Beck Jr., Sieff prepare for 2005 Hall of Fame induction

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Eugene Beck Jr., former president of Beck Tire International, and John Sieff, retired president of S&M Tire Co. and Mr. Tire Service, are the 2005 Tire Industry Hall of Fame inductees. The Hall is run and supported by the Tire Industry Association (TIA).

Four additional inductees were selected for induction in a new Hall of Fame category, which was added this year for "Historical Contributors." This category recognizes those individuals who have made significant industry contributions and have been out of the industry for at least 20 years or more. They may be retired, deceased, or may have begun their career in the tire industry and moved on to a different industry.

The four individuals chosen for induction as "Historical Contributors" are:

* Fernley Banbury, inventor of the modern internal mixer (the Banbury mixer) for elastomers first patented in 1916;

* Theodore Smith, founder, president, publisher and editor of the India Rubber Review (now Tire Review); and

* Marius Mignol and Pierre Bourbon with Michelin, inventors of the radial tire.

Eugene Beck Jr.

Beck was a leader in the tire industry for nearly 50 years. His career started as a young boy spending his summer months patching tubes at his father's filling station and flat-fixing company -- a company that evolved into used tires, vulcanizing and subsequently recapping.

He graduated in 1956 from the University of Akron, College of Business Administration, and took on a leadership role in his father's business. He began to buy government scrap tires in earnest and accumulated a large stock of discarded aircraft tires with the hope for a future emerging market on a grand scale.

Beck subsequently developed a 30,000-plus inventory of F-16 tires into a sale to John Deere for its rotary mowers. These tire and wheel assemblies were offered as an option on new equipment. The durability and superior performance of the assemblies soon made them the tires of choice.

The other aircraft tire sizes he accumulated were sold for farm wagons, tractor front tires, grain carts, cranes, skid-steer loaders, large rubber tire loaders and many other specialized applications.

In the 1970's, he expanded the business into Texas, Florida and the Netherlands. The joint venture in the Netherlands allowed him to purchase NATO Forces surplus and export used tires to European nations.

He formed a new company, Cost Plus Tires, to sell new tires and in 1993 sold that business to Community Wholesale Tire of St. Louis, Mo. In the early 1980's, Beck purchased two more businesses, Florida Tire Terminal and Texas Tire Terminal, which are still operating under those names today.

In 1990, he formed a tire recycling company, Tire Energy Corp., which was later sold in 2002 to Alternative Fuel Service in Odessa, Mo.

Beck received numerous awards throughout his career, including the 2000 Pioneer Award for Recycling from the former International Tire and Rubber Association, and was inducted into the Missouri Tire Dealers Hall of Fame in 2004.

John Sieff

Sieff enjoyed a successful career in the tire industry for 45 years. He began his career as the general sales manager for S&M Tire, which was founded by Sieff's father, Philip Sieff, who was inducted into the Tire Industry Hall of Fame in 1988.

Throughout Sieff's career, he was always a strong supporter for the independent tire dealer and, particularly, private brand tires. The S&M Co. founded both the Remington and Star brand tires in the 1930's; in the 1970's, Sieff was a key leader in the formation of the Summit Tire and Battery Corp. He served as the president of Summit Tire from 1979-1992 and oversaw the brands' development into one of the top private label groups in the country.

As Summit Tire president, Sieff also was instrumental in the development of the business agreements with the private labels and Asian manufacturers. His relationship with the management at Ohtsu was legendary in private brand circles. This relationship turned out to be the precursor for the manufacturing trends of today.

Sieff also founded the Mr. Tire Service franchise and, later, the Mr. Tire Dealer Affiliate program. At the height of the program, Mr. Tire Service had six company-owned stores directed by Sieff and more than 85 dealer associates throughout the Upper Midwest run under the S&M Tire Co. umbrella.

Sieff has been involved in numerous charities over the years and strongly believes in his father's philosophy of "paying back" the community that has been so good to him. Just a few of the charities John Sieff's Family Foundation has supported and currently support include the Salvation Army, March of Dimes, the Little Sister's of the Poor, St. Joseph's Home for Children, the Shriner's Hospital and hundreds more.

The Hall of Fame inductions will take place on Nov. 1, 2005, in Las Vegas, Nev., prior to the opening of the SEMA Show and TIA's Performance Tires & Wheels trade show. The presentation will be held during TIA's Breakfast with the President, scheduled from 7 a.m. to 9 a.m. at the Caesar's Palace Hotel Roman Ballroom.

Tickets for the event are $35 and are available online at

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