When Bruce Schulman took over as general manager of Group 1 Automotive's Mercedes-Benz of Beverly Hills in 2005, Group 1 CEO Earl Hesterberg told him that part of the job was to become an integral part of the community. That Schulman has done, in spades.
His dealership is involved with more than 60 charities that Schulman says "span all the ethnicities and religions that are indigenous to Los Angeles."
Each of his 23 salespeople selects a charity for the dealership to support, and each is asked to do volunteer work at community service events.
Schulman, 60, is deeply involved in four organizations: Jewish Big Brothers Big Sisters, the Maple Counseling Center, the Beverly Hills Rotary and the Beverly Hills Chamber of Commerce. He is finishing a stint as CFO of the Chamber, and will be installed as president on June 1.
Marcy Kaplan, CEO of the Maple Counseling Center, a low-cost mental health counseling service where Schulman is a board member, says his networking abilities are vital to the center's fundraising.
"Nonprofit organizations are very much about relationships," she says. "Bruce knows everybody and then some."
A father of two and grandfather of three, Schulman calls himself a "behind the scenes guy," raising money as a board member so the charity organizations can do their work.
Some of the money comes directly from Mercedes-Benz of Beverly Hills. Charitable and civic events are a big part of his advertising budget, Schulman says.
Schulman has a hard time saying which of his many charitable causes is closest to his heart. "They are so different," he says. "It would be like picking a favorite child."