Love’s Travel Stops is celebrating 60 years of operations, marking a legacy of innovation, growth, and community impact since its first store opened in Watonga, Oklahoma, in 1964.
That year, Tom and Judy Love were looking for a way to support their growing family. So, they leased a filling station in Watonga, and with Tom Love’s people-focused mentality, that one store led to a nationally recognized brand.
“While a lot has changed in six decades, the heart of Love’s has not, and it’s now alive in four generations of our family,” said the Love family in a news release. “Growth and innovation of our product offerings, living our core values and culture daily, and dedication to clean places and friendly faces are what this company was started on in 1964."
Love’s said it is the only major travel stop that is still family-owned and -operated. It is now a travel stop and convenience store network with 637 locations in 42 states and nearly 40,000 employees in North America and Europe. Its growing family of companies includes Musket Corp., Trillium Energy Solutions, Gemini, and Speedco.
Tom Love was an innovator from the start, opening a combined convenience store and filling station at a time when that was practically unheard of, the company said.
The company said his innovative spirit is at the heart of every addition the company has had over the years, including expanding into travel stops, adding the Gemini Motor Transport fleet, restaurant and fresh food options, total truck care solutions, alternative fuels, and private label offerings.
Love’s recently was ranked #1 for “Work Wellbeing in the U.S.” by Indeed.
“Tom Love said it best, ‘yesterday’s trophies don’t win tomorrow’s games,’ and even after six decades we still live by that motto, constantly innovating and improving,” said Shane Wharton, president of Love’s. “The secret formula behind the company’s success is our employees and how they model the core values Love’s was built on and sustain a legacy of driving for excellence.”