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Associations decide one board is better than two

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The Chesapeake Automotive Business Association (CABA) and the WMDA Service Station and Auto Repair Association are merging.

On Dec. 16, 2010, the boards of directors of both associations announced they have completed their negotiations and will eventually consolidate their memberships, assets and staff.

(Members of the legacy associations will be asked to vote on the consolidation early next year if required by their bylaws and state law.)

 A 22-person board of directors has been named to oversee the combined organization. In addition, association officers will be led by:

Larry Jackson (Hickory Ridge Sunoco/Columbia, Md.), president, and

Bob Wilson (Edgewater Tire & Auto/Annapolis, Md.), vice president.

Rick Agoris (Brunswick Citgo/Brunswick, Md.), Doug Meekins (Brooks Huff Tire & Auto/Hunt Valley, Md.), Sajid Chaudhry (Landover Shell/Lanham, Md.) and Vernon Lyon (Mainline Automotive/Baltimore, Md.) round out the list of elected officers.

“Bringing our organizations together allows us to act as one strong voice in an ever-changing automotive industry,” says Jackson.

“With the challenges we face in the next decade, it is very important to the individual business owner to have the power of a larger organization. Without that support many of us would not be able to face these legislative and economic challenges."

Directors on the new WMDA-CABA Board include three independent tire dealers: Mike Kress (Marlboro Tire/Upper Marlboro, Md.), Ralph Schissler (Atlantic Tire/Baltimore) and Rob Wilson (Admiral Tire/Bowie, Md.).

The other directors are: Riaz Ahmad (Silver Hill BP/Suitland, Md.), Mario Bruno (Lake Liberty/Chevy Chase, Md.), Lynn Cook (Parker’s Exxon/Washington, D.C.), Bill Cropper (Salisbury Automotive/Salisbury, Md.), Frank Eberle (Eberle Automotive/Severn, Md.), Larry Frederickson (Lisbon Citgo/Lisbon, Md.), John Obradovic (Industry Consultant/Severna Park, Md.), Ken Quasney (Auto Sense/Millersville, Md.), JR Rosenberger (Aspen Hill Shell/Silver Spring, Md.), Mel Sherbert (Piney Orchard BP/Odenton, Md.), Bryan Smith (Standard Motor Products/Reisterstown, Md.), Dave Sutton (Standard Auto Parts/Baltimore) and Paul Warner (Uni-Select/Bowie, Md.).

“Our two groups have been considering this marriage for almost 12 years,” says Bob Wilson. “We now have a fresh opportunity to make a big impact on our local automotive aftermarket."

The WMDA-CABA officers have hired Skip Potter, CABA’s CEO, as interim executive director to help with the consolidation. Potter and the new board will consider a longer term role for him as the new organization unfolds.

“A strong, single advocate for our independent aftermarket small businesses in any local area is critical to the long-term success of a state trade association," says Potter.

More information about the new organization will be available as it develops on a temporary Web site: www.wmda-caba.org.

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