AIA Canada award winners announced

by | Mar 27, 2024 | 3 comments

The Automotive Industries Association of Canada (AIA Canada) has announced the recipients of the 2024 Distinguished Service Award and the Young Professionals in the Auto Care Sector (YPA) Young Leader of the Year Award. 

 AIA Canada Distinguished Service Award 

The AIA Canada Distinguished Service Award is the highest award presented by the Association to an individual member. It recognizes outstanding service and leadership that contributes to the growth and development of Canada’s automotive auto care industry. 

AIA Canada awarded the 2024 Distinguished Service Award to Bill Hay. 

Bill Hay, President, The E.R.I. Group

Bill’s automotive career began in Kitchener, Ontario working for BF Goodrich as an insider order desk selling industrial products and soon bridged over to the aftermarket sector in 1981. He quickly learned the ropes and throughout the years grew his career to C-Suite positions such as vice president for Dayco, regional vice president for Uni-Select, and president and COO of Best Buy Distributors Ltd. In May 2023, Bill retired but quickly returned to the industry in July 2023, accepting the role of President of The E.R.I Group, a Canadian based engine parts distribution business. 

Throughout his career, Bill has been involved with AIA Canada in a variety of roles, such as a Board member and a member of the Ontario Division, to name a few. Moreover, he has taught the aftermarket program at the Automotive Business School of Canada (ABSC) in Barrie and has dedicated his time to various charity events as a Board member, such as the Slapshots for a Cause and Shads R&R.  

Young Leader of the Year Award 

Each year, the Young Professionals in the Auto Care Sector Committee presents the Young leader of the Year award to an outstanding young leader in Canada’s auto care sector. This award recognizes leadership, innovation, and commitment to the industry. It is with great pleasure that we present the 2024 Young Leader of the Year Award to Patrick Verriet. 

Patrick Verriet, Business Development Manager – Canada, MANN+HUMMEL 

Due to his father’s 34-year long career with WIX Filters, Patrick Verriet has been familiar and knowledgeable about the auto care sector from a young age. With over 18 years of experience in leadership, sales, and customer service, Patrick is passionate about industry innovation and continuing his involvement in the auto care sector industry.  

Currently, he is a member of the Canadian Professional Sales Association, a Board member with the Automotive Materials Stewardship of Ontario, and is the Chair of AIA Canada’s Young Professionals in the Auto care sector (YPA) Committee after being a member since 2017. 

In March 2022, to commit to being a leader in the industry, Patrick earned his Automotive Aftermarket Professional Designation and graduated the Leadership 2.0 program, both through Northwood University in Michigan, United States.  

Outside of work, Patrick enjoys being outdoors, volunteering, and, being a 14-year veteran of the Canadian Armed Forces, mentoring Canada’s future leaders in the Canadian Cadet program. 

About the Automotive Industries Association of Canada

The Automotive Industries Association of Canada (AIA Canada) represents, supports and leads innovation in Canada’s $37.8 billion auto care sector. With thousands of members from coast to coast, our vision, research, training programs and advocacy supports Canada’s collision and mechanical sectors. Our best practices for the auto care industry help our members keep Canada’s fleet of almost 26.6 million vehicles on the road.

Whether you have been in a collision or require maintenance, our members help vehicles last longer, pollute less, and keep drivers safer by offering Canadians any product or service a vehicle may need after it rolls off the dealership’s lot.



  1. Rob Wagner

    Congratulations Bill ! Well deserved.

  2. Bob McPherson

    Congrats Bill on the well deserved recognition.

  3. Dov Lidor

    Congratulations Bill ! Well deserved.


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