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SEMA Council & Network News: Meet the YEN Power Tour Participants

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.

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Eric Ables
Michael Phillips

Meet the YEN Power Tour Participants

The Young Executives Network (YEN) will hit the road this summer with 10 members to participate in the Hot Rod Power Tour. The YENsters will stop in seven cities, starting in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, with the finish line in Kansas City, Kansas. Each stop attracts hundreds of local car enthusiasts, students and automotive professionals. YEN members will interact with students, showing them around the “traveling car show,” and discussing career paths in the automotive aftermarket industry.

You can follow them along their journey via the hashtag #YENPowerTour. Let’s meet one of the teams!

Eric Ables will drive the the ’14 GTR #Pennzilla on the YEN Power Tour.

Driver – Eric Ables, Flat 12 Gallery: Assistant General Manager

Eric Ables is the assistant general manager at Flat 12 Gallery, which specializes in the repair and sales of “cars with provenance.” The dealership is often home to movie cars, celebrity-owned cars, one-off prototypes and vehicles with race history.

Flat 12 Gallery was featured on CNBC’s primetime program, “The Car Chasers.” Ables “The Mad Scientist” starred on the show, which showcased his automotive ingenuity with old relics to the latest technologies. He started in engineering with a background in environmental lab testing, and spends his off hours working on and building cars. Over the years, Ables has morphed his hobby and his work together, and is now an integral part of the Flat 12 team, having been tasked with heading up the launch of Flat 12 Gallery’s new speed and appearance brand, Speed Asylum. The first build under the brand, led by Ables, will be the ’14 GTR #Pennzilla, which will travel from Boston to Los Angeles on the Goldrush Rally, and then turn around and head out on the YEN Power Tour.  

Passenger – Michael Phillips, Slam’d Magazine: Staff Editor

Michael Phillips, staff editor, is the newest member of Slam’d magazine. His family is full of enthusiasts, engineers and lead feet. He has a deep connection for all things automotive, having grown up in the garage with both his grandfathers, who have worked in the industry their entire careers. Phillips is currently in school, pursuing his degree in graphic design. His love for cars covers a wide variety of categories and genres. He has two current projects—a ’99 Jeep TJ and an ’03 S2000—as he apparently appreciates torqueless vehicles that are a blast to drive. He hopes to explore his creativity by learning the ropes of digital publishing and automotive journalism at Slam’d. Phillips is blown away by his opportunity to participate in the YEN Power Tour.

For more information about the YEN Power Tour, visit

Young entrepreneurs have the opportunity to bring their new products to the SEMA Show to compete for a grand-prize package designed to launch the winner’s business to the next level.

Young Professionals Business Competition Application Period Ending Soon!

Calling all young entrepreneurs with the next big automotive aftermarket product! The SEMA Launch Pad powered by YEN is a platform for you to transform your dream into a growing business.

Young entrepreneurs have the opportunity to bring their new products to the SEMA Show to compete for a grand-prize package designed to launch the winner’s business to the next level. Any executive with an automotive aftermarket product or service is encouraged to apply. You do not have to be a SEMA member to participate.

Ten finalists will be given the opportunity to pitch their product to industry icons in front of a live audience at the 2016 SEMA Show.
Prize packages include:

Semi-Finalists (14 participants):

  • One-year complimentary SEMA membership.
  • Complimentary registration to the 2016 Exhibitor Summit, two nights of hotel and meals at the event (June 21–22).
  • $500 grant to be used toward the cost of travel to the 2016 Exhibitor Summit.

Finalists (10 participants):

  • All the semi-finalist prizes, and:
  • Complimentary 2016 SEMA Show kiosk booth in the New Products Showcase area.*
  • Two exhibitor passes to the SEMA Show.
  • Two tickets to the SEMA Banquet.
  • A one-hour mentoring session with an industry icon.

Winner (one participant):

  • All the semi-finalist prizes, finalist prizes and:
  • SEMA News: One full-page, four-color ad.
  • SEMA eNews: One full-page article.
  • SEMA YEN Member News: Featured section in one article.
  • SEMA Show: Turnkey exhibit space with premium placement at the 2017 SEMA Show*
  • SEMA Garage: One full day of photography studio usage and up to three hours of free custom scanning services.
  • SEMA Data Co-op: 50% off supplier monthly membership fees for your first year. Up to a $3,600 value.
  • SEMA Education: One video feature in SEMA's “BizTips” video series.
  • SEMA Manufacturers’ Rep Network: Distribution/sales support consultation meeting.
  • Hot Rod Magazine: A page equivalent advertisement in Hot Rod magazine and 200k banners on the Hot Rod network.
  • Family Events: Event-level sponsorship package to either a Family Events truck and off-road group property or a Family Events performance car group property.

* No changes are permitted to the booth layout. Company does not accrue SEMA Show seniority points by reason of exhibiting at a 2016 SEMA Show kiosk booth in the New Products Showcase area or the turnkey exhibit space with premium placement at the 2017 SEMA Show. All taxes on prizes are the sole responsibility of the prize winning company. Tax liability is based on the value of the prizes.

What are you waiting for? Learn more and launch your business today!

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PRO to Host Long-Range Planning Meeting in Detroit

The Professional Restylers Organization (PRO) is hosting its annual Long-Range Planning (LRP) meeting June 15–16 in the nation’s car capital—Detroit. The annual LRP is an opportunity for council members to address restyling industry issues and challenges, and weigh in on the needs of its member companies. Employees of PRO-member companies are encouraged to attend to gain insight into council initiatives, contribute their ideas to push the restyling industry forward and mingle with Select Committee members and SEMA staff to learn how PRO resources can help your business grow.

As an added bonus, attendees will tour the innovative Mobility Transformation Facility, more commonly known as Mcity, at the University of Michigan. The 32-acre facility is located on campus and is the first of its kind in testing new automated vehicle technologies and their capabilities to safely maneuver actual roadways. Public access to Mcity is limited, but LRP attendees will enjoy a guided, private tour of the facility.

The meetings kick off Wednesday, June 15, at the Detroit Metro Airport Marriot, and will break late morning for the Mcity tour and lunch. The meeting will reconvene back at the hotel after the tour for a group discussion and breakout sessions. A PRO-hosted dinner will take place that evening. The Thursday agenda includes a continental breakfast, breakout sessions, lunch and group project planning, and is slated to end at 3:00 p.m.

RSVP now!

For questions on this event, contact Senior Manager of Councils Allan Keefe at 909-978-6696 or

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