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Jim Lazzarino (L), general manager for Redwood RV, spends time with the Cooper's, Terry and his wife Evanda, and their dachshunds.

Jim Lazzarino (L), general manager for Redwood RV, spends time with the Cooper’s, Terry and his wife Evada, and their dachshunds.

A unique partnership between Syracuse, Ind.-based Redwood RV and a couple of well known full-time RVers took another step forward Tuesday (Nov. 4) at the company’s brand new Customer Service Center, a facility the company shares with its CrossRoads RV sister division in Topeka, Ind.

Texas natives Terry and Evada Cooper took delivery of an upscale 2015 Redwood 39MB fifth-wheel from the luxury residential fifth-wheel manufacturer, a top-of-the-line 42-footer retailing in the $130,000 range for which the Coopers didn’t pay a dime.

That’s because the Coopers aren’t regular full-timers. Terry, known on the RV consumer circuit as “The Texas RV Professor,” and Evada, who also goes by the handle of “Lady E,” are both sought-after RV professionals who travel the country as part of their businesses.

And the Coopers get a new rig every year – in fact, this is their third fifth-wheel from Redwood — in exchange for working with Redwood RV General Manager Jim Lazzarino to provide invaluable feedback on a monthly basis regarding how the unit functions and about consumer preferences in general. The Coopers, familiar names in the consumer arena, are passing along not just their observations, but also the comments they hear from other consumers they encounter during their travels.

At the same time, Redwood RV enjoys the residual marketing of the Coopers espousing the full-timer lifestyle in a Redwood fifth-wheel everywhere they go.

An RVIA/RVDA master certified RV Technician, professional instructor and president of the National Association of RV Inspectors, Terry operates the Mobile RV Academy, which offers hands-on training to service personnel at dealerships nationwide. In addition, he conducts training seminars for work campers wanting to develop their technical skills, and he provides campgrounds with additional services as well as workshops for consumers seeking to become better equipped to handle DIY repairs on their rigs.

Evada, a gourmet cook, conducts culinary seminars, showing attendees all they can accomplish within the confines of an RV kitchen. During each session, she provides packing and storing tips and tricks as well as explaining how RVers can most efficiently use their RV appliances, like the oven, convection/microwaves and the refrigerator.

She operates a blog, called “My RV Kitchen,” in conjunction with her business, and she is the author of “The RV Centennial Cookbook – Celebrating 100 Years of RVing (1910-2010)” (available at Amazon.com).

“Every month we talk with each other and I ask them, ‘What do you have for me this time?’” said Lazzarino, who refers to this unique partnership as a “win-win” situation for both the Coopers and his Thor Industries Inc. division. “Sometimes it can be a list of bullet points. Other times not so much. But that feedback from out on the road is a benefit. That relationship allows us to get better.”

The Coopers, for their part, told RVBUSINESS.com they’re “very excited” to have taken delivery of their new Redwood. “This relationship is stronger than ever and we’re grateful to be a representative of Redwood,” Evada said.