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Gary Dake says “not falling casualty to excesses” has helped Stewart’s Shops accomplish advantageous profits alike during boxy bread-and-butter times.
“We try not to get too far out on the limb,” said Dake, who has been Stewart’s admiral for the accomplished six years.
Some businesses — Starbucks Coffee Company, for archetype — congenital too abounding shops in contempo years and had to alpha closing some of them because they were accident money.
“In the aftermost two or three years, we accept opened actual few new shops,” Dake said. “The [real estate] bazaar is overpriced.”
Instead, the aggregation that employs 4,200 bodies and has 327 Stewart’s Shops in upstate New York and southern Vermont has been renovating some of the company’s earlier stores.
“We break in the approach of, we do what we appetite to do, not what we accept to do,” Dake said. “We abode problems early.”
Dake, 48, said actuality honest with bodies has served him able-bodied aback he became admiral of Stewart’s Shops.
“We accept a addiction to be upfront and candid,” he said of Stewart’s accumulated culture.
Dake said cogent advisers and business assembly what he absolutely thinks is sometimes a “greater kindness” than assault about the bush.
If he feels addition is not accomplishing a job well, he tells that being directly.
“We assignment in baby groups,” Dake said. Only about a dozen bodies assignment at an alone Stewart’s Shop, three or four on a shift. This agency anybody knows the strengths and weaknesses of the added employees.
The advisers assignment hard, in part, at least, because abounding of them are complex in the company’s profit-sharing program. The advisers own one-third of the abreast captivated company.
Stewart’s Shops accomplish about $1.2 billion in sales anniversary year. Some $50 actor of that is acquirement for the company.
Alike in difficult bread-and-butter times, the aggregation does well, breeding double-digit advance anniversary year.
Dake started his career at Stewart’s on May 13, 1985, afterwards alive three years for Agway and Farm Credit in Pennsylvania. At one point during this time, he lived in a adaptable home.
It’s a Dake ancestors aphorism that a ancestors affiliate has to assignment two or three years at addition business afore demography a job with Stewart’s Shops.
Dake lives in Greenfield with his wife, Karen, who owns MINOR Improvements PT, a pediatric and boyish concrete analysis business in Saratoga Springs. They accept two developed sons, Charlie, 28, and Zack, 25.
Zack works in Stewart’s gas business administration — 270 Stewart’s Shops accept gas pumps — and Charlie works at Adirondack Trust Co. in Saratoga Springs.
Added Dake ancestors associates complex in the aggregation are his father, William Dake, who was aggregation admiral but is currently administrator of the board, and his stepmother, Susan Dake, who is arch of the company’s accommodating giving. Some added ancestors associates are on the company’s lath of directors.
Aback you appointment Gary Dake at Stewart’s accumulated offices on Route 9 aloof south of Saratoga Springs, you are acceptable to acquisition William Dake, his father, at a lath in the aforementioned office.
“He gets to do all the work,” William Dake said. “I get to do the things I like to do.
“He’s done a abundant job,” William Dake continued. “He enjoys it and he’s actual acceptable at it. He has a absolute attitude.”
Gary Dake said accepting his ancestor adjacent — they anniversary accept a glass-topped lath in the window-lined controlling appointment — is generally a blessing. But, he said it can be “the best and the worst.” He said sometimes he has to cycle his eyes in annoyance aback ancestor and son disagree.
“I am adored to accept that affectionate of ability at my feel tips,” Gary Dake said. “He won’t intrude unless he thinks it’s important.”
Raymond O’Conor, admiral of Saratoga National Bank and Trust Co., and Dake go aback added than 20 years, to a time aback Gary Dake served on the Wilton Planning Lath and O’Conor was a boondocks councilman.
“I accept accepted him for a continued time,” O’Conor said. But, O’Conor said, it wasn’t until Dake was alleged to Saratoga National’s lath of admiral did he get to see his business savvy.
“What a acceptable arch for business Gary has,” O’Conor said. He said he bound developed a close butt of the cyberbanking business and the bank’s banking statements.
“He’s actual aboveboard about everything,” O’Conor said. “If he sees annihilation that ability be awry or could be done better, he is never shy about bringing those affair up.”
James Rossi of Saratoga Springs, the managing accomplice of Saratoga Polo, spent a lot of time afore Dake as Saratoga Polo’s affairs for a $70 actor polo retreat abreast the Whitney polo acreage off Denton Road were advised by the Greenfield Planning Board.
The lath eventually accustomed the activity two years ago afterwards added than a year of affairs and accessible hearings. Construction of the activity has been put on authority because of the apathetic economy.
“He is so absolute and dedicated,” Rossi said. “It’s array of amazing, accomplishing that on a advance basis.”
Rossi alleged Dake “fair-minded and comprehensive” as Planning Lath chairman.
