“Large enough to serve every customer’s need – small enough to value a single charter booking.”
At local bookstores, novels for summer reading are flying off the shelves, but to local business people, no exotic romance is as compelling or as satisfying as the story of a family-owned business start-up that is doing everything right.
Established in 1996 by local entrepreneur Ron Ernenwein, AA Transportation has grown from the remnants of a long-time Worcester institution, Weagle Bus Company, into a full-service, family-owned transportation company that, with equal ease and safety, gets individuals to important destinations 24 hours a day, and the children of area school systems to class before the first bell.
“After starting my career in the real estate industry, I accepted an offer from the Weagles, who were family friends, to join their bus company as Maintenance Director,” says Ron Ernenwein. “When the company lost several important contracts, I began to think that perhaps I should be in business for myself. Using some of my modest real estate investments as collateral, I was able to get financing, won a handful of clients’ bids, and everything after that fell into place”.
From an initial fleet of 26 vehicles, the company has grown to over 400 vehicles, five area locations, and a staff of 450. AA Transportation drivers are a source of pride; all are DPU (Department of Public Utilities) certified and have passed all appropriate background and safety checks.
The fleet is of equal pride; the company offers school bus service (to Shrewsbury, Auburn, Grafton, West Boylston, Southbridge, AKF, Webster, Sutton, Leicester, E. Brookfield, N. Brookfield and Spencer), charters, coach bus service, limousine service, and heavy hauling through the company’s truck division.
The importance of AA Transportation far exceeds the first-rate service it provides to its individual customers as well as to municipalities. Because the company is very much part of, not just located in the local community, AA Transportation gives back in many important ways. During the 2011 football season for example, AA Transportation – which provides motorbuses for athletic teams partnered with The Scholastic Sports Zone radio, a feature of WCRN 830 AM program called Touchdown for Teens. The program raised money to support the athletes in Shrewsbury Schools. AA Transportation was one of four business sponsors that promised a donation for every touchdown scored by the varsity football team that season. The team scored 31 touchdowns and the Shrewsbury High School Athletic Department received much-needed support.
Asked “What makes AA Transportation a success?” Ernenwein replies simply by listing three elements of any successful business; “As the owner, I’m available for every customer and oversee operations personally. I treat our employees with respect and appreciation. I act on new opportunities.” It’s a formula for success. The company has been ranked 36th on the Top 50 Contractor Fleets of 2012 by School Bus Fleet Magazine, and it has also earned the Worcester Business Journal’s Top Growth award. Ron himself received WBJ’s prestigious “40 under 40” designation.
With a full fleet of vehicles, expertly trained employees, and great leadership, AA Transportation clearly is a company that is going places. – Article published in Heart of the Commonwealth: Profiles of Excellence, A Photographic Portrait of Worcester & Central Massachusetts.