CAWA event launches telematics whiteboard, doubles scholarship fundraising

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Las Vegas—CAWA leadership, members, sponsors and supporters attended the association’s Annual Membership Dinner Meeting, themed, “Plug-in to the Autoparts Industry,” at the beginning of Industry Week in Las Vegas, Nov. 2, where they succeeded in doubling funds for its Memorial Scholarship Fund through a silent auction and raffle.

A special feature of the evening was a viewing of a telematics whiteboard, initiated and developed by Aaron Lowe, Auto Care Association, and CAWA member Michael Antonelli, Vantage Marketing Global, which illustrated the issues of telematics and shared data among OEMs and the aftermarket.

“CAWA and the Auto Care Association can be at the forefront of developing a whiteboard that can explain the issue of telematics to the public, industry, legislators and regulators in simple terms,” CAWA President and CEO Rodney Pierini said Antonelli told him when presented with the idea. After the viewing, Lowe and Antonelli were recognized and applauded by all attendees for their efforts.

The host of the evening, Selwyn Joffe, CEO of Motorcar Parts of America, the event’s sponsor for several years, said, “Organizations such as CAWA are critical for our industry and we need to support education, government communications and watchdog events, and certainly telematics and equal access to vehicle information.”

Ron Aparicio, 2014 chair of the board of directors, of Motul USA, welcomed the 2015 Chair-Elect Ward Myers, of WORLDPAC, who said, “We will continue legislative battles and we need our lobbyists and advocates who are good at telling our side of the story.” He recognized Gary Conover, Jennifer Zins, David Brown, Stuart Goodman and Lowe for all their efforts and contributions. “We’ve been, and will continue to be, at the forefront of protecting who we are and what we do, as well as supporting the industry through our scholarship program.”

Pierini welcomed the 1994 chair of the board of directors, Mort Schwartz, who performed the Traditional Red Vest Ceremony and presented Aparicio with his vest on stage along with other past chairs.

“Over the years, we’ve had tremendous people and chairs who have volunteered time and devotion. Their leadership, loyalty and dedication is fantastic and they deserve recognition for their enthusiasm, spirit and motivation,” Schwartz said, as he presented the Red Vest to Aparicio.

The 2015 officers of the board of directors were sworn in by Past Chair Steve Sharp, of WORLDPAC. Installed as Chair-Elect for 2015 was Myers; Vice Chair-Elect Greg Livingston, of All Trade Tools; Treasurer-Elect Antonelli; Secretary-Elect Jack Gosnell, of Next Level Parts Inc.; and Past Chair-Elect Aparicio.

Mary Davis, past chair of the board of directors, auctioned donated items such as trips to Napa, NFL and NHL games, VIP tickets to Sonoma Indy Car Weekend and many more, which accounted for $22,800 raised, more than twice the $10,000 from last year’s event.

Speaker John Passante, author of “The Human Side, Human Touch Leadership in a High Tech World,” provided the keynote. All proceeds from the event went toward the scholarship fund.