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AWDA Presents Annual Awards In Las Vegas

Fred Bunting, founder and chairman of Auto-Wares Group of Companies, was presented with the Jack Creamer Leader of the Year Award by the Automotive Warehouse Distributors Association (AWDA) at its 2016 Annual Business and Education Conference in Las Vegas.

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Fred Bunting Named AWDA’s 2016 Leader of the Year

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buntingFred Bunting, founder and chairman of Auto-Wares Group of Companies, was presented with the Jack Creamer Leader of the Year Award by the Automotive Warehouse Distributors Association (AWDA) at its 2016 Annual Business and Education Conference in Las Vegas. Each year, AWDA bestows this prestigious honor on an aftermarket professional who has contributed to the industry in a unique and significant way.

Presenting the award was last year’s Leader of the Year, Larry Sills, chairman and CEO, Standard Motor Products, Inc. Auto-Wares, headquartered in Grand Rapids, MI, is a full-line, full-service, full-program distributor servicing more than 750 jobbers. The company employs more than 1,800 people who together operate 336 Auto Value/Bumper to Bumper stores and 800 Auto Value/Bumper to Bumper Certified Service Centers.

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Bunting has been an active member of the Aftermarket Auto Parts Alliance Inc. since the early 1980s, serving for more than 20 years on The Alliance Board of Directors. He has also served on the AWDA Board of Governors.

“Fred is truly an innovator in the automotive aftermarket,” said Jeff Darby, senior vice president, sales and marketing, Dorman Products. “He’s built a business from the ground up that’s viewed as one of the most prestigious organizations in the industry.”

“For many service professionals in the Michigan region, a high point of the year is the Auto-Wares Tech Expo, of which Fred was the architect,” said John Washbish, president and CEO, Aftermarket Auto Parts Alliance Inc. “Fred believes that the more training our industry provides to technicians, the better it is for everyone. Last year, more than 4,000 professional technicians attended the Tech Expo and its training classes.”

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In 2007, Bunting was awarded the Art Fisher Memorial Scholarship Award given in memory of former AWDA Chairman Art Fisher. The award is presented annually to a company or individual who demonstrates outstanding commitment to education and training either within their company or throughout the industry.

Larry Pavey Recognized with 2016 AWDA Lifetime Achievement Award

paveyLarry Pavey, president of the Federated Auto Group and CEO of The Automotive Parts Services Group, was presented with the Martin Fromm Lifetime Achievement Award by AWDA at its 2016 Annual Business and Education Conference in Las Vegas. Presenting the Award was AWDA’s current chairman, Cliff Hovis.

The Martin Fromm Lifetime Achievement Award recognizes individuals who have, over the course of many years, distinguished themselves through their unselfish commitment to, and high level of performance within, the motor vehicle aftermarket industry.

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Pavey has spent his entire career in the automotive aftermarket, starting in sales at Walker Manufacturing, then on to the BWD division of Echlin. He served as vice president of marketing for the Borg Warner, Niehoff and Whitaker brands. With Pavey at the helm, Echlin’s brake business made more than 20 acquisitions, becoming the largest brake supplier in the aftermarket industry. He served as president of Echlin’s North American Operations and then president of Dana’s Under Vehicle Group.

Today, Pavey serves as president of the Federated Auto Group and CEO of The Automotive Parts Services Group, a joint venture between National PRONTO Association and Federated. He has been active in many industry associations, serving on the boards of ASE, AAPA, MEMA, AAIA (now the Auto Care Association) and the AWDA Board of Governors.

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“Larry’s integrity is probably his greatest passion. He is able to look at the industry as a whole and do what’s best for all of us,” said Brent Windom, president and CEO, Auto Plus and Pep Boys.

“Larry’s commitment to the aftermarket is long and varied,” said Tim Trudnowski, president and general manager, Automotive Jobbers Supply.” He has worked on all sides of the supply chain. He is truly one of a kind.”

“Larry has served our industry in many ways – as a manufacturer and now as The Group’s leader,” said Richard Beirne, vice president, corporate development, Automotive Parts Headquarters. “Bringing two major groups together like Federated and PRONTO, he had to make a lot of things work. Larry is a quiet but effective leader who has had a major impact on our industry.”

