The small town of Forest City, Iowa is known for manufacturing Winnebago motorhomes and for over 45 years Lichtsinn RV has been the dealership known for selling them across the country. What began as a small GM and Winnebago Dealership in the 1970s has grown into what Lichtsinn RV is today, the top selling Winnebago Motorhome Dealership in the US. Our guests throughout the country have made this possible, coupled with the tremendous efforts of our team. At Lichtsinn RV, we know we would not be where we are today, without our exceptional team of employees, and we are incredibly thankful for each and every one of them.
In a delicate time when employment longevity is less common, we are proud to say that most of our team members have worked with Lichtsinn RV for over five years, and many have been with us for over ten years. These team members have helped build Lichtsinn RV to what it is today, and we would not be here without them. Read more to learn about Lichtsinn RV team members with employment tenure of 10 years or more.
BEN FOLLMAN – Service Technician
Ben joined Lichtsinn RV 10 years ago. Prior to joining the Lichtsinn RV service team he worked for a local plumbing and electrical company. Ben has been a key member of the Lichtsinn RV safety committee for a number of years. One of the biggest changes he noted since he started is the new building and the many new faces at the dealership since he began. As he looks upon his time at Lichtsinn RV some of his favorite memories involve the annual Lichtsinn RV employee golf outings and he also enjoys his co-workers and work environment. When not working on RVs, Ben enjoys golfing, hunting and fishing.
REED BURKHOLDER – RV Sales Consultant
Reed joined Lichtsinn RV 11 years ago after having worked for a number of years in the golf industry. However, he did grow up in the RV industry as his parents ran the Winnebago-Itasca-Travelers Club during his middle and high school years. In his youth, Reed also worked summers at the Winnebago Factory building slide rooms. Reed recollects that when he started working at Lichtsinn RV his office was in a small sales building and now we have a new full scale sales, parts and service facility. The parking lot has also been improved to better assist with inventory presentation and provides plenty of camping sites for our guests.
Reeds favorite memories while with Lichtsinn RV are during the WIT rally. He loves meeting the people there from all over the country, many of whom he has built long-lasting relationships with. He always enjoys receiving photos from their RV adventures and learning about the different areas of the country they have visited. In his time away from work Reed enjoys assisting at the local golf course and playing sports with 2 young children. His wife is the Director of the Forest City Chamber of Commerce which keeps his family busy supporting local Forest City events as well.
HANNAH LUNNING – RV Sales Manager
Prior to joining Lichtsinn RV 13 years ago, Hannah was employed at a local car dealership working in their office and also waitressed part time. Hannah has held different positions at the dealership including a GM Sales Consultant and Business Manager. Hannah grew up surrounded by people that worked at Winnebago including nearly all of her grandparents, an Aunt, an Uncle, Father, Mother-In-Law, and sister, some of whom are still employed there today. So many things have changed for Hannah since she started most notably her office environment. She notes that transitioning from GM Sales Consultant in the former GM building, to what we have now has been quite the evolution.
Some of Hannah’s favorite memories of working at Lichtsinn RV have been the friendships she has built with guests that come back year after year for service or to attend GNR. She says “It’s like connecting with family you haven’t seen for a long time each year they return!” Her favorite thing about working at Lichtsinn RV she notes is “our incredible team!” Noting she gets to come to work each day with people that are fantastic, hardworking and fun! Outside of work Hannah enjoys spending time with her children, husband and family including activities such as spending time outdoors, gardening, raising chickens, camping, horseback riding lessons and traveling.
BRAD BUFFINGTON – Service Technician
Brad joined Lichtsinn RV 14 years ago. Prior to coming to Lichtsinn RV Brad worked at Winnebago and was self- employed for a period of time at his woodshop. His brother also worked at Winnebago for many years. Brad was a member of the Lichtsinn RV Safety Committee for many years. Brad notes that the most notable change since he started is the size of the dealership. We have a much larger facility and a larger staff to fill it despite no longer being a GM dealer. He also mentioned that during this time he has grown several more grey hairs.
Over the years Brads favorite Lichtsinn RV memory is the time spent with his coworkers and company events. His favorite thing about working at Lichtsinn RV is helping people to get back on the road and allowing them to continue to enjoy their RV. “Minimizing their frustrations and maximizing their enjoyment” is how he refers to this. When not working on RVs Brad lives for family time! He also volunteers with numerous local activities and is a City Council Member.
