The Electronics Representatives Association (ERA) has announced that Dan Parks, CPMR, owner of West Electronic Solutions, Inc., of Costa Mesa, Cal., is the 11th recipient of the Ray Hall Spirit of ERA Award. Parks has served as an ERA national officer since 2011, is the association's current president and was instrumental in the hiring of ERA's current CEO, Walter Tobin, in 2015
In addition to his national leadership roles, Parks has held many offices in ERA's Southern California Chapter and has been active in ERA throughout his 32-year career. He has also helped establish and has led a number of rep councils for various manufacturers.
The Ray Hall Spirit of ERA Award was established in 2004 to honor the now-retired CEO who had served ERA for more than 40 years. Hall asked that the award recognize individuals who exemplify the spirit of ERA through their commitment to serving and advancing the professional field sales (manufacturers' representative) function.
Parks was nominated for the award by Mark Hahn on behalf of Southern California ERA. Hahn referred to Parks as an "evangelist" for ERA, "at the forefront of furthering the representative cause in the electronics industry." He added: "Dan has always held integrity above all else ... he has always ensured he conducted his business and himself beyond reproach ... [while exemplifying] significant and profound care for his fellow man. On many occasions, I have witnessed Dan assisting a distributor partner in franchising a new supplier, assisting a fellow manufacturer's representative company in acquiring a new principal ... even going so far as to share interviewing and on-boarding strategies, and [he is] always willing to assist people looking for employment opportunities."
When notified of the award, Parks was somewhat overwhelmed, commenting, "It never occurred to me that I would even be considered for this award. I'm shocked and very humbled. I'm also deeply grateful to my fellow members on the ERA Executive Committee and to all the rep volunteers I've served with over the years in the Southern California chapter. Our association runs on the fuel of volunteerism, and I'm proud to be a part of that team."
The Ray Hall Spirit of ERA Award will be presented at the association's 48th Management and Marketing Conference, running Feb. 22 - 28, 2017, at the AT&T Conference Center in Austin, Tex. As the award recipient, Parks receives a full conference attendance package covering his airfare, registration fee and hotel costs.
The 10 previous recipients of the award, who served as judges of this year's entries, are:
Tom Shanahan, ERA's retired CEO (2015)
Bob Evans, CPMR, EK Micro, Rolling Meadows, Ill. (2014)
Bob Walsh, CPMR, Coakley, Boyd and Abbett, Inc., Framingham, Mass. (2013);
Bill Herold, Conquest Technical Sales, Thousand Oaks, Cal. (2012);
Carol Cohen, CC Electro Sales, Inc., Indianapolis, Ind. (2011);
Kathie Cahill, CPMR, of Net Sales Company, Victor, N.Y. (2009);
Paul Nielsen, CPMR, of Brainard-Nielsen Marketing, Elk Grove Village, Ill. (2008);
Bruce Scoggin, CPMR, of Electro-Rep Associates, Charlotte, N.C. (2007);
Mark Conley of O'Donnell Associates North, San Jose, Cal. (2006); and
Mark Motsinger, CPMR, of Wallace Electronic Sales, Kernersville, N.C. (2005)
The 82-year-old Electronics Representatives Association (ERA) is the international trade organization for professional field sales companies in the global electronics industries, manufacturers who go to market through representative firms and global distributors. It is the mission of ERA to support the professional field sales function through programs and activities that educate, inform and advocate for manufacturers' representatives, the principals they represent and the distributors who are reps' partners in local territories. ERA member representative firms (often called "reps") provide field sales services on an exclusive basis to manufacturers of related (but non-competing) products in a defined territory. For more information about ERA, visit era.org.