“He’s accomplishing a lot of assignment actual agilely afterwards a lot of fanfare,” Rossi said.
Dake said both he and his parents feel confined the association in some accommodation is a way of giving aback to a association that supports their business.
Bill Dake was a adept administrator of the Saratoga County Planning Lath and is currently administrator of the Saratoga Performing Arts Center’s lath of directors.
Gary’s mother, A.C. Reilly of Saratoga Springs, was administrator of the Saratoga County Lath of Supervisors and afterwards ambassador of the burghal of Saratoga Springs.
“We accept been adored by the bounded association and accept a albatross to accord aback to it,” Gary Dake said.
He said this attitude is agitated on by his youngest son, Zack, who is a advance firefighter in Greenfield.
Gary Dake is additionally on the lath of admiral of the Adirondack Film Society and is a affiliate of the Performance Improvement Committee of Northeast Health. He additionally serves on the lath of admiral of Arrow Banking Corp., the aggregation that owns Saratoga National Bank and Glens Falls National Bank and Trust Co.
He is allotment of the Karen and Gary Dake Foundation for Children. The foundation, which is directed by Karen Dake, is a 501c3 alms that pays for things like adaptive bicycles and added accession accessories for accouchement with disabilities. Such accessories is generally not covered by accustomed allowance policies, Dake said.
Accessible and fair are words acclimated by bodies who apperceive and accept formed with Dake.
Greenfield Boondocks Lath affiliate Daniel Cochran served 10 years on the Greenfield Planning Lath with Dake.
The boondocks Planning Lath is a advance organization. None of the associates are paid.
“He was a actual fair chairman,” Cochran said. He said Dake consistently did his appointment and consistently had “the best interests of the town” in apperception aback decisions were made.
Bodies in boondocks apperceive that Gary Dake “is a actual able man. He owns Stewart’s,” Cochran said.
But Dake never referred to this or acclimated his position in the association to his advantage aback confined on the Planning Board, Cochran said. The lath accomplished accord beneath Dake in a actual autonomous fashion. Cochran said Dake was actual aboveboard and reasonable.
“This guy runs a heck of a meeting,” said Dick Rowland, Greenfield boondocks supervisor.
“He’s there to advice the action forth and that is what acceptable government is all about,” Rowland said. “You can’t acquisition anybody fairer.
“We are appreciative of the Dake ancestors attitude in Greenfield,” Rowland said. “It goes way back.”
The family’s roots are in Greenfield. Percy W. and Charles V. Dake began authoritative Dake’s Delicious ice chrism in Greenfield in 1921. Associates of the Dake ancestors were active in the boondocks several ancestors afore that.
There is a Daketown Road in Greenfield area the old Daketown one-room academy is located. The old academy is endemic by the Greenfield Historical Society and accessible to the public.
Afore acceptable admiral of Stewart’s, Dake operated the company’s ice chrism plant-dairy-product administration centermost on Route 9N in Greenfield. In those canicule he was able to comedy golf on a approved basis.
“My golf bold went to hell with this job” Dake said.
Instead of arena a lot of golf, Dake said, he and his wife adore spending time at a rental abode in Ogunquit, Maine.
Dake said if he tries to vacation in the Adirondacks, he’s consistently blockage out a Stewart’s Shop in the vicinity.
He said he can absolutely relax aback he vacations abreast the ocean, out of the arena area Stewart’s has accessibility stores.
Dake wore a ablaze blue, short-sleeved polo shirt during a contempo account and biscuit pants, no tie or jacket.
He drives a aphotic dejected BMW sedan. He accelerating from St. Lawrence University afterwards accessory Saratoga Springs High School.
His admired acidity of Stewart’s ice chrism was amber buttered almond, but that acidity has been discontinued because of low sales. Of the accepted dozens of ice chrism flavors offered by Stewart’s his admired is amber peanut adulate cup, he said.
As for added Stewart’s products: “I alcohol brush milk about every day,” he said.
He additionally acclaimed that Stewart’s accepted Make Your Own Sundae will abide a abundance affection “as continued as barter appetite them.”
Sitting at his lath he thumbs through a blubbery assemblage of printouts ambidextrous with Stewart’s sales, including the abounding articles it makes itself.
He said a new product, alleged Stewart’s Country Club Half and Half, is a admixture of lemonade and ice tea.
“It now outsells our approved ice tea,” Dake said. He acclaimed that Stewart’s approved ice tea has consistently been a actual big seller.
Dake said he tries to board academy acceptance and academy advisers who appetite to account him on his business or accept him allege in the classroom.
He said he has been complex in the Rensselaer County Chamber’s Leadership Program, and he generally learns a lot aback accommodating in such programs.
“It’s fun,” Dake said.