John Cochrane, a pivotal figure in bringing the Right to Repair issue to light and a former Jobber News Jobber of the Year, has been presented with the Automotive Industries Association of Canada’s prestigious Distinguished Service Award for 2010.
The Distinguished Service Award is the highest award presented by the association.
Cochrane, the owner and president of Cochrane Automotive in Toronto, Ont., was presented with the award during the AIA Aftermarket Conference for Executives in Montreal, Que.
John Cochrane’s personal contributions to the growth of the aftermarket industry in Canada are well known. Of particular note among his many activities are his efforts surrounding the Right to Repair issue. His experience and knowledge on the topic have been instrumental to the Canadian aftermarket industry.
“John is a true leader and through his tireless efforts that included many presentations across the country to both industry and government, he helped mobilize our industry to ensure that automotive technicians and collision repairers have access to the information they need to properly service and repair Canada’s automotive fleet, ” said John Watt, AIA past chair, during the presentation.
In his acceptance speech, Cochrane thanked his wife and business partner Leah for her support, his late father Frank for teaching him the business, and his daughter Ashley for understanding when industry business took him away from home.
“The staff at Cochrane Automotive, namely Raye Brown, Peggy Li, Larry Gass, and Gennaro Scamperti, have been with me for over 20 years. Without their support I would not have been able to volunteer as much time and energy to the AIA and the aftermarket industry it represents. I am also indebted to all of my staff for their continual support and hard work, especially in these tough economic times,” Cochrane added.
Cochrane also urged the aftermarket to ramp up cooperative efforts on vehicle inspections.
“Another issue that the aftermarket and vehicle manufacturers need to collaborate on is to lobby the government in every province to implement mandatory vehicle safety inspections to be performed yearly, tied around license renewal. The reason why it is more important now than ever before is because the vehicles that are being manufactured now have much longer service intervals, and may not see a service provider for 12 to 18 months for scheduled maintenance. This is a lot of time for a vehicle to be on the road with no safety inspection.”
In addition to being the recipient of the Distinguished Service Award, in 2003 he received the E.J. & A.E. Wadham Memorial Award, better known as the Jobber News Jobber of the Year Award.
While his Cochrane Automotive jobber business is well known, his roots in the service business are also strong.
Since 1972 Cochrane has operated a large and successful automotive service repair facility, today specializing in high-tech electronics and computer diagnostics.
As a Class “A” automotive technician licensed since 1967, Cochrane is a firm believer in continual training to keep up to date in all areas of auto repair.
Several years ago, John opened Cochrane Training Services to focus on retraining and updating licensed automotive technicians on the latest technology.
In addition to his own training, he has been an instructor for the ACDelco division of General Motors, specializing in high-tech electronics and computer diagnostics.
He was also instrumental in bringing Lindertech training to Canada.
John Cochrane was the chairman of the AIA board of directors in 2006-2007, and is currently an active member on several other boards, including the ACDelco Advisory Board, the CAA/AARS Advisory Council, and the National Automotive Service Task Force.
Today, he also continues to serve on the AIA Government Relations Committee and the Automotive Service Providers Association Council.
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