No Asterisk With The Counter Pro Of The Year Award

No Asterisk With The Counter Pro Of The Year Award

Don't let the crazy events of this year deter you from nominating yourself (or a colleague).

In professional sports, some fans and pundits believe that certain achievements should come with an asterisk. Specifically, I’m thinking of Barry Bonds’ all-time home run record, which some people view as tainted because of his suspected steroid use. But the notion of the asterisk goes back many years in sports. When Roger Maris broke Babe Ruth’s single-season record by belting 61 homers in 1961, some people asserted that the record should be qualified with an asterisk, because Maris set the record during Major League Baseball’s then newly expanded 162-game season, while Ruth had set the previous record in a 154-game season. (I’ve never hit a home run, so I think both records are incredible achievements.)

Fast-forward to 2020. If the NBA, Major League Baseball or any major sport is able to complete the pandemic-shortened season and crown a champion, it’s understandable that many fans likely will view the champion with an asterisk.

I bring this up because I hope the crazy events of this year don’t deter you from nominating yourself (or a colleague) for the 2020 Counter Professional of the Year award. The pandemic hasn’t stopped counter pros from plying their trade, and it’s not stopping us from continuing our tradition of recognizing the Counter Professional of the Year.

If anything, the pandemic has only magnified the importance of the automotive aftermarket, and the people who work in it. We already knew it was an essential industry. It took a public health crisis for the federal government to make it official.

As we point out every year in our calls for nominations, the Counter Professional of the Year award acknowledges the vital role counter pros play in the automotive aftermarket, honoring those whose passion, expertise and dedication have elevated their businesses and the profession. These are the quintessential “go-to” parts professionals – the ones who go the extra mile when their customers need a quality replacement part or trusted advice … day in and day out. Does that sound like you?

Our tradition is to honor the Counter Pro of the Year at a reception in Las Vegas, as part of AAPEX in late October/early November. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there won’t be an in-person AAPEX event this year. However, we still intend to honor the 2020 Counter Professional of the Year – just as we’ve done every year since 1986. As always, we’ll feature the 2020 Counter Professional of the Year on the cover of our December issue. And we’ll find other ways to make this year’s award special – perhaps with a virtual ceremony.

Regardless, there’s no need for an asterisk. As an essential worker in an essential industry, what you bring to the table is more important than ever.

To nominate yourself or a colleague for the 2020 Counter Professional of the Year, visit

You May Also Like

What Will the ‘COVID-Era Consumer’ Do in 2022?

The beauty of the automotive aftermarket is that the economic conditions always seem to work in the industry’s favor.

Online Shopping

Remember the tariffs? Nathan Shipley does. Back in 2019, “that’s all we were talking about as an industry,” Shipley recalled, during his “Aftermarket Outlook 2022” presentation this past November at AAPEX.

Looking back at the “Distribution Preview” in the January 2019 issue of AMN/Counterman, aftermarket leaders consistently expressed concerns that former President Trump’s tariffs – and China’s retaliatory tariffs – could disrupt aftermarket supply chains, leading to higher prices and even production interruptions. Tariffs remained on their radar in January 2020, although it looked like the aftermarket was weathering the storm.

Right To Repair, Trade Associations And You

In the fight for Right to Repair legislation, aftermarket trade groups can’t do it alone.

Veterans Can Be Heroes Off the Battlefield Too

Veterans bring an incredible amount of value to the civilian workplace, in terms of nontechnical and technical skills.

Veterans and Vehicles
What’s Really Driving The Automotive Aftermarket’s Growth?

NPD’s Nathan Shipley looks at the many moving pieces contributing to the industry’s recent spike in demand.

aftermarket growth
Strength In Numbers

The automotive aftermarket is filled with great people. In fact, many say it’s our strong suit.

Teamwork automotive aftermarket

Other Posts

Still Time for Counter Professional of the Year Nominations

The award recognizes America’s most trusted “go-to” men and women behind the parts counter.

Get to Know the 2022 Counter Pro of the Year [AUDIO]

Amanda Balk is the manager of the Auto Value store in Thorp, Wisconsin.

Rocky Gragg, 2021 Counter Professional Of The Year

Gragg, a senior market specialist at Parts Authority, has been an in-demand counterman for more than 40 years.

Rocky Gragg
Never Stop Learning

With so much internet-based training content available, it’s never been easier to expand your knowledge base.

Continuing Education