Margie van Lierop

Spotlight date: June, 2013 ASCCA | Margie van LieropMember of the month: Margie van Lierop Spotlight date: June, 2013 Margie van Lierop, VIKING Auto Care Corp., Irvine, CA In her own words: “My background is in media sales and marketing working for CBS or ABC affiliates for fifteen years. When I left the corporate world I started my entrepreneurial quests in small local advertising agencies and media consulting services which led me to a fun entrepreneurial adventure in starting a magazine titled “Beach Cities Style” which I founded, owned and published for 6-years in South Orange County. I sold that publication in 2008. I have also dabbled in the music business touring with Bruce Springsteen and the E-Street Band, Ringo Starr and His All-Star Band, White Zombie, Wynonna, Tim McGraw & Faith Hill. But this is another adventure for another time. Now, I am businesswoman who owns an automotive repair shop and am taking a cr ... read more

Denise Pina

Spotlight date: May, 2013 ASCCA | Denise PinaMember of the month: Denise Pina Spotlight date: May, 2013 Denise Pina, her husband Fred and mom, Virginia, Brea Auto Body In her own words: “Thank you for this honor from a great association with amazing members! I remember one day, when I was young, Dad said, “I want to start my own shop.” Things were really tight, so this was a big leap of faith. In 1979, my parents started Brea Auto Body, located in North Orange County, California. Brea Auto Body has grown to a state-of-the art collision repair and paint facility; a certified green shop, ASE Blue Seal, with all of the equipment, training and services of an A+ shop, recognized locally and nationally for community service. Consumers voted us Best Auto Body Shop in Orange County twice. Our key values include excellence in customer service, a commitment to giving back, and dedication to making our industry better. Brea Auto Body ... read more

Gene and Robin Morrill

Spotlight date: April, 2013 ASCCA | Gene and Robin MorrillMember of the month: Gene and Robin Morrill Spotlight date: April, 2013 Gene and Robin Morrill, Certified Automotive Specialists, Glendora, CA In his own words: “My wife Robin and I are the owners of Certified Automotive Specialists in Glendora. Our goal has always been to stay ahead of the changing automotive industry, have an awesome place to work and be profitable. Certified Automotive Specialists’ mission is to provide safe and reliable transportation for our customers by thoroughly inspecting each car we service. We’re committed to educating our customers so that they can make the best service and/or repair decisions possible. We also believe it’s our responsibility to be leaders in the automotive industry and to meet or exceed all industry standards. I’m a 28-year member of ASCCA, but didn’t attended meetings early on, much like many members today. Af ... read more

Cindy Brown

Spotlight date: March, 2013 ASCCA | Cindy BrownMember of the month: Cindy Brown Spotlight date: March, 2013 Cindy Brown, Connie & Dick’s Automotive Service, Claremont, CA   In her own words: “Scott, my husband and I have owned Connie & Dick’s Automotive Service Center, Inc. since 1996. My husband inspired me to become more involved in our business about 10 years ago. Almost 5 years ago he told me he had a wonderful opportunity to help take IATN (a second business) to new levels and I have been running Connie & Dick’s Automotive, Inc. since. Running our shop has been a huge learning curve for me. I had to step into some big shoes (Scott’s), so I re-branded our business as woman-owned-and-run and continued with great business training classes and attended trade shows with training. It’s been a wonderful experience, my customers love knowing I run the business and my employees have expressed v ... read more

Kris Cesena

Spotlight date: February, 2013 ASCCA | Kris CesenaMember of the month: Kris Cesena Spotlight date: February, 2013 Kris Cesena, Auto Medics, San Mateo, CA In her own words: “My inspiration to become involved in the automotive repair industry came in the summer between high school and college I got a job working as a bookkeeper at a service station. It was there that I met my future husband, Dan Cesena, who was working there as a technician. Three months later we moved in together and 3 years later we opened our own shop. Although I had a full-time job at the time, I would go to the shop after work and on weekends to help Dan with the marketing and general office type work. Dan had worked at many independent shops before working at the Honda Dealer and always wanted to have his own service facility. The popularity of Hondas in the eighties and people’s understanding of the importance of routine maintenance was the perfect formula to get ... read more

John Camara

Spotlight date: January, 2013 ASCCA | John CamaraMember of the month: John Camara Spotlight date: January, 2013 John Camara, Camara Auto Service, Inc., Tulare, CA In his own words: “I became inspired to get involved in automotive repair from always being curious as to how toys and other objects worked. When my personal objects would eventually break I would naturally try to fix them. When I entered high school I enrolled in auto shop classes and eventually an opportunity came along for me to work part time at a full service station assisting in the repairs. That began my automotive repair career. In 1972 the owner of the facility I grew to manage unfortunately experienced serious medical complications and he could no longer work full time and looked for a buyer to take over his business. At that time I decided this would be my opportunity to own my own repair shop. I then was able to start my own business on January 01, 1973. From the ver ... read more

Bob Toepp

Spotlight date: December, 2012 ASCCA | Bob ToeppMember of the month: Bob Toepp Spotlight date: December, 2012 Bob Toepp, Bill’s Auto Electric & Repair, Santa Clara, CA In his own words: “I was raised in the shop where my dad was part owner and I started working with him when I was 15years old. I wanted to learn what made the car tick. I always loved to take things apart, fix it and put them back together! It was June 1976 when I started working at Bill’s Auto Electric & Repair. It was the business that my dad (Bob Toepp ) started working at in 1958 and in 1971 he and a partner, Don Bordessa bought from the owner, Bill Siemsen. I worked my way up the ladder from mopping floors, cleaning parts to working on cars. I went through the automotive apprenticeship program, went to Santa Rosa Junior College and graduated with an AA degree in automotive in June 1981. I knew that the automotive business was in my blood. I worked alo ... read more

Dave Kemnitz

Spotlight date: November, 2012 ASCCA | Dave KemnitzMember of the month: Dave Kemnitz Spotlight date: November, 2012 Dave Kemnitz, D & H Enterprises, Concord, CA In his own words: At the age of 15 I worked for a guy who owned a race car. I became part of his pit crew and we ran it every Saturday night. It was during that period of time that I became hooked and subsequently enrolled in all of the auto shop classes in high school! I am sure that you have heard that my wife Mary likes fast cars and she was part of the same group that hung out at the speedway and ran powder puff. It wasn’t long until I caught her eye and the rest is history. I feel Like ASCCA brought us out of a cave, we knew how to fix cars, we had a good business plan, but building all of these ASCCA relationships is priceless, not to mention all of the discounted endorsed vendors that we have access to! ASCCA opened many doors and brought us to the next level of success ... read more

Art Ratner

Spotlight date: October, 2012 ASCCA | Art RatnerMember of the month: Art Ratner Spotlight date: October, 2012 Art Ratner, Art’s Automotive, Berkeley, CA In his own words: "I grew up at a time when the automotive culture was in full bloom. While I was an amateur mechanic I had several experiences with major repairs on vehicles that left me with such a feeling of accomplishment that I naturally was drawn to attending a college level automotive school and making a career in the field of automotive repair. I started the business 32 and 1/2 years ago by myself out of a rented apartment with four small garages in back. I impressed people (with money) with my hard work who backed me getting into a proper commercial location at year four. I got to buy one, then two and then three properties, side by side and expanded and hired until I reached 20,000 square feet of space and fourteen employees including nine technicians. ASCCA opened doors to ed ... read more

James Justus

Spotlight date: September, 2012 ASCCA | James JustusMember of the month: James Justus Spotlight date: September, 2012 James Justus, James Automotive, San Diego, CA James Justus of James Automotive in San Diego, California has been a four decade plus dedicated member of IGO / ASC / ASCCA since 1971. He gives back to his industry, this Association, his community & his Chapter. James currently serves on the Government Affairs Committee and has served on many committees with varying positions both within his local chapter and at the state level. Not only does James actively participate in the annual Legislative Day, Quarterly Team Weekends, attend annual conferences, he also regularly contacts his legislators on issues affecting the automotive industry, freely offers his experience-based advice to his colleagues and always offers an open ear to a colleague in need. James has been very instrumental and active with SB750 which he was assigned to trac ... read more
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