Jim Shapiro, 65, president of SRS Marketing Co., passed away in his home early Friday morning, May 29, surrounded by his family.
Jim joined his father, Malcom Shapiro, as a manufacturers’ representative at Shapiro and Boehm at the age of 22 and took the company over when Malcom passed. SRS Marketing was established in 1996 when Shapiro and Boehm merged with Robert Riefberg Sales, where Jim served as president alongside his partners Robert Riefberg and Bob Slemmer until his passing.
“I met Jim in 1990 and we became close friends immediately. We recognized the future consolidation of the Aftermarket and merged our companies in 1996. Jim has been a dear friend, confidant, and business partner for the last 24 years and amazingly we have never had one disagreement. Jim’s passion for the business and intellect have been a breath of fresh air along our journey together. He always wanted to do what was right for our customers, employees and our manufacturer partners,” said Robert Riefberg, SRS Marketing Co.
In 2014, Jim brought his son, David Shapiro, into the fold as a 4th generation member of the automotive aftermarket.
“My relationship with my father was beyond special. People who saw us together recognized this almost instantly. It is my professional mission to carry on the legacy of respect and admiration that he garnered from our clients, customers, and peers in the industry. The 6 years that we had working together will be some of the greatest memories of my life. I know it’s cliché, but he really was my hero,” said Dave Shapiro, SRS Marketing Co.
Jim has served on both ASIA and APAA committees and has more recently served on the Auto Care Association board of directors. Recognizing the need for a strong volunteer presence in the industry, Jim held many different roles within the Association.
- Manufacturer’s Rep Council – Chairman (2006 – 2008)
- Manufacturer’s Rep Council – Member (2003 – 2015)
- Auto Care Events Committee – Member (2003 – 2008)
- Auto Care Association Nominating Committee – Member (2009 – 2010, 2015)
- Auto Care Association Investment Committee – Chairman (2010 – 2012)
- Auto Care Association Investment Committee – Member (2010 – 2015)
- Auto Care Association Finance Committee – Member (2017 – 2020)
“Jim was an active participant in the industry he loved and truly understood that if we all collaborate, we all do well. Jim was a careful observer of people and trends and was always quick to add a smile or a laugh during tense negotiations with his customers. As a rep he was able to balance the need of the customer to the desires of the supplier and was a fantastic matchmaker. Countless companies in the aftermarket should be thankful to Jim for their success,” said Bill Hanvey, CEO, Auto Care Association.
In lieu of flowers, the Shapiro family has requested that donations be made to one of the charities that Jim supported:
- Automotive Aftermarket Charitable Foundation (AACF) – www.aacfi.org – The AACF, or Automotive Aftermarket Charitable Foundation, was founded in 1959 to assist automotive aftermarket members and their families who, due to catastrophic illness or terrible accident, have exhausted all other available resources in maintaining a reasonable existence.
- Gary Senise Foundation – www.garysinisefoundation.org – At the Gary Sinise Foundation, we serve our nation by honoring our defenders, veterans, first responders, their families, and those in need.
- The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) – www.aspca.org – The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals® works to save animals from dogfighting, puppy mills, hoarding and other cruelty situations. We provide animals medical care and behavioral rehabilitation and help thousands of animals find loving homes every year. We respond to emergencies when disaster strikes, and fight for stronger laws to protect animals.