Affleck and Anderson join Hall of Fame, Ludwig named 'Friend of Industry'

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Norm Affleck, retired CEO and president of Big O Tires Inc., and Craig Anderson, retired CEO and president of Hercules Tire & Rubber Co., are the latest inductees into the Tire Industry Hall of Fame. In addition, the Tire Industry Association (TIA) has honored Modern Tire Dealer contributor Saul Ludwig with its 2007 Friend of the Industry Award.

Affleck was a founding dealer member of Big O Tires and was the first president of the company, a position that he held for 25 years. He also was instrumental in the introduction of the Big O brand 33 years ago.

"Affleck’s vision for the future, and his implementation of Big O’s exclusive products and programs, were vital to the growth and success of the company," say TIA officials.

Anderson joined Hercules in 1976. Under his leadership, Hercules began sourcing tires from Asia in 1979, launched the company’s TDW distribution program in 1987, and made several key acquisitions, including the Electra Group of Canada in 1998, now known as Hercules Tire Company of Canada Inc. and Hercules Tire International. Anderson retired from Hercules in 2005.

TIA’s Friend of the Industry Award recognizes well-known individuals "who are allies and proven supporters of the tire industry," say TIA officials. "Mr. Ludwig has been a strong supporter of the tire industry for nearly 40 years as a tire analyst and is considered the industry’s expert on financial trends."

Ludwig is a managing director with KeyBanc Capital Markets Inc., based in Cleveland, Ohio. He has been writing for MTD since 1975.

In addition, six individuals have been chosen for induction into the Tire Industry Hall of Fame as "Historical Contributors." They include Ira J. Cooper, who formed The Cooper Corp., later to be known as Cooper Tire and Rubber Co.; Robert Eisentrout, regarded by many as "the father of American performance tires" and former president of BF Goodrich Tire Group; Otto and Willy Gruber, founders of Otto Gruber & Co., known today as Rema Tip Top; and Rudy Holman and Neil McIntyre, developers of the Orbitread extruder.

TIA's Hall of Fame Inductions will take place on Tues., October 30, 2007, in Las Vegas, Nev., prior to the opening of TIA’s Performance Tires & Wheels/SEMA Show.

The presentation will be held during TIA’s Breakfast with the President, scheduled from 6:45 a.m. to 9 a.m. in the Palace I Ballroom at Caesars Palace. Tickets for the event are $35 and are available online at

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