NHRA Board Chairman Wally Parks is First Recipient of "Robert E. Petersen Lifetime Achievement Award" Special Celebration Honors Hot Rodding's Founding Father At Fourth Annual Hot Rod & Performance Trade Show -- February 28, 2002 FULLERTON, ...
NHRA Board Chairman Wally Parks is First Recipient of "Robert E. Petersen Lifetime Achievement Award"
Special Celebration Honors Hot Rodding's Founding Father At Fourth Annual Hot Rod & Performance Trade Show -- February 28, 2002
FULLERTON, Calif. (February 28, 2002) -- The National Hot Rod Association's founding father and current Board Chairman, Wally Parks, today was selected as the first recipient of the "Robert E. Petersen Lifetime Achievement Award" honoring his contributions to the business and sport of hot rodding and restoration.
The award presentation was made at the fourth annual Hot Rod & Performance (HRP) Trade Show, in Indianapolis by publishing magnate and entrepreneur Robert E. Petersen, the creator of Hot Rod Magazine, along with a myriad of other titles including Car Craft and Motor Trend. Hot Rod & Performance initiated the award in honor of Petersen's invaluable role in transforming what many considered an 'outlaw' sport into a multi-million dollar aftermarket industry, and asked him to select the first recipient of the " Lifetime Achievement" award created in his honor.
"I cannot think of a more fitting recipient for this award than Wally Parks, a man who contributed immeasurably to the hot rodding industry over the last five decades, as an editor, an organizer, and an innovator," says Petersen. "Wally not only organized the National Hot Rod Association but has been its driving force -- moving the NHRA from its fledgling days to its current stature as the world's largest motorsports body."
Parks helped organize the Southern California Timing Association (SCTA) in 1947 and was instrumental in coordinating the first SCTA "Speed Week" at the famous Bonneville Salt Flats where racers first officially began running against the clock. Once Parks b ecame editor of the monthly enthusiast magazine Hot Rod, it was only a matter of time before he attempted to "create order from chaos" and in 1951 formed the National Hot Rod Association, instituting safety rules and performance guidelines to help legitimi ze the sport. Parks became the organization's first president and today continues his service to the sport as NHRA's Board Chairman.
The "Robert E. Petersen Lifetime Achievement Award" is a beautifully executed bronze sculpture by noted automotive and motorcycle artist Steve Posson. Aptly titled "Running At The Lakes," the trophy will be permanently displayed at the Petersen Automotive Museum and will be an on-going tribute to the entrepreneurs who have contributed to the history, growth and well-being of the hot rod industry.
Based in Fullerton, California, HOTROD & PERFORMANCE produces the world's largest hot rod and restoration trade show, endorsed by the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA), Street Rod Marketing Alliance (SRMA), and Automotive Restoration Market Org anization (ARMO). The company also publishes HOTROD & PERFORMANCE , a bi-monthly trade magazine dedicated to promoting professionalism and growth in the hot rod and restoration industry.