People Places & Racing News

SEMA Council & Committee News: New PRO Event Restylers and Installers Can't Afford to Miss

ARMO Council Meeting
Strong Select Committees set council direction and ensure that councils and committees work for the needs of the membership.

All SEMA and council and committee members:

SEMA council Select Committee elections are now open to all members. Historically, nominations for Select Committee seats were only accepted from members of an individual council or committee. This year, however, all SEMA-member company representatives, regardless of council or committee affiliation, are eligible to participate in the nomination process.

Any SEMA member may nominate an individual for one or multiple SEMA council or committee Select Committee seat(s). A nominee must, however, be a member of the council or committee to which he/she is nominated. Dues payment in advance may be required.

Also new this year is a electronic nomination form that is quick and easy to complete, and requires no printing or faxing. All nominations must be received by Monday, March 22, 5:00 p.m. Follow this link to the nomination form.

Strong Select Committees ensure that SEMA councils and committees continue their work on behalf of the membership. For members unfamiliar with SEMA councils and committees, please visit for an overview.

Visit ARMO's website.  

ARMO New Products Showcase Registration Is Now Online

ARMO-member companies may now submit product registrations for the 2010 ARMO New Products Showcase. Registration is now available online.

The 13th annual ARMO New Products Showcase will once again be held at Spring Carlisle in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, Wednesday–Sunday, April 21–25. The showcase continues to grow every year, with a record number of product entries in 2009. More than 100,000 automotive hobbyists attend Spring Carlisle each year, and the ARMO Showcase Tent is located at the very center of the show in a prime position, guaranteeing your products will be seen. This is a fantastic opportunity for ARMO-member companies to put their new products in front of one of the largest annual gatherings of restoration enthusiasts in the country. Participation is open to all ARMO-member companies, and it’s FREE!

There is no judging of entries in the showcase. The focus of the event is to showcase the products to generate publicity, inquires and sales leads. All entries will be photographed at Spring Carlisle, and the photos, product descriptions and company names will be displayed in the ARMO booth at the 2010 SEMA Show.

ARMO New Products Showcase Criteria

All products submitted must meet the following criteria:

  • Must be the product of an ARMO member-company.
  • Must be a new product or improved design since March 2009.
  • Product must be available for sale (market-ready) by the opening of the showcase, April 21.
  • Must demonstrate unique/innovative technology and/or be a benefit to the restoration industry.


  • Complete one entry form per product.
  • Product entry forms must be completely filled out and submitted to SEMA by Wednesday, April 14, 2010. Some of the information will be used to create signage for the product at the Spring Carlisle Showcase and to accompany the photos in the ARMO booth at the 2010 SEMA Show. ARMO will guarantee acceptance of FOUR product entries per company. Any additional entries will be considered on a first-come, first-served basis.
  • Companies are urged to include marketing materials (sales literature, flyers or brochures) with the product. These materials will be made available to hobbyists who ask for more information and/or want to contact the manufacturer to find out where they can buy the product.

Delivery of product(s)

  • Product(s) may be pre-shipped for arrival no later than Friday, April 16, 2010 to:

    Carlisle Events
    Attention: ARMO New Products Showcase – Jim Vinarski
    1000 Bryn Mawr Rd., Carlisle, PA 17013


Product(s) may be hand-delivered to the Showcase, Wednesday April 21.

Product(s) may be removed after 1:00 p.m., Sunday April 25.


Company can pre-arrange for return shipping by completing the “return shipment information” on the entry form.

ARMO Select Committee Elects Alex Tainsh as Chair-Elect

Alex Tainsh is a founding member of ARMO and has been an active member for 12 years. His accomplishments begin with a combined 16-year stint at P.U.I and Soffseal, and he is currently the sales and marketing manager for TrimParts.

Throughout his many years with ARMO, he has worked passionately to promote the "Take a Kid to a Car Show" program and, most notably, headed up the Colton Camaro project. When asked about future projects, Tainsh reiterated the importance of young enthusiasts and the preservation of the restoration market.

