The annual “Race to the Holidays” Children’s Christmas Party at Sonoma Raceway has drawn more than 3,300 children since its inception in 2005.Selwyn Joffe (left), of Motorcar Parts of America, poses with CAWA’s Rodney Pierini and the new “Motorcar Parts of America - Selwyn Joffe” award.Scott Spanbauer, of SpeeDee Oil Change & Auto Service in Modesto, is an ASE Master Automobile Technician of the Year.Grant Takikawa, of Dick’s Automotive in Clovis, is the ASCCA member of the month for December 2018.USA Automotive Supply’s Steve Sharp introduced SMR to LIQUI MOLY USA, which will now be a 2019 sponsor for the team.

Northern California People & Places - January 2019


The California state minimum wage will increase on Jan. 1, to $11 per hour for employers with 25 or fewer employees and to $12 per hour for employers with 26 or more employees.

More than 300 Sonoma Valley children enjoyed a festive day at Sonoma Raceway on Saturday at the 14th annual “Race to the Holidays” Children’s Christmas Party. The raceway teamed up with the Sonoma chapter of Speedway Children’s Charities (SCC) to host the children and their families at the event, which featured a race-car display, balloon animals, face painting and a visit from Santa Claus, who arrived via Schell-Vista Fire Protection District fire truck. The event, which has drawn more than 3,300 children since its inception in 2005, culminated with Santa Claus presenting each child with a full bag of toys and a stuffed animal.

CAWA was awarded a $25,000 grant from the University of the Aftermarket Foundation to implement an automotive high school teachers scholarship program in 2019. According to CAWA’s President & CEO Rodney Pierini, “the program would consider financial assistance, accreditation support, access to automotive products for classroom use and access to industry training for the teachers. This grant will allow CAWA the resources to establish the program and serve as a model for others to implement because we believe it’s a first in the country to provide this type of support for our high school automotive teachers.” The CAWA Board of Director’s named the scholarship program the “Motorcar Parts of America - Selwyn Joffe” award as a tribute to their underwriting of CAWA's annual dinner meeting the past several years.

Scott Spanbauer, of SpeeDee Oil Change & Auto Service in Modesto, is a ASE Master Automobile Technician of the Year. He was one of 52 automotive professionals recognized in November at the Fall Board of Governors meeting of ASE. The annual awards banquet spotlights top scorers on the ASE Certification Tests. Forty-one companies from both OEM and Aftermarket segments sponsored the individual technician recognition awards in the Auto, Truck, Collision, Parts and Service categories, along with awards for automotive instructors. In addition to looking for top scores on ASE tests, award sponsors examine on-the-job excellence, community service and other factors when selecting honorees.

The ASCCA Membership Committee announced that Grant Takikawa of Dick’s Automotive in Clovis is its ASCCA member of the month for December 2018. Takikawa took over Dick’s Automotive, now a domestic and foreign auto repair shop, in 1993 and shortly after got involved in his local Chapter 25. Reflecting on those early days, Grant said, “Being a part of Chapter 25 in my early years allowed me to be in the room with the who’s-who of my local area, and the shop owners in my chapter accepted me with open arms and treated me with respect right out of the gate.”

LIQUI MOLY USA has announced the sponsorship of Stevens-Miller Racing (SMR) for the 2019 TA2 season. The agreement is for LIQUI MOLY branding of one team car as well as one of the SMR team transporters. SMR will use LIQUI MOLY lubricants and additives exclusively in their TA2 cars in The Trans Am Presented by Pirelli 2019 season. “Last season we were introduced to the LIQUI MOLY product range by USA Automotive Supply’s Steve Sharp [located in Hayward, Calif.], and our drivetrain has never looked better. Now we use LIQUI MOLY products in everything, including in our transporters and personal vehicles.

Parts & People

Parts & People is published monthly by Automotive Counseling and Publishing Company, Inc., a Colorado corporation, P.O. Box 18731 Denver, CO 80203, 303-765-4664. President-Lance Buchner. Founded by Lance Buchner and Dave Lucia.