Fred Bunting Honored with AWDA Lifetime Achievement Award

Sunday, October 29, 2023 – Las Vegas, NV

The Automotive Warehouse Distributors Association (AWDA), a community of the Auto Care Association, presented its 2023 Lifetime Achievement Award to Fred Bunting, Auto-Wares Group of Companies.

AWDA’s Lifetime Achievement Award recognizes individuals who have, over the course of many years, distinguished themselves through their unselfish commitment to, and high level of performance within, the motor vehicle aftermarket industry. The award is named in honor of former AWDA President, Martin Fromm.

Fred is third generation auto parts person and started working in the family automotive aftermarket business at age 15. He learned every job in the family aftermarket warehouse distributor business in Detroit, Michigan. The family business was sold in 1967 while he was in college.

In 1976 founded Auto-Wares Group of Companies headquartered in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Grew the business to 8 distribution centers, 350 independent jobbers ‘customers, 200+ company owned retail/wholesale auto parts stores and 9 Specialty Companies doing business in Michigan, Indiana, Ohio, Illinois, and Wisconsin. Auto-Ware’s services daily 450+ auto parts stores and 36,000+ wholesale accounts. Auto-Wares has 300+ Auto Value/Bumper to Bumper member stores, 650+ Auto Value/Bumper to Bumper Certified Service Centers. Employs 2,200+ top notch service oriented professional people and over the years created jobs for 15,000+ people who have worked at some time for Auto-Wares Group of Companies. Annual sales grew to $365 million.

Auto-Wares sponsors Tech Expos Training for 20+ years has resulted in filling 60,000 technician training seats. Organizing local Regional training events in 5 states as resulted in 15,000+ more training seats filled. Auto-Wares has won national awards like Head of the Class for training their own employees.

Honored Personal Awards

  • Northwood Automotive Aftermarket Education
  • Auto Value Man of the Year
  • Art Fisher Scholarship (technician training)
  • Mort Schwartz Excellence in Education (2 times)
  • MAAP degree (Master Automotive Aftermarket Professional)
  • Jack Creamer AWDA Automotive Aftermarket Leader of the Year 2016
  • Michigan Auto Parts Association Lifetime Achievement Award 2018
  • Northwood College Outstanding Business leader 2023
  • AWDA Martin Formm Lifetime Achievement Award 2023

Mr. Bunting has been a member of Alliance Auto Value/Bumper to Bumper national group for 40+ years and BOD director for 36 years. He served on the AWDA Board of Governors and a member of AWDA for 49 years. Proud member of the Michigan jobber association MAPA for 40+ years. A personal philosophy of Fred’s is to treat customers, employees, and vendors all like friends. Stay aggressive and build for the long term.  Enjoys a strong personal relationship with his customers and employees. Fred spends a lot of time every year visiting and meeting with jobbers and technicians.He has always believed it happens on the streets and it is especially important to stay Street Smart!   

Comments 2
  1. Congratulations Fred, Truly a well deserved award for the tremendous contributions that you have made to the industry that you love so much.

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