People, Places & Racing News

MOVERS AND SHAKERS: JOHN O'DELL, PAUL WILBUR, STEVE WEIGNER AND MORE

Edmunds Inc. announced that veteran automotive journalist John O'Dell has joined its editorial team as senior editor. O'Dell reports to Editorial Director Kevin Smith and works in Edmunds' Santa Monica office. O'Dell was previously with the Los Angeles Times as a reporter and occasional editor since 1980. His 35-year career as a journalist has been marked by numerous awards for professional excellence in writing, research and project development. In his new role O'Dell is focusing on an area of great personal interest—the automotive industry's environmental efforts and undertakings. Using the existing Edmunds' Green Car Guide as a foundation, he will build the popular channel to meet growing interest in topics such as hybrid cars, alternative fuels, technological developments and gas-saving tips.

Hancock Park Associates, the primary investor in Saleen Inc., recently completed the acquisition of assets of American Specialty Cars Incorporated (ASC), and also named Paul Wilbur, current president and CEO of ASC, to president and CEO of Saleen. In the near-term, both ASC and Saleen will remain as separate companies, although the long-term vision is to strategically integrate the two operations, the companies said. While each company will maintain its unique focus, both companies have common platforms as low-volume, specialty-vehicle manufacturers. The combined group will be comprised of OEM, Tier 1 and aftermarket business units.

Internet Brands Inc. announced that it acquired Ford Truck Enthusiasts (www.Ford-Trucks.com), and www.F150online.com. Internet Brands plans to maintain Ford-Trucks.com and F150online.com as thriving, stand-alone websites, while leveraging Internet Brands’ extensive technology and content resources to enhance the sites. Both Ford-Trucks.com and F150online.com were founded in 1996.

The Marx Group announced that won three print media awards in the 13th annual Communicator Awards competition. The Marx Group received one “Award of Excellence” and two “Awards of Distinction” in the print media competition. The Award of Excellence was presented to The Marx Group for its “Serenity Now Campaign” for FusionStorm/Hitachi. The company received an Award of Distinction for its work on the H3R Clean Agents “System Backup Program” brochure and for the agency’s work on its own “25th Anniversary Logo.” 

Steve Weinger of Toyo Tires will serve as Grand Marshall for the upcoming Toyo Tires NHRA Nationals at Maple Grove Raceway, located near Reading, Pennsylvania, August 16–19. Weinger is senior vice president of sales and marketing for Toyo Tire (U.S.A.) Corporation and is a 25-year veteran of the company. In addition, Paul “Skip” Levengood Sr., president and owner of CJ’s Tire & Automotive Services, will serve as the “Honorary Starter” for the event.