Being in a leadership position is not unusual for Elkhart County entrepreneur and philanthropist Kelly Rose, according to a report in the Elkhart Truth.

Being in a leadership position and having to learn how to wave and decide what to wear, however, is definitely out of the ordinary. Yet Rose and his wife, Karen, prepared diligently to lead the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Parade on Sunday (July 22) as the grand marshals.

“It’s really neat,” Rose said. “What an honor.”

The pair were selected to take the helm of the parade because of their continuous behind-the-scenes support of the county fair and, most recently, for their work in raising funds to purchase the large swath of land adjacent to the fairgrounds. To fair board president Jack Lengacher Jr., picking the Roses to be the 2012 grand marshals was “almost a no-brainer” because they have been “instrumental in helping the fair be as successful as it has been.”

“They’re just really great people,” Lengacher said. “They’re the salt of the earth. They know they’ve been blessed. This is their way of giving back to the community.”

Rose and partner Mike Schoeffler have headed up several RV enterprises, including purchasing Starcraft Corp. out of bankruptcy in 1990 and subsequently selling the RV division to Jayco Inc. Rose is currently chairman of EverGreen Recreational Vehicles LLC in Middlebury, Ind., and subsidiary LIFESTYLE Luxury RV.

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