On September 27, 2011, Equalizer suffered the sudden great loss of our Leader, Mentor, Friend & Father. Ray loved coming to Equalizer every day. His tireless effort to enrich the lives of all Auto Glass Technicians by offering them the best possible products available is at the heart of Equalizer. His accomplishments are a testament to the true American success story. Ray's lifelong dream was to invent and foster the creation of innovative products and to create a company around that concept.

He acheived so much more than that in the short 23 years he had at Equalizer. His friends and family here at Equalizer are very grateful to have known him and to have followed him in pursuit of his dream. Ray was dedicated to keeping Equalizer a pleasant and flexible working environment. He worked hard to keep employees empowered and productive. He spent many years working for other companies that just focused on getting the work done and treated employees as a number other than a person. Ray vowed to make his company be a place where people were free to think, speak and act on the ideas and concepts they felt were important to the companys success.

Often described as a "southern gentleman" to most who knew him, Ray treated each employee and their families with the utmost respect. As time moves on from Ray's passing, Equalizer is dedicated to preserve and continue Ray's legacy for the future. As he was a private person, below is a bit of Ray's personal life for those who knew him and for those who didn't, a brief glimpse into his life and memories.





Wilma, John, Leroy, Joan, Ray (Garnett) & Geraldine
Circa 1946


  Born on January 21, 1944 to John and Geraldine Asbery on a rural farm in Casey County, Kentucky, (Garnett) Ray spent his early childhood riding horses and working his family's tobacco farm alongside his brother Leroy and sisters, Joan and Wilma. A self-described "tinkerer", Ray could always be found making something from whatever he could find on the farm that could make a job easier or more effective.

His hobbies ranged from upholstery on old autos to designing and flying model remote control (RC) airplanes. These hobbies and his insatiable desire to invent would lead him inevitably to his success with Equalizer.

 

In 1962, after graduating from high school, Ray spent the summer before college in the big city of Louisville. While there, he got a job transporting vehicles from an auto dealership to auto glass shops for repairs and replacements. He got to know many people in the auto glass industry around Louisville and inevitably took a job as a technician with Auto Glass and Upholstery of Louisville. In 1963, while in the small town of Mount Washington, he met Clara Vires. The two fell in love and in 1965 they got married. Ray and Clara had two children, Eric and Wendy.

Over the next 20 years, Ray worked at Auto Glass and Upholstery of Louisville at various locations and eventually climbed the ladder to become regional manager in 1984. The Asberys lived in Mt. Washington until 1986, when Ray got offered a position with Globe Glass & Mirror out of Chicago, Illinois. He was given a Store Manager position in Austin, Texas.


  After receiving the "Rookie of the Year" Award at Globe Glass for 1986. Ray was given the opportunity to become a regional manager headquartered in Columbus, Ohio in the summer of 1987. But there was one problem, Ray had fallen in love with Austin, Texas. He decided to stay in the Lone Star State and pursue a business of his own centered around a new tool he had invented and patented called The Equalizer®.

Over the next 23 years, Ray designed and brought to the auto glass industry, hundreds of new tools and innovations and created an auto glass tool genre that hadn't existed before. Ray's concept of quality auto glass tools for all technicians now exists all over the world.



 

Ray finally was rewarded for his years of perseverance, hard work and sacrifice. His dream of founding a well-known and respected company came true and Equalizer is committed to keep Ray's dream alive.

At Auto Glass Week 2012, Ray was honored by having the show dedicated to his memory and the Auto Glass Technician Olympics Innovation Award, renamed the Ray Asbery Innovation Award for his innovations in the auto glass industry. Watch video of that dedication here.

Donate To Ray's Favorite Charity Here

View More History About Equalizer here.

 


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