ground was broken for the latest Habitat for Humanity home sponsored by Jasper Engines & Transmissions. This future home is for a deserving mother and her two children in the nearby city of Huntingburg, Indiana.
Habitat for Humanity of Dubois County was founded 18 years ago, and has helped 13 local families by partnering with them to build simple, good housing. Habitat selects “partner families” to become Habitat homeowners. Much like the idea of paying forward, before the groundbreaking begins, partner families must invest a minimum of 150 hours of “Sweat Equity”, usually by helping to build other Habitat homes elsewhere. Beyond the groundbreaking, a partner family must then invest a cumulative total of 300 hours in order to move into their own Habitat house. What a rewarding way to give back to our community and neighbors, don't you think?