Advertising Premium Sales, Inc. (PPAI 101466, D6) is celebrating its diamond jubilee this year.

The St. Louis-based distributor was founded in 1962 by Harold “Buddy” Shucart, grandfather of current owner and president Matt Shucart.

Harold Shucart started the business selling sports guides, buttons, matches and other products to companies around the St. Louis area.

“[My grandfather] would stop everything to take care of his clients and operated his business at a higher standard than most for the services he provided,” says Matt Shucart. “One story that still stands out of Grandpa Buddy taking off his tie and helping one of my dad’s customers unload their holiday gifts as he was dropping something off to them. He was truly people-helping-people and he stood for kindness, honesty and integrity and that was something he instilled in my father, Jay, the next generation of APS.”

Jay Shucart joined the company shortly after college and helped grow it into what it is today. His wife, Sheila, came onboard in 1976. Initially she filed catalogs and wrote checks and is still with the company today as CFO. Running the company’s finances, she has been involved with many of the changes over the years that have evolved it into a 21st century company.

Matt Shucart joined the company 10 years ago and became president when his father passed away in May 2021.

“I came to work at the family business after years of wanting nothing to do with pens and coffee mugs,” says Shucart. “Prior to this, I spent a lot of time working in the restaurant industry and finally realized this is where I was supposed to be. Working from the bottom up, I learned the ins and outs of the business and eventually took over as third generation owner after my dad passed away. It was the best decision I’ve ever made.”

Shucart also credits the company’s employees and their long service for the company’s success. Several staff members has been with the distributor for a decade or more. Most of its account executives have been there for 10, 15 or even 20 years. Steve Deutsch has been with the company for more than 40 years, joining when Harold was president.

Lori Brown, who has been with the company for 27 years as office manager, part of its art department and more, credits her longevity to Jay and Sheila, who have, she says, “fostered a partnership of ideas and openness, that value her contribution to the company.”