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SEMA Council & Committee News: Jonathan Mill of E-Stopp Wins SEMA Launch Pad Competition

Automotive Restoration Market Organization (ARMO)
Manufacturers' Rep Network (MRN)
Emerging Trends & Technology Network (ETTN) Professional Restylers Organization (PRO)
Hot Rod Industry Alliance (HRIA) SEMA Businesswomen's Network (SBN)
Truck and Off-Road Alliance (TORA) Wheel & Tire Council (WTC)
Motorsports Parts Manufacturers Council (MPMC) Young Executives Network (YEN)


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Jonathan Mill of E-Stopp was the winner of YEN's inaugural SEMA Launch Pad contest.

Jonathan Mill of E-Stopp Wins SEMA Launch Pad Competition

By SEMA Editors

SEMA’s Young Executives Network crowned the winner of its inaugural SEMA Launch Pad contest on Thursday morning, November 7, during the SEMA Show. Five contestants pitched their business plans to a group of industry experts at a live event hosted by Jarod DeAnda.

The candidates included Bryan Conzone from CarNinja, Dominic Lin from Funding Garage, Jonathan Mill from E-Stopp Corp., Robert Kibbe from The Muscle Car Place and Trent Campbell from CarBuff Network.

The judges (Greg Adler of Transamerican Auto Parts, Ron Coleman of COMP Performance Group, Doug Evans of Source Interlink Media, Jim Liaw of Formula Drift and Jeff Yapp of UPS) in turn provided feedback about each presentation, evaluating the contestants based on their business plan, product analysis and presentation.

Following the presentations, Jonathan Mill was declared the inaugural Launch Pad winner. Mill’s product, the E-Stopp, is a push-button emergency brake and anti-theft device for custom vehicles.

Mill took home a comprehensive package of donated business services from SEMA, eTool Developers, Kahn Media, SEMA’s Manufacturers’ Representative Network, Source Interlink Media, Taylor Creative, Family Events and UPS.

“I'm extremely honored to be the first Launch Pad winner, and being so has truly fueled my passion for what I do,” said Mill. “I take the responsibility of representing YEN and the Launch Pad seriously, and plan to utilize my prize package to the fullest.”

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George Barris (center) of Barris Kustom Industries won the ISCA Legends in Hot Rodding award at the HRIA reception.

Hot Rod Industry Celebrates at SEMA Show

By Amanda Gubbins

The Hot Rod Industry Alliance (HRIA) hosted a successful reception at the 2013 SEMA Show. More than 600 members of the industry were in attendance to enjoy networking opportunities, awards presentations and an auction benefitting SEMA Cares.

The live portion of the auction featured three award-winning participants from the council’s Pinewood Builder’s Challenge. A silent auction also included eight other pinewood cars, a limited-edition Gibson Les Paul guitar and a toolbox pinstriped by Von Hot Rod. In total, the council raised $7,680 for the charities supported by SEMA Cares.

The 2013 award winners were:

HRIA Education Day will consist of 24 sessions, each led by a hot-rod parts manufacturer educating attendees about product features, benefits and installation guidelines.
Hot Rod Council to Present Education Day at 2014 Detroit Autorama

By Della Domingo

The annual SEMA Hot Rod Industry Alliance (HRIA) Education Day will be held, for the first time, in conjunction with the Detroit Autorama—the 60-year-old custom car show taking place in March 2014 at Cobo Hall in Detroit. The program will consist of 24 sessions, each led by a hot-rod parts manufacturer educating attendees about product features, benefits and installation guidelines.

“For more than 10 years, HRIA Education Day has proven to be a key event for helping manufacturers share detailed, and sometimes technical, information about their products with their customers,” said Jim Skelly, SEMA director of councils. “Holding the Education Day program at the Detroit Autorama will allow HRIA members to expand and reach a new audience.”

HRIA previously held its Education Day program at the Hotrod & Restoration Trade Show in Indianapolis. The move to the Detroit Autorama will enable manufacturers to reach a new, expanded audience. Autorama, which is well known for having the world’s most coveted hot rods, prestigious awards competitions, as well as top celebrities and student programs, attracts more than 150,000 individuals annually. Education Day will take place Thursday, March 6, 2014 (the day before Autorama officially opens), and is open to all hot-rod shops and businesses, as well as to all Autorama attendees.

“As one the nation’s premier indoor custom car shows, the Detroit Autorama attracts thousands of businesses and enthusiasts who are passionate and deeply vested in new hot-rod products,” said Peter A. Toundas, president of Championship Auto Shows Inc.—promoter of the event. “The HRIA Education Day program will add a valuable element to the event, giving attendees an opportunity to connect directly with manufacturers, which would be difficult for them to do on their own.”

Attendee registration is now open. Reserve your spot today.

For more information about HRIA, contact Jim Skelly.

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PRI Attendees Invited to Drag Racing Roundtable

By Amanda Gubbins

Retailers, builders and race teams attending the PRI Show in Indianapolis are invited to join the Motorsports Parts Manufacturers Council (MPMC) for an industry discussion about the current state of drag-racing sanctioning bodies.

