Archive for the ‘Competition’ Category

Two years after finishing fifth, Brandon Rene left Safelite’s Best of Belron with a championship.

[Pictured: Brandon Rene accepts the technician competition trophy and winnings at last evening’s awards gala.]

The Salt Lake City technician edged out Mike Stakes of Phoenix for first place, a $10,000 check and a trip to the International Best of Belron competition in Barcelona, Spain in May.

[Pictured: First place technician Brandon Rene and runner-up Mike Stakes pose with their trophies.]

“I can honestly say that any of these guys could have won and done a great job representing Safelite® in Barcelona,” Rene said. “I just got lucky. I’m kind of sad that it’s over because I’ve become friends with all 11 of these guys.”

Stakes received $5,000 for his runner-up finish.

In the CSR competitions, Angie Miller of Columbus, Ohio took first in the Referral competition, Wendy Powers of Columbus, Ohio was first in Sales and Amanda Kerley of St. Louis was first in the Field. Each received $2,500 in prize money.

[Pictured: Safelite president and CEO Tom Feeney and VP of National Contact Center Brian O’Mara pose with CSR winners Wendy Powers, Amanda Kerley and Angie Miller.]

Watch a wrap-up video of the entire Safelite Best of Belron event and hear from the winners on our Facebook page. Photos are also posted on Safelite’s Flickr account.


The technician finalists for Safelite’s Best of Belron competition will soon be in New Orleans and facing off for the title of best technician nationwide.

Meet six of the 12 competitors who will be trying to prove their skills Wednesday:

Pascal Barone

Mid South Division Champion
New Orleans

Pascal Barone is excited for his fellow competitors to get a taste of life in his hometown of New Orleans.

“I plan on showing the competitors a good time,” he said. “I’m excited to meet everyone and welcome them to the area.”

Technician manager Allen Mayer has served as Barone’s trainer throughout the competitive process. Mayer said Pascal is a very self-motivated technician.

“He comes to us and asks what he can do to help out market get better and expand his knowledge about the business,” Mayer said. “His future with us looks very bright.”

Aaron Bowden
Pacific Division Champion
San Francisco

After receiving an honorable mention at the 2010 Safelite’s Best of Belron, Aaron Bowden returns this year with an eye on the title.

Bowden has more than a decade of experience as a Safelite technician and thinks his previous competition experience set his personal bar even higher. While he may or may not perform better than at his previous competition, he feels the need to prove himself.

“It’s less pressure and a lot of pressure at the same time,” he said. “It’s a weird position to be in. I personally feel better about the competition aspect, having done it before but I feel there is more pressure on me to win than last year. People are expecting me to win.”

Brad Dedmon
Southern Cal Division Champion
Bakersfield, Calif.

While training for the competition, Brad Dedmon worked with Aaron Thrasher, a technician manager from the San Diego market. Thrasher praised Dedmon’s skill level.

“I had the opportunity to spend some time with (Dedmon) in preparation for the national competition,” Thrasher said. “I have been in the industry for over 23 years and feel that as a tech manager I would be thrilled to have him in my market.”

Thrasher said Dedmon sets a great example for the other technicians in his work ethic and willingness to share his knowledge and experience.

Todd Dull
Rockies Division Champion
Fort Collins, Colo.

Earlier this year, competing in New Orleans at Safelite’s Best of Belron competition was the furthest thing from Todd Dull’s mind.

“I was having severe headaches that eventually turned into back and neck pain that was impacting my job performance,” Dull said. “I went and saw a doctor and next thing I know – brain surgery.”

When Dull returned to work, he hadn’t put much thought into entering Safelite’s Best of Belron® competition, but his managers hoped he would still be interested.

“I’m glad I entered,” he said. “it’s been an awesome experience so far and it’s giving me a lot to look forward to. I really did want to see if I had what it takes. Apparently I do. It’s been a crazy year.”

Adam Guetzkow
Midwest Division Champion
Minneapolis, Minn.

Store manager Ambrose Moser thinks Adam Guetzkow’s system and speedy work rate will help him succeed at the competition.

“I think Adam will win the national competition if he continues to refine his installation skills,” Moser said. “He has a great system and is highly energetic. His speed may create a lot of pressure for the other technicians.“
Adam said after his win at the division level, he’s prepared for the small details that can be the difference between winning and losing. During the divisional, judges intentionally gave him the incorrect work order to see how he would handle the situation.

“It is things like that, that I have to keep an eye out for,” he said. “That is the type of thing you take for granted in your day-to-day job. You just assume it is right.”

Moser added that Adam’s personality will also give him an advantage in the competition, “His ability to improvise makes him a great tech. He never feels defeated and thrives on taking on challenging jobs.”

Josh Henry
North Atlantic Division Champion
Middletown, N.Y.

