Alfred L. Gaspar defined his role as a leader in the automotive aftermarket industry through 40 years of service.
A graduate of San Jose State College, Gaspar launched his career with a 14-year stint in San Francisco at Standard Oil Corporation. Other assignments led him to employment with Exxon Corp., Wynn Oil Co., Bardahl Manufacturing Corp. and McKay Chemical Co.
In 1994, Gaspar was appointed President & CEO of the Automotive Parts and Accessories Association (APAA). In 1999, he orchestrated the merger of APAA with the Automotive Service Industry Association (ASIA) to form the Automotive Aftermarket Industry Association, which he proceeded to lead until his retirement in 2004.
During this long tenure representing the automotive parts and accessories sector, Gaspar championed the growing marketing and sales opportunities with China in joint ventures and technology exchanges. In 1997 “The Auto Channel” magazine quoted Gaspar as stating, “China’s priority plan for developing its components industry makes the mission especially timely for American OE/aftermarket suppliers.”
He also led the Association’s battles with the original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) over, “The Motor Vehicle Owners’ Right to Repair” legislation, 2001 HR 2735. This bill mandated that the Federal Trade Commission issue rules requiring car companies to make available all tools and information necessary to service today’s sophisticated vehicle systems. The bill was reintroduced in 2003 and 2005. No provisions were adopted until the Massachusetts legislature engaged Right to Repaid Bill H. 4362 in 2012 and a binding ballot initiative presented to voters later in the year, passed with 86 percent support.
Gaspar was widely applauded for leading the ambitious $5 million Aftermarket Education Center at Northwood University in Midland, MI. He also championed and raised funds from his member companies to research the viability of consumer education to capture a share of $70 billion in unperformed vehicle maintenance. This work resulted in the development of a national consumer education campaign.