SEMA News - April 2010 


Simmons, who passed away in February, was named SEMA Person of the Year in 1980 and was inducted into the SEMA Hall of Fame in 2004.  


Performance parts pioneer, SEMA Hall of Fame member and founder of SECO Equipment Company and SECO Performance Centers John Simmons passed away on Sunday, February 14.

“John Simmons was more than my mentor for more than 20 years,” said SEMA Chairman of the Board Rick Rollins. “He was like a father that you could always go to for the answers, and not the answers that you wanted to hear, but the ones that came from his many years of experience and, more importantly, from his heart.”

Simmons started his warehouse distribution business for performance parts in 1962. He began by selling parts from a trailer that he hauled to race tracks on weekends. By 1967, Simmons was committed to the performance parts business, but he also owned and operated the Helena Dragstrip. Soon after the track was closed in 1967 due to noise, Simmons, along with several partners, acquired Lassiter Mountain Speedway, which they ran for 10 years.

Simmons joined SEMA in 1969. He served three terms on the SEMA Board of Directors from 1978–1982, and he chaired the SEMA Finance Committee in 1981. He served on the awards judging committee from 1984–1986, chaired the Person of the Year Committee in 1987 and also served as Membership Committee chairman. Simmons was named SEMA Person of the Year in 1980 and was inducted into the SEMA Hall of Fame in 2004.

“John didn’t have time for the modern-day marketing surveys or 30,000-foot views of what was going on, because he knew,” Rollins said. “He stayed in touch with what was going on in the streets, on the race tracks and at the car shows. As a manufacturer sales manager, I made very few decisions concerning selling into distribution or running promotions without first consulting John. I will miss him.” 



More than 50 educational seminars conducted at the 2009 SEMA Show are now available to download at   


SEMA Show Seminars Delivered to Your Desktop

Did you miss the 50 world-class seminars at the 2009 SEMA Show? No problem. For the first time, SEMA has recorded and uploaded audio from every education session presented at the 2009 Show.

More than 50 sessions are now available for you to download, listen to at your convenience and refer back to at any time.

Members pay just $4.95 per session, or $9.95 per session for non-SEMA members.

Gain fresh insight and learn practical tools that can improve your business today from the SEMA Education Institute (SEI). Get started at




Exhibitor applications for the 2010 SEMA Show must be returned by May 7 in order for companies to participate in the priority space-selection process.  


Exhibit Space Applications for 2010 SEMA Show Now Available

Exhibitor applications are now available for the 2010 SEMA Show, which will be held Tuesday through Friday, November 2–5, 2010, in Las Vegas.

The forms are posted on the SEMA Show website and must be returned by May 7 in order for companies to participate in the priority space-selection process.

The SEMA Show is the premiere automotive accessories trade show in the world. The annual event draws more than 100,000 industry professionals, including 50,000 buyers and 2,300 media representatives.

To learn more about the SEMA Show and how to exhibit, visit or contact SEMA Show Management at 702/450-7662, x120.


SEMA Show Enhances Offerings for Paint and Body Market


SEMA Show organizers are working with the Society of Collision and Repair Specialists and the Collision Industry Conference to enhance the Paint, Body & Equipment section of the 2010 SEMA Show.   


The Paint, Body & Equipment (PBE) area of the 2010 SEMA Show will be larger and in a more prominent location than it was in 2009, and educational sessions specific to the paint and body market will be offered during the event, set for November 2–5, in Las Vegas.

The move to enhance the PBE section by Show organizers was made due to SEMA Show attendees increasingly expressing interest in the paint and body market. While the PBE floor section was formally introduced in 2009, Show organizers had seen an increase in the product category for many years.

“We’re constantly adapting to changes in the industry,” said Chris Kersting, SEMA president and CEO. “We challenge ourselves to deliver high value to both exhibitors and attendees, all with the goal of providing them with a Show that is current and relevant.”

Organizers are also working with the Society of Collision and Repair Specialists (SCRS) and the Collision Industry Conference (CIC), both of which will host meetings for their groups in Las Vegas during the week of the SEMA Show. The SCRS is collaborating closely with SEMA to develop targeted educational seminars at the SEMA Show.

The Exhibit Space Rental Agreement (ESRA) for manufacturers is now available. Attendee registration opens in May. Updated SEMA Show information is also available at



The Sports Car Club of America Inc. (SCCA) appointed Reece White to the position of public relations manager. White will manage the public relations efforts for such SCCA Pro Racing series as the World Challenge Championships, Playboy Mazda MX-5 Cup and Trans-Am Series as well as SCCA’s Club Racing, Solo and Rally programs. His duties will include producing feature articles, press releases and media materials on each of the SCCA programs. SCCA, Topeka, KS; 785/357-7222. 

THI Corp., parent company of Extang, TruXedo and BedRug, has hired Michael McGunagle as marketing director. He is responsible for the marketing and branding efforts for all THI product lines. McGunagle has 13 years of experience in the automotive aftermarket industry, working with companies such as Maxxis Tires and Eaton Corp. Extang, Ann Arbor, MI; 800/877-2588. TruXedo, Yankton, SD; 877/878-9336.

The team at CWR Electronics will participate in the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life in Berkley Township, New Jersey, May 15–16. Team CWR will camp out overnight and take turns walking around the track at Veterans Park to raise money and awareness for the battle against cancer.

