Mort Schwartz Excellence in Education Award
"It set me on a trajectory that I never expected. It floored me that I was considered for a nomination. When I won, it change me: it changed my attitude and how I saw the industry looking at the content we were producing - it was a game changer for me. I'm humbled and honored. If I can win an award like this, so can you."Carm Capriotto, Founder and Host, Remarkable Results Radio Podcast & 2017 Mort Schwartz Excellence in Education Award Recipient
The Mort Schwartz Excellence in Education Award is given annually by the Auto Care Association’s Education Committee to an individual that best advances the concepts and programs for education or continuing education in the North American auto care industry. Nominations are evaluated in accordance with the candidate's:
- Innovation of new auto care education programs for any auto care audience,
- Advancement of existing programs, and/or
- Superlative effort to further promote the educational programs or education fund raising efforts.
The award was established in by Mort Schwartz, aftermarket entrepreneur, business owner and now investor/consultant.
The Mort Schwartz Excellence in Education Award was created to honor one of the automotive aftermarket’s greatest success stories, a man who rose to the top of the auto care industry by virtue of his enormous talent, hard work and dedication
to the industry that he helped shape.
As a young entrepreneur, long-time business owner and now investor/consultant, Mort Schwartz has always put back more than he has taken out of the industry. Not only has he been involved in and chaired some of the largest and most powerful industry associations, Schwartz has always been a strong advocate for industry education, training and scholarship programs.
The Automotive Aftermarket Scholarship Program, www.automotivescholarships.com, which he helped create, continues to grow today through contributions given by industry organizations and individuals.
2021 Award Recipient
Richard Beirne, MAAP, is vice president of corporate development at Automotive Parts Headquarters (APH) in St. Cloud, Minn., and serves on the AWDA executive committee as treasurer emeritus.
Beirne started his career in 1968 as a delivery driver for United Auto Supply (UAS). After working in every aspect of the business, he was named president and CEO in 1989. Beirne continued in that role until UAS was acquired by APH in 2015.
During his tenure with UAS, Beirne served on the executive board of Federated Auto Parts, including chairman. He joined the AWDA board of governors in 1996 and served as chairman in 2004. He continued to serve the AWDA as treasurer and eventually treasurer emeritus.
Beirne received his MAAP from the University of the Aftermarket in 2016 and along with his wife, Lisa, became lifetime trustees of the University of the Aftermarket Foundation in 2019.
2015: Susan Kalish, Senior Director, Education, Auto Care Association
2014: Bobby Bassett, Manager of Training, Gates Corporation
2013: Hovis Auto and Truck Supply
2012: Brian Cruickshank, Director, University of the Aftermarket
2011: Fred Bunting, CEO of Auto-Wares, Grand Rapids, Michigan
2010: Chuck Udell, MAAP, President, Essential Action Design Group
2009: Jim John, Instructor & Chair, Automotive Aftermarket Management Program, Northwood University
2008: Steve Hoellein, President, Felt Auto Parts Co.
2007: Pete Kornafel, MAAP, Vice Chairman, CARQUEST
2005: Northwood University