People Places & Racing News

Council & Network News: Ride Along on the Hot Rod Power Tour

Strengthen Your Company Through Community

No matter what niche you're in—rods, restoration, racing, restyling, reps, trucks or wheels and tires—there's a SEMA council or professional network that's right for your company. SEMA councils and networks offer members a variety of market-specific programs and activities designed to provide educational and networking opportunities while promoting their particular industry segment.

YEN Logo

Visit YEN's website

Join the Journey: Ride Along on the Power Tour

By Amanda Gubbins

SEMA’s Young Executives Network (YEN) will send 10 network members on the Hot Rod Magazine Power Tour again this summer to share their experiences in the industry and the network. These YEN members will represent different niches in the specialty-equipment market as they interact with tour attendees and visit schools along the seven-city, seven-day journey to share about their careers with the next generation of industry executives. The participants will also take the tour online through the YEN Facebook page, Twitter and other social media outlets.

With a dedication for cultivating young talent in the industry, YEN provides educational and networking opportunities for employees of SEMA-member companies who are under the age of 40. Because the Hot Rod Power Tour attracts more than 5,000 vehicles each year, it is a prime opportunity to create consumer awareness about the diversity of the industry. YEN participants will collect stories of attendees and highlight the variety of automotive career paths available in the specialty-equipment market in their interactions.

"The YEN Power Tour is about more than hitting the road in your musclecar or hot rod; it's about forging relationships and making connections,” said YEN Chair Dan Kahn. “There are literally thousands of job opportunities in the automotive aftermarket for young people across the nation in the automotive aftermarket—we want to tell that story and show that in our high-performance family, young people aren't afraid to get their hands dirty."

Participants in the YEN Power Tour will receive a grant from SEMA to cover tour expenses. Five individuals will drive their own vehicles and receive $1,750, while the five other passengers will receive $500.

Learn more and apply today to join the YEN Power Tour. Applications will be accepted through April 10. All YEN members are eligible to apply. Not yet a member? Join today.

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Visit ARMO's website.
ARMO's Hot Products Showcase will take place April 23–25, 2015, at Spring Carlisle in Carlisle, Pennsylvania.

Register Your Restoration Parts for the Hot Products Showcase

Registration is now open for the Automotive Restoration Market Organization’s (ARMO) Hot Products Showcase, which will take place April 23–25, 2015, at Spring Carlisle in Carlisle, Pennsylvania.

This event is an opportunity for council members to display one or more products in front of one of the single-largest gatherings of automotive restoration enthusiasts in the world.

In addition to having products on display in the Hot Products tent, a professional photographer will shoot each one. The photos will be available to manufacturers and will also be used in a slideshow at the ARMO booth and reception at the 2015 SEMA Show. A gallery on the ARMO webpage also houses each of the photos, along with a product description for those unable to attend the event. This publicity is available to ARMO members for only the cost of shipping the product entries to the Carlisle Fairgrounds.

Product entries must meet the following criteria:
  • Be the product of an ARMO-member company.
  • Be available for sale (market-ready) by the opening of the Showcase, April 23.
  • Demonstrate unique/innovative technology and/or be a benefit to the restoration industry.
Members can register products by filling out the online application. All applications must be received by April 17, 2015.

Restoration Professionals Gather for Networking at the Hot Product Showcase

ARMO will also host a networking mixer in the Hot Products Tent at the Showcase, Thursday, April 24, from 5:30 p.m.–7:30 p.m. The mixer will be a chance for members to grab a drink and spend some time interacting one-on-one with council leadership and fellow ARMO members. The council leadership believes this event holds enormous potential for new ideas and partnerships as members network with new and old industry friends. RSVP today.

Not an ARMO member? Join today to gain access to this event and other council benefits.

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Visit ETTN's website 

Attend the Internet Retailer Conference and Exhibition with SEMA

The application deadline for the Emerging Trends & Technology Network's (ETTN) second Professional Development Program is March 16. For this program, 10 ETTN members will attend the Internet Retailer Conference and Exhibition (IRCE), June 3–4, 2015, in Chicago. Members who attend will receive the benefit of a negotiated registration rate and grant from SEMA to help cover costs. They attend the conference with a group of like-minded professionals, making the learning experience that much more engaging.

On its own, the costs associated with this conference could prove prohibitive for members, but through ETTN, participants receive a specially negotiated registration rate, and the company of the participating employee receives a $500 grant from SEMA to assist with registration (all benefits received are considered taxable income). IRCE, a two-day conference, originally cost $1,095. Combining the negotiated rate and SEMA grant, ETTN members save 80% and pay only $216 for registration.

