Michael Gratz is, to say the least, a veteran to the automotive industry. With over 50 years under his belt, Mike knows how to treat his customer’s right and has gained several friends along the way. With Runde’s recently obtaining the Platteville location, Michael Gratz is now part of our loving sales team and ready to serve you!
How long have you worked in the automotive industry?
Since 1963 – 50 years now.
Have you mostly worked selling Chevy’s in the industry?
Yes. My dad and I owned a dealership up in Mineral Point for almost 71 years. We started out selling Oldsmobile and GMC then we acquired Pontiac and Chevrolet. We sold that in ’06 and then I came down to Platteville and worked here since December of ’08 and have been here since. I’m a big fan of Chevrolet.
What do you enjoy most about working in the automotive industry?
Up to this day I enjoy all of customers I meet and how they become my friend. Also closing a deal gives you a bit of a rush and I still enjoy that feeling. I love talking to people; I can talk to anybody and enjoy talking to all the different people.
What are your past-times and hobbies?
Anymore I enjoy golfing and fishing. I’ve done the chains for Mineral Point for 43 years and I’ve kept the book for probably 25 years for the boys’ basketball team. I enjoy going to Platteville games. I don’t miss many games.
Are you married?
Yes. Cindy and I have been together for 10 years now.
Do you remember your first date?
*laughs* Yep. We went out to Quivey’s Grove in Madison, Wisconsin. It was on June 3rd of 2002 and we got married on May 10th of 2003.
Do you have any kids?
We had five children. Two died in accidents and I have 3 left. Brooke is a teacher in Platteville now; Bear is an industrial engineer in Joplin, MO for General Mills and Ron works in Chicago as a fitness trainer. They are all doing well.
Do you have any pets?
A couple of dogs. Murphy and Missy – they are both small dogs.
Do you have a favorite hang-out spot in the Tri-State area?
Not really. I usually just get involved by going to ball games. I’m a big Packer and Badger fan.
If you were to pick a vehicle from the lot, what vehicle would it be?
A GMC Yukon. It’s roomy. I do a lot of fishing, boating and jet skiing and stuff like that. The Yukon will pull the boat and hold everything I’d need it to just fine.
Did you see the new 2014 GMC Sierra that was recently announced?
Yes. They are beautiful with a great design. The interior really impresses me. They look really sharp.
What’s your favorite restaurant?
Ludden Lake Golf Club – They have terrific steaks.
Red Velvet cake.
Oh my gosh, I couldn’t put that down or everyone would be laughing at me… [He later revealed that movie as Gone with the Wind, a classic which does not deserved to be laughed at!] But I like the National Lampoons Family Vacation with Chevy Chase.
Tom Cruise. Demi Moore is my favorite actress.
Jimmy Buffet and Patsy Cline… Whoever reads this is going to think “Man, that guy’s old!”
What’s you’re most memorable experience about a car or truck?
One time, back in the 70’s when Oldsmobile came out with a diesel, I sold the Scott family 5 diesel’s in one day – that’s my most memorable experience about a vehicle. I had two on hand and had to order them 3 more. They still come to do business with me.
Do you consider the glass half-full or half-empty?
Half-full. I’m a very positive person.
Where’s the first place you will travel when you win the lottery?
I’ll go back to Hawaii or go to Canada to go fishing.
Where else would you like to travel?
I’ve been all over the United States, Dominican Republic, Canada… someday I want to go to Alaska to look at the wilderness before it’s all gone.
What would you like to say to all of your potential customers wondering if they should come to Runde’s in Platteville?
Just that we’d love the chance to serve them, meet them and take care of any of their needs. We have so much to choose from and I’d love to talk to whoever might be interested in a vehicle. I am really a family man. Having lost 2 daughters, I believe that family is so important and have great respect for others and their family.
Thanks Mike! Welcome to the Runde Family!