CORT, the nation’s leading provider of furniture rental and transition services, has announced today that Executive VP Richard Ritter will retire after nearly four decades with the company.
Richard joined CORT in 1979 as a manager trainee in the Cincinnati District. Within a year, he was promoted to district general manager in Louisville, Kentucky, and served in that role until 1983. Richard then launched the CORT brand in the Chicago market as district general manager and has since held several other management positions for CORT, working in several cities across the U.S. Most recently, Richard spearheaded Tapdn™, a new Internet of Things (IoT) platform that consolidates data from every workplace IoT sensor under one platform, providing impactful insights to improve workplace performance.
“I’ve enjoyed every minute at CORT and the great people that I’ve been lucky enough to work with over my 39 years,” said Richard. “People wonder why I chose to stay for so long and it’s really because of the great opportunity CORT provides for you to grow. If you’re willing to put your nose to the grindstone and work hard, you can achieve great success. I also faced some difficult times in my personal life and was always supported 100 percent. CORT is a company that wraps its arms around you, picks you up, dusts you off and tells you it will be okay. CORT is a company that rules with its heart and its head – that’s why I stayed.”
One of Richard’s most memorable experiences at CORT took place while he was managing the service center in Louisiana when Hurricane Katrina hit. According to Richard, it was a challenging time, but also the most rewarding experience in his life. CORT’s service headquarters took a direct hit by Katrina. All 60 CORT employees based in New Orleans were displaced from their homes, and business was shut down. CORT provided its employees temporary housing, so they could serve as first responders to customers that were affected by Katrina.
“Not only did CORT do the right thing by taking care of their employees, but they helped the most critical residents of the Gulf Coast that were suddenly homeless – the first responders,” said Richard. “In partnership with local apartment complexes, CORT provided furniture for several firefighters, police officers and EMS for up to four months after Katrina hit.”
In total, CORT invested $17 million and delivered furniture for over 4,000 apartment units in 16 weeks. The entire CORT family rallied behind the New Orleans team and employees from all over the country flew into the devastated area, working around the clock to help bring the city back and keep CORT New Orleans in business to support displaced families.
Throughout his career at CORT, Richard has been committed to helping people grow and develop. As he moves onto the next chapter, Richard’s advice to his coworkers and future CORT employees is “to spend your time helping people get better and develop, because it’s so rewarding watching those you help grow and succeed.”
CORT, a part of Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway, is the nation’s leading provider of transition services, including furniture rental for home and office, event furnishings, destination services, apartment locating, touring and other services. With more than 100 offices, showrooms and clearance centers across the United States, operations in the United Kingdom and partners in more than 80 countries around the world, no other furniture rental company can match CORT’s breadth of services and companywide commitment to making a house a home, an office a great place to work and an event a memorable celebration. For more information, please visit www.cort.com.