SEMA News—August 2021

PEOPLE

SEMA Announces New Board of Directors Members

By Mike Imlay

The SEMA Board of Directors is composed of industry representatives who volunteer their time to lead and guide the association. They are elected by SEMA-member companies and reflect the trade association’s key membership categories: manufacturers, distributors/retailers, manufacturers’ representatives and services.

Member terms are staggered so that there is regular turnover in the Board’s composition. For the 2021 election cycle, there were 10 candidates running for six open seats, which included chair-elect, distributors/retailers, services, and manufacturers board positions. Online voting took place from May 11 through May 25 and was open to all current SEMA-member companies. Per SEMA bylaws, votes were cast by each company’s primary contact.

With the results tallied, SEMA announced that Kyle Fickler of Driven Racing Oil will become the chair-elect. In addition, Larry Montante of Keystone Automotive Operations and Steve Whipple of Jegs High Performance were elected to distributors/retailers seats; Kim Pendergast of Magnuson Superchargers and Brian Reese of Driven Lighting Group were elected to manufacturers seats; and Lindsay Hubley of Lodestone Events was elected to a services seat.

The entire Board of Directors is honored each July at the association’s Installation & Gala, which for 2021 takes place Friday, July 30, in the new West Hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center. This year, outgoing Immediate Past Chair and Secretary Wade Kawasaki of Legendary Companies and Board members Donnie Eatherly of P&E Distributors, Dan Kahn of Kahn Media, and Brian Lounsberry of One 6 Motorsports also will be recognized for their service on the Board.

The following pages provide biographical information and statements from the newly elected Board members regarding the platforms they ran on, their views on issues confronting the industry, and their priorities for serving the association.

Kyle FicklerChair-Elect

Kyle Fickler
Director of Sales & New Business Development
Driven Racing Oil

As SEMA Board chair-elect, I will work to maintain our right to modify our vehicles and have a place to enjoy them. This freedom can be restricted in many ways, but whether it is regulatory, legislative or societal, we need to act proactively as an industry to provide solutions. I bring SEMA members a unique perspective blended from the education of a licensed attorney, the unwavering commitment required of a business owner, and the hands-on passion demonstrated by a virtual lifetime of successful participation in motorsports and our industry.

I have served the last eight years on the SEMA Board of Directors and as SEMA treasurer, following six years as a select committee member and as chair of the Motorsports Parts Manufacturers Council. I’ve also served on numerous SEMA task forces and committees, including:

  • SEMA Board Executive Committee
  • SEMA Investment Committee
  • SEMA Budget Committee (chair)
  • PRI Advisory Committee
  • SEMA Manufacturer of the Year Task Force (chair)
  • SEMA Person of the Year Task Force
  • SEMA Board Nominating Committee (chair and three-time member)
  • SEMA Town Hall (host and three-time panelist)
  • MPMC Rules of the Road (three-time panelist)
  • MPMC Future of Performance (panelist)
  • CBLC Liaison
  • SEMA PAC President’s Club

Although I am a licensed attorney in Missouri and Montana, my best experience has been in service of three different industry-leading manufacturers dating back more than 25 years: director of business development for Aeromotive Inc.; vice president of sales and equity partner at Weld Racing LLC; and current director of sales and business development at Driven Racing Oil.

I am very active in motorsports, with an AHRA world championship and two NHRA national event wins to date. My wife and daughter also race, with Danika (my daughter) winning back-to-back races to start this season. When I’m not racing, you are likely to hear a story about our JK on a Badge of Honor trail. Like most gearheads, we also have plenty of projects (10) that need attention.

Our industry is what my family lives for, and I will be a capable and energetic leader serving our industry for the benefit of current and future generations.

Larry MontanteDistributors/Retailers

Larry Montante
Vice President, Category Management
Keystone Automotive Operations

My name is Larry Montante, and I am excited to have the opportunity to serve the SEMA membership.

The market is changing, and it’s time for action with a fresh approach. I am a proven, innovative leader with 37 years of industry experience across many functions and channels, and I know the needs of the supplier, retailer and consumer.

Agenda: Leveraging my experience, passion for driving change and strategic nature, I will drive several impactful topics to be part of SEMA’s future plans.

