People, not cars, drive new NAPA owner
Published 3:00 am Friday, August 19, 2016
After spending more than a decade as the general manager at Ken Cox Ford, Mike Kilcrease is returning to the auto parts business at NAPA Auto Parts.
Although he has spent the last 20 years in the dealership business, Kilcrease started out in the auto parts business in 1978.
“This is something I know,” he said. “I opened my own auto parts store in 1982.”
Cox’s decision to sell his dealership prompted Kilcrease to look for a new job.
“Mr. Cox was ready to sell his dealership and the new company had their management team coming in so I started looking for something else,” Kilcrease said. “As doors closed on other options, NAPA was always open.”
One reason that Kilcrease said he chose NAPA was because of the family atmosphere.
“I went to a couple of meetings in Atlanta and with NAPA, it’s all about family,” Kilcrease said. “And they’ve also got the right product at the right price, at the right time”
Kilcrease said that he loves owning his own business. “Although working with Ken Cox has been a great experience, I sort of missed that over the last 20 years,” he said. “I feel like I’m where God intended me to be.”
Kilcrease’s nearly 40 years in business dealing with vehicles might lead some to assume that he does it for the love of cars, but he said what really drives him are the people.
“I love associating with people,” Kilcrease said. “There’s satisfaction in owning your own business and being able to help and assist people. I’m not going to be hidden in an office all day. I do my office work at night. This is the only locally owned parts store in Troy where you can speak directly to the owner. I work the counter daily.” Kilcrease said that it’s been a “whirlwind” transition, especially getting renovations done. But he said that the renovation is finished, including a new floor and ceiling and a fresh paint job, and that the store is fully stocked and ready for business. Kilcrease said he’s also thankful that former owner Mike Taylor will continue working at the store.
“It’s a true blessing that he’s staying on with me,” Kilcrease said. NAPA Auto Parts is located at 1118 S. Brundidge Street. It is open from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday and 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday. Hours are subject to change with demand.