Retiring Boss Gives Employees $1,000 For Each Year They’ve Worked for Him

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Some folks get a gold watch on the day they retire. Others get a handshake and a nudge out the door. Very few people actually give more than they get on the last working day of their lives — and almost nobody has given as much as Howard Cooper.

When Cooper, 83, retired from the auto dealership he owned in Ann Arbor, Mich., he had a special present for each of his 89 employees: a check for $1,000 for every year each employee worked for him according to AnnArbor.com.

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So, for a worker like Bob Jenkins, a mechanic who had worked for Cooper’s dealership for 26 years, these checks were life changing. “I was shocked,” Jenkins told AnnArbor.com. “You just don’t expect something like that.”

Cooper told the site that he wanted to thank his employees for giving him the success he has had and the checks were simply a way he could do that. Cooper had already turned down more cash from other offers, but went with Germain after negotiating a guarantee that his entire staff could stay on after he left.

Once Cooper, who started the dealership in 1965, began thinking about his retirement, he brought 46-year employee and controller Sandy Reagan in on the surprise handouts and had her print the checks a few days in advance.

The two kept the secret until the grand reveal that left employees in total shock and earned Cooper a standing ovation.

“The lady behind me had tears running down her face,” Reagan told AnnArbor.com.

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7 comments
twentyfour7
twentyfour7

Been in the car business for 20 years, never heard of such a thing.  The majority of owners are heartless and greedy. This man deserves a statue!

Michael Bean
Michael Bean

That is a good boss, I'm just sorry he's retiring

artdeco54
artdeco54

In his own small way, Mr. Cooper carries on the example of Mr. Gates, Mr. Buffett and Mr. Carnagie in using hs accumulated money to make the world a better place. My compliments and best wishes to him and his family.

max4374
max4374

How amazing.  And not only for the incredible gesture, but also for the telling reaction of the employees.  It is interesting that the lower the economic pecking order, the more appreciative people are.  Can anyone actually imagine a Wall Street banker be so moved by a $23K bonus?  Even for a single year's worth of work, much less a 23 year grind?

I applaud all those involved: the generous Mr. Cooper, and the appreciative employees.  I strive to do the same.

John W. Stafford
John W. Stafford

Now that's a boss who appreciates his employees/ family.  What a nice surprise.