The Auto Care Association recently announced the winners of its annual awards recognizing excellence within the industry through education, innovation, and future leadership. The awards were announced during the association’s Fall Leadership Days event in Denver, Colo., and included the 2022 Mort Schwartz Excellence in Education Award, the Auto Care Career and Education (ACE) Awards, and the Impact: Four for the Future Award. (Note: the latter of which will be published in tomorrow’s edition of AMN.)
2022 Mort Schwartz Excellence in Education Award Winner – John Passante
This year’s Mort Schwartz Excellence in Education Award winner is John Passante, CEO and president, The Organizational Development Group.
The Mort Schwartz Excellence in Education Award is annually given to an individual who demonstrates a passion for advancing the concepts and programs for education and continuing education in the North American auto care industry.
John Passante is a broad-based senior executive with over 30 years of extensive general marketing, sales, organizational development, and senior human resources experience with progressive corporations involved in multiple locations, both domestic and international. Passante was the President & CEO of Brenton Productions, as well as the President & CEO of The Organizational Development Group, Inc. He has worked with other corporations such as Carquest, MOOG Automotive and Delphi Products and Service Solutions.
In 1995, Passante was inducted into the Automotive Aftermarket Hall of Fame. In August 1980, he was awarded the University of Toledo Pacemaker Award. Additionally, in 2021, he received the Aftermarket Warehouse Distributors Association (AWDA)’s Art Fisher Award for Excellence in Education for his commitment to education and training in the aftermarket.
Passante is currently an adjunct professor at Northwood University and the University of the Aftermarket. He was also a member of the Northwood University Board of Governors. Passante has been an adjunct professor at the University of Toledo, St. Louis University, and a guest lecturer at Bowling Green State University, University of Missouri, and Providence College. He has written a book titled “The Human Side, High-Touch Leadership in a High-Tech World,” and created the book “A Women’s Perspective on Leadership.”
2022 Auto Care Career and Education (ACE) Award Winners
The ACE (Auto Care Career and Education) Award recognizes auto care companies dedicated to excellence in education, including investing in the growth of knowledge and skills within their organization and/or throughout the industry.
Large Company category winner: Auto Value and Bumper to Bumper, San Antonio, Texas
Continued education is a primary focus for Auto Value and Bumper to Bumper. This can be seen in its attendance at industry events and education programs, such as Aftermarket 101 and Leadership 2.0, its commitment to scholarships, virtual educational programming and in-person events.
Examples of its virtual educational programs include its monthly Up to Speed, Prodcast, and Heavy Duty Holler webinars that concentrate on training Auto Value and Bumper to Bumper members in all facets of our industry. Alliance University is also available on-demand, where in-depth automotive and commercial vehicle training is catalogued by category and supplier. In-person educational programming includes its Sales and Marketing Forum that provides three days of keynotes, trainings, and workshops.
Each year, $25,000 is granted in scholarships for Alliance shareholders, Certified Service Centers and Jobbers, as well as their families. These scholarships are executed through the University of the Aftermarket Foundation. The Alliance also awards two Leadership 2.0 scholarships each year to industry professionals. Additionally, Auto Value and Bumper to Bumper focuses on continuing education through its Technician of the Year program. Shareholders host their own regional event that culminates with headquarters hosting the national finalists to determine the winner by utilizing a custom ASE exam.
Mid-size Company category winner: MEVOTECH, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Mevotech is committed to investing in the advancement of knowledge, skills and job satisfaction of the people within its organization and across the industry. From employee training courses to customer education programs, to train-the-trainer sessions and even hands-on in-shop demonstrations, Mevotech understands that the success of the aftermarket depends on building an environment of continuous learning. Examples of Mevotech’s internal training include its comprehensive employee onboarding program; Leadership Excellence Accreditation and Development (LEAD) Program; and MevoUniversity, which provides practical online training webinars across the organization.
Mevotech also believes in providing robust ongoing training for customers that both informs and entertains, including through its Mevotech Training Portal, dedicated landing pages, webinars, and Train-the-Trainer session. The company also has the MevoMobile program, where subject matter experts visit professional repair shops and technicians across the United States and Canada to deliver concise and highly relevant training within 15-20 minutes.
Small Company category winner: The Detroit Garage, Detroit, Mich., and Florida
The Detroit Garage celebrates the successes of its employees and believes that individual career advancements are essential to company growth. Education is a multipronged approach at The Detroit Garage. It takes place in the bays, at the front counter, through social media, and in the offices of elected officials. The Detroit Garage management team meets individually with each employee to discuss their goals and to create a custom career path in which they are encouraged and financially supported every step of the way. The company encourages industry training through online offerings, Auto-Wares Group of Company training, out-of-state opportunities and anything else that will help the team with growth and development.
The Detroit Garage also works to educate its customers about the potential ramifications of failing to fight for the rights of independent auto repair shops. Its goal is to help the general public understand what life would look like without the Right to Repair.
To learn more about the Auto Care Association’s annual scholarships, awards and other industry recognition opportunities currently open, visit autocare.org/awards.
Note: See tomorrow’s edition of AMN for the Impact: Four for the Future Award winners.