Master 'Hardwarian'

Carmen GeorgeMay 24, 2012 

If you've spotted a familiar face on that new True Value Hardware commercial recently while flipping through the channels, it's likely that you really have seen him before.

Allan Bryant, at Oakhurst's family-owned True Value Home Center, is one of 27 True Value retailers across the country featured in the company's newest national television commercial, which will continue on and off throughout the year.

According to Erika Torvik with the True Value corporate office in Chicago, Bryant has also been dubbed a "master of all things hardwarian." And although "hardwarian" is not a word found in the dictionary, you can be assured it means he knows a lot about the hardware business.

Bryant and his brother Paul have been working in the family business since 1985, when their father Jerry purchased H&L Lumber, already part of True Value at that time. The family opened the Oakhurst True Value in 1994 in the Old Mill Shopping Center and then moved it to its present location near Kaiser Permanente on Highway 49, where its been for the past six years.

Ownership and management has transitioned to Jerry's sons, Allan and Paul, over the past few years. Last year, the family also bought the True Value store in Coarsegold's Yosemite Lakes Park.

Allan auditioned for the commercial during a large True Value buying sale in Orlando, where 3,000 store owners flocked to get the latest goods for their stores. He was chosen for the commercial in February, and in March a San Francisco photographer came to Oakhurst to get photos of the store front throughout the day, followed shortly by a film shoot in Chicago in front of a green screen.

The new True Value commercial is airing on major networks, including TBS, TNT, CMT, Spike, CBS Sports Network, DirectTV, Hallmark, History, National Geographic, Military and Weather channels.

"True Value is not a franchise," Bryant said about what he hopes people take away from watching the commercial. "We're a buying co-op, with the buying power of 5,000 stores and yet we can run and operate the stores the way we see fit, and that benefits your community. We have different customers and purchase differently, for example, even for the YLP and Oakhurst store. The beauty is we can stock this store with what the community needs."

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