SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — TechForce Foundation has hired Tina Smith to be its director of national partnership, responsible for developing corporate partnerships throughout the transportation industry with the aim to solving the vehicle technician shortage.
In her new role, Ms. Smith will identify new corporate partners willing to sponsor the FutureTech Success campaign or to donate to TechForce Foundation's scholarship and grant program, including its Veterans at Work: Military Transition Campaign, Accelerate Tuition Scholarships and Life Happens Emergency Relief funds.
Ms. Smith previously was national sales manager for Lumileds Holding B.V., where she managed its U.S. aftermarket sales program and sales team. Prior to that she worked five years at NGK Spark Plugs (U.S.A.) Inc. and three years at Gates Corp.
TechForce is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization with a mission to encourage students to pursue careers as professional vehicle technicians.
It recently launched its industrywide initiative, FutureTech Success, to encourage companies to donate training aids and support employee volunteers to help with local high school shop classes and after-school programs; to promote automotive careers through a national marketing campaign that tries to dispel the "grease-monkey" image; and develop one-stop-shop resource hubs for future techs, parents, educators and the industry to help students pursue a career.
In addition to an associate's degree in automotive technology, Ms. Smith holds an auto mechanics certificate, is a first-year Chrysler Apprenticeship Technician graduate, was an Automotive Aftermarket Suppliers Association Emerging Leader member 2015-16 and a member of the Women in Auto Care Educational Committee 2014-17.
"Tina herself pursued a technical education, made possible thanks to a generous scholarship, became a technician, turned wrenches, and knows what it's like to be a female technician in the industry," TechForce CEO Jennifer Maher said.
"Tina has the authenticity and passion we sought in someone who can walk the talk of the TechForce story, and help companies realize how they can be part of the solution."