Josh Henry joined Safelite two years ago after working for a computer company. While the competition will be tough in New Orleans, he says that winning the North Atlantic was a boost of confidence.

“I was going up against legitimate veterans of this trade,” he said. “I’ve only been doing this for two years. But then I would catch a glimpse at someone making a mistake on a part that I already finished and I kept feeling better.”

Mike Napoli, Monroe, N.Y. store manager, said Josh’s determination reflects the Hudson Valley market’s drive for success. “We wish him the best of luck and have total confidence in his performance at the next competition.”

The final set of three customer service representatives who will make an appearance at Safelite’s Best of Belron national competition work in the referral division within the company. As the profiles below demonstrate, a common theme with all of these CSR competitors seems to be genuine enjoyment talking to our customers from all over the country and going above and beyond to delight. Good luck on Wednesday to all of our customer service representatives, including the sales central and field services representative divisions

Lori Kelly
Referral CSR
Cedar Rapids, Ia.

Lori Kelly has more than 25 years customer service experience and transitioned to Safelite after working for the Auto Glass Service Center and is now familiar with reporting all kinds of insurance claims. She has five children and three grandchildren.

Angie Miller
Referral CSR
13 years’ experience
Columbus, Ohio

Angie Miller was happy to be included among the three referral CSRs who reached Safelite’s Best of Belronnational competition in New Orleans.

“It’s just exciting to be acknowledged in this way,” Miller said. “I think my experience and account knowledge was a big difference. I work as part of the Help Desk, so I’m supposed to know how to handle all these different situations.”
Miller reaching the finals wasn’t a surprise to Contact Center operations manager Tisha Bivens.
“Angie always goes the extra mile to make sure the customer is taken care of,” Bivens said. “She strives for extraordinary results and customer delight every day.”


Lana Whittridge
Referral CSR
11 years’ experience
Columbus, Ohio

The ‘golden rule’ is a staple in the service industry because those who serve customers are customers themselves.
“I try really hard to treat everyone the way I would want to be treated and it seems to have worked,” Lana Whittridge said. “I just try to be in their shoes when I’m talking to them so I know how they feel.”
Whittridge’s method must be successful. The referral CSR will travel to New Orleans to compete to be the best sales CSR in the company at Safelite’s Best of Belron.Whittridge, who has lived in Columbus for more than 40 years, said she was in shock because she works with so many great people.

“It’s a privilege to go because there are so many outstanding CSRs surrounding me at work,” she said. “It’s an honor to be chosen among the best.”

The time has quickly gone by leading up to the national Safelite Best of Belron competition, which will take place Feb. 8 at Mardi Gras World in New Orleans. Have you been keeping up with the training tips and latest news on our Facebook page?

The 12 national technician competitors are:

  • Pascal Barone, New Orleans, La.
  • Aaron Bowden, San Francisco, Calif.
  • Brad Dedmon, Bakersfield, Calif.
  • Todd Dull, Ft. Collins, Colo.
  • Adam Guetzkow, Minneapolis, Minn.
  • Josh Henry, Hudson, N.Y.
  • Bob Hosta, Cleveland, Ohio
  • Jade Martin, Charlotte, N.C.
  • Jason Mayfield, Cheyenne, Wyo.
  • Brandon Rene, Salt Lake City, Utah
  • Gary Riebesehl, Orlando, Fla.
  • Mike Stakes, Phoenix, Ariz.

Make your predictions as to who will come out victorious on our final technician competition map after watching a video of all the techs below. This is shaping up to be a tough finale!

Stay tuned for more in-depth features on both our technicians and customer service representatives leading up to the event.

The last Safelite Best of Belron® divisional event will take place this Saturday in Pittston, PA, to fill in the remaining divisional spot on this competition map:

A high-scoring wildcard competitor will also be named at the beginning of next week.

Learn more about the six North Atlantic technicians who will be showing their skills this weekend with auto glass repairs and replacements:


Bob Andis – Fairfield, N.J.: An 18-year veteran, Bob Andis is the North Atlantic Division returning champion. Once, Andis installed a windshield on a 1958 Jaguar valued at more than $1 million. He is married with two children and spends his time outside of work with his family or hunting and fishing.



Harry BaumLong Island, N.Y.: With over 25 years of vehicle glass experience, Harry Baum is entering Safelite’s Best of Belron® for the first time. Baum said he typically wouldn’t enter a competition like this but he’s glad he did and will hopefully have something to show for it. Baum is the father of three and has a love of cars.



Josh Henry Hudson, N.Y.: Experience isn’t everything, especially for Josh Henry who has only been in the vehicle glass industry with Safelite® for two years. Originally from Middletown, N.Y., Henry is recently married and loves dirt track auto racing.



Jason Mayfield Denver, Colo.: Hoping 2011 is the charm, Jason Mayfield will be entering Safelite’s Best of Belron® for the third time. The father of two feels prepared for competition with over 10 years of industry experience and knowing what to expect from past attempts. Mayfield enjoys spending time with his family. (*Note: Mayfield was unable to attend his Rockies Division event, and will be competing in the North Atlantic event.)