IRCE is in its 11th year and is largely considered to be a flagship event of the e-commerce industry. Each year, more than 10,000 attendees travel to Chicago to hear from more than 200 expert speakers representing all areas of the industry. This year, exciting speakers include top executives from Target,, QVC and more. In addition to the educational opportunities, the 250,000 sq.-ft. exhibit hall presents more than 600 companies in the e-commerce solutions industry.

Applicants may be selected to attend one of three conferences in 2015, along with SEMA staff and a group of nine other network members. The first conference selected was the Social Media Strategies Summit, which took place in Las Vegas, in February. Later in the year, a third group of members will learn customer service skills at the Disney Quality Service course.

To learn more and apply, visit the ETTN Professional Development Program homepage or contact Senior Manager of Networks Bryan Harrison.

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Visit HRIA's website

Award-Winning Builders Share Lessons Learned at Autorama

By Amanda Gubbins

The Hot Rod Industry Alliance (HRIA) will host a Builder’s Panel at the Detroit Autorama, Saturday, March 7, at 3:00 p.m., in Room 140 A&B of Cobo Hall. Members and prospective members are invited to attend and hear about the reality of hot-rod building from some of the nation’s foremost, award-winning car builders. From Ridler Award winners to HRIA Hall of Fame members, this panel of hot rodders will discuss their secrets to success and what they’ve learned from setbacks. In between, you can expect a large dose of stories and laughs from our expert panel: Bobby Alloway, Jesse Greening, Dave Lane, J.F. Launier, Andy Leach and Troy Trepanier. Mark your calendar and make plans to attend. For more information, contact Jim Skelly.

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Visit TORA's website.  

Council Members Invited for an Exclusive Look at International Trucks

By Amanda Gubbins

Manufacturer members of the Truck and Off-Road Alliance (TORA) are invited to attend one of SEMA’s stops during the 2015 International Measuring Session Tour. New on the tour will be the ’14 UAZ Hunter and ’14 Mitsubishi L200. This will also be members’ final opportunity to gain access to the ’12 Toyota HiLux (through June) and ’13 Ford Ranger T6 (through November).

These vehicles are popular throughout key international markets, including Europe, the Middle East, Australia and Asia, and represent an opportunity for product-line expansion for many truck accessory manufacturers. With multiple stops around the country, this tour is a convenient way for members to collect the vehicle data needed for their product development.

The next measuring session will take place April 7–8 at Roush Performance in Plymouth, Michigan. Other sessions will follow April 21–22 at Hypertech in Bartlett, Tennessee, and May 18–22 at the SEMA Garage in Diamond Bar, California.

Visit the International Measuring Session website for more information about the tour, the vehicles and to register.

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SBN Logo
Visit SBN's website.
Charlene Bower

SBN Member of the Month: Charlene Bower, Bower Motorsports Media

Charlene Bower, owner of Bower Motorsports Media in Mesa, Arizona, is SBN’s Member of the Month.

What does your company do?

We are a PR firm that works with companies, racers and events to ensure each category is represented correctly in every way possible. We also own and operate multiple projects, including Race Team Store, Racer Marketing School, I’m Not Just a Girl, Offroad Newswire, Shirt Swag Club, Shirt Bling Club and others that are in testing phases.

What is your position?

Owner, chaos creator.

What is the most satisfying aspect of your job?

Watching racers succeed at the races, but more importantly, at keeping their sponsors happy.

How long have you been involved with the aftermarket industry?

20 years, since June 1994.

What brought you to the industry?

The love of the sport, which continues today.

What are some of your major professional accomplishments?

Five years in business as Bower Motorsports Media.

Who is your industry mentor?

Dave Damron of Chaparral Motorsports, Greg Mulkey of Raceline Wheels, Erik “Camo” Linker of

What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?

“Is it good enough?” – Camo, As a perfectionist, I have had to learn this time-saving technique. It has helped me be very successful in recognizing and meeting expectations.

What would someone meeting you for the first time be surprised to learn?

I have worked in the off-road industry for more than 20 years in almost every segment from retail, wholesale, media and events. Knowing every level of customer gives me a unique outlook on projects.

What is your dream car?

The ’15 Corvette is looking very sexy!

What is your favorite pastime?

Dirt-bike riding. Exploring areas that not many get to see while clean air pushes through my helmet.