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Debt of Gratitude

Instead of the usual warm temperatures of the desert, it took TANA’s annual OTR conference to heat things up with its biggest and best conference to date. Congratulations!

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Debt of Gratitude

Instead of the usual warm temperatures of the desert, it took TANA’s annual OTR conference to heat things up with its biggest and best conference to date. Congratulations!
This year’s agenda was packed with some great sessions. There was one devoted to selling tires and service to mines and another on tire tracking systems. Plus, there was a review of the results from TANA’s first OTR Benchmark Survey, and two informative panel discussions on the changing face of the OTR industry and a look at innovations in retreading and repairing.
One unexpected piece of news from the desert conference was the announcement that TANA’s Executive Vice President David Poisson has resigned and will leave the association entirely at the end of this month for a new post in private industry.
As many of you know, when he came on board with TANA, David walked into an association that was in terrible trouble in almost every imaginable way. Dwindling membership and limited interest. Stretched finances. And a trade show that, well, you know the story.
Working hand-in-hand with a group of dealers that truly believed in the benefits of a strong national organization, in just three and a half short years, David took the association and reworked it, renamed it, revitalized it, reshaped it and transformed it into a world-class organization. One every tire dealer should be proud to be part.
Under his direction, TANA positioned the International Tire Expo with SEMA which has now become the 13th largest association trade show in the world. TANA has launched new training programs, a new web site, added 40 new member benefit programs, improved association communication programs, instituted the new CarCareOne credit card program, balanced TANA’s budget, and found a new home for the association in Reston, Virginia.
During the conference, I had the chance to spend a little time with David and I asked him about his personal feelings about leaving this post. I could see that he clearly is going to miss the tire industry and an association he feels is now “the best trade association in Washington.” The ability of the staff he assembled gives him confidence that their efforts and dedication to excellence will continue to move this association and our industry forward.
In fact, the first hire David made was to bring on the talented and very capable Ross Kogel, who will hold the position of interim executive vice president while a search committee starts the long process of finding David’s replacement.
David believes the direction for TANA’s future lies in education and continued unification of our industry, as well as taking advantage of opportunities that will expand the scope of our industry. I firmly believe that David can rest assured that the staff he has left in place won’t stop marching forward toward accomplishing these objectives. 
I wish I could say that I’ve known him for many years and we had developed a long and great friendship.
Unfortunately, I’ve only known David for eight short months. But I have a greater appreciation for the tire industry because of a friend who was always willing to give of his time. And that I will miss. Thanks David!   
We will all miss him. And this entire industry owes a deep debt of gratitude for his untiring efforts, guidance, patience, concern, and belief.

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