In December 2009, Carlisle Companies Inc. created Carlisle Engineered Transportation Solutions, which is comprised of Carlisle Tire & Wheel, Carlisle Industrial Brake & Friction and Carlisle Power Transmission. According to the company, combining the operations into one unit will strengthen the value of the Carlisle brand, create a differentiated platform for its markets and bolster Carlisle’s position with key manufacturing and distribution customers. Carlisle Tire & Wheel, Carson, CA; 310/816-1001.

Deeza Chassis Parts has added eCommerce capabilities to its website. The enhancements include the ability for customers to review stock quantities, place regular or drop-ship orders and review order history, statements and invoices.

Advantage Truck Acc. Inc. announced that the company’s quality management system has been assessed and registered by Intertek Testing Services NA Inc. as conforming to the requirements of ISO 9001:2008 as of January 25, 2010. Advantage Truck Accessories Inc., Elkhart, IN; 574/293-0979.

Mishimoto Automotive announced that its T-shirt Design Contest is underway as of February 8. The contest provides enthusiasts with the opportunity to determine the next installment in the Mishimoto apparel line. Mishimoto Automotive, Wilmington, DE; 877/GO-MISHI.

Edelbrock and the Center for Learning Unlimited have once again teamed up in support of helping children with learning disabilities to present the 5th Annual Rev’ved Up 4 Kidz VIP gala charity auction and car show, April 24–25. The weekend kicks off with a gala dinner and charity auction on Saturday evening at “Vic’s Garage,” hosted by event organizer Christi Edelbrock. Sunday, Edelbrock hosts the Rev’ved Up 4 Kidz Car Show, where all makes and models are welcome. Interested participants can pre-register here. Edelbrock, Torrance, CA; 310/781-2222.

Meyer Distributing added a new cross dock in Nashville that will act as a key location for the company’s distribution network. Meyer will provide route delivery to the Nashville metro area, Clarksville, Columbia and greater Tennessee from the new location. Meyer Distributing, Jasper, IN; 800/MEYERUSA.


The Association of Diesel Specialists Guadalajara regional event is set for May 19–23 at the Camino Real Hotel in Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico. The event showcases technical training courses and new technologies regarding fuel-injection systems. Attendees will also have the chance to explore the packed exhibit hall for the latest products and resources available.

Skyjacker Suspensions is offering a $35 consumer rebate on all Skyjacker Hydro H7000 series and Nitro N8000 series shocks and leveling kits. Unlike similar promotions, the rebate does not require the dealer to fill out any paperwork. Dealers simply sell the product, and the consumer and Skyjacker handle the rebate portion of the transaction. The promotion runs from March 1 to May 31. For more information, visit Skyjacker Suspensions, Monroe, LA; 318/388-0816.

Continental Tire North America announced a name change that better reflects the growth of the tire maker in both North and South America. The new name for the passenger and light-truck and commercial vehicle tire divisions in the region is now Continental Tire the Americas LLC. One of the key actions in 2009 that led to the decision to modify the name was the acquisition of a leading tire company in Latin America, Compañia Ecuatoriana del Caucho S.A. (ERCO).

RCH Designs announced the opening of its Studio Garage, a white room that is 25 ft. long and 35 ft. wide, with a custom silk ceiling baffle. The studio has lighting options for video and still photography. The studio currently offers the use of basic tools and machinery (an air compressor and air tools, a work bench, cordless power tools, wrenches, sockets, etc). RCH Designs, Huntington Beach, CA; 714/842-9899.

Fear This Inc., a nonprofit organization that provides safe-driver education to teens, has incorporated five exercises in its program that teach drivers to think and react quickly. Based on the Emergency Vehicle Operation Course (EVOC) undergone at all levels of law enforcement, Fear This Inc., founded by Woodrow Gaines, employs the Teen Vehicle Operation Course taught by peace officers and certified EVOC instructors. Fear This Inc., Snellville, GA; 770/823-7823.

Autobytel Inc. named Steve Lind executive vice president of corporate development. Lind brings to the company nearly 15 years of online and offline automotive experience, a rich collection of industry contacts and a proven track record of executive leadership honed at Nissan North America, LeadPoint, Stealing Home Media and through nearly 10 previous years of service
at Autobytel.

The first annual Winfield Award—presented by master customizer and designer Gene Winfield in recognition of automotive excellence—will be presented during the 2010 Syracuse Nationals, July 16–18. Winfield will choose six vehicles known as the Select Six from the entries, and the vehicles will be prominently displayed inside one of the main buildings at the nationals. Winfield will conduct the final judging at the show, and the winner will be announced on Saturday, July 17. The winner will receive a one-of-a-kind personalized commemorative jacket and $5,000. For additional details, call 800/753-3978.

Fidanza and Zoom Performance Products formed a new partnership known as the Clutch Alliance, which allows the two companies to work together on engineering and product development while continuing to exist as separate entities. Fidanza, Perry, OH;

Classic Instruments announced that it will sponsor the Pros Pick award at all National Street Rod Association (NSRA) events. The Classic Instruments Pros Pick award will be presented by the NSRA at all 11 events yearly, and the company will determine five Pros Pick recipients at each event. At the Street Rod Nationals, there will be 12 recipients chosen. Classic Instruments, Boyne City, MI; 231/582-0461.    


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