The Motorcycle Industry Council (MIC) announced that Erik Pritchard, president and CEO of the powersports industry association that also encompasses the Motorcycle Safety Foundation, Specialty Vehicle Institute of America, and Recreational Off-Highway Vehicle Association – is stepping down on March 22 to pursue new opportunities.
“It has been a privilege to work with the boards, the member companies, the broader industry, and the talented staff at the associations,” Pritchard says. “We were able to help the powersports industry not only survive but grow during a global pandemic, and we launched numerous strategic programs to support future success. I’m confident that powersports will continue to be an important part of transportation and recreation in America and that the associations will be there to help.”
Under Pritchard’s guidance, the MIC grew as the voice for powersports. During the COVID-19 pandemic, he helped navigate the industry through global shutdowns, led the team in working with the U.S. government to ensure powersports businesses could stay open, launched campaigns to position powersports as the perfect way to social distance, and provided tools to give businesses real-time information on guidelines and available support.
“Under Erik’s leadership over the past 10 years, the MIC has been strengthened as an association that’s keenly focused on ensuring the livelihood of our industry,” comments MIC Chair Derek Brooks, motorcycle product line manager, Yamaha Motor Corporation, U.S.A. “The work Erik led, with the MIC government relations team, was directly responsible for keeping motorsports dealers’ doors open during COVID. He’s also led the charge to expand awareness of motorcycling and increase ridership. The powersports industry is in a stronger position because of Erik’s significant contributions.”
During Pritchard’s tenure, more than 1 million students enrolled in skills development courses with MSF, SVIA, and ROHVA. He also identified the need and ensured the development of expansion initiatives at both MIC and MSF that continue to inspire, engage, and integrate new and returning riders.
“The entire training community and the millions of MSF students around the world have benefitted greatly from Erik’s visionary leadership,” says Croft Long, chair of the Motorcycle Safety Foundation. “He brought a high level of synergy across the associations, and he has navigated us through very challenging times, delivering the associations in a much stronger position to meet future demands.”
“Erik’s contributions to all the associations and the overall industry cannot be overstated,” Ryan Stiver, chair of the Recreational Off-Highway Vehicle Association comments. “He continued to stand up for the powersports industry time and time again, helping us with government regulations, expanding trails access for OHV use, and truly protecting and promoting our industry. Through it all, Erik always sees and puts the people first. He will truly be missed in this position.”
“Under Erik’s leadership, we have evolved training to meet the challenges of the ever-changing landscape, as well as reinforce the training with safety messages across a variety of channels,” says Colin Miller, chair of the Specialty Vehicle Institute of America. “We achieved this in large part because Erik has a unique ability to see the broader powersports landscape and deliver added value to riders, the broader training community, and powersports companies.”
The MIC says more details about the process of identifying new leadership will be communicated at a later date.