In 1937 an enterprising young man named Romeo Brunelli started Central Chevrolet, which later developed a towing division to serve both the dealership and local county and state agencies. A second generation in the person of Richard Brunelli worked in both businesses, and in the mid-70’s began the gradual process of taking over both as Mr. Brunelli Senior retired.
Central Towing was spun off as a separate business entity with the entry of Quinn Piening as a partner. At the time, the grand total of the company’s tow trucks was three and the staff was one part-time driver. The office was located in a spare room at the Central Chevrolet Dealership.
Piening led the company to new quarters at 36849 San Pedro Drive in Fremont in 1988. Though the modular building was modest, the staff had grown to five full-time employees and four part-timers, handling five tow trucks including the company’s first heavy duty three-axle. It was a company on the move.
Membership in the California Tow Truck Association came at a time when CTTA was building its nationally recognized driver training programs, and Piening quickly took advantage of the availability of professional training for Central Towing’s staff. At the same time, he was elected as a director and then received an appointment to the State Education Committee. Central Towing’s training attracted more customers, including most major motor clubs as well as an expanding commercial clientele.
The company entered a period of exponential growth even as Piening devoted more and more time to CTTA matters. With a strong staff of 12 by 1993, the company took the next step of computerizing operations under the direction of Micheal Angeli, a software engineer. They had also completely outgrown their modest building and embarked on construction of a new, carefully planned permanent facility. Quinn Piening was elected president of the CTTA Greater Bay Area Chapter.
Corporate policy was codified to standardize employee procedures and an in-house safety training program was instituted in addition to continuing outside training by state and national training programs.
Next the fleet was updated to handle greater weights and low angles, more delicate car and truck bodies—a process which is ongoing to today. Staff incentive programs have led to greater customer care and a closer relationship between driver and client. The driver training and retention programs instituted have proven very successful and have stabilized employment despite California’s turbulent labor market.
The latest milestone for this vibrant company was the move into its new quarters. We appreciate your interest in Central Towing and its efforts to serve you, the client. Thanks, and please accept this as your invitation to come see us and our new facility anytime!