Modern Tire Dealer

NOV 2018

Magazine for the professional tire industry

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M T D N o v e m b e r 2 0 1 8 34 at Bridgestone, but if you are truly dedi- cated to your dealers they will have a big- ger influence on you. My first dealer visit is also the indi- vidual who has had the biggest influence on me. Ed West- moreland, founder of Westmoreland Tire C o. in For t Payne, Ala., not only taught me about the industry but why to love it. Ed's passion for his customers, team members, and com- munity reinforce how great this industry can be. What keeps you up at night? My people — both at work and at home. I care deeply about people and want to ensure everyone I interact with feels sup- ported and heard. Growing up, what was your dream job? I always loved trucks and wanted to start my own car dealership. e closest I came to that dream was as an actor in a car dealer commercial when I was a kid. Describe your first car and what you loved most about it. My first car was a teal colored Chevrolet S-10. We named it the "Teal Tiger." I loved that truck. What do you expect to be doing 20 years from now? I'll be somewhere selling tires — even if it's to a driverless vehicle! Mitch Tate DIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS TATE BOYS TIRE & SERVICE LLC BARTLESVILLE, OKLA. AGE: 26 What keeps you up at night? e thought of custom- ers going to other auto centers and not getting to experience the service our team could be deliv- ering to them. How do you spend your work day? I oversee the operations at our six (soon to be seven locations), as well as our warehouse. e majority of my day is spent in the stores interacting with customers, coaching our store managers, driving business results, and ensuring the Tate Boys standard is upheld at all of our locations. Richie Howard GENERAL MANAGER BRUCE'S TIRE INC. SAN JOSE, CALIF. AGE: 27 What was your first job in the industry? I was raised cleaning our showrooms and rest rooms but my first official job was as a general service tech at Bruce's Tire. I believe starting as a technician has helped me value, and respect, every employee at Bruce's Tire and the hard work that it takes to accomplish our company's goals. What's your biggest accomplishment in the industry? My proudest accomplishment in the industry is becoming general manager of Bruce's Tire at age 24. At the time I was managing our highest volume store and I could not imagine leaving the store for someone else to manage. Now I am involved with every aspect of our business and continue to learn and grow. Tell us about your family. Both of my grandfathers were in the tire industry as well as my father and uncle. My wife has become accustomed to the long hours and the grease that comes along with being in the industry and running a family business. My wife Nikol and I were married just over a year ago and we just had our first child in July and are enjoying being new parents. What's your secret superpower? I have two secret superpowers. e first one is my family. ey help motivate me and help me succeed. e second is coffee. What's the biggest issue facing the tire industry? Technology and lack of interest from the millennial generation. ere are fewer and fewer young people interested in the industry. I also believe technology will drastically change our industry in the next 20 years. Robert Pritchett REGION GENERAL MANAGER CONSUMER REPLACEMENT TIRES BRIDGESTONE AMERICAS TIRE OPERATIONS LLC DALLAS, TEXAS AGE: 32 Who has had the biggest influence on your career? I have been fortunate to work with amazing leaders and coaches

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