Steve Schoolcraft, founder of the collision repair marketing firm Phoenix Solutions Group, died suddenly on May 19.
Schoolcraft “passed away peacefully in his sleep” at the age of 61, according to a message posted by Tina Biancalana, vice president of Client Development for the firm.
“As many of you know, Steve was considered a visionary,” Biancalana wrote. “His passion, drive and dedication to the collision repair industry was unparalleled. He leaves the industry with a legacy; he leaves the world and all of us who knew him with very heavy hearts.”
Schoolcraft founded Phoenix Solutions Group in 1989. The Hoffman Estates, Ill.-based group bills itself as “the most comprehensive on-demand marketing firm available for the professional collision repair facility.”
“Know that the Phoenix Solutions leadership team and staff remain committed to carrying on the legacy Steve started,” Biancalana wrote. “Our commitment to his vision is strong and want everyone to know that the PSG team, Steve’s family, friends and supporters will ensure his legacy lives forever.”
A 2015 PPG MVP Conference biography describes Schoolcraft as “a sought-after speaker and author” whose “numerous whitepapers have been instrumental in dimensioning what factors influence collision sales growth and are a must read.”
Dave Luehr and Stacey Phillips, authors of “The Secrets of America’s Greatest Body Shops,” expressed their condolences in a Facebook post.
“Steve was a major industry influencer, finding and sharing the truth about collision business marketing and a tremendous contributor of our book,” they wrote. “Steve will be greatly missed.”
Schoolcraft is survived by his wife Alexis; sons Nicholas and Michael; and granddaughter Noelle.