"The only constant is change.” I don’t know who originally said this, but it certainly applies to our industry.

Bob Ulrich (left, with MTD Publisher Greg Smith) ceaselessly championed the independent tire dealer during his career.

Bob Ulrich (left, with MTD Publisher Greg Smith) ceaselessly championed the independent tire dealer during his career.

Modern Tire Dealer experienced a big change a few weeks ago when our long-time editor, Bob Ulrich, retired after a 34-year career as the face of our brand.It’s safe to say that you – at some point or another – read an article or an editorial written by Bob.

Many of you spent time with him at industry events or talked with him by phone or email. Some of you even traveled with him.

The word “iconic” is often overused and misapplied, but not in Bob’s case. Bob was an icon – and an unforgettable presence – in our industry.

It’s tough to sum up all of the things that Bob did to help you, our readers – simply because there are so many. But I remember one exchange that comes as close to capturing Bob’s philosophy as anything else.

Many years ago, when I was new to MTD, Bob asked me, “Mike, do you know what makes MTD special?”

I rattled off a list of reasons as he patiently waited for me to finish.

“It’s not any of those things,” he said. “MTD is special because we care.”

When he said this, I knew that he was referring to himself, as well.

Bob cared about this industry. He cared about your business. And most importantly, he cared about you.

We do, too.

As I step into the role of MTD’s editor – the 10th in the 101-year history of this publication – I’m mindful of the fact that MTD doesn’t belong to me.

It doesn’t belong to our fantastic, talented editorial team of Lori Mavrigian, Ann Neal and Joy Kopcha.

It doesn’t even belong to our sales team, led by our publisher, Greg Smith.

Ultimately, MTD belongs to you, the independent tire dealer. This is your publication. That’s what Bob believed.

And I believe it just as wholeheartedly.

Thank you for your readership and support. We look forward to continuing to serve you.

And by the way, Bob sends his best as he enjoys the early days of his retirement. (I saw him just the other day, and he's as busy as ever!)

Thank you, Bob, for everything you’ve done to make MTD what it is today.

Author

Mike Manges
Mike Manges

Editor

Mike Manges is Modern Tire Dealer’s editor. A 20-year-plus tire industry veteran, he is a three-time International Automotive Media Association award winner and holds a Gold Award from the Association of Automotive Publication Editors. Mike has traveled the world in pursuit of stories that will help independent tire dealers move their businesses forward.

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Mike Manges is Modern Tire Dealer’s editor. A 20-year-plus tire industry veteran, he is a three-time International Automotive Media Association award winner and holds a Gold Award from the Association of Automotive Publication Editors. Mike has traveled the world in pursuit of stories that will help independent tire dealers move their businesses forward.

View Bio
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