People Places & Racing News

Movers & Shakers: Avery Dennison Introduces New Wrap Trainer Blake Madsen

Blake Madsen
Blake Madsen

Avery Dennison Graphics Solutions has announced that veteran wrap and graphics industry professional Blake Madsen has joined the Avery Dennison team as one of its wrap trainers. Madsen’s first class is May 1-2 at Warrior Wraps in Las Vegas.

Madsen is an accomplished professional in the wrap and graphics industry, with more than 15 years of experience in the field. He began his career in 2006, working in sign and print shops mastering the art of vehicle wraps. Madsen's passion for his craft led him to compete in numerous wrap competitions, where he consistently placed at the top of his class. His expertise and dedication have earned him numerous accolades, including seven industry certifications including becoming Avery Dennison certified in 2016. A year later in 2017, Madsen founded his company, Brand Command, which specializes in commercial vehicle branding.

For more information about Avery Dennison 2023 wrap classes, PPF and Automotive Window Film classes, and certification schedules, visit

Dragonfly Energy and Airstream Form Battery Partnership

Dragonfly Energy Holdings Corp. has announced it has partnered with Airstream, manufacturer of riveted aluminum travel trailers, to provide Battle Born Batteries as standard equipment in the Pottery Barn Special Edition Travel Trailer and Classic Travel Trailer models, and as an optional upgrade on the REI Co-op Special Edition Basecamp Travel Trailer.

Additionally, Dragonfly Energy was recently named an Airstream Five Rivet Supplier and was awarded the Top Improvement Score Designation as a result of their comprehensive service and support program. Dragonfly Energy has a strategic partnership with THOR Industries, the parent company of the Airstream brand, supplying lithium-ion batteries for several of the THOR family of companies.

Epicor Donates $100,000 to Northwood University for Aftermarket Software Training Lab


The Sloan Family Building for Aftermarket Studies at Northwood University. Northwood is the only school in the country to offer an automotive aftermarket management major. It recently received a $100,000 gift from Epicor to fund a new lab for students to learn leading automotive aftermarket software.

Northwood University has announced it has received a $100,000 gift from Epicor, a global leader of industry-specific enterprise software to promote business growth, to fund a new lab for students to learn leading automotive aftermarket software.

"The generous donation from Epicor has provided funding to establish this new lab, which will integrate Epicor Auto-based products into higher education courses," stated Dr. Kristin Stehouwer, academic vice president and provost for Northwood University. "The classes will be designed so students are educated in the use of Epicor Auto Product capabilities as they graduate and go into the marketplace, or in some cases, interview for employment at Epicor. The goal is to have at least one upper-level and one lower-level course with an Epicor Lab each semester."

Additionally, students who successfully complete the Epicor Lab series can apply and test for an industry certification. The lab coursework will correlate to the current undergraduate program to enhance and reinforce classroom learning.

Oracle Lighting to Exhibit During Jeep Beach 2023

Oracle LightingOracle Lighting has announced it will exhibit during Jeep Beach 2023, held in Daytona Beach, Florida, April 23-30, as part of the event's 20th anniversary celebration. According to event organizers, Jeep Beach is one of the largest Jeep-exclusive events in the world, attracting more than 225,000 people and 25,000 Jeeps to Daytona Beach in 2022. All 50 states and 34 countries were represented last year. During Jeep Beach 2023, Oracle Lighting will feature a number of its new Jeep-specific lighting solutions.

NGK Spark Plugs Co. Rebrands to Niterra

Officials with NGK Spark Plugs (U.S.A.) have announced its corporate company has rebranded to Niterra. While Niterra will become the group's overall name, the brands NGK and NTK will continue to exist for the company's respective ignition and sensor businesses. The move is in alignment with the company's "2040 Vision" and "2030 Long-Term Management Plan," which will see the company "transform its portfolio in more sustainability-driven directions." Niterra is based out of Aichi, Japan. For more information, visit

EGR USA Debuts the Ultimate Overlanding Jeep Gladiator at Overland Expo 2023

EGREGR USA has built an overlanding Jeep Gladiator for debut at Overland Expo 2023. EGR USA and the new Ultimate Jeep Gladiator will attend all four Overland Expo events: Overland Expo West in Flagstaff, Arizona (May 19-21); Overland Expo PNW, Redmond, Oregon (July 7-9); Overland Expo Mountain West in Loveland, Colorado (August 25-27); and Overland Expo East in Arrington, Virginia (October 6-8).

The Ultimate Overlanding Jeep Gladiator is a '21 Hydro Blue Gladiator JT that features EGR's electric retractable EGR RollTrac bed cover, EGR Superguard hood guard with a dark smoke finish, EGR in-channel window visors in a black matte finish, a LEITNER forged  Active Cargo System (ACS) rack, LEITNER HydroPod portable shower kit, MaxTrax MKII recovery boards, TACTIK Stubby front bumper with hoop, TACTIK T10 high-performance winch, Carnivore front bumper from Quadratec, 2.5/3.5 Rubicon Express lift kit, satin black Lynx wheels and 35-in. NITTO Trail Grappler tires from Quadratec and Rock Slide Engineering four-door step slider.

Chris Anderson Appointed Executive Vice President of Elgin Industries

Elgin Industries has announced the appointment of Chris Anderson as executive vice president. Anderson, who joined Elgin in 2000, most recently served as executive vice president of the Elgin World Trade operating unit. He reports to Elgin President and CEO Bill Skok. In his new role, Anderson will assume additional operating responsibility for the company's domestic and overseas businesses.

Speedway Motors Reveals 2023 Cars & Coffee Schedule

Speedway MotorsSpeedway Motors has announced the dates for its 2023 Cars & Coffee events, held at its company headquarters in Lincoln, Nebraska, on the last Saturday of each month, May through October. The family-friendly gathering features an extensive car display, camaraderie of the automotive and motorsports community, plus coffee and donuts. Those who display their car will also receive two complimentary vouchers for the Speedway Motors Museum of American Speed.

In addition, the May 27 kick-off event will feature cars from the pages of Wheel Hub magazine, which will fill the newly completed 90,000-sq.-ft. expansion in the museum. For more information, visit the Speedway Motors announcement here.

2023 Speedway Motors Cars & Coffee Dates
340 Victory Lane, Lincoln, Nebraska
8:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.

  • Saturday, May 27
  • Saturday, June 24
  • Saturday, July 29
  • Saturday, August 26
  • Saturday, September 30
  • Saturday, October 28

Tread Lightly! Hires New Utah Program Manager

PennefatherTread Lightly! has announced the addition of a new Utah program manager, Brett Pennefather, who will be responsible for creating and fostering relationships with the land managers that allow for the implementation of Tread Lightly!’s stewardship, education and outreach programs.

Pennefather has a keen interest in people and their relationship with the environment, which steered him to a national diploma in nature conservation from Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University in South Africa. After working in the safari industry, he embarked on an international career of whitewater rafting, kayaking and canyoneering guiding in Scotland, Morocco, Nepal, Switzerland, Sri Lanka, Vietnam, Cambodia, New Zealand and Uganda.

Pennefather and his wife moved to Utah for all the outdoor opportunities that the state has to offer. He spent a year and a half as a field producer for a Salt Lake City-based TV show "At Your Leisure," where he got to spend quality time in the Utah outdoors, meeting and sharing experiences with diverse enthusiasts across the state.

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