SAN DIEGO (Feb. 18, 2016) — Jim Smith, longtime editor of Tire Review magazine, died unexpectedly last night while covering the Tire Industry Association's (TIA) Off-The-Road Tire Conference in San Diego for the publication.
Mr. Smith, who spent more than 30 years working in both public relations and publishing in the tire and automotive industries, joined Tire Review in October 1999.
According to an obituary posted on Tire Review's website, Mr. Smith, a journalism major at Kent State University in Kent, Ohio, began his career serving as an editor for a number of community newspapers in Northeast Ohio before joining Modern Tire Dealer (MTD) magazine as an assistant editor in 1984. During his time with that publication he was promoted to senior editor, also serving as editor of MTD's Kovach Tire Report.
Mr. Smith then spent four years in brand and corporate public relations roles with Bridgestone Americas — including a stint as a spokesman for the tire maker's then-Dayton Tire unit in Oklahoma City — before joining Nashville's Stumpf Bartels Advertising agency in 1992.
Tire Review said that during his career, Mr. Smith served on TIA committees and also was a board member for the Center for Tire & Service Excellence. In November 2014 he was honored with the Ed Wagner Leadership Award, presented by TIA, for his service in the industry.
The magazine added that “those who knew Jim know he was very passionate about the industry.”
Mr. Smith is survived by his wife Maryellen, sons Jimmy (Shana) and Alex (Liz), and grandson Grayson.