General Manager, Ernie’s Towing; Age 37
Fournier joined the family business, Wayside Auto, and its towing and recovery division, Ernie’s Towing, straight out of high school. Starting as an operator, he worked his way up through the ranks, eventually taking over management of that division. He opened a second location in Amherst in 2009, creating new jobs in a down economy. Now a standalone entity owned by Fournier, Ernie’s Towing continues to operate two locations with 35 employees. He has continued to grow the company, expanding its services to include becoming a premier AAA provider, entering into the long-distance transportation service, and securing more than a half-dozen local and state agency emergency contracts. With the Massachusetts Statewide Towing Assoc., Fournier has served as Western Massachusetts director for more than 10 years and sits on its legislative steering committee, aiming to professionalize and standardize the towing and recovery industry while advocating for the safety and well-being of consumers and industry professionals. He was vital in passing the Slow Down Move Over Law in Massachusetts, making police, firefighters, paramedics, tow-truck operators, and roadside emergency and maintenance professionals safer on the job.
What did you want to be when you grew up? Law enforcement.
What three words best describe you? Determined, thoughtful, honest.
What’s been your biggest professional accomplishment so far in your career? Expanding the business from a small, six-employee company to more than 35 employees today.
What goal do you set for yourself at the start of each day? To better improve my business while also keeping my employees safe.
What are you passionate about? Family.
Who inspires you, and why? My father. He is my biggest role model. He is a hardworking and very smart businessman.
What do you do for fun? I enjoy traveling, snowmobiling, and also spending time on the UTV with family and friends.
How do you relieve stress? Spending time outdoors with my family.
What will work colleagues say at your funeral? He was a great leader and a thoughtful and helpful person, always concerned about his employees and leading by example.