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Aftermarket Auto Parts Alliance Awarded AWDA Pursuit of Excellence Honors

alliance_finalThe Aftermarket Auto Parts Alliance was honored with the AWDA 2016 Pursuit of Excellence Award. Established in 1983, this award is given annually to an AWDA member in recognition of excellence in business performance and the setting of high standards as an example for others to follow.

Don Bickle Jr., president, Warehouse, Inc., presented the award on behalf of AWDA at the association’s 2016 Annual Business and Education Conference in Las Vegas. Megan Hastings, digital marketing and training manager, Aftermarket Auto Parts Alliance, accepted on behalf of the Alliance.

The Pursuit of Excellence Award is presented exclusively to AWDA member companies or employees of those companies in the auto care industry.

The Alliance’s commitment to its shareholders and the auto care industry was never more in evidence than at AAPEX 2015 when, in cooperation with the Auto Care Association, the Alliance flooded the show floor with more than 3,000 affiliated repair shop owners, managers and technicians, completely changing the dynamic on that final day of AAPEX.

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“The Alliance exemplified the essence of this award when they took the risk to become the first program group ever to conduct their convention, dubbed the Aftermarket Jackpot, in conjunction with AAPEX,” said Bill Collins, national group sales director, Standard Motor Products.

Through the Alliance’s efforts, the number of service center personnel attending AAPEX last year more than tripled, including many who attended for the first time. Exhibitor booths were redesigned to accommodate training sessions for attendees. Sessions were taught by exhibitors, and focused on training the automotive technician the value of aftermarket parts. The Alliance incentivized the training by offering coupons to customers attending the sessions for a chance to win a vintage muscle car.

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“Our booth was swarmed with thousands of professional technicians,” said Jeff Darby, senior vice president, sales and marketing, Dorman Products Inc. “We were able to share all of our product innovations and new product ideas that we could bring to the aftermarket.”

“What they pulled off on Thursday last year at AAPEX, with not only the service technicians, but also their shareholders, created excitement on a day that really needed it. It was just a fantastic,” said Jeff Blocher, director of sales and marketing, MANN+HUMMEL Filtration Technology Group Inc.

Cliff Hovis Presented with AWDA’s 2016 Art Fisher Memorial Scholarship Award

hovis-onlyAWDA presented the 2016 Art Fisher Memorial Scholarship Award to Cliff Hovis, president, Hovis Auto and Truck Supply, for the company’s long-standing support for training and education within the auto care industry.

The award was presented by Bobby Segal, CEO, Automotive Supply Associates, on Nov. 1 at AWDA’s 2016 Annual Business and Education Conference in Las Vegas.

The Art Fisher Memorial Scholarship Award is presented annually to an aftermarket company or individual who demonstrates outstanding commitment to education and training, either within his or her own organization or throughout the industry.

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Given in memory of former AWDA Chairman Art Fisher, the award grants scholarships in the name of the award winner to two students enrolled in the automotive aftermarket management program at Northwood University.

Hovis, who serves as president of the family-owned chain of auto parts stores, built the world-class Hovis Technical Training Center in Mercer, PA, which is committed to providing comprehensive instruction, technical materials and educational programs to automotive and heavy-duty vehicle service and repair technicians, machinists and paint and body professionals.

The center offers a learning environment that utilizes a blend of classroom education and hands-on training.

Hovis has served on the Federated Auto Parts Executive Committee and Board of Governors, as well as the AWDA Board of Governors and the Auto Care Association Government Affairs Committee. He received the Mort Schwartz Excellence in Education Award in 2013.

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Hovis has also been a tireless advocate for career promotion and development for the industry. He has been a passionate supporter and champion for the Young Auto Care Network Group (YANG), AWDA Internship Scholarships and Next Step Scholarships, and was the driving force behind the development of a new and highly successful College Outreach Program.

“Cliff built a tremendous state-of-the-art training center in Pennsylvania and has continually advocated for more aftermarket training and funding,” said Richard Beirne, vice president, corporate development, Automotive Parts Headquarters.

“His interest in helping move this industry forward by training the younger generation is second to none,” said Dave Shapiro, sales associate, SRS Marketing Company. “Cliff is a leader that others follow.”

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“Cliff exemplifies everything that Art Fisher believed in – organizational development and empowering young people,” said Segal.

“One of the most important things that Art Fisher stressed was education, which he preached that our industry could never have too much of. Cliff adopted that belief and ran with it,” said Tim Trudnowski, president and general manager, Automotive Jobbers Supply.

For more information, visit autocare.org/awda.

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