TRAINING, EDUCATION, CERTIFICATION, AND RESEARCH FOR MANUFACTURERS’ REPS AND THE MANUFACTURERS THEY REPRESENT
IPA / MRERF HISTORY
In October of 1935, a small group of radio parts representatives gathered in New York City to share experiences and exchange ideas and knowledge about the still developing industry. This momentous meeting led to what has become today’s Electronics Representatives Association, ERA. By 1936, membership had grown to 78, and plans were initiated to establish “chapters” or “sections” in leading cities throughout the country.
The years that followed were fraught with global challenges, including a world war impacting business, economics, and contributions to the US culture as we know it today. By February, 1984 after many years of discussion and planning, ERA recognized the need to form and support a group dedicated to promoting the profession of the manufacturers’ representatives and enhance their effectiveness in the marketplace. Their vision took shape and the not-for-profit foundation known as MRERF began.
The summer of 1984 brought the strength and support of the National Electrical Manufacturers’ Representative Association (NEMRA) who joined with ERA to move the project along, draft by-laws and name a board of governors. A short 6 years later, by 1990, the association membership of MRERF had grown to represent over 20 unique industry groups.
In that same year, 1990, the recommendation was brought to the board that MRERF open negotiations with MRA for the use of their certification programs. MRERF purchased the designation “Certified Professional Manufacturers’ Representative (CPMR) and in 1991 took on the role as owners of the program. The Institute for Professional Advancement (IPA) stayed as the governing body and became the educational subsidiary of MRERF and administrator of CPMR.
Today MRERF is stronger, more dynamic, and more exciting than ever. With over 25 trade associations, a growing curriculum and multiple ongoing research programs, our collaborative community offers manufacturers’ representatives, manufacturers, and their channel partners a place to share, grow, and network.