DAVID STRAW – RV Parts Sales Consultant
David came to Lichtsinn RV 20 years ago with previous RV experience having worked with an RV dealership in California prior to coming to Lichtsinn RV. Some of the largest changes he noted since he started is the new building, becoming solely an RV dealership (vs. RV and GM) the growth of the parts department and the dealership, the new General Manager and the many new employees. Some of his favorite dealership memories are the pot-lucks in the old building, dressing up for Halloween and the annual Christmas Party. One of his favorite things about working for Lichtsinn RV is talking to really nice people from around the world. During David’s free time he takes care of his mom and is very active in his church.
LONNIE FOX – RV Parts Consultant and Inventory Manager
Lonnie came to Lichtsinn RV 36 years ago straight out of business college. He has held a number of different parts related positions over the years with Lichtsinn RV. He learned of Winnebago early on as his dad worked there for a time when Lonnie was younger. When Lonnie started his employment with “Lichtsinn Motors” (as Lichtsinn RV was named at the time,) we sold John Deere consumer products and GM cars and trucks and the shop labor rate was only $29 an hour, which seemed a great deal of money at the time.
Lonnie notes that he has met and worked with a lot of great people over the years. He mentioned he enjoys working at Lichtsinn RV, which is “a world class dealer that uses the latest technology to meet and exceed dealership guest expectations.” When not helping people across the country with their RV parts needs, Lonnie enjoys spending time with his wife and fur babies and tinkering with his antique tractors.
HEIDI THOMPSON – Vice President and General Manager
Heidi has been with Lichtsinn RV for 29 years. She started at the dealership on a part-time basis during her sophomore year of college and then continued in a full-time capacity once she graduated. She has worn many different hats since she started at the dealership, providing her a strong breadth of experience to take into her current role. Positions she has held include: Administrative Assistant, Title Clerk, Business Manager, RV Sales Consultant, RV Sales Manager, HR Manager and Controller.
Heidi became familiar with Winnebago at a young age as her dad was the General Manager of the Winnebago-Itasca Travelers for many years. Heidi noted that the biggest change she has experienced since she started is technology. When Heidi started with Lichtsinn RV she learned all office duties and most Title/F&I duties on a green screen computer and used paper, pencils, typewriters and carbon paper. She remembers when the dealership had one desktop computer in the mid to late ‘90s when internet and email started to be incorporated in business and she was tasked with checking the dealership email one time per day. When she started with Lichtsinn RV there were 10 employees and since then it has grown in both team members and space, however, she notes that our “family-owned business culture and belief system still remain core to our values.”
When asked about her favorite memories while working at Lichtsinn RV Heidi mentioned she has been fortunate to work with wonderful people her entire career – owners, managers, co-workers, mentors and the guests that we help every day. “It has been amazing to be a part of the growth our dealership has experienced, including building and opening our current state-of-the-art building. However, at the end of the day, it is the people who make every day rewarding, memorable and fun!”
Heidi says her favorite thing about working at Lichtsinn RV is our team. “Each and every team member at Lichtsinn RV has a servant heart and is motivated to help people, whether it is our guests or other team members. It is easy to feel motivated to do your best when you are doing it alongside others who are the best at what they do and are focused on helping others.”
When not at work Heidi and her husband enjoy spending their free time working on their acreage and spending time with their four sons. In addition to family time, she spends a lot of time at Forest City High School activities and is in her 3rd year as Chairperson of the Forest City Sports Boosters Marketing Committee. Heidi and her husband are active members of the local community and love to volunteer wherever they can, including helping with the props and set dressing for our local community theater.
As a result of the tenure of our team members, our guests are assured that they are working with knowledgeable consultants in sales, parts and service who are backed by years of experience. As a result of the combined years of experience our team can boast, we are able to provide the best possible assistance in Winnebago sales, service, and parts. Our family-oriented business allows our team to create personal relationships with our guests and provide an industry leading guest service experience.
Contact a Lichtsinn RV team member today for your Winnebago Sales, Parts or Service needs.
Experience the Best® at Lichtsinn RV, we have been recognized as the #1 Winnebago Dealer in North America each year since 2015 by Winnebago Industries. Lichtsinn RV is located 1 mile north of the Winnebago Motorhome Factory in Forest City, IA and we proudly sell new Winnebago motorhomes and pre-owned RVs from various manufacturers. While at Lichtsinn RV, you can expect no delivery miles on new RVs, a complimentary half-day educational orientation of your RV, excellent guest reviews, an assigned support team from sales, parts, service and the business office, superior accommodations, no-hassle pricing and competitive financing. See our extensive new and used inventory here.
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