By Ashley Reyes
This week’s SEMA Truck and Off-Road Alliance (TORA) Volunteer Spotlight features Rick Hermann of WeatherTech. As an experienced automotive aftermarket sales director, Hermann is active in giving back to TORA and the industry through his business skills, knowledge and continuous volunteer efforts within the council.
By serving as a previous select committee member, Hermann played a vital role in helping guide the council’s direction through the execution of valuable benefits and key initiatives.
Get to know what keeps Hermann in the industry in his Q&A with the SEMA Truck and Off-Road Alliance:
SEMA: What inspired you to pursue a career in the truck and off-road industry?
Rick Hermann: I was so lucky back in 1986 when Denny Elwell from Dee Zee gave me my life-changing opportunity. When I was going to college, I worked at a gas station and used to fill his tank. When I was getting ready to graduate from college, my dad told me I should go and interview with him to get some practice. I walked in to get some interview experience and walked out with a job.
SEMA: Why did you decide to volunteer for TORA? How has it or will it impact you?
RH: In the end, life is about giving back based on the blessings I have received for more than 30 years, and I felt it was important to find a way to do this. Luckily, I had met Ron Divencenzo who helped me get connected with the SEMA Light Truck Accessory Alliance (LTAA), and as they say, the rest is history. Networking is a vital part of our daily activities and has allowed a number of beneficial mutual opportunities.
SEMA: What advice do you have for someone pursuing a career in the automotive aftermarket?
RH: Network, network, network, and find people you like to help and mentor you. I found that while college can provide a foundation, the practical aspect of business is one that is profoundly learned in the field. I have had a number of mentors, friends and customers through my years who have truly helped me and the companies I have worked for.
SEMA: What is your dream truck or off-road vehicle? Where would we find you in it on any weekend?
RH: I currently drive a Raptor and that truck is truly awesome. It is higher than others, so being a 50-plus-year-old man, it allows for a more strenuous entry, but it is just a real classy ride.