Northwood University recently honored the senior vice president of commercial business operations for Niterra North America, Inc. during its annual Automotive Aftermarket Management Education Awards luncheon in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Formerly NGK Spark Plugs, Niterra is headquartered in Wixom, Michigan. It is a world leader in spark plug and sensor technology. Senior Vice President Brian B. Norko oversees all sales, product development, and marketing strategies for Niterra’s commercial business, including aftermarket, OEM, and OES channels. In addition, he has the same responsibilities as the regional director for Australia, Mexico, and Canada.
Before taking his current position in 2020, Norko was Niterra’s vice president of aftermarket. He led growth initiatives in brand marketing, product management, and category management functions, which expanded the sales leadership role responsibilities of the vice president of sales, which were established when he joined the organization in 2016.
Before joining Niterra, Norko worked with the Federal-Mogul Corporation. His career in the aftermarket industry spans nearly 35 years, and he is involved in several councils and committees, including the Automotive Sales Council. He previously served on the Aftermarket Warehouse Distributors Association’s Manufacture Advisory Council.
For his dedication to the aftermarket industry, Northwood University was pleased to name Norko among this year’s class of Automotive Aftermarket Management Education Award honorees.
“We appreciate our university’s special relationship with the aftermarket industry,” said President Kent MacDonald during the luncheon. “The future is bright for Northwood students, as we have implemented a strategic plan for growth in all programs with a focus on automotive and the automotive aftermarket. We are exceedingly grateful for industry leaders who continue to support and shape our students through internships and experiential learning.”
Since 1975, Northwood has honored aftermarket leaders for their significant efforts to further the cause of education for business and society. The Automotive Aftermarket Management Education Award honorees, past and present, comprise a “who’s who” of this industry.
This year’s other honorees include:
Randy Buller, CEO, Parts Authority, New Hyde Park, New York
Michael C. Buzzard, of Dallas, Texas, managing partner, Schwartz Advisors (headquartered in La Jolla, California)
Arthur “Bo” Fisher III, CEO/owner, Fisher Auto Parts, Staunton, Virginia
Dr. Donald R. James, CEO, Solero Technologies, Rochester Hills, Michigan
Aaron M. Shaffer, director of marketing services, Standard Motor Products, Long Island City, New York.
Chris Williams, president and CEO, NA Williams, Atlanta, Georgia
The Automotive Aftermarket Management Awards were developed in partnership with the Auto Care Association, Aftermarket Warehouse Distributors Association, Motor & Equipment Manufacturer’s Association and Northwood University. The awards luncheon was held during the Automotive Aftermarket Products Expo (AAPEX) in Las Vegas, Nevada. AAPEX is one of the leading international meetings for the global automotive aftermarket industry.
Northwood students enrolled in the Automotive Aftermarket Management program — which is the only four-year degree program of its kind in the nation — presented the awards to the honorees.
“We are grateful for the opportunity to gather today to recognize and celebrate the successes of these professionals who are being honored by Northwood University for making a difference in the lives of many in their communities and in the aftermarket industry,” stated Northwood student Owen Hayes, of Whitehall, Michigan.