pursuit of excellence award: recognizing special achievement

This annual award is presented in recognition of excellence in business performance and the setting of high standards as an example for others to follow. Such performance may be related to innovative and successful methods of management, marketing, manufacturing or service. In addition, this award may be presented for exemplary volunteer or advocacy efforts made on behalf of the winner's company and/or industry.


The Automotive Warehouse Distributors Association (AWDA), a community of the Auto Care Association, presented its 2018 Pursuit of Excellence Award to Tom Seboldt, vice president, merchandise, O’Reilly Automotive, Inc. The award was presented on behalf of AWDA by Henry Slack, president, Slack Auto Parts, at the association’s annual conference in Las Vegas on Oct. 28. 

Like so many in the O’Reilly organization, Tom Seboldt worked his way up the company ladder from an entry level position as delivery driver to his current position, where he oversees the merchandising operations and serves on the executive committee of one of the nation’s leading auto parts chains.

During his 30-plus-year career at O’Reilly Automotive, Seboldt’s roles have included: driver, counterman, store manager, assistant purchasing manager, product manager and director of merchandise. Along the way, Seboldt was responsible for establishing the company’s first direct import program, first off-shelf rotation program and first vendor compliance system.

Seboldt’s volunteer service within the auto care industry also sets a high standard. He has been a member of the Auto Care Association’s Category Management Committee and currently serves as chairman of the Auto Care Association’s Events Committee. In addition, Seboldt has served as California Automotive Wholesalers' Association (CAWA) treasurer and is currently a member of CAWA’s Executive Committee. He is also deeply involved with his local church, volunteering on the board and serving as chairman from 2012-2015.

“Tom is the consummate pro,” said Rodney Pierini, president and CEO, CAWA. “He's a very thoughtful and engaging individual who does great service not only for his company, but also for his industry trade associations, including the Auto Care Association, AWDA and CAWA out here in California.”

AWDA’s Pursuit of Excellence Award celebrates the setting of high standards as an example for others to follow. The success of those standards are directly reflected in the vibrant company and volunteer culture embraced and influenced by Tom Seboldt. 

“Tom Seboldt is a true professional, a solid guy that knows his business and does the right thing for his company and his industry,” said Roger McCollum, president, N.A. Williams Company.

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