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Steven Watts

Steven Watts

Town & Country Ford
Bessemer, Alabama

“It has been most rewarding to provide stable, good-paying jobs to more than 150 employees and their families while at the same time giving excellent customer service to the thousands of people who have bought and serviced vehicles at Town & Country Ford since 1999.”

“It has been most rewarding to provide stable, good-paying jobs to more than 150 employees and their families while at the same time giving excellent customer service to the thousands of people who have bought and serviced vehicles at Town & Country Ford since 1999,” nominee Watts said.

A 1977 graduate of Farmington (Hills) High School in Farmington Hills, Michigan, Watts attended Jacksonville State University in Jacksonville, Alabama. Throughout his early career in financial serves with GMAC (General Motors Acceptance Corporation), World Omni Financial Corp and BBVA Compass, he worked in credit and sales directly related to the automobile industry.

That background inspired him to join his current business partner, Bill Sain, and open a pre-owned, high-end auto sales business from 1994 to 1998 before founding Town & Country Ford in Bessemer in 1999. Today, the pair also own and operate Town & Country Ford Pell City in Pell City, Alabama. Watts’ son, Mitchell, helps manage the Bessemer store.

Watts is proud to have earned the Ford Motor Company’s President’s Award multiple times. “It is the most meaningful award we have received because it recognizes business success and customer service excellence,” he said. He is also very active in the Automobile Dealers Association of Alabama, having served as chairman and on the executive committee and board of directors.

In the area of community service, Watts has partnered with Habitat for Humanity for the past five years to build a new house for a local family during the Christmas season. This Home for the Holidays initiative brings together his employees and community members to improve the lives of families in need. “We also initiated a program to allow employees to contribute to the Town & Country Ford charitable committee, which supports local community programs and disaster relief,” he said.

To bring even more donations into his community, Watts’ dealership has hosted the DeMeco Ryans & Bo Jackson Celebrity Golf Tournament for the past five years. “This exciting event featuring local NFL players has generated $152,000 for the players’ foundations that help children in the area,” Watts said.

Watts’ leadership role with the Birmingham Automobile Dealers Association is particularly rewarding. “I have been involved in making the decisions on how to donate millions of dollars generated by the Alabama Auto Show,” he said. His dealership also supports Children’s Harbor, a respite for children with serious illnesses and their families on Alabama’s Lake Martin; Jimmie Hale Mission; the Foundry Ministries; and Big Oak Ranch, a Christian home for abused, neglected and abandoned children located in Gadsen and Springville, Alabama.

Watts was nominated for the TIME Dealer of the Year award by Thomas R. Dart, president of the Automobile Dealers Association of Alabama. He and his wife, Joice, have two children and five grandchildren.