PHOENIX — Daniel McCrume of Carmax in Gulfport, Miss., is the 2022 Techs Rock Awards grand prize winner.
The TechForce Foundation awards honor professional technicians who mentor and inspire the next generation of techs, bring excellence to their workplaces and communities, and demonstrate passion and commitment to the profession.
Thousands of TechForce followers voted for nominated technicians and selected McCrum as the grand prize winner from among five category winners in the Nov. 28 - Dec. 2 People's Choice public vote. McCrum previously won the Barrier Buster category.
As the grand prize winner, McCrum will receive more than $10,000 in total prizes from TechForce and its industry partners. Prize sponsors include Advance Auto Parts, AutoZone, Caliber, Cengage Learning, CRC Industries, Ford Motor Co., Snap-on Industrial and WD-40 Co.
Over $17,500 in prizes are being awarded in the 2022 Techs Rock Awards, including:
• Each category winner (grand prize winner included) received tools, gift cards and other prizes valued at over $1,700.
• The grand prize winner also receives an all-expenses-paid trip to STX 2024 in Orlando, Fla., valued at $3,000 courtesy of Advance Auto Parts, along with an additional prize package valued at over $5,500.
The category winners are:
- Barrier Buster: McCrum. The Barrier Buster category recognizes technicians for showing heart and passion in overcoming obstacles to succeed.
- Die Hard: Joshua Ferrantino, Rodman Ford. The category recognizes industry superfans who live, breathe, sleep and thrive in their career.
- Outstanding Mentor: Frank Mendoza, Flow Nissan & NASCAR Technical Institute. The category recognizes techs for providing support and guidance to the industry's future technicians.
- Pay it Forward: Zachary Carlsen, Northern Auto Repair. The category recognizes technicians for being a community advocate and inspiring the next generation of techs.
- Rookie of the Year: Kael Gortat, Carmax. The category recognizes up-and-coming tech professionals with under two years of professional experience.
The five category winners represent less than 1% of the nearly 700 technicians nominated, TechForce said. Winners were selected by a panel of celebrity judges including: Emily Reeves, Flying Sparks Garage; Charles Sanville, The Humble Mechanic; Bogi Lateiner, Bogi's Garage; Pete Meier, Motor Age Magazine; and Julia Landauer, Julia Landauer Racing.
The Techs Rock Awards are part of TechForce's workforce development campaign to inspire and support tomorrow's workforce of technicians.
TechForce said it created the Techs Rock Awards to highlight the contributions of technicians in their workplaces and communities and demonstrate to the public that a technical education and career is a viable pathway to success.
The awards showcase the benefits of an in-demand technician career to spark students' interest, and the TechForce Network meets those students where they are with the resources needed to explore and pursue a technical education and career.