SEMA Member News—September/October 2012
MPMC Elections Bring New Select Committee Members
MPMC organized a seminar on the “The Business of Engine Building” at the 2011 PRI Show, with veteran engine builders (from left) Tracy Dennis, Keith Dorton, Ron Hutter, David Reher, Scott Shafiroff and Carl Wegner answering questions from moderator Alan Reinhart. MPMC select committee members volunteer their time on projects such as this for the benefit of the motorsports parts manufacturing community.
Chris Douglas of COMP Performance Group and Mike Crutchfield of Coker Tire are serving their freshman terms as Motorsports Parts Manufacturers Council (MPMC) Select Committee members. Chris Fairless, the other new face on the committee, previously served as chairman of the Manufacturers’ Rep Council prior to moving to his current position at Magnaflow Exhaust. Fairless was unavailable at press time, but below are some comments from Douglas and Crutchfield.
SEMA Member News: What is your history in the industry and in MPMC?
Chris Douglas: I have worked in the motorsports and automotive aftermarket industry since I was 18 years old. While competing in the ARCA and ASA racing series, I obtained a marketing degree from the University of North Alabama. Today, I am the vice president of marketing for the COMP Performance Group, which currently includes 12 automotive performance brands. I am directly responsible for an in-house marketing team of about 15 people as well as being a member of our overall management team that deals with every aspect of the day-to-day operation of our businesses.
Mike Crutchfield: I have worked in the automotive and motorsports industry for more than 25 years. I served as vice president and general manager for Gene White Racing Firestone and later owned and operated Crutchfield Sales and Dragracetires.com,
handling sales for Phoenix Race Tires and distribution for M&H Racemaster brands. Today I am vice president of Phoenix Race Tires and performance brands at Coker Tire, where I am responsible for development, testing, promotion and sales for the performance brands.
SMN: Why do you feel that it’s important to serve on the MPMC Select Committee?
CD: I want to give back to an industry that has been very good to me and help ensure that MPMC-member companies have opportunities in the future. I feel strongly that it is important that we define MPMC goals that match up with the overall strategic goals put forth by the SEMA Board of Directors.
MC: MPMC is very important to the motorsports and aftermarket industry. It helps identify issues that the industry faces and helps to mold the correct path so that the industry can move forward with development of new products and services.
SMN: What do you see the MPMC doing well?
CD: The MPMC Media Trade Conference (MTC) has been a huge success and continues to grow. We need to continue refining and evolving the MTC, but the SEMA staff does a good job of executing that event each year. I’m more concerned with how MPMC can solve real-world problems that affect our member companies.
MC: From what I have noticed in the past, the MPMC has surrounded itself with great leadership. They have done an outstanding job of identifying and finding solutions to the industry’s issues.
SMN: Where do you think MPMC could improve?
CD: MPMC and all SEMA councils need to look closely at how we utilize volunteer efforts, so that each volunteer feels that his/her efforts are making a meaningful difference on a strategic level rather than just accomplishing tactical or repetitive tasks. In addition, we need to communicate to the membership all the hard work that’s happening. There are definitely opportunities to work more closely with other councils and committees that I would like to see us pursue.
SMN: How do you plan to contribute?
CD: I feel that I bring a unique perspective and background that, hopefully, adds value to the MPMC Select Committee and allows us to be more successful in our endeavors. I get excited about finding creative and effective solutions to real problems.
MC: I hope to use information that I learn through serving on the Sportsman Racers Advisory Council of NHRA to help MPMC identify the direction of sportsman drag racing. Over and above that, I will contribute in whatever way the Select Committee sees fit.