NEW ORLEANS-The National Tire Dealers & Retreaders Association's 1995 convention in New Orleans, which had fewer attendees and trade show exhibitors than the group's 1994 gathering in Dallas, drew criticism from a group of NTDRA past presidents. According to the minutes of the NTDRA Past Presidents' Advisory Council's Oct. 13 meeting, all but two of of the 10 past presidents in attendance voiced disappointment at the New Orleans trade show and membership functions, which one of the group described as ``lack(ing) professionalism,'' resulting in a ``disappointing 75th anniversary'' for North America's largest tire dealer association.
According to the minutes, the majority voiced ``serious concerns with the current state of affairs, expressing their views and those of many suppliers and members who had complained to them.''
Chaired by 1993 NTDRA president, Don Dobbs of Dobbs Tire & Auto Centers in High Ridge, Mo., the council advised the association's incoming elected officers to ``take immediate action to correct the trade show and the association's negative trends.''
New NTDRA President Paul Bobzin, of LaCanada (Calif.) Tire Center Inc., told the group that he and the association's other officers are ``aware of the situation and plan to aggressively pursue solutions.''
Council members also urged that immediate attention be paid to finding a replacement for Executive Vice President Philip P. Friedlander Jr. who plans to retire in 1996.
A majority of the past presidents felt Mr. Friedlander's replacement will have to possess ``strong marketing experience and be free from the Washington bureaucracy'' in order ``to reverse the negative trends now prevalent,'' according to the minutes.