Andrew Samson – Boston, Mass.: With seven years of experience, Andrew Samson is entering Safelite’s Best of Belron® for the first time. In his free time he enjoys golfing and playing paintball.




Marc Valentine Hartford, Conn.: A former cabinet installer, Marc Valentine has been with Safelite® for 11 years. A father of one, he loves to work on cars. He also enjoys skiing and fishing.

Best of luck to all the North Atlantic competitors!

Seven Safelite® technicians will take the stage on Saturday in Glendale, CO, to try to claim the Safelite Best of Belron® Rockies Division title.

Learn a little bit about each technician before they go head-to-head this weekend:

Dan Cameron
 – Tulsa, Okla.: After serving two tours in Iraq with the United States Marine Corps, Dan Cameron returned home in 2006 and re-entered vehicle glass repair and replacement. He joined Safelite® as a technician after growing up in his family’s local glass shop. Originally from Springfield, Mo., Cameron is the father of a five-year-old daughter and enjoys fishing and hunting in his spare time.

Terry DewittWichita, Okla.: This grandfather of five is an industry veteran with nearly three decades of vehicle glass experience. In his free time, Dewitt enjoys playing golf, bowling and fishing. He will be entering Safelite’s Best of Belron® for the second time.





Todd DullFort Collins, Colo.: After spending nearly 15 years in the auto body repair industry, Todd Dull made the switch to vehicle glass. Now that he has spent the last three years with Safelite® he feels he is ready to compete to prove himself the best technician in the country. In Dull’s spare time he enjoys riding his Harley Davidson motorcycle and taking trips with his wife.

Tom Johnson – Aurora, Colo.With over three decades of industry experience, Tom Johnson is entering Safelite’s Best of Belron for the second time after placing third in the division in 2009. Johnson enjoys fishing and hunting. He is the father of two and the grandfather of a three-month-old granddaughter. 


Ivon King – Kansas City, Mo.: With less than two years of experience, Ivon King entered the competition to see what it’s like to competitively do his job and to see how he matches up to his associates. In his spare time, King enjoys camping and fishing along with spending time with his family.


Jason Mayfield
Denver, Colo: Jason Mayfield will be entering Safelite’s Best of Belron® for the third time. This father of two feels prepared for competition with more than 10 years of industry experience and knowing what to expect from past attempts. Mayfield enjoys spending time with his family.



Ryan TuttleColorado Springs, Colo.: With more than a decade of experience, Ryan Tuttle is entering Safelite’s Best of Belron® for the first time. In his spare time he enjoys taking trips on his motorcycle and dabbles in Frisbee golf. Tuttle is originally from Colorado Springs and is the father of five children.

Good luck to all the competitors!

The Safelite Best of Belron® division events are winding down, but each competition is still proving to be a close contest between talented technicians.

This Saturday in Pewaukee, WI, these six Midwest techs will face off for the right to go to nationals in New Orleans:

 Rick BeasleyMilwaukee, Wis.: With nearly 11 years of experience, Rick Beasley is entering Safelite’s Best of Belron® after he was inspired by one of his managers and the success of past competitors. Originally from Kenosha, Wis., Beasley is the father of two daughters and is also a semi-pro football player.


Luis BucksbaumDavenport, Iowa: The father of two children and an avid gardener, Luis Bucksbaum is returning to Safelite’s Best of Belron® for an encore performance. Just missing nationals in 2008, Bucksbaum feels his 15 years of experience will edge him over the competition in 2011.


Adam GuetzkowMinneapolis, Minn.: After just three years of experience as a Safelite® technician, Adam Guetzkow is entering Safelite’s Best of Belron®. In Guetzkow’s spare time he enjoys hunting and fishing. He is the father of a two-year-old son and is originally from Watertown, Minn.


Eric PettengerDavenport, Iowa: With just one year of vehicle glass experience, Eric Pettenger is this competition’s rookie. Originally from Mahomet, Ill., Pettenger enjoys all things outdoors. In his free time he goes mountain biking and hiking. Pettenger said he is looking forward to pushing himself and representing his store at the division level.


Ted UmphressChicago, Ill.: With more than 13 years of vehicle glass experience, Ted Umphress feels prepared to compete. Umphress has spent just more than a year with Safelite® but believes his industry experience will give him an edge. In Umphress’ free time he bowls and plays cornhole in organized leagues.


Curtis WyattSt. Louis, Mo.: Curtis Wyatt is hoping competing in Safelite’s Best of Belron® will help him expand his career. He enjoys traveling and says he knows what it takes to be a top technician. Besides preparing for competition, Wyatt enjoys music, playing guitar and working on cars.

Best of luck to the Midwest competitors!