The executive committee of the Spring Manufacturers Institute (SMI) has announced the appointment of Gary McCoy as the association’s new executive director. McCoy will take over for Lynne Carr, who will remain with the organization until her retirement after the 2023 SMI Annual Meeting, April 22-25, at the Waldorf Astoria Orlando. Carr began working part-time for SMI in 1995 as an administrative assistant and since 2013 she has served in her current role as executive director.
McCoy will officially start with SMI Dec. 1 and will work with Carr through the annual meeting to ensure a smooth transition.
“On behalf of the executive committee and the board of directors, I want to thank Lynne for her tireless efforts on behalf of our association,” said SMI president Gene Huber, Jr. of Winamac Coil Spring. “The many traditions and standards that she set and upheld over the years have been impeccable. She will be missed.”
McCoy has more than 30 years of experience in marketing communications, public relations and association management. He is the founder and president of Fairway Communications in Elgin, Illinois, and has been the managing editor of Springs magazine since 2008. He is the former director of communications for the Automotive Service Industry Association and a former president of the Automotive Communications Council.
“We are more than pleased to announce that Gary McCoy has accepted the position as executive director of SMI,” said Huber on behalf of the SMI executive committee that includes Don Jacobson III, Newcomb Spring, vice president; David DeVoe, Plymouth Spring, treasurer; Dave Deerwester, The Yost Superior Company, at-large; and Bert Goering, Precision Coil Spring, past president. “Gary brings not only a professionalism that comes from his many years of experience with trade associations, but the ability to listen to the needs of an association, as well. We look forward to the innovative ideas and technical savvy that Gary will bring to his new role with SMI.”
Since 2001, McCoy has been a member of the automotive scholarship committee at AutomotiveScholarships.com that awarded 471 scholarships in 2022 for a record total of $731,350. In 2009, McCoy received the prestigious Northwood University Automotive Aftermarket Management Education Award. He earned a B.A. degree in Journalism and Mass Communications from Iowa State University and holds the professional development designation of Master Automotive Aftermarket Professional (MAAP) from the University of the Aftermarket.
“It will be a challenge to follow in the footsteps of an industry legend like Lynne that I have had the privilege of working with for the past 14 years,” said McCoy. “I am honored to be selected by the leadership team of SMI to serve in this new role and I look forward to the challenges ahead. I believe SMI has the opportunity to grow in its outstanding offerings of business and technical information to reach even deeper into the industry. I have developed many friendships with SMI members during my 14 years as editor of Springs, which has allowed me to understand the challenges that springmakers and their suppliers face.”
Carr’s 27-year history with SMI and the spring industry, includes her work in helping the association organize and operate the Metal Engineering eXpo, a three-day education and trade show that started with the inaugural event in Charlotte, North Carolina in 2015. In addition, she has served as the advertising manager for Springs during her entire career and has been responsible for running SMI on a daily basis and organizing all SMI events. In addition, she has served as an ex-officio member of the SMI executive committee.
“Lynne has worn many different hats in her time with SMI and has become a beloved friend and colleague to many in the spring industry,” said Huber. “We are planning a big send-off party in Orlando to thank her for her loyal and faithful service.”
For more information about SMI, visit www.smihq.org.