People, Places & Racing News

Movers & Shakers: Yokohama Tire Promotes Pavan Desaneni to Vice President of Information Technology

Compiled by SEMA Editors

Pavan Desaneni
Pavan Desaneni

Yokohama Tire Promotes Pavan Desaneni to Vice President of Information Technology

Yokohama Tire has hired 20-year IT veteran Pavan Desaneni as its new vice president of information technology. He replaces Wasi Ahmed and will report to Tom Masuguchi, Yokohama executive vice president and CFO. Desaneni, who graduated from Osmania University with a degree in computer science, joined Yokohama in 2014 as senior manager, enterprise architect and platform. He was promoted to director, enterprise architect and platform before ascending to vice president. Prior to joining Yokohama, Desaneni worked as IT manager at Ventura Foods and a senior systems engineer at Pharmavite LLC.

Legendary Builder Stephan Papadakis Documents Development of 1,000+ hp Motor for YouTube Series

2018 SEMA Masters of Motors winner Stephan Papadakis invites YouTube viewers to join him for an all-access look at what it takes to develop and create a 1,000+ hp motor for the MKV Supra from a brand-new production engine, which replaces the 2JZ, first introduced in 1990 and last produced in 2007. In the four-part YouTube series, Papadakis explores the limits of the Mark V Supra B58 engine. To deliver 1,000 hp, Papadakis must push the performance limits to more than triple its power. From first looks under the engine cover to the engine dyno reveal, a four-part episodic digital series lifts the veil on the often secretive world of the sport-compact scene and takes viewers into the process of building on the leading edge.

Brett Tennar
Brett Tennar

Lubrication Specialties Inc. Promotes Vice President of Operations Brett Tennar to President

Lubrication Specialties Inc. (LSI) has announced the immediate promotion of Brett Tennar, LSI’s former plant manager and vice president of operations, to president, effective immediately. The announcement was made recently by LSI’s founder and CEO Chris Gabrelcik. Hired in 2016 as LSI’s plant manager, Tennar was responsible for ordering raw materials, all production, shipping, receiving and participating in weekly manager meetings and staff meetings to advise on plant progress. Mid-year in 2018, Tennar was promoted to vice president of operations, where he was more directly involved in human resources, sales and distribution, marketing, accounting and planning.

Toyo Tires Treadpass and South Hall Entrance Exhibit Return to SEMA Show

Toyo Tires is returning to the 2019 SEMA Show with both in its display located at the South Hall entrance (booth #62122) and the Toyo Tires Treadpass located between the Central and South Halls of the Las Vegas Convention Center. See some of the show’s top vehicle builds, meet celebrities and Toyo Tires models and have a chance to collect limited-edition pins. Features will include special appearances by Ken Block (Tuesday, 12:30 p.m.–1:30 p.m.; Wednesday, 2:30 p.m.–3:30 p.m.; and Thursday, 12:30 p.m.–1:30 p.m.) and TJ Hunt (Tuesday, 2:30 p.m.–4:00 p.m.; Wednesday, 11:00 a.m.–12:30 p.m.; and Thursday, 1:30 p.m.–3:00 p.m.). Toyo Tires will also debut several new vehicle builds in the Toyo Tires Treadpass, including the Baja 911, Ruffian Mustang, Button Built Ferrari “BB355TT,” ’20 Toyota GR Supra Widebody, DEFCONBRIX ’71 Ford Bronco and Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 5 Widebody.

California Tire Dealers
All tire industry members are welcome to attend the annual California Tire Dealers (CTDA)/1-800EveryRim New Year Luncheon.

California Tire Dealers, 1-800EveryRim to Host January Luncheon

The eighth annual California Tire Dealers (CTDA)/1-800EveryRim New Year Luncheon will be held January 29, 2020, in Santa Fe Springs, California, and will feature Tire Industry Association (TIA) Vice President Dan Nothdurft of Tires, Tires, Tires and SEMA Wheel & Tire Council Select Committee Member George Finch of The Carlstar Group. In addition, master of ceremonies will be Chris Barry, senior sales director of The Independent Tire Dealer Group (ITDG) and CTDA past president. All tire industry members are welcome to attend, and retail tire dealers are invited free of charge. For sponsorship information, contact CTDA Director Marc Connerly at 916-214-6495. Early RSVPs are now being accepted. Contact Billy Eordekian at 562-351-4840.

Russell Stephens
Russell Stephens

Russell Stephens Joins PerTronix Performance Brands

Russell Stephens, a 30-plus-year industry veteran, has joined the PerTronix Performance Brands family as vice president of sales and marketing. Stephens was previously president of a prominent Texas-based performance manufacturer, where he held various roles in the organization for more than 30 years. Stephens has also served the industry as a volunteer with more than 25 years of service with SEMA, including three terms on the SEMA Board of Directors. The role of vice president of sales and marketing for Pertronix was previously held by industry icon Jim Hairston, who will move into a new role within the organization where he will work with business development and acquisitions.

Austin Hatcher
’18 Jeep Wrangler
Austin Hatcher
’18 Ford Explorer

Chattanooga Police Looking for Two Vehicles Stolen From Austin Hatcher Foundation Last Weekend

Last weekend, two vehicles—an ’18 Ford Explorer and ’18 Jeep Wrangler—were stolen from the Austin Hatcher Foundation for Pediatric Cancer’s new Education Advancement Center, located at 1601 South Holtzclaw Ave., in Chattanooga, Tennessee. Chattanooga police are working to recover the stolen vehicles. Anyone with information regarding the location of these vehicles should call the Chattanooga Police Department at 423-698-2525. The vehicles were built and outfitted by pediatric cancer patients and their families as part of the foundation’s industrial arts therapy division. This program, offered at no cost to participants, gives children a chance to perform occupational therapy in a fun, educational environment. In addition to being used by childhood cancer patients and survivors as part of therapy and recovery, both vehicles were to be auctioned in Scottsdale, Arizona, at the Leake Auto Auction in January 2020.

“We are completely devastated by this horrible theft,” said Austin Hatcher Foundation President Amy Jo Osborn. “These cars had a lot of hard work and love put into them by our patients, and we’re heartbroken to see the wreckage left behind by whoever stole these vehicles. They obviously damaged the vehicles and left a trail of destroyed parts behind. Even if the police find the vehicles, we probably won’t be able to use them as fundraisers as we’d planned. This is truly a huge loss.”

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