A little over eight years ago, a man put his neck on the line and gave me a crack at the magazine business. I had zero experience. I'd been to college and studied photography but pissed all of that away when I stumbled across import drag racing. As far as career paths went back then, I was only interested in burnouts and e.t's. I could find my way around a camera, spell my own name and drive in a straight line at least, and hopefully, for some reason, the guy saw more and gave me a shot at an editorial job. Eight years later, and Evan Griffey, editor of our sister publication Turbo, is leaving his permanent post in the industry for greener pastures (literally).
Considered a pioneer of the import movement by myself, and many others, Evan provided me with my early opportunity, becoming my boss, then a colleague and, even more importantly as years passed, my friend. As I went on my own path with Import Tuner, Evan's office has never been more that several feet from mine and for the past few years he's been a rock solid pillar of reason. Through all the triumph and turmoil that resulted when this job and my personality collided, Evan always listened to my rants and somehow helped me keep my feet on the floor and the steam from burning my ears.
As a pioneer, Evan embraced the import performance industry at a time when almost everyone else ignored it. Back in the day, Turbo was the only media source racers and enthusiasts had and it was, without a doubt, Evan and Turbo that helped carve early sponsorship deals and inevitably the mass recognition it has had ever since.
By the time you read this, Evan will be long gone, chillin' somewhere in the greener pastures of the Northwest. Fortunately for all of us, his passion for all things import means he's not gone completely. Evan will be dishing out his years of knowledge, wisdom and reasoning through several Primedia publications as a freelancer.
But, the next time I lose it and start throwing things across my office, I can't just walk next door for a dose of rationality. I can't reminisce about the good old days of duct-taped ghetto racecars flying down ghetto drag strips. I can't be reminded of all the trouble I've caused or even chat about the big horse at Hollywood. But what I can do, is speak on behalf of an entire industry when I say thanks for everything you've done for all of us and you truly will be missed.