Your local experts in collision and auto body repair
By Jillian Chandler
Photo by Kiersten Patterson Photography
It was 1976 when Mel Donenfeld founded Northwest Autobody and Towing to serve the Sandpoint community. Specializing in providing top-quality collision repair and extraordinary customer service since the first day of service, today, you will find a leadership team dedicated to using the latest technology while attracting, training and retaining the very best employees the industry has to offer.
Mel expanded the business in 2014 with a second location in Ponderay, at which time his sons Eric and Cory Donenfeld took over ownership of the successful and popular business their father started more than four decades ago.
“We grew up at Northwest Autobody and learned our trade by watching our father,” shares Eric. “He taught us the ‘Golden Rule’ about how to treat our employees and our customers. We treat everyone like family.”
You will still find Mel stopping by the shops occasionally and making it a point to meet and talk with every employee when he does.
Northwest Autobody is Gold Class certified by I-CAR—an international organization which promotes the highest level of technical skill in the collision industry. Their technicians are continuously recertifying to hone their skills and to learn new techniques, and they have invested in the training and equipment to be one of the only Ford, GM, Chrysler, Ram and Dodge certified repair facilities in the area.
“Nothing compares to the satisfaction of talking with a customer who is ecstatic that their vehicle has been repaired above and beyond their expectations. When they contact us after an accident, customers are always treated with respect and empathy,” affirms Cory.
Eric and Cory also enjoy watching and assisting their employees in earning a good living and realizing they are making a difference in many lives.
“What really sets up apart is the level of connection we have in our communities,” says Eric. “We sponsor a ton of local activities, and our owners and employees are very active in many civic organizations.”
Northwest Autobody and Towing has been honored by Rotary, the Chamber of Commerce and Business Network International (BNI), as well as the Pend Oreille Bay Trail and Firewood Rescue for their participation. In addition, Northwest Autobody has employees on the Board of Directors in many of these organizations—as well as many more!
“Success is contagious,” states Eric. “We make decisions every day, and all of those decisions can lead to our success. We learn and apply lessons all the time. We would not be the company we are if we didn’t have great employees and loyal customers.”
When someone is in need of their services, there is a good chance Eric and Cory already know them or their family—after all, the two have called Sandpoint home their entire lives. And for those who are new to the area, the recommendations and ratings Northwest Autobody receives online act as the company’s word-of-mouth advertising. As Cory says, “We remind ourselves that the same natural beauty, recreational opportunities and the quality of people who call here home that attracted our dad, and many others, are the same amenities that are attracting our newest residents.”
Born and raised in Sandpoint, Eric and Cory are now raising families of their own. They love the outdoors, the recreational opportunities and organized sports, and they do their part as responsible citizens and business leaders to give back. “We love the spirit of giving we see by residents and those in the business community,” says Eric.
If you are looking for the best collision and autobody repair in Sandpoint and Ponderay, or are in need of towing assistance (available 24 hours a day), look no further ... Eric, Cory and the rest of the Northwest Autobody and Towing team are ready to serve you.
Northwest Autobody and Towing
1305 Michigan Street, Sandpoint, Idaho 83864
1202 Triangle Drive, Ponderay, Idaho 83852