Playing at Leadership Lunch

Josie Umfleet

Not every success story starts with a degree from a major university. Sometimes all you need is passion, drive, and life experience to make it big in a field. Mr. Ken Haas, owner of Reverend Guitars which are manufactured here in Toledo, is an example of one of these stories.

This month’s Leadership Lunch was with Haas, CEO of Reverend Guitars and employee of the company for many years. Reverend Guitars manufacturers guitars for artists including Fall Out Boy, Jackson 5, and Fergie.

Haas says that he never thought he would own a guitar company. He played in several bands in high school and after graduating decided not to attend college. After high school, Haas began waiting tables and bartending.  He learned a lot of life skills through this and later became a sales rep for a paint company and continued to gain knowledge and experience in the workforce.

Throughout his early career he continued to play guitar in several bands and have a growing love for music. The paint company he was working for gave him the opportunity to meet with Reverend Guitars on several occasions. He developed a relationship with this company and eventually started working for them. Haas would attend guitar conventions and became a sales rep for the company. He was very successful with this and eventually earned a position at Reverend Guitars.

He grew a great relationship with the owners of the company and eventually when the owners decided to sell he bought the company and became the CEO along with his wife.

“I thought his Leadership Lunch very good and I really liked how he didn’t have to go to college in order to be successful,” sophomore Ava Tushman said.

Ken Haas used the many skills he learned throughout his life to attain success.