The award, in its 28th year, recognizes an independent tire dealer or retreader in North America who, during the past year, has made significant contributions to the betterment of his or her community through charitable or public service work.
An independent panel will judge the nominations, and the winner not only will receive the handsome Tire Business Tire Dealer Humanitarian Medal as well as a trip to the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) Show, in Las Vegas, he or she will get a check for $2,500, to be donated to the charity of the winner's choice.
The winner will be recognized on Monday, Nov. 1, during the annual Tire Industry Association (TIA) Honors program, which will be held prior to the opening of the SEMA Show, Nov. 2-5.
This year's honors ceremony will be held during the lunchtime hour, a one-time change to accommodate TIA's 100th Anniversary Gala, which is slated to be held later that evening. The gala was postponed in 2020 because of the pandemic.
Both events will be held at TIA's host hotel, the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas.
Last year's winner of the Humanitarian Award was Rodrigo Valle Hernandez of Grupo Tersa of Tijuana, Mexico.
Mr. Valle, whose dealership oversees more than 150 stores throughout his native land, is the first recipient of the award from Mexico. Only one other dealer — Eric Gilbert of Ericway Tire Inc. of Beamsville, Ontario — has won the award outside of the U.S.
Mr. Valle has an impressive philanthropic resume — if you haven't read his story, check it out on tirebusiness.com — donating $1 million alone to help build what today is called the Rodrigo Valle Hernandez gymnasium/auditorium on the campus of his alma mater, CETYS University in Tijuana.
Mr. Valle's penchant for charitable causes prompted him to start his own organization, the Valle-Bibbe Foundation, which supports everything from children with cancer to adults in their final stages of life. The foundation has raised more than $3.5 million and donates to around 15 causes in and around Tijuana.
The competition for the Humanitarian Award is stiff, which speaks to the quality and community focus of tire dealers around North America. Last year, we received around a dozen nominations, each of them as worthy as Mr. Valle.
So even if you nominated someone last year, or in a past year, who wasn't selected for the honor, be sure to nominate that dealer again.
The deadline to nominate a candidate is July 31.
Click here to nominate a dealer and please send as many supporting materials as possible.
Do it before it gets too late. And do it before your shops get busier for the summer driving season.
You won't regret it.
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And if you're looking to enter your business in our Best Places to Work survey, sit tight. We will begin asking for solicitations in the third quarter, with plans to honor winners early in 2022.
Last year, SimpleTire L.L.C. of Trevose, Pa., was the winner, joining four other finalists honored.