Ford finds over $100K in leather during renovation, donates to company that hires veterans, Detroiters

When Ford Motor Company was renovating the Ford Design Center in Dearborn, they demolished an attic after almost 70 years. Inside, they found $100,000 in quality leather. This isn't going into any cars.

Jim Conner with Ford said the hides were found in the basement and attic of the center which is being demolished. Included in the treasures, which were very nearly thrown out, was $100,000 worth of leather, originally for the high-end Lincolns and King Ranch edition trucks.

"Personally, donating these items gives me great satisfaction - especially to local companies, to local organizations because we can really make a difference in people's lives," Conner said.

What did Ford decide to do with the high-quality hides? Donate them to two Detroit-based small businesses. One of them, Pingree Detroit, is a leather goods manufacturer who hires Detroiters and veterans. 

"To have a donation this level is a game-changer for us," said Jarret Schlaff, Co-founder CEO of Pingree Detroit. "We are literally going to be able to hire more people to meet this demand. We couldn't be more proud of the team and to have this opportunity,"  said Schlaff

But you're too late if you want any of this leather. Pingree said they're already sold out.

Rayne Rose is the head seamstress at Pingree Detroit and has been sewing since she was 9. She knows she's going to be pretty busy with all this new leather.

"I was very grateful for it because it helps us and helps our community," said Rose. "We get to use our creative juices to make produces that people can actually use."

Ford found $100,000 in brand new, high-quality leather hidden in one of its facilities recently and opted to donate them to companies who can put them to good use.