A longtime local business has been chosen the best of its kind in Canada.
Meridian RV has been named the 2011 Canadian RV Dealer of the Year by the RV Dealer's Association.
"It's quite exciting actually. We were chosen by our peers," said owner Tom Ramsay. "I didn't expect to win. There were some very, very credible dealers."
Ramsay runs the business, originally started by his father in 1967, with his wife and family, all of whom remain involved in the thirdgeneration family business.
The award distinguishes dealers for dedication to the industry and RV lifestyle, recognition by customers and peers for being a businessman of the highest integrity and credibility in both work and personal life, and contribution to the community.
The company was first nominated for and won the B.C. dealer of the year award, and was automatically entered into the Canadian competition.
The business originally manufactured custom RVs from the frame to upholstery stitching, but transitioned into sales and service in more recent years.
Despite recent economic turmoil, Ramsay has only seen his business grow over the years.
"The state [of business] is good. We actually started selling new RVs just as the RV industry crashed.
"A lot of manufacturers closed their doors. But in those years, we've done nothing but move up. Our graph is positive all the way," he said.
Aside from being proud of his familyoperated business, Ramsay remains proud of his community achievement.
He has been heavily involved in Scouts Canada, the Coquitlam Sunrise chapter of Rotary International, and numerous professional and civic boards and committees.
"I'm a proud member of the community and I appreciate the local support. I also feel honoured that we can support the community in the many ways we have and will continue to do in the future," he said.
Ramsay dedicates the award to his parents who were role models for him.