As Tainsh begins his two-year term as chair-elect, Laura Bergan will assume chairwoman duties July 1.

ARMO Column in SEMA Member News

Read ARMO's column featured in the March/April issue of SEMA Member News.

For more information about ARMO, contact Jim Skelly.

Visit HRIA's website  

HRIA Column in SEMA Member News

Read HRIA's column featured in the March/April issue of SEMA Member News.

For more information about HRIA, contact Zane Clark.



Visit TORA's website.

TORA Column in SEMA Member News

Read TORA's column featured in the March/April issue of SEMA Member News.

For more information about TORA, contact Jim Skelly.



Visit MPMC's website.  
Vic Wood
The MPMC Select Committee voted Vic Wood of Hedman Performance Group as its new Chair-Elect of the council.

MPMC Select Committee Chooses Vic Wood as New Chair-Elect

The MPMC Select Committee voted Vic Wood of Hedman Performance Group the newest chair-elect of the council. Vic has spent the majority of his career in or around the specialty-parts industry, including appointments to the board of directors of the Australian Automotive Aftermarket Association and the Australian National Drag Racing Association.

He started drag racing at 16, and drove all types of vehicles through 2004, when he clocked 234 mph in a modified roadster at Bonneville.

When not working, Vic is busy with his '64 Chevrolet pickup, and crew chiefs a nostalgia funny car that competes in the NHRA Heritage Series.

“It is a great honor to be elected Chair Elect of MPMC,” said Wood. “SEMA has been a part of my life in some form or another for nearly 30 years. I am thrilled to have this opportunity to serve the members of this historic SEMA Council, and I look forward to supporting our current Chairman over the next two years as we address challenges of our market sector.”

Take a Friend to a Race Fan Page

The MPMC Motorsports Awareness campaign, highlighted by the Take a Friend to a Race program, now has its very own Fan Page on Facebook. If you’re not a fan yet, you should be!

MPMC Column in SEMA Member News

Read MPMC's column featured in the March/April issue of SEMA Member News.

For information about MPMC, contact Jim Skelly.

MRC Logo
Visit MRC's website.  

MRC Names Chris Fairless New Chair-Elect

The MRC Select Committee has named Chris Fairless of Fairless Sales & Marketing to the position of chair-elect. Fairless is a current MRC Select Committee member and will take over duties as chair-elect on July 1. Fairless stated, “I’m honored to be selected as MRC’s chair-elect. I’m looking forward to the future challenges and the opportunities. I’m excited to be involved with SEMA and MRC and hope to inspire more people in our industry to get involved. There are great opportunities ahead!” When Fairless assumes chair-elect duties on July 1, current chair-clect Wade Cobb of HAPCO will become chairman of MRC, when Joel Rosenthal’s two-year term as MRC chairman ends. At that time, Rosenthal will assume his new role as the MRC immediate past chairman/advisor.

2010 MRC Long-Range Planning Meeting at PWA

MRC will be conducting its annual Long-Range Planning meeting in conjunction with the Performance Warehouse Association (PWA) Conference. All reps are welcome and encouraged to participate in this open forum and address issues faced daily by reps in all segments of the automotive industry. Bring your ideas and suggestions to raise the bar for all manufacturers' reps.

For us to be able to accommodate attendees with food and beverage, we ask that you take a moment and contact Staci Bostock at 909/396-0289 ext. 104 or e-mail

MRC Column in SEMA Member News

Read MRC's column featured in the March/April issue of SEMA Member News.

For information about MRC, contact Staci Bostock.

PRO Logo
Visit PRO's website.  

Technical Skills & Training Conference: Training and Product Knowledge You Need; an Event You Can’t Afford to Miss

PRO is launching a new technical training program designed specifically for restylers and installers. This one-day program is packed with installation training and product knowledge brought directly to you by the product manufacturers.

Attendees will also enjoy the opportunity to network with peers and industry professionals.

Attendees: Register here.