The roundtable-style seminar will give participants the chance to learn about what changes and challenges are faced by the drag-racing sanctioning bodies and what the council and SEMA might do together to help. Alan Reinhart will moderate the event, and the presenters will include: Scott Gardner of IHRA, Kenny Knowlings of ADRL, Steve Wolcott of NMCA/NMRA and Kyle Seiple of K&N Bracket Racing Series.

The event is open to all PRI attendees and will take place Thursday, December 13, 2013, from 2:00 p.m.–4:00 p.m. at the Indiana Convention Center, room 234. Reserve your seat today.

MPMC Hall of Fame Inductees to be Honored at PRI

Each year, MPMC accepts nominations for the council’s Hall of Fame. The award is designed to recognize individuals who have made a significant contribution to MPMC and the motorsports parts manufacturing segment of the aftermarket. This year’s inductees are Dennis Overholser, Bob Ritzman and Earl Gaerte.

A formal MPMC Hall of Fame induction ceremony will take place over breakfast at the PRI Show. Show attendees are invited to attend the celebration, Friday, December 13, from 8:00 a.m.–9:00 a.m.

The 2014 MPMC Media Trade Conference will be held January 21–23, at the Embassy Suites Orange County Airport South.

Media Registration Open for 2014 MPMC Media Trade Conference

By SEMA Editors

Reporters, editors and freelance journalists: Conduct private interviews with leading manufacturers during the 2014 MPMC Media Trade Conference. Registration is now open and available. The 2014 event takes place January 21–23, at the Embassy Suites Orange County Airport North in Santa Ana, California.

The annual Media Trade Conference, which features 100 companies from SEMA's Motorsports Parts Manufacturers Council (MPMC), brings together members of the working press with motorsports parts producers for face-to-face private meetings. Media reps have the opportunity to meet with up to 14 exhibitors each day of the conference—for a total of 42 quality meetings throughout the event's three days.

Media will select the manufacturers they most want to meet with and indicate those which they do not want to meet with when registering online. A personalized schedule will then be created for the registered media, and sent out in early January. Register now! Questions? Media inquiries can be directed to All manufacturer questions or general questions about the event can be directed to or 909-978-6690.

View the list of participating exhibitors.

Date: January 21–23, 2014
Location: Embassy Suites Orange County Airport South
1325 East Dyer Rd.
Santa Ana, CA 92705

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This year's SBN Speed Networking Breakfast featured a theater-in-the-round layout, creating a more intimate, friendly gathering.

2013 SEMA Show Full of Opportunities for Women in the Industry

By Gigi Ho

The SEMA Businesswomen's Network (SBN) had a busy schedule during the 2013 SEMA Show. The Select Committee kicked-off the week with a lively leadership meeting and finished with a gathering of business experts to share ideas at Café SEMA. Each event showcased the benefits of SBN membership.

Gear Up Girl, held the day before Show opening, provided female students pursuing careers in the automotive industry a unique networking opportunity to talk with seasoned, female professionals to gain insight about how to get started.

This year also marked the 20th anniversary of the network. A reception was held Wednesday night, November 6, at the Las Vegas Hotel's Oasis Lounge to celebrate. Emceed by Select Committee member Camee Edelbrock, the event not only celebrated the milestone, but also recognized the past and present contributions of the group's members. The highlight of the evening was the presentation of the SBN Athena Awards to recognize outstanding contributions to women by individuals or companies in the automotive aftermarket.

For the fourth year in a row, the SEMA Speed Networking Breakfast Powered by SBN was sold out. The network introduced a new breakfast format this year with a theater-in-the-round layout, creating a more intimate, friendly gathering. Attendees were treated to a delicious breakfast followed by a rousing networking session where participants rotated through four-minute one-on-one meetings.

Capping off a tremendous SEMA Show week was the third year of Café SEMA: In the Know with a Cup of Joe, which featured female automotive industry experts leading table discussions with topics specific to advancing the industry. Offering 100 spots at the event, it allowed SEMA members to have conversations that truly impacted their business concerns.

It was indeed an amazing week at the SEMA Show for the members of SBN, and there's more in store for the future. To join the network and receive updates about future events, visit today.

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Join the SEMA Council Family

SEMA hosts 10 distinct councils and committees that represent focused niches within the specialty-equipment industry. These groups are comprised of elected volunteers (Select Committee) who guide and direct council activities while representing the membership at large. Although each council acts independently and represents a different segment, they are all focused on the betterment of the industry as a whole.

The value councils provide SEMA and the industry is beyond refute. It is inspiring to witness a diverse collection of company representatives, many of which are direct competitors, come together and develop educational, training, youth awareness and networking events that are, at the core, designed to give back and promote business. An equally important council function is to ensure that SEMA sustains a pulse on the industry and maintains a presence with its members.

The question is often asked, “Why should my company join a council?” The answer is simple. SEMA councils open the doors and provide you exposure to industry leaders, decision makers, trendsetters and a community of like-minded individuals who share your passion and desire to see business succeed and prosper. Once the doors are open, it is your responsibility to take advantage of the benefits by becoming actively involved.

Learn more today