Positioned for the Future

SEMA Member News—September/October 2012

Positioned for the Future

Four Incumbents Reelected to Select Committee

Manufacturers Rep Council (MRC) - SEMA CouncilThe Internet, data and industry consolidation have greatly impacted the role of manufacturer agents and how this critical segment delivers value for manufacturers, warehouse distributors (WDs) and accounts. These issues require a progressive Select Committee that will approach council business with a long-term vision to provide the council membership with sustainable solutions. A necessary step in assuring future viability is building a group of volunteers who are committed and willing to ask the hard questions. Through the recent Select Committee elections, the Manufacturers’ Rep Council (MRC) has solidified its foundation with the reelection of four incumbents.

For the last 16 years, Victor Bennett has worked for Gantt-Thomas & Associates and has truly enjoyed all of the experiences the automotive aftermarket has provided. The rep community and the automotive aftermarket are going through a time of major adjustment. Understanding the importance that the future holds, Bennett is encouraged to be a part of a Select Committee that is focused on stabilizing and enhancing the rep segment. Solutions for rep agencies in the automotive aftermarket begin with open communication from reps around the country. In his current capacity as a Select Committee member, Bennett has participated in more than 95% of the monthly conference calls and MRC strategic meetings and will participate with the passion and commitment he has for his
own business.

Derrick Johnstone has served in the automotive industry for more than 20 years. Starting on the counter of a local retail chain of auto supply stores, he worked his way up through WD phone rooms and outside sales positions with two local WDs to his current position of owner/partner with Alliance Sales. Johnstone has been a manufacturer’s representative for 10 years and is committed to providing support to the industry through his involvement with the MRC Select Committee. In addition to SEMA, Johnstone’s company is a PWA and CPSA member as well as a volunteer at AIA events.

Jerry Nuñez of Innovative Marketing Services believes that the MRC’s major challenge is to remain relevant in its segment of the industry. Nuñez feels that the MRC must assess, evaluate and expand its current benefits package in order to increase membership value and address apathy among members. Nuñez believes that he has a good grasp of the things that matter to reps and the things that MRC could offer to benefit the industry. More importantly, he is willing to devote his time to helping MRC offer these kinds of services and programs. He believes that the direction will positively turn around once the MRC can show the rep community the benefits of being MRC members.

Bunyan L. “Les” Rudd of Bob Cook Sales entered the industry as an enthusiast more than 30 years ago. He has transformed his passion into a lifelong dedication to the industry, serving in the jobber market, in the manufacturing arena and as a manufacturer’s rep. Rudd is known for his brash way of looking outside of the box and his ability to motivate conversation. He has served in several capacities inside the MRC and will continue to invest what is needed to ensure that MRC evolves inside the SEMA organization to the level the council chooses.

Rep Technology Roundtable

SEMA Data Co-op CEO Jon Wyly.   eTool Developers President and founder Luanne Brown.   Cie Studios Vice President of Business Development Tyler Tanaka.

SEMA Data Co-op CEO Jon Wyly.


eTool Developers President and founder Luanne Brown.


Cie Studios Vice President of Business Development Tyler Tanaka.

The rep technology roundtable, exclusively for reps, will teach attendees how to take advantage of a technological economy and be more profitable. Technology, data and e-commerce have greatly impacted the way reps do business. Through intimate roundtable discussions led by such industry experts as SEMA Data Co-op CEO Jon Wyly, eTool Developers President and founder Luanne Brown and Cie Studios Vice President of Business Development Tyler Tanaka, attendees will have the opportunity to ask questions and receive practical solutions that address critical areas, such as software applications, business efficiency, e-commerce, web development and product data.

Don’t miss this one! Space is limited. To sign up, register through the SEMA Show Events Registration System. Contact Zane Clark via e-mail at zanec@SEMA.org or by phone at 909-978-6696 for more details.