In 1967, Ralph Luke (1931-2007) founded Luke Oil in Hobart, Indiana as a supplier of home heating fuel. Ralph Luke was born and raised in Hobart, Indiana along with his four brothers and one sister. After graduating from Hobart High School, Ralph spent time overseas in the Air Force. Upon his return, he went to work for Van Senus Oil. With the help of Bill Van Senus, Ralph would go on to purchase Van Senus and start Luke Oil Company. His greatest asset was his personality and his ability to inspire others. Humbled by his success and fortune, Ralph never relocated, staying loyal to Northwest Indiana and its institutions.
By 1980, Luke had transitioned into a fuel supplier for gas stations. By 1990, Luke was one of the largest fuel suppliers in Northwest Indiana and had started purchasing convenience stores. By 2001, Luke had acquired over 30 convenience stores and had started to diversify into other industries. In 2006, Luke purchased the County Line Orchard in Hobart, Indiana.
In July of 2013, Luke Family of Brands acquired Strongbow Inn in Valparaiso, Indiana.
Strongbow Inn is refined comfort food, and the restaurant includes a bakery, banquet center, and craft beer bar known as Bow Bar all within its’ walls.
Today, Luke is a third-generation, family-owned company that has diversified into various commercial divisions.
Luke’s Mission Statement:
“To consistently provide solid growth opportunities for all partners and associates who qualify.”
Luke’s Vision Statement:
“To set the standard for quality, service and convenience in every market we serve.”
Luke is committed to the development of their people, serving to recruit and retain high quality individuals by promoting its mission and vision statements. It will continue to provide quality growth opportunities for partners and associates who qualify by adopting its qualifying principles. Luke will continue to be the preferred place of employment in the industries they serve as they strive to be one of the top places to work in Northwest Indiana.
Luke plans to continue to grow by adding new retail stores. Luke also plans to further develop the County Line Orchard by adding a food commissary, farm-market co-op, community garden program, art and music classes and programs as well as becoming a small business incubator for farm market products and services and improving the educational component of current school programs. In 2009, they completed the development of a 25,000 square-foot barn to host weddings, events, and conventions, thereby creating a setting to host philanthropic and community events.
Click here to visit Luke’s website.
Click here to return to the Career Development home page.