The Auto Body Association of Texas (ABAT) has been working to expand its reach within the state by adding chapters.
Since the end of 2018, association members in the San Antonio area have been working to organize a series of educational opportunities for local collision repair industry professionals to help them stay up-to-date on the industry’s constantly evolving technology, requirements and concerns.
Manuel Rubio, ABAT board member and owner of Miracle Paint & Body, has been actively involved in this initiative. He states, “In San Antonio or in any market throughout the country, you’re able to visit with peers within your industry. There’s always information to share on the challenges of proper repairs, technology, equipment, ongoing education, better estimating, and understanding insurance companies and their positions.”
Rubio said it’s important for collision repair professionals to share information to help create a stronger, more professional industry that safely repairs vehicles. He points out, “I try to encourage everyone who’s in our business and association to hold their heads up high and keep doing good work for their customers – the owners of the cars. Make sure you take care of them and that they’re happy, and they’ll go back to you if their car is wrecked again.”
The San Antonio chapter’s most recent meeting attracted almost 100 collision repair industry professionals and featured an update on ABAT’s recent legislative activities delivered by ABAT President Burl Richards. The meeting also included a special role-play with Richards acting as an adjuster while John Booker of Crossroads Collision Center assumed the role of a shop owner, and the pair demonstrated ways to improve documentation and the explanation of necessary supplemental items when discussing with insurers.
The chapter next plans to host the first ABAT Holiday Celebration as well as other member gatherings, and Rubio encourages other industry professionals in Texas to get involved with their local chapter or to form a local chapter if one is not already available. “We’re lucky that we get to operate under the umbrella of ABAT. They are fighting for the entire state, so we’re a branch or division.