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Davis Electrical Supply President/COO Roger D. Cleary Passes Away

Roger D. Cleary passed away on February 16 at the age of 65 after a tough 13-year battle with cancer. For the last 42 years he worked at Davis Electrical Supply Co. Inc., serving as the president and chief operating officer.

Roger was a well-liked and well-respected member of the electrical industry community in Buffalo. He was an active and supportive member of IMARK Group and was greatly appreciated by his fellow members and our preferred supplier partners. Always a welcome presence at IMARK meetings, Roger was a long-time member of I-Net #11 and he always shared his perspectives and insights with his fellow networkers. He will be greatly missed.

Roger graduated from Bishop Neumann High School, where he played hockey. He continued his education and passion for hockey at Niagara University and received his bachelor’s degree in business administration. Roger enjoyed watching sunsets in his backyard in Hamburg and Florida as well as golf, boating and fishing, just a few of his many hobbies.

Roger was the devoted husband of Deborah DiVita-Cleary; loving father of Christopher, Daniel (Rose), Renay Tucci and the late Michael Cleary; cherished grandpa of Roger James "RJ" Cleary; dearest son of the late Mary Ann (nee Mudd) and Thomas P. Cleary; dear brother of Thomas (Sheri) Cleary, Catherine (Glenn) Frank, Nora Cleary (John Webb), Michael (Elizabeth) Cleary and Ann (Donald) Bortnick; also survived by in-laws, nieces, nephews and many friends.

He will be greatly missed by many loving family members and friends.

Donations may be made to the Roswell Park Alliance Foundation in Roger’s name.

Thomas ‘Tom’ Miles Wiltrout of Wiltrout Sales Passes Away

Longtime industry leader and founder of Wiltrout Sales, Thomas Wiltrout, passed away on March 13 after a fight with cancer that spanned more than 20 years. Over that time, he won so many battles, it renders cancer’s eventual victory practically meaningless.

Tom started in the electrical industry as a purchasing agent with Burnstine’s Distributing Corp. in 1973. From there he began his career as a manufacturer’s representative in 1976, working first as an outside salesperson for other agencies before starting his own agency, Wiltrout Sales, in 1984 with his wife Margaret in the spare bedroom of their home. He credits his affiliation with the National Electrical Manufacturers Representative Association (NEMRA) and its members for his early success in attracting electrical manufacturers looking for representation in the state of Indiana.

Soon after starting Wiltrout Sales, he saw a need for professional training and development in the manufacturer’s representative industry. To meet this need, he partnered with a group of educators and representatives from other industries to form Manufacturers Representative Education and Research Foundation (MRERF). From those early meetings came the Certified Professional Manufacturers Representative (CPMR) training and designation program, which is now governed by The Institute for Professional Advancement (IPA). Tom was instrumental in developing the curriculum for the three-year training program that candidates must complete to earn the CPMR designation and was a member of the first class to complete the course and receive the designation in 1993.

In the years following the formation of the CPMR program, Tom continued to serve his industry as a board member of MRERF, IPA, the NEMRA Board of Governors and has served as both treasurer and president of the organization’s

Indiana Chapter. Additionally, Tom enjoyed a lengthy relationship with the Electric League of Indiana (ELI) and served as chairman for the Indiana Electrical EXPO ’93.

Wiltrout Sales continues operations to this day, now led by Tom’s son, Tim, who purchased the company upon Tom’s retirement in 2015. Though officially retired, Tom continued serving as a consultant and mentor in the industry while also volunteering in the cancer wards of St. Vincent, IU North and Community North hospitals until March of 2020; only a global pandemic could slow him down.

Tom lived and worked according to a simple set of rules: work hard, do it right, tell the truth and have some fun. He trained and mentored many people who are leaders in the industry today and was fond of saying that he learned more from the people he worked with than he could ever teach them.