pursuit of excellence

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. 

Established in 1983, the Pursuit of Excellence Award is presented exclusively to AWDA member companies or employees of those companies, in recognition of excellence in business performance and the setting of high standards as an example for others to follow.

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.

Previous award recipients

  • 2017 Corey Bartlett
  • 2016 Aftermarket Auto Parts Alliance 
  • 2015 Wix Filters
  • 2014 Wilson McMillion
  • 2014 George Segal                         
  • 2013 John Bartlett, Jr.
  • 2012 Frank Frederick
  • 2011 Richard Beirne, MAAP 
  • 2010 David Caracci
  • 2010 Brian Cruickshank, MAAP 
  • 2009 Rusty Bishop
  • 2008 Dennis Welvaert
  • 2007 Jay Burkhart
  • 2006 Bill Schlatterer
  • 2005 Jerry McCabe
  • 2004 Rosemary Hall
  • 2003 Barbara Cunningham, Jim Eady
  • 2002 Jon Owens, AAP
  • 2002 Ken Mullen, AAP
  • 2001 Richard H. Morgan, AAP
  • 2000 Bill Dotson, AAP
  • 1999 John M. Riess
  • 1998 Standard Motor Products
  • 1997 Moog Automotive 
    Chuck Udell, AAP
  • 1996 Dayco Products Inc.
  • 1995 Robert Egan, AAP 
    Jack Creamer, AAP
  • 1994 A.E. Clevite Engine Parts 
    The Gates Rubber Company
  • 1993 Triad Systems Corporation
  • 1992 John Castle 
    Rosemary Hall 
    Charles J. Monahan
  • 1991 Robert Miller 
    Stephen C. Horn, AAP
  • 1990 Gus Carlson 
    Richard D. Kudner
  • 1989 William Wade, AAP
  • 1988 Jack Heyler, Automotive Service Association 
    Tenneco Automotive Wagner Division, Cooper Industries
  • 1987 S.R. "Dick" Downey 
    Charles J. Monahan 
    Robert H. Raff, MAAP
  • 1986 Jay L. Love 
    N. Birnie Pryor 
    Kenneth D. Walker, AAP
  • 1984 Worldparts Corporation 
    Louis A. Zuanich, AAP
  • 1983 ACDelco, General Motors Corporation 
    Federal-Mogul Corporation
  • 1982 Bank of America 
    Ford Motor Company
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