Lujack’s Northpark Auto Plaza

Daily Point of Light # 1516 Nov 25, 1999

Lujack’s Northpark Auto Plaza has been extraordinary in its contributions to volunteer service in the Quad Cities area of Iowa. Several organizations in the area have been helped by Lujack’s strong sense of altruism.

A commitment to volunteerism is part of the culture that Pete Pohlmann, President of Lujack’s, has developed at the Auto Plaza. Although it is wonderful to be able to write a check, equally important is the gift of time and all members of the Lujack team are encouraged to be active participants in dozens of local philanthropic organizations.

In 1986, Pohlmann had a vision to harness the energy and enthusiasm of the area’s high school students to raise food for the less fortunate members of the community. This vision resulted in the Student Hunger Drive. Area high schools competed with each other to see who could raise the most pounds of food per student and all donations went to the River Bend Foodbank. In addition, Lujack members held their own Hunger Drive and added thousands of pounds of food to the total. The first year, the drive raised 29,000 pounds of food. Each year, it grew until it became too large of a project to be handled within the dealership. The Student Hunger Drive is now a separate community organization. Lujack’s continues to be a major sponsor and Lujack’s team members continue to hold their own Hunger Drive. This year, 722,222 pounds of food were raised with a value greater than $1,400,000.

Lujack’s and its team members are also big supporters of many other organizations in the community, such as the United Way, Junior Achievement, Partners in Education, and the Make A Wish Foundation. Lujack team members voluntarily contribute a portion of each paycheck to Make A Wish in order to fulfill the wish of a critically ill child.

Saturn of the Quad Cities, a division of Lujack’s, built a playground at the Family Museum of Arts and Science in Bettendorf. Lujack’s took a portion of each new Saturn sold to build a $35,000 Kingdom for Kids. Saturn team members and owners donated more than 400 volunteer labor hours for the building project.

For the past three years, Lujack’s has hosted a Sale-A-Thon for MDA. In addition to being a remote location for the annual Labor Day telethon, Lujack’s agreed to contribute $50 for every vehicle sold in the week proceeding Labor Day. To date the Sale-A-Thon has raised over $25,000 for the Muscular Dystrophy Association.