Technical Skills & Training Conference Details

Where: University of Northwestern Ohio, Lima, Ohio

When: Friday, April 30, 2010, 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

The program: There will be 12 seminar/workshops each consisting of one hour of classroom training, with two classes running concurrently throughout the day conducted by manufacturers such as Webasto, Katzkin, Audiovox, Restylers Choice, Eagle Enterprises and more.

Attendees may choose sessions in the following tracks:

  • Leather
  • Sunroofs
  • 12 volt
  • Truck Accessories: Towing & Suspension; Diesel Performance
  • Self Adhesive
  • ASE/A6 Electrical
  • “Bullpen” with hands‐on installation training in addition to the classes
  • Catered Lunch
  • PRO Council General Membership Meeting: Learn about PRO and what we’re doing for the industry, and how you can participate.
  • Evening cocktail reception: Drinks, food, fun and networking
  • PRO Long‐Range Planning Meeting for PRO Members, Saturday, May 1

Cost: $25 for first attendee from each company, $15 for each additional person. Includes breakfast and lunch, PRO open membership meeting and cocktail mixer reception.

For more information, go to

Hotel Information: You MUST Mention UNOH when making reservations to get discounted rate.

Comfort Inn - $62.99
(Elizabeth) 419/228‐4251
20 minutes away
1210 Neubrect Rd.
Lima, OH 45801

Fairfield Inn - $70
(Mike) 419/224-8496
2 minutes away
2179 Elida St.
Lima, OH 45801

Wingate Inn ‐ $72
(New Manager) 419/228‐7000
15 minutes away
175 W. Market St.
Lima, OH 45801

Country Inn & Suites - $85
20 minutes away
804 S. Leonard Ave.
Lima, OH 45801

Holiday Inn & Suites ‐ $89
(Allysia) 419/879‐4000
20 minutes away
803 S Leonard Ave
Lima, OH 45805

PRO Column in SEMA Member News

Read PRO's column featured in the March/April issue of SEMA Member News.

For information about PRO, contact Zane Clark.

SBN Logo
Visit SBN's website.
Discover the SEMA Mentoring Program—Powered by the SBN

“I’ll get by with a little help from my friends…” - Joe Cocker

Everyone needs help or expert advice from time to time, and SEMA’s Mentoring Program is an excellent resource to get answers to all your questions. Whether you need to know more about SEMA, market information for a start-up company or advice on how to approach your boss about a new position, the SEMA Mentoring Program can help.

“Ask A Mentor” is perfect for one-time questions. You can expect multiple SEMA mentors to provide online guidance and answers to your industry-related questions.

Short-term Assistance/Guidance is for help with a specific project or task. A SEMA council/committee mentor with the expertise you seek will be paired up with you to provide guidance with your project.

Long-term Relationship is helpful for developing your professional career. In this program segment you will be paired with a SEMA council/committee mentor who will provide guidance and assistance for ongoing career development or a long-term project.

So whether you just need an answer to a question or you want to cultivate a mentoring friendship, the SEMA Mentoring Program—Powered by the SBN is available to help. After all, we can all use a little help from our friends.

Visit the SEMA Mentoring Program now.

SBN Column in SEMA Member News

Read SBN's column featured in the March/April issue of SEMA Member News.

For information about SBN, contact Kim Desai.

SPC Logo
Visit SPC's website.  

Titan blog
Titan Motorsports' blog is one way the company is attracting enthusiasts to its site and staying connected with its customer base.

Easy Ways to Keep Up With Your Customers Online

While you may not find yourself posting about what you had for breakfast this morning on Facebook or Twitter, your customers are likely using these services to express theirselves, receive news, review products and conduct personal research. The days when your customers would simply go to your website for the latest news and product information are long gone.

Instead, social media networks, such as blogs, Twitter and Facebook, are channeling this information out to the world at a blazing rate. From a business standpoint, social media is important—it allows you to personalize your interaction with consumers while differentiating yourself from the thousands of other businesses competing on the web.

