KerenOr Consultants


KerenOr Consultants was founded in 1998 by Karen Fierst, a collision repair and aftermarket parts industry veteran. In that same year the Taiwan Auto Body Parts Association (TABPA) contracted with KerenOr Consultants to fill the newly created position of U.S. Liaison. Responsibilities include Industry Relations, Cross Cultural Communication, Public Relations, Project Management, Strategic Planning and Marketing, among others. That relationship continues today. Clients include aftermarket part manufacturers and distributors, collision repair shops, trade associations, government agencies and law firms.

Prior to establishing KerenOr Consultants, Fierst was an executive of the Certified Automotive Parts Association (CAPA). CAPA is an independent third party, standard setting and certification program developed to ensure the quality of non-OEM automotive crash parts. During her tenure at CAPA, Fierst's responsibilities included strategic planning, industry relations, government affairs, program management, as well as development and implementation of technical and public policy.

Fierst has extensive experience in project development and management, research, writing, public affairs, marketing and advocacy.  She has contributed to and co-authored numerous consumer guide books, including many focusing on automotive issues, for major publishers (HarperCollins, Putnam, Pocket Books), researched monthly columns and articles for magazines, such as Good Housekeeping, and conducted public affairs for the Consumer Federation of America, the largest consumer lobbying organization in America.

Fierst's advocacy work included serving as consumer representative on Ford Motor Company's Consumer Appeals Board and ASTM's Committee for Bunk Bed Safety.  On behalf of the Consumer Federation of America, she lobbied industry, legislators and regulators on automotive issues, including Federal legislation on rebuilt salvage vehicles and FTC regulations for lemon vehicle buy backs.

Prior to becoming a consumer advocate and working for CAPA, Fierst was a community organizer and teacher.  She taught children and adults, on a volunteer and professional basis in the United States and abroad. She has been involved in formal and informal education, serving on various community Boards, for over thirty years.

Fierst is actively involved in the National Auto Body Council (NABC), currently serving as its Treasurer. She is also a regular participant in the Collision Industry Conference (CIC) and served as Co-Chair of the Industry Discussions Committee for six years. She has chaired or co-chaired a number of fund raising projects for the Collision Industry Foundation and NABC including Recycled Rides.  

Fierst is the recipient of numerous industry awards, among them the prestigious Most Influential Women in the Industry Award, given by Akzo-Nobel (class of 2003).  She is a frequent speaker at industry events and has presented at the Aftermarket Automotive Industry Association's Legislative Summit, in Washington, DC, the International Body Shop Industry Symposium (IBIS) in Italy, France and Switzerland, the Auto International Association at the AAPEX/SEMA Show and China Business Update's China's Post-WTO Sales, Distribution and The Aftermarket: Challenges and Opportunities Conference in Shanghai, China, the International Auto Body Conference and Exposition (NACE), the Advanced Seminar for the Auto Repair Industry in Seoul, Korea and Automechanika in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Fierst earned a Bachelors of Science degree in Program Management and Consumer Studies from the University of Maryland and has completed graduate work in International Trade and Business Management.