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SEMA Secretary/Treasurer Wade Kawasaki (left) with Patrick Judge, SEMA's 2008 Person of the Year.

SEMA named Patrick Judge, executive vice president of Keystone Automotive Operations Inc., Person of the Year and recognized his contributions toward enhancing the relationship between SEMA members and government legislators. Judge was presented with the award at the 2008 SEMA Show Industry Awards Banquet in Las Vegas.

Judge began his more than 37-year career in the automotive industry as a teenager working in a neighborhood auto parts store. He went on to manage a chain of retail Auto and Accessory stores, which ultimately led him to his current position at Keystone Automotive Operations.

It was Judge’s involvement in federal, state and local politics that enabled him to develop relationships with numerous individuals and organizations in Washington, D.C., that support SEMA’s legislation. Judge headed the SEMA Political Action Committee (PAC) from its inception before he was appointed by the Supreme Court of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania as a Court of Judicial Discipline judge. He raised more than $150,000 to assist legislators in their efforts to support SEMA issues.

Judge is currently serving his third term on the SEMA Board of Directors and serves as a member of the SEMA Retail (Education) Task Force. He is also a member of SEMA’s Automotive Restoration Market Organization (ARMO), Hot Rod Industry Alliance (HRIA), Light-Truck Accessory Alliance (TORA), Professional Restylers Organization (PRO), Sport Compact Council (SCC), Wheel & Tire Council (WTC) and has served on the SEMA Nominating Committee and the Jobber/Retail Task Force.

Created in 1969, the Person of the Year Award recognizes individuals for their distinguished service to the trade association and the specialty-equipment industry.