With information being published through so many sources, it can become difficult to track content without having multiple windows scattered around your computer's desktop. Rather than devoting a full-time employee to monitor this content, there are now companies developing specialized products and services to help streamline your social media interactions and help make this sea of information manageable.

An easy and effective way to keep your customers up-to-date on new releases and company news is a blog or a web blog. One of the tools available is Word Press, which offers many great free themes and plug-ins for the ultimate customization to power your blog. WordPress can be downloaded from; installation instructions are available on the site as well. Once you’ve got your blog setup and customized to fit your brand, two simple automation techniques will allow you to broadcast your blog postings directly to your Twitter and Facebook followers.

The first service,, exports your blog postings directly to your Twitter account simply by inputting your RSS feed and providing access to your account. A similar task can be performed on your Facebook page by entering your RSS feed in the Notes tab, which publishes a brief synopsis and thumbnail on your wall with each new blog posting.

While blog and forum postings help get news and information out, using social media to the fullest allows you to see what current and future customers are saying about your company and products. Companies are now developing products that harvest this information to allow for easy display and interaction with your social media accounts in one convenient window. One product available that can help collect and organize this information is a program called Seesmic Desktop.

After merging a similar competing product Thwirl in 2008, Seesmic was developed and improved into an easy-to-use “one-stop” console. Seesmic Desktop is a free program that coincides with Adobe Air framework allowing you to monitor and interact with multiple Facebook and Twitter accounts in one convenient window.

Accessible through both Macs and PCs, the console features various views and customizable columns to help organize your workflows. The console displays individual accounts in separate columns while offering capabilities of condensing and hiding duplicate postings. This becomes a real benefit when managing multiple accounts with the same followers.

Seesmic does more than just display your social feeds in one convenient window. Features such as integrated interest groups, trend watching, searches and notifications allow you to track topics and make for easy interaction. Interest lists and groupings allow you to easily locate your potential followers. This helps you generate a more specific group of followers to reach out to. Finding keywords in users’ postings can be saved and refreshed for instantaneous discussion updates. Users’ postings can be searched via keywords and then saved and refreshed for instantaneous discussion updates.

Scouting Twitter for user feedback on a new product, event or topic can easily be viewed in the same window. These search queries can also be saved for access and review at a later date. Alert notifications can be set to notify you of new postings and/or messages using visual or audio notifications, all of which can be customized to various levels. Postings can include automatically hosted photos and videos, as well as shortened text and integrated URL addresses. These are all useful and key features for frequent social media users.

As new platforms and technologies come to market, the need to adapt becomes an increasing challenge and a necessity to stay relative. As experiences with products and companies get reviewed by people all over the world on public forums and social media platforms, the need to quantify this data and address issues will become increasingly more difficult to manage.

The programs we use to manage these feeds will work to adapt with the changing of social environments, all while trying to remain easy to use. Keeping customers up-to-date, tracking the response to our products and services and even making sure we’re one step ahead of our competition at any given point is what ultimately makes the most of our social network. Social media is here to stay. —Baadal Deliwala, Nikki Contenti and Wes Bourne, Titan Motorsports

SPC Column in SEMA Member News

Read SPC's column featured in the March/April issue of SEMA Member News.

For information about SPC, contact Kim Desai

WTC Logo
Visit WTC's website.

WTC Column in SEMA Member News

Read WTC's column featured in the March/April issue of SEMA Member News.

For information about WTC, contact Zane Clark.



YEN Logo
Visit YEN's website.
Join YEN

Did you know that the SEMA Young Executives Network has more than 500 members networking in the industry and is the largest SEMA committee? If you are employed by a SEMA-member company and are under the age of 39, then you can join the SEMA Young Executives Network for FREE. If you are interested in becoming part of the team, please visit our website at

YEN Member of the Month Spotlight

Did you know that YEN has a Member of the Month Spotlight on the SEMA website and that anyone can be nominated? To view previous selections or to make a nomination, visit

YEN Column in SEMA Member News

Read YEN's column featured in the March/April issue of SEMA Member News.

For information about YEN, contact Kim Desai.