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Steve Lusby, ARA of New Jersey president, introduces some new industry leaders

By Steve Lusby

August 8, 2023

Steve Lusby

Steve Lusby

No one in the rental business needs to hear from me how challenging it can sometimes be to balance our work with our “giving back” commitments — even when those commitments involve service to our industry that supports our families, our staffs and those who depend on them. And yet, without those who contribute their time and their talents on a volunteer basis to better our industry, where would we be?

Input from rental operators like you and me who serve on the American Rental Association’s (ARA) various boards and committees add, in a word, authenticity to the business management, education, training and risk management programs the association develops for its members. We also are the ones who are at the core of networking events that create connections that can lift our businesses and can last a lifetime.

With that in mind, I would like to thank a few of the folks from our region who stepped up to begin their journey of association service this spring and summer — during our busiest season. I’m sure each will offer valuable, fresh insights to their individual ARA state chapters’ board of directors:

ARA of Maryland

Brittany Sleight, director of marketing and management, Elite Tents and Events, Sykesville, Md. Elite Tents and Events was established in 2001. Brittany continues the Sleight family’s history of involvement on the ARA of Maryland board — Jeffrey Sleight, the company’s president/chief operating officer, served from 2011-2021 and is a past president.

Tyler Gullivan, president, Gullivan Sales, Forest Hill, Md. “I started doing inside sales for my stepdad, Ron Thomas of Thomas Sales Co., after graduating from Towson University in 2011 with a bachelor’s in business,” Gullivan says. “I grew up around the equipment Ron represented, and occasionally spent the day with him making sales calls and doing demos.”

Harry Price of Trimble & Associates, who recently stepped away from the ARA of Maryland board after 15 years of service, was directly involved in Gullivan joining the team. “Harry reached out to me with an opportunity to join and thought it would be a great fit for me. I’ve always been around the ARA as an associate member, and when I was asked if I was interested in the opportunity, it just felt like a good time to progress into the industry,” Gullivan says.

ARA of Pennsylvania

Phillip Coletta, rental coordinator, ADMAR Supply Co., Erie, Pa. “I have been in my current role at ADMAR as a rental coordinator for two years now,” Coletta says. “Prior to that I owned and operated an excavation and construction company focusing on dirt work, drainage and land clearing.”

Coletta says that as he enters board service, “I look forward to working with my colleagues to help bring members together to collaborate and help advance the rental industry in Pennsylvania.”

Cameron Folga, vice president of operations, Grand Rental Station, Erie, Pa. “I have been associated with the rental industry for 13 years,” Folga says, adding that his 67-year-old company is “a party and equipment rental company that prides ourselves on our quality and timely service. Being a younger individual in the event space, I connect with my workers and get the best out of them. I look forward to engaging with the younger generation of employees who may be interested in a full-time career as a rental house employee.”

“I hope to learn from some of the more experienced board members,” Folga says as he steps up to the ARA of Pennsylvania leadership team. “I’ve met so many supportive people in the industry. That makes it so valuable.”

A big part of what ARA state chapter volunteer leaders like these folks do is plan networking events where rental folks can meet, interact and have a little fun. The ARA of New Jersey will be hosting just such an event on Sunday, Aug. 20, at Six Flags Great Adventure in Jackson, N.J. It’s our Family and Staff Appreciation Day and admission/lunch tickets are still available for you to treat your team at a very reasonable price. Learn more here.

We in the ARA of New Jersey and our neighbors in the ARA of Maryland, ARA of Pennsylvania and ARA of Virginia are planning more business education and fun networking events for the coming months. An example is the ARA of Pennsylvania’s Sporting Clay Shoot coming up on Nov. 1. Be sure to watch your email or check the ARA Calendar of Events for registration information and details on all of these and plan to attend.

Have a safe and profitable month!

Steve Lusby, ARA of New Jersey president
Grand True Value Rental
Hackettstown, N.J.