The Motorsports Parts Manufacturers Council (MPMC) welcomed three new select committee members on July 1. Chris Thomson, national sales manager for Airaid, Lee McGuire, director of marketing and operations for Skyjacker Suspensions, and Steve Whipple, vice president of sales for Edelbrock LLC, will use their platforms as council leaders to help guide the direction of the group for the good of the whole industry. The three recently shared some of their goals for their terms.
Over the summer, 10 members of the Young Executives Network (YEN) embarked on the Hot Rod Power Tour to promote the network and highlight the variety of career choices available to young professionals in the automotive specialty-equipment market. The tour route began in Charlotte, North Carolina, and visited Tennessee, West Virginia, Ohio and Indiana before ending in Iowa. Amy Fitzgerald, Ian Lehn, Scott Lowe, Paul Makarucha, Brit Mansell, Jonathan Mill, Michelle “Missy” Perez, Dylan Sievers, Kirstin Stone and Jerid Suchy were chosen to participate through an application process.
Westgate Resorts has acquired the LVH–Las Vegas Hotel & Casino, making the property the newest addition to the Westgate’s portfolio of 28 resorts. The hotel has been renamed Westgate Las Vegas Resort & Casino. The new Westgate is located one block off the Las Vegas Strip, adjacent to the Las Vegas Convention Center, and is one of seven stations on the Las Vegas Monorail.
More Than 415 Business OpportunitiesEvery first-time exhibitor represents a business opportunity. Attendees, looking for the latest trends and hottest new products, know that new exhibitors can be a tremendous resource. This year (as of July 29, 2014) more than 415 new companies have already registered for a booth at this year’s Show. The online list of first-timers represents the leading edge of what will be a strong freshmen class for the 2014 SEMA Show. Buyers can now browse through and note businesses to visit during the 2014 SEMA Show online.
After celebrating its 20th anniversary milestone last year, the SEMA Businesswomen’s Network (SBN) continues its momentum by powering numerous 2014 SEMA Show events. With an emphasis on networking and fostering the growth of the next generation of women leaders in the aftermarket industry, the SBN introduces four events that are open for registration.
On July 1, three individuals joined the select committee for the Light Truck Accessory Alliance (LTAA). Jason Christiansen, president and CEO of Rigid Industries, Erika Garcia, national sales manager for Bolt Locks by Strattec, and Jerrod Strauss, director of sales and marketing for T-Rex Truck Products Inc., will join Todd Hoffman of A.R.E. Accessories and Kathryn Reinhardt of MagnaFlow, who were re-elected to fill the remaining two seats on the committee. SEMA Member News caught up with the three new members to share an introduction.
In order to land on our “35 Under 35” list, individuals must first be nominated by one or more industry peers. Pouring through the nominations, SEMA News looks for candidates already displaying leadership qualities within their organization or business. Entrepreneurship, commitment, insight, innovation, integrity, responsibility, and demonstrated skill, involvement and success within the industry weigh heavily in our decision-making. The selection process is never easy—in one way or another, every nominee is a winner—but, ultimately, we reduce the nominations down to 35 finalists to make our special section. When all was said and done for this 2014 edition, we again found ourselves with an impressive roster of highly accomplished individuals making their marks at a young age in a diverse array of industry segments.
This year, the Hot Rod Industry Alliance (HRIA) joins the Posies Driven Dirty Tour with the goal of connecting a new generation to opportunities in the industry. The route will run October 25–November 2 from Hummelstown, Pennsylvania, to the SEMA Show in Las Vegas. The tour is a natural fit with HRIA’s Futures in Hot Rodding initiative, which is an effort to encourage the industry’s next generation by identifying, communicating and promoting hot-rod-specific educational resources and career opportunities.
Were you to park a ’14 Chevy Malibu next to a ’56 Bel Air and open the hoods of each, the contrast would be remarkable. The Malibu’s short, wide engine bay is so full of plastic covers, tubes, hoses, wires, bottles and other equipment that the car’s four-cylinder engine is barely visible—if at all. The Bel Air’s Turbo-Fire V8, on the other hand, stands out in the ’56 Chevy’s spacious engine compartment, covered in bright orange paint and hooked to a canister air cleaner, a couple of radiator hoses and little else. Ask any shadetree mechanic why he prefers to work on old collector cars over today’s computer- and emissions-controlled vehicles and the answer usually comes down to: “They were so much simpler then.”