More than 600 members of the industry joined the SEMA Installation Banquet & Gala Fundraiser in Irvine, California, July 27, to honor 2007 inductees Russ Deane, Ron Funfar and Nate Shelton, and to raise nearly $200,000 for children's charities Childhelp and Victory Junction Gang Camp. They also came to thank nine members for their service to the SEMA Board of Directors, as well as welcome 10 new members to the Board.
The event kicked off at 8:30 a.m. with a shotgun start to the charity golf tournament as SEMA councils fielded foursomes and squared off in the first Council Cup - Cash for Kids challenge. Tyler Tanaka (Turbonetics), DC Chavez (AEM), Kurt Miller and Mike Webster (Advanstar Communications) of the Sport Compact Council turned in the best council performance on the greens.
"Carl Sheffer and the SEMA staff organized a wonderful golf tournament that I was proud to be a part of," Tanaka, who also won "Closest to the Pin" and "Longest Drive" honors, said. "Not only was the competition fierce, but the camaraderie and enthusiasm before, during and after the event was electric. The tourney was extremely well run, the prizes and gifts more than expected, and I hope to be lucky enough to play again next time. My hat's off for such a worthwhile and enjoyable event."
Congratulations to all of the councils; they and their supporters raised more than $8,000 in charity contributions.
The SEMA Installation Banquet & Gala Fundraiser supported by DUB Magazine and Hot Wheels, presented by Advanstar and Alcoa, evening program began at 6 p.m. with a silent and live auction, the highlight of both including bids for a 2008 Harley-Davidson Softail Fatboy. The winning bid of $26,500 was placed by Bianca Hennings of Window Canvas.
A rousing version of the "Star-Spangled Banner," performed by 10-year-old Taylor Longbrake, opened the dinner and program that followed, led by emcee Dave McClelland, and honored the Hall of Fame inductees and featured thoughts from outgoing SEMA Chairman Mitch Williams and incoming Chairman Jim Cozzie.
SEMA thanks all for the extraordinary volunteer effort, and encourages all who would like to volunteer for next year's event to contact Special Events Administrator Lisa Moreno at firstname.lastname@example.org.
SEMA thanks outgoing Board Members...
-Joel Ayres, Leer/Truck Accessories
-Paul "Scooter" Brothers, Competition Cams Inc.
-Craig Chatt, DCi
-Anne Graves, SECO Performance Centers
-Kathy Bybee Hartzell
-Chuck Lombardo, California Street Rods
-Dennis Overholser, Painless Performance
-Steve Swanson, Hushmat
-Bob West, Westin Automotive Products
...and welcomes its incoming Board Members
-Rick Rollins, Superchips Inc
-Gale Banks, Gale Banks Engineering
-Donnie Eatherly, P&E Distributors
-Larry Erickson, Ford Strategic Design Studio
-Tony Napoli, Jr., American Speed Centers
-Mike Spagnola, Street Scene Equipment
-David Stutts, Hot Rod Air Inc.
-Van Woodell, Weathers Auto Supply
-Jeep Worthan, Auto Meter
-David Wrobleski, Jim Wrobleski & Co. Inc.