  • Preserve: Protect our industry by engaging in key legislative areas, understanding and managing market shifts that cause disruption, fostering the creative passion that drives our industry, and preparing for changes brought on by future vehicles and technologies.
  • Grow: Expand our industry and increase consumer awareness, target youth markets and onboard new enthusiasts and consumers while developing plans to pursue adjacent markets.
  • Engage: Drive more engagement from existing membership and grow membership; drive effectiveness and reach of SEMA communications; diversify SEMA’s influence beyond the SEMA Show and deliver more consumer reach through digital channels.

Experience:

Career: 37 years with Keystone Automotive. Well-versed in different business functions from my various leadership roles:

  • Currently: vice president, category management.
  • Previously: vice president, marketing; pricing and analytics director; category manager; buyer; salesperson; retail store associate; and warehouse associate, where I started my career at Keystone.

Industry: Served on the SEMA Show Committee, TORA, WTC and YEN. Hosted several SEMA events and served as an advisor to SEMA and member companies. Currently a Federated Group Executive Board member.

Accomplishments: Multiple SEMA WD of the Year Awards and more than 30 top customer awards. Launched more than 25 innovative programs, websites, loyalty programs, promotions, shows and publications. Led new brand, product and market launches. Graduate of the Wharton School Advanced Management Program.

At Work for You: As a hands-on driver of change, I will deliver fresh thinking to protect the future of our industry and promote growth.

Steve WhippleDistributors/Retailers

Steve Whipple
Director of Private Label Sourcing
Jegs High Performance

The world has changed; undoubtedly, we won’t go back to where it was. It’s time for leadership to shape the industry of tomorrow: new thinking, new innovation, new motivation, new inspiration, new transparency and commitment—not the same old stuff. It’s not the same old world!

Passions

  • Protect the Industry: Guard against being regulated out of business with unnecessary regulations and governmental overreach.
  • Focus on the Future: Overcome the challenges in vehicle technology, including electric vehicles; successfully engaging the next generation of automotive enthusiasts, including customers and employees, to influence our great industry going forward.
  • Provide a Passionate Voice for All SEMA Members: Whether you’re a manufacturer, a warehouse distributor, an industry service provider or a small shop fighting for your life, I will be your voice. I will serve the SEMA members passionately.

Leadership Experience

  • Jegs Automotive, director of private brands–new markets (four months)
  • Edelbrock, vice president, sales and marketing (21 years)
  • Nitrous Oxide Systems (NOS), director, sales and marketing (two years)
  • Super Shops, western states sales manager (22 years)
  • 20+ years in performance core manufacturing
  • 20+ years in performance distribution
  • 40+ years in the performance industry

SEMA Service and Awards

  • SEMA Board of Directors (three years)
  • SEMA MPMC Select Committee (five years)
  • SEMA WD of the Year Committee (five years)
  • SEMA Rep of the Year Committee (three years)
  • Attended the SEMA Washington Rally to meet with
  • Congress in support of the RPM Act
  • PWA 2015 Person of the Year
  • SEMA MPMC 2016 and 2017 Chairman’s Award
  • SEMA MPMC Hall of Fame

Personal Life

  • Been married for 42 years to the same lady, Lisa.
  • Have two great kids: Lindsey, 37, married to Christian; and Michael, 32, married to Kelly. I also have two “faultless” grandkids, Charlotte and Elliot.
Kim PendergastManufacturers

Kim Pendergast
CEO
Magnuson Superchargers

I’m Kim Pendergast, CEO and owner of Magnuson Superchargers and an entrepreneur with 44 years of experience in business and 15 years in the automotive aftermarket. Although new to the SEMA Board (replacing Dr. Jamie Meyer when he became president of PRI), I have experience on five boards in the automotive industry.

So why did I run for reelection? Simple: I believe it is critical that we protect our industry—my business and your business—from increasing attacks by the EPA and restrictive government regulations. I will be a voice in the boardroom, pushing for our industry—through SEMA—to mount an aggressive and effective response in Washington.

How? First, SEMA must grow its political action committee—and quickly. Next, SEMA must proactively and massively push back against the actions being taken against our industry through public awareness campaigns, grassroots efforts and organized, aggressive outreach campaigns at the local, state and national levels. Let them know who we are and why we are important!

As a business owner and manufacturer, I understand all too well the issues the industry is facing, and I want to address them head on. I promise to help SEMA be a strong industry advocate in Washington and make clear to America, to Congress and to regulators who we are and the immense popularity and size of our industry.

New technological trends such as electrification threaten to become political mandates. We must take the lead on these issues and make sure the aftermarket is not banned from playing a role in the future modification of vehicles.

I have been a member of SEMA since 2005 and a strong supporter of the SEMA Businesswomen’s Network (SBN). In 2018, I was honored with the SEMA SBN Athena Woman of the Year Award. I served as the SEMA chair of the 2017 Person of the Year Task Force as well as the 2018 Scholarship Committee.

As a Board member, I will fight for our companies and our industry as a whole.

Brian ReeseManufacturers

Brian Reese
President and CEO
Driven Lighting Group

With the honor of serving on the SEMA Board, my overarching commitment is to represent the best interests of all SEMA members. My focus will start with four objectives. First, keep our industry legal! Legislative threats must be met with increased proactive effort from SEMA, and I will push for that. Second, SEMA must look forward and prepare the industry for emerging trends and technology, such as vehicle electrification. I will drive SEMA to lead this charge. Third, I will push SEMA to market the thrills and excitement of the aftermarket in order to attract new enthusiasts and appeal as a career for talent so that we continue to be relevant and enticing to next generations. Finally, my door is always open—I welcome contact from the members who I am here to serve.

I bring broad and extensive experience, having worked my entire career for SEMA-member companies across several categories. Currently, I am the president, CEO and co-owner of Driven Lighting Group—the leader in aftermarket lighting. Previously, I was the president and CEO of Race Winning Brands (JE Pistons, Wiseco, Diamond Pistons, Trend, Dart, MGP, Rekluse, ProX and Manley). Prior to Race Winning Brands, I served as a vice president at Comp Performance Group, vice president at Craftsman and DieHard, and director at SLP Performance.

My SEMA volunteer experience spans more than 20 years, starting as a YEN member. I have served on three councils (SCC, SPC and ETTN), chaired two councils, was elected to the CBLC, served as a YEN Launch Pad judge, and served on several task forces and committees, including the SEMA Hall of Fame, Gen-III Innovator and SEMA Garage planning team. I have been honored with the GEN-III Innovator (2012) and YEN Vanguard (2020) awards.

I am a fanatical “car guy.” From motorcycles to Jeeps to classics to performance and racing, I am an active participant. I have built engines, painted cars, raced motocross, autocrossed, road raced and drag raced. It’s my passion, personally and professionally. Beyond SEMA, I am also an endurance athlete who enjoys precious time with my wife and son as well as traveling the world.

Lindsay HubleyServices

Lindsay Hubley
Managing Partner
Lodestone Events LLC

My name is Lindsay Hubley, and I am honored to be elected to the SEMA Board of Directors. I am an experienced public trade show and consumer event strategist with a passion for the overall sustainability of the automotive aftermarket, fostering the careers of women and youth, protecting our right to modify our vehicles and OHV land-use advocacy!

I grew up in this industry, working into a leadership role in my father’s event production company­—producing events such as the Hot Rod Power Tour, the Car Craft Summer Nationals, the Sand Sports Super Show and the Off-Road Expo. Today, I am a 20-year active SEMA member and co-founder of Lodestone Events, producers of the Overland Expo series.

Over my career, I’ve produced thousands of events reaching millions of automotive enthusiasts nationwide across racing/performance, classic car, powersports and off-road. My event management background, combined with the successful pivot of a live-event business through the pandemic, makes me uniquely qualified to guide SEMA’s development of a hybrid trade show strategy that is both live and virtual, and a 365-day content plan to engage young innovators and expand SEMA’s reach.

Youth Engagement, Education and Advocacy:

  • SEMA Young Executives Network (YEN) Select Committee (2012–2016)
  • Developed the first SEMA YEN Launch Pad (2013)
  • Developed the first SEMA YEN Power Tour (2014)
  • SEMA Political Action Committee Member (2015–2021)
  • Curated Overland Education for the SEMA Overland Experience (2019)

Current Positions:

  • Off-Road Business Association Board Member
  • Tread Lightly! Education and Fundraising Partner
  • Founding and Current Board Member, One Voice Foundation for Off Road Motorized Recreation

Strategic Initiatives:

  • Expand SEMA’s youth engagement and global reach.
  • Enhanced SEMA member benefits, including a robust year-round business education program.
  • Address threats from intellectual property and trademark infringement plus the counterfeit community.
  • Automotive and aftermarket industry sustainability in a looming net-zero emissions economy.
  • Protect the right to modify our vehicles and motorized access to public lands.

I am an industry professional who raises the bar, questions the status quo and drives change. As a SEMA Board member, I will protect our right to innovate, modify and recreate the automobile.

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