Jim Chick, 2011-2013 Board of Directors Nominee

2011-2013 SEMA Board of Directors Nominee, Jim ChickAs a lifelong enthusiast and career automotive guy, I’m in a place today where available time, desirable experience and passion to give back to the association have converged.

Providing SEMA meaningful direction on behalf of thousands of small-business interests would be a high honor. My emphasis will be on two fronts: 1) Helping SEMA connect and align small business with its services. 2) Helping continue SEMA’s outstanding federal and state efforts to keep open land open and invasive restrictions on vehicles at bay.

I began as a counter grunt and warehouse worker at Dar-Van. Then, I worked at Phoenix retailers Giant Off Road and Fly-N-Hi, where I was GM.

In 1987, I went to work at Mr. Gasket, as vice president for the off-road division. In the early ’90s, I moved to Ohio to work as vice president for Mickey Thompson Performance Tires & Wheels. In 1992, I rejoined Mr. Gasket in Cleveland as marketing director. In early 1996, I became president of TrailMaster Suspension, which was acquired by and eventually sold by Lund in 2002. Next was MasterCraft Safety, where I served as president. Since 2007, I have been sales and marketing director for Bestop’s aftermarket business.

Working for Mr. Gasket was a formative experience with great early mentors—Joe Hrudka, Steve Bloom, Gary Biggs and Craig Manchen—along with many other excellent co-workers, manufacturers’ representatives, suppliers and customers.

At TrailMaster, I oversaw doubling of business and quadrupling of earnings, where I gained experience with P&L, payroll, finance, supply chain, investment, mergers and acquisitions.

I positioned MasterCraft for fast growth by establishing finance alternatives; dove into new channels and expanded OEM military sales; created and executed marketing plans; and altered operations to meet demand for aftermarket and OEM products.

I have been the contact at LTAA, MPMC, ORBA, AUSA and the Off Road Motorsports Hall of Fame. I also served with SEMA companies on the SEMA/SAE Aftermarket Systems and Suspension Group.  

Thanks to my father, I have been a lifelong enthusiast, along with thousands of miles Jeeping in the ’60s and ’70s. I enjoyed a semi-successful decade or so off-road racing during and following college. Raising a family of three won out over speed and sponsors. 

 

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