Atlanta, GA - At its Executive Conference in Chicago this week, the ECIA announced the winner of the inaugural ECIA North Star Award, the association’s highest leadership honor. For millennia, the North Star provided the navigational basis to those who sought to explore the world and to make it better. The award, so named to reflect the concept of extraordinary leadership, guidance, and perseverance within our industry, is the successor to NEDA’s Gail Carter award. ECIA felt the need to continue the tradition of recognizing individuals who made significant contributions to the industry over the course of their careers and set the standard for those who follow. Past award honorees of this prestigious award include industry trailblazers Lee Davidson, Mark Larson, Brian McNally, Frank Flynn, Jim Bruorton, Phil Gallagher, Roy Vallee and Jim Kaplan.

This year’s award recipient was Michael Knight of TTI, Inc., the world’s leading IP&E distributor. Knight joined the industry in 1983 and eventually landed at TTI in 2004 after rising through the ranks in sales and marketing, domestically and internationally in distribution, rep firms, and manufacturing. He is currently senior vice president of TTI Americas and responsible for product management, marketing, quote management and development, and TTI’s transportation business unit.

In presenting the award, ECIA Chairman Blair Haas, Bud Industries stated the many reasons for the designation. “For the last decade Michael has taken a crucial leadership role in the ECIA, specifically in the effort to merge the ECA and NEDA. In his role as chairman, he drove changes that will enhance the association’s growth and value for years to come. He brings a clear vision to Board work and provides a well-respected point of view.” Haas added, “He is passionate about this business and the future of it, he is passionate about FIRST Robotics and exposing children to STEM disciplines, he is passionate about authorized distribution and he is not afraid to challenge the status quo. Michael is a consummate industry spokesman and has deftly used this skill in his role as a leading advocate for our industry. We can count on him to take a bold stance on addressing challenging industry issues. When he speaks – the industry listens.”

About ECIA The Electronic Components Industry Association (ECIA) is made up of the leading electronic component manufacturers, their manufacturer representatives and authorized distributors. ECIA members share a common goal of promoting and improving the business environment for the authorized sale of electronic components to the end customer. Comprised of a broad array of leaders and professionals representing all phases of the electronics components supply chain, ECIA is where business optimization, product authentication and industry advocacy come together. ECIA members develop industry guidelines and technical standards, as well as generate critical business intelligence. For more information, visit or call 678-393-9990.

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