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Ratchet+Wrench Names New Online Columnists

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June 14, 2017—Ratchet+Wrench magazine announced Tuesday that it has added three top shop operators to its lineup of exclusive columnists. Renowned industry leaders Brian Sump, Rissy Sutherland and Aaron Stokes are the publication’s first three online columnists, dedicated to Ratchet+Wrench’s mission to help shop operators make money, save money and work smarter.

“Brian, Rissy and Aaron are three of the most respected and most progressive leaders in this industry, and we couldn’t be more excited to have them join our team,” Ratchet+Wrench editor Bryce Evans said. “All three have unique perspectives on business, operations and leadership, and are excited to offer their perspectives to our readers.”

Brian Sump is not your typical shop owner. A former professional athlete, Sump had never turned a wrench in a shop before starting Denver-based Avalon Motorsports in 2007. But in the years since, he has used his business acumen and a detailed, process-based management philosophy to grow the German-specialty shop into what a number of industry consultants consider to be one of the best repair facilities in the industry. In 2015, Sump opened Urban Autocare, his second facility in Denver, to cater to the general repair market and he now leads six different organizations. Sump has been recognized with multiple industry and business awards, and was the cover subject of Ratchet+Wrench’s premier issue in July 2012.

Rissy Sutherland is an auto care industry lifer, having grown up in her family’s automotive franchise business. She has done everything from changing oil and rebuilding transmissions to writing and implementing the training and operational systems for all 300 auto repair franchise locations for Moran Industries—the automotive giant that purchased her family’s shops. She is the COO, as well as a co-founder, board of directors member, brand ambassador and public speaker for Phoenix, Ariz.–based Honest-1 Auto Care, and is one of the industry’s foremost experts in shop operations.

A nearly 20-year veteran of the automotive repair industry, Aaron Stokes grew his business from a one-car garage to a six-shop operation that is widely regarded as one of the top repair businesses in the country. Stokes, the founder of Shop Fix Academy, is an operational guru with a unique business and leadership philosophy that has not only led his business to great heights but has also instilled a desire to pass along his practices to other operators. In addition to his repair shops, Stokes also owns a rental car agency and hosts a weekly radio show on auto repair.

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