Melina Algier of Farnsworth Chevrolet has been selected as the 2019 Grand Prize Winner. She was selected from a group of five category winners through an online, people's choice vote. In addition to the $1,000 tool voucher sponsored by Snap-on® she received for winning Rookie of the Year, Melina will also receive roundtrip airfare and hotel accommodations to Scottsdale, Arizona to enjoy Arizona Auto Week 2020 and be honored at the annual TechForce Foundation Summit.
Learn more about each of our five category winners below and learn more about why each was nominated. The category winners were selected out of hundreds of nominations by a panel of judges. All five category winners will receive a $1,000 tool voucher, sponsored by Snap-on.
Congratulations on your accomplishment to all of our 2019 Category Winners!
“Over his 30 years as a member of the Fullerton Ford team Michael has shown leadership and compassion. He is always there for anyone that needs guidance, and leads the team by example. For the past 20 years Michael is the main technician that trains all the new hires.
He is always willing to help and also willing to learn. No one is more fitting of the mentor awards then Michael Owens. "Mike Owens" and "mentor" go hand in hand…”
“Through Mike's guidance and training I was able to become a full time technician. He is always willing to stop what he is doing and help. Very professional, and easily the best teacher in our shop…”
“Michael mentored me and it turned into a friendship that is 25 years strong. I am now a Senior Master, diesel certified, and GT certified. He is a very positive influence. Michael has a calm way of helping new employees, and will always stop what he doing to help somebody else…”
"Melina joined the shop a year and a half ago, after she walked into my office and asked for a chance to learn. Melina is the first female technician in the dealership. She quickly graduated from maintenance work to a line technician. In 12 months she has completed over 70 GM certified courses and is now ready to start testing for ASE certifications.
Melina now trains new incoming students and interns... She simply gets along with everyone.
Melina has a tremendous work ethic, arrives on time every day, and is eager to listen and learn from senior technicians. On days with heavy snow, Melina is the first to work and helps clear snow from sidewalks and customers' cars.
Melina has broken a lot of stereotypes around the industry being only for men. She is a wonderful example of dedication and pursuing the career that you want, not the one others think you should have..."
“Chris has been employed at Burritt Chevrolet-Buick for 10 years. In that time he has risen to the top of the ranks. He holds the highest long-term production average of any employee, and will soon achieve World Class Technician (WCT) status.
Chris is fully invested in his career. He has worked the most days of any technician per calendar year, and attends six days per month of hands-on classes in addition to web-based training. Chris is very excited to complete the remainder of his ASE certifications and become a WCT.
Chris is an excellent mentor to our apprentice technicians. He is sparking a passion for production and education in the next generation. Chris has participated in EVERY employee volunteer day available, and is typically the one leading the charge. Whether he is wielding a paint brush, wrench or ratchet, Chris is a very compassionate person both in and out of work...”
"Samantha is the only female technician in our dealership. She started her career 13 years ago as a porter, and is now one of our lead technicians. She has a tireless attitude toward growing our younger technicians' knowledge and abilities. …She has eclipsed the barrier that female technicians often face in this industry and has earned the respect of her peers and co-workers through her outstanding work ethic and attitude.
Samantha has consistently worked to improve her technical skills. She is a Chassis Master and is working toward her goal of earning a Master Certification in the next 12 months. She mentors all new technicians, and has a dual role as a tech team leader and dispatcher.
She has volunteered to speak to promising female technicians about the opportunity for females in the automotive industry. Samantha prides herself on the success of those she has trained. She shares in her team’s success and failures, and puts the needs of the team in front of her own..."
"Jason doesn't just fix vehicles because it's his job, he does it because he knows people are relying on him. As a diesel tech, most of his clients rely on their vehicles for work and can't necessarily get a loaner or rental. Jason often stays late, comes in early and works through his lunch breaks to ensure customers vehicles are completed when they need to be.
When a customer could not afford their repairs, Jason talked to the dealership owner and arranged to repair the vehicle without being paid for his work as long as the dealership covered the parts cost. Jason even stayed late to complete the repair.
Jason is very efficient without taking short cuts. He will diagnosis a vehicle, order parts, and then start on another repair to ensure every customer gets their vehicle in a timely manner.
Jason works with the same level of respect for every customer and vehicle. He not only loves his work, he genuinely cares for his community..."