By Joshua Estabrooks
Special to The Pioneer
What could be better than operating a one-of-a-kind environmentally conscious automotive service centre in Invermere with your lovely wife and two good friends? How about being featured in a multi-page spread in an automotive trade magazine that goes to all shops throughout the country, and being one of three mechanics up for a Canadian Technician of the Year award from Canadian Technician Magazine?
Well, if you are Cleanline Automotives head wrench turner (no grease monkeys in this shop), Aaron Van de Kemp, then all of this is just another day in your fabulous life. Oh, add in two amazingly wonderful daughters too, as Aaron and his wife, Stephanie, just welcomed a newborn in August.
Aaron was nominated for the award this summer. He immediately made it into the top ten across the whole darn country, and then the top three, which prompted an in-depth interview and huge spread within the pages of the prestigious magazine, he said.
The magazine has a panel who decides who moves forward. They interviewed me and they interviewed Steph and decided that I was going to go on in the competition, said Aaron.
The whole idea behind the competition is to recognize ambassadors of the trade. So for Aaron, his green focus within an industry not well known for lessening its environmental impacts is what sets him apart from your average mechanic, and is what caught the eye of the magazine.
Its not just the guy with the best technical skills. The competition is more about technicians that stand out in their community in a positive way, he said.
The winner of the contest will be announced in November, and will receive $10,000 in cash and tools. The magazines expert panel will be making the final decision on who wins the award.
For more information on Cleanline Automotive, check out their website at www.cleanlineautomotive.com.