This year we’re celebrating our 40th birthday as a self-storage company. We recently discovered that here at Storage West Bell Rd. we’ve had a member of our community staying with us continuously for over 22 years. Wow! That’s more than half the amount of time we’ve existed! We think that just might be the longest running stay with us anywhere in the company so we thought we’d have a little chat with him to see what’s kept him here all these years.
My name is Heather Williamson; I’m the Social Media Coordinator here at Storage West. I had the great privilege of talking with Keith Hertzendorf. We talked over the phone so I could learn a little bit more about his story.
I found out that Keith originally began storing with us back when the location was called Paradise Valley Mini Storage or PV Mini Storage for short. This was long before my time here at Storage West. I couldn’t recall the old name, but Keith even had an original receipt from way back in the day to jog my memory. We sure got a kick out of hearing that reminder here in the Marketing Office. That little token sent our Sales and Marketing Director Don Willis on a trip down memory lane back to when he was a District Manager for that area. There were a whopping 4 facilities in town at that time. He had no Associate Managers so when someone needed a day off or went on vacation he ran the facility.
It sure was a pleasure speaking with Keith. I asked him what has kept him storing with us all these years. He said that he’s been really happy with the property. He’s never experienced any robberies. That’s always a plus! He said that he lived in the Moon Valley area for 16 years so this location was convenient for him. He later moved to Cave Creek but still had family living nearby so he would have an excuse to come over to visit his stuff when he went out to see them. When he moved away he just didn’t see any reason why he shouldn’t leave his stuff there, since he’d never had any trouble… well, except for that one time…
Keith recalled a funny occasion back five or six years ago when the property was repaved and the crew laying the new asphalt spread things a little thick; so thick his door was sealed shut. Our Manager at that time had to help chisel his unit free. Lesson learned! Sorry about that Keith! Property maintenance is really important to us, so repaving our black top goes along with that. We’ll definitely have to make sure our vendors are a little bit more careful with the edges though. We want to keep your items safe, and make sure your door is secure, but not THAT secure!
Speaking of keeping Keith’s items secure, I was curious what it was that Keith has been storing all this time. He’s a bit of an outlier when it comes to his length of stay but not when it comes to what he’s storing as it turns out. He has the usual assortment of items: furniture, family photos, personal effects, and some business records.
I asked Keith how much longer he planned to stay with us. He joked and asked if you could will a unit to your children. I guess he plans to stay awhile! That’s just fine with us Keith. We’ve certainly loved having you as part of our community all these years.
I was so glad to hear that Keith has had a good experience with us overall, that one chisel incident being the one humorous exception. I asked if he had any suggestions for us, going forward. Being a community member for 22 years, I figured he’d have some pretty good perspective on the way we run things. He just said that it might be nice if we had some more parking spaces up front and some more garbage bins around the property. This is an old property, and those certainly aren’t bad ideas. If a property remodel is ever in the future, those are certainly some thoughts to consider. Thanks for the insight Keith!
Well, after 22 years, I was glad to hear that Keith still says he would recommend Storage West to anybody. That certainly is a testament. It was wonderful to have one more reason to be proud of the company I work for, and a conversation with Keith was a great way to get that reminder. His 24 years in stand-up comedy sure made him easy to talk to. And on that note I’ll leave you with this little nugget from Keith. After 22 years of storing with us he might just be our longest standing community member. He’d like to retain that title just so long as he never becomes our oldest community member.
We sure appreciated Keith taking the time to let us interview him. Now we open the floor to any other community members here at Storage West. Has anyone been here longer? Can anyone challenge Keith Hertzendorf’s title? Give us a call! We’d love to interview you too!