Leonard Bus Sales was founded by Gerald and Helen Leonard in Hancock in 1965, serving thirteen counties in eastern New York State. In 1971, the distributorship territory increased to twenty-eight counties, and the growth of the business necessitated additional personnel. Following his graduation in 1973, Mike Leonard started working full-time in the shop, and his duties soon expanded to include parts sales and service work on the road. As his father's health worsened in succeeding years, Mike found himself increasingly making sales calls on his father's behalf. After Jerry passed away in 1978, Helen and Mike continued to operate and grow the business using the founding principles of honesty and fairness that he had established over many years. Helen, who was instrumental in the company's growth since its inception, elected to retire in 1983, and Mike committed himself to continuing the expansion of the bus franchise.
Leonard Bus Sales continued to grow through the 1980's, and in October of 1988 LBS moved into a new 18,000 ft2 facility on ten acres in Deposit, NY. The new facility enabled an increased focus on customer service and support, and the company enjoyed a steady increase in sales and market share. During this period, Leonard Bus Sales also became a New York State distributor for Girardin Minibus, and remains today as Girardin's oldest United States dealer. In 1997, another significant company milestone occurred when Leonard Bus Sales opened a second facility in Mechanicville to service customers in the North Country, Capital District, and Upper Hudson Valley.
In October of 2001, Mike and the Leonard Bus team chose to end their long-standing relationship with Blue Bird and entered into a distribution agreement with International/IC Bus. Today, Leonard Bus Sales distributes buses to fifty-four counties throughout the state, and employs over one hundred people statewide. The Deposit facility has undergone two expansions, increasing the total footage by 10,000 ft2. In 2002, 12,500 ft2 in additional service, parts, and office space was added to the Mechanicville garage.
2004 was an eventful year for the Leonard Bus team. In November LBS leased a newly renovated 4,700ft² service facility in the Griffiss Business and Technology Park in Rome, providing a much-needed service point for central New York. In December, LBS celebrated the opening of a new 20,300 ft² facility in the Apple Tree Industrial Park in Bergen, located in Genesee County, Western New York.
At the main entrance to Leonard's Deposit headquarters a plaque reads:
"In honor of Gerald B. Leonard, who founded Leonard Bus Sales in 1965. This building symbolizes the leadership and vision that he stood for, and is dedicated to his selfless efforts and uncompromising principles."
The entire Leonard Bus team remains committed to our founding principles, and we look forward to many more years of service to the pupil transportation industry. – less – More from ZoomInfo »