The Young Executives Network (YEN) will maintain a strong presence at the SEMA Show in 2014, but some of the events that have become staples for members will have a new look. Each of the main initiatives geared toward young professionals will include a networking component, so members are encouraged to make plans early to join the festivities and meet with peers.
YEN Member News
Over the summer, 10 members of the Young Executives Network (YEN) embarked on the Hot Rod Power Tour to promote the network and highlight the variety of career choices available to young professionals in the automotive specialty-equipment market. The tour route began in Charlotte, North Carolina, and visited Tennessee, West Virginia, Ohio and Indiana before ending in Iowa. Amy Fitzgerald, Ian Lehn, Scott Lowe, Paul Makarucha, Brit Mansell, Jonathan Mill, Michelle “Missy” Perez, Dylan Sievers, Kirstin Stone and Jerid Suchy were chosen to participate through an application process.
After the success of last year’s Launch Pad competition, SEMA is excited to announce that the contest will return for a second year at the 2014 SEMA Show in Las Vegas. Sponsored by the Young Executives Network (YEN), the SEMA Launch Pad offers innovators under the age of 40 an industry platform to showcase their businesses and win a significant package to help them market a new automotive product or service.
The SEMA Show Young Executives Network (YEN) Fellowship is a benefit available to SEMA-member company employees under the age of 40. In particular, the fellowship program demonstrates SEMA’s commitment to recognizing and developing talent among the next generation of specialty-equipment professionals. Fellowship participants are given the chance to attend the SEMA Show with travel expenses paid and receive hands-on experience by participating in a variety of events geared toward developing business skills and expanding professional networks.
Powered by SEMA’s Young Executive Network (YEN), Launch Pad is an unprecedented opportunity to promote new products and businesses run by YEN members. This new competition offers innovators, inventors and entrepreneurs under the age of 40 an industry platform to showcase their business plans for marketing new automotive products or services. The candidates have been narrowed down to a group of five, and the competition between the final candidates (with Jarod DeAnda, the Voice of Drift, as the master of ceremonies) will be held live at the SEMA Show on Thursday, November 7, from 9:00 a.m.–10:30 a.m. at the Vehicle Technology Center in the Grand Lobby of the Las Vegas Convention Center.
Join members of the SEMA family for good food, drink and conversation at a networking mixer to be held September 24, 2013, from 6:00 p.m.–8:00 p.m., in conjunction with the Performance Warehouse Association (PWA) Conference in Phoenix. The conference takes place September 