Industry News

Roy Littlefield and Martin Barry Elected to Tire Industry Hall Fame

The Tire Industry Association’s (TIA) Hall of Fame Committee has selected two new inductees for the Tire Industry Hall of Fame: TIA CEO Roy Littlefield III and the late Martin J. Barry, a former president of the National Tire Dealers Association, who will enter in the historic category.

The committee also named Monte Niemi, CEO of First State Tire Recycling, Isanti, Minn., as the winner of the 2021 Ed Wagner Leadership Award and selected Miles D. Moore, retired senior Washington reporter for trade publications Rubber & Plastics News and Tire Business, as the recipient of the Friend of the Industry Award.

The Hall of Fame Award is the tire industry’s highest honor. It recognizes individuals who have contributed greatly to the growth and development of the tire industry or have demonstrated high standards, ideals and leadership in the management of their businesses and in the tire community and have achieved goals and success that distinguish them from others.
The Ed Wagner Leadership Award is presented to individuals or companies that demonstrate leadership or innovation in products and services that foster and promote the tire, retreading and/or tire recycling industries.

TIA’s Friend of the Industry Award recognizes well-known individuals who are allies and proven supporters of the tire industry.

“We are pleased to honor these exceptional individuals entering the Tire Industry Hall of Fame and receiving the Ed Wagner Leadership and Friend of the Industry awards,” said Mason Hess, incoming TIA president. “On behalf of the Association, we extend our congratulations and are honored to recognize these amazing individuals who have proven themselves as key industry influencers.”

TIA will recognize the honorees at the Tire Industry Honors Awards Luncheon on Monday, Nov. 1, 2021, from 11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. at The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas hotel & casino, prior to the start of the Global Tire Expo/SEMA Show Nov. 2-5 in Las Vegas. This is a complimentary ticketed event, but advanced RSVP is required.

2021 Hall of Fame Honorees

Roy Littlefield III – CEO of the Tire Industry Association

Roy Littlefield has worked for the Tire Industry Association and its predecessor associations for 42 years, including the past 18 years as CEO/executive vice president. He joined the former National Tire Dealers & Retreaders Association (NTDRA) in 1979 as director of government affairs. He held that same position at the American Retreaders Association (ARA)/International Tire & Rubber Association (ITRA) from 1984-2000. From 2000-2002 he served as director of government affairs for the Tire Association of North America (TANA) and was named TIA’s top executive in 2003. He has the second-longest tenure as CEO/executive vice president in the Association’s 100-plus year history. As CEO, Littlefield stabilized and grew the Association. Membership stands at an all-time high of more than 13,000, from 2,700 when he took over, and the Association’s finances are the strongest in its history. As the Association’s first full-time government affairs director, Littlefield initiated periodic Lobby Days in Washington, D.C., grew the Association’s political action committee and expanded its legislative influence at the federal, state and local levels for the benefit of TIA members and the tire industry. Under his watch, TIA expanded its tire technician training programs to cover all tire types and saw the number of TIA trained techs grow to more than 200,000.

Martin J. Barry – three-term president of the National Tire Dealers Association (deceased)

One of only three, three-term presidents in the Association’s history, Martin J. Barry played a pivotal role in helping the organization survive and evolve in its early years, guiding it through two evolutionary name changes, the Great Depression and World War II. He was elected National Tire Dealers’ Association (NTDA) president in 1931, 1932 and 1933. Those years were particularly important in the annals of Association history, because the NTDA already was suffering financially when the Great Depression hit in August 1929. Barry made sure the Association remained focused on independent dealers and fought to hold it together. He championed a new retail code of ethics for both tire and battery distribution and helped organize the “Code Convention” in 1934, along with Code Authority Chairman Norwal P. Trimborn. Barry was president of the Association longer than anyone else. With no convention planned for 1933, Barry remained president for the first five months of 1934. He held the title long enough to lead the Association back to independence – financial relations with the Rubber Manufacturers Association ceased at the end of 1933 and tire factory-affiliated dealers were eventually ousted from the Association. On June 13, 1934, Barry returned to being a director of the NTDA, which changed its name to the National Tire and Battery Association. But his impact on the Association didn’t end there. He remained a director through 1945 and helped guide the Association during World War II and rubber rationing. He was not only a director in 1945, but also a member of the Executive Committee and chairman of the Surplus Property Committee for the renamed National Association of Independent Tire Dealers. Prior to becoming president in 1931, Barry served as an Association director from 1926 through 1929, and the first vice president in 1930.

Barry formed his namesake Hood tire dealership in Baltimore, Md., in 1918. He added automotive service to the mix in 1928, becoming a “one stop” automotive shop. Ever evolving, the operation morphed into a Lincoln-Mercury distributorship in 1955. It was still in operation at the time of his death at the age of 65 in 1955.

2021 Ed Wagner Leadership Award Honoree

Monte Niemi – CEO, First State Tire Recycling

Monte Niemi is a leader in developing markets for tire-derived aggregate (TDA), which has many civil engineering applications. He was instrumental in creating the market, formulating material specifications and working with civil engineers on various projects leading to construction design specifications. His work with ASTM committees in creating standards has assisted in expanding the markets for this recycled material. Millions of pounds of scrap tire material have been recycled into TDA through Niemi’s efforts. He also shares his expertise with others in the industry through conference presentations, industry committees and public works meetings. Niemi is a member of TIA’s Environmental Advisory Council and was responsible for developing the TDA definitions and information found in the EAC Glossary. Through Niemi’s leadership and efforts, the use of TDA is spreading throughout the tire industry.

2021 Friend of the Industry Award Honoree

Miles D. Moore – Senior Washington Reporter (retired), Rubber & Plastics News and Tire Business

From 1977 to 2020, Miles Moore was a reporter for Rubber & Plastics News and Tire Business, both published by Crain Communications Inc. During most of that time, he was Washington reporter for both trade newspapers, covering legislation, regulations and court cases of vital interest to the tire industry. He also reported on other issues crucial to tire dealers, retreaders and manufacturers, including tire recycling, natural rubber, alternative sources of rubber, such as dandelions and guayule, and automotive service. He enjoyed the respect of his readers and his peers; was known for speed, accuracy and fairness in his reporting; and when he misreported something, he admitted it and corrected his error.

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