There's More than Meets the Eye

There’s More than Meets the Eye

Commitment, dedication, sincerity and integrity - those are the words that best describe this year's Counterperson of the Year.

Once again, it’s time to honor our Counterperson of the Year. My how time flies! It seems like only yesterday I was writing about last year’s winner, Chris Isted, a very deserving parts professional from an Illinois CARQUEST store. Now here we are in 2002 honoring Jerry Ives, another outstanding CARQUEST pro from the Syracuse, NY, area. Jerry is the assistant manager at the Mattydale, NY, CARQUEST.

There’s a saying that goes, “The more things change, the more they stay the same.” And I say that not just because Jerry and Chris both work in the CARQUEST system, but because there are other similarities between Jerry and Chris. If you look closely over the 19-year history of this award, there is a very definite common thread among all of our recipients, and I’d like to share some of those characteristics with you.

Jerry, like Chris, was nominated by his supervisor. He excels at customer service and is lauded by his customers and co-workers. He is often cited as the single most important reason why customers buy from his store. Jerry is an ASE Certified Parts Specialist (among many other honors) and a former mechanic who can, to this day, work on pretty much any vehicle on the road. To sum it up, he’s more than qualified for this honor. But, that’s just the beginning.

In an industry where image is key, Jerry exemplifies what it means to be an automotive aftermarket professional. Jerry is one of the few store personnel we know of who holds a master’s degree. He attained his master’s and bachelor’s degrees from Syracuse University, attending classes in his limited free time while also working part time in the automotive aftermarket. That type of dedication to one’s own personal growth and development speaks volumes about the type of professional one will be at work. Commitment, dedication, sincerity and integrity – you’ve heard these characteristics mentioned over and over. However, it’s rare that you see them all come together in one complete package. And rarely do you see the type of impact they have on your business. But you can see all of this in Jerry Ives.

Here are some of the comments that impressed me the most when I was reading Jerry’s letters of recommendation:

Experience: “The automotive industry continues to change,” said Charlie Schirtz, one of Jerry’s best customers. But, “Jerry has been through all those changes and continues to expand his knowledge in his field. This guy is the best.”

Knowledge: “You don’t have the kind of insight that Jerry has unless you’ve done the job yourself,” said Mark Ellis, a longtime customer.

Jerry as a Team Player: “I feel very honored to represent an industry that I’ve been a part of for so many years. I am fortunate to work with such a great bunch of guys. We all work together as a team, and I have to give much of the credit to them.”

Going the Extra Mile: “Jerry’s commitment to education and his customers is the cornerstone to achieving the perfect balance in the automotive parts industry,” said Richard Kent, the department chair of Automotive Technology and Alternative Fuels at Onondaga Community College.

Jerry, we at Counterman are proud to have you representing counter professionals everywhere. Congratulations! See you in Las Vegas!

You May Also Like

Will Surging Gas Prices Hurt The Aftermarket?

The jolt to miles driven – a key indicator for the aftermarket – remains to be seen.

Editor's note: This column appears in the June issue of AMN/Counterman.

As of today (June 15), the average price of a gallon of regular gasoline in the United States is $5.01, according to AAA. That’s up from $4.47 a month ago.

Remember the good old days? A year ago (from June 15), the average price of a gallon of regular gas was $3.076 – a great time to fill ‘er up, compared to today.

Online Ordering Isn’t A Fad

Online sales in the automotive aftermarket continue to grow.

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
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

Other Posts

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
Never Stop Learning

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

Continuing Education
Welcome To 2035 – What Things Might Look Like

The future is what we make it. We need to start addressing technology now so 2035 becomes a bright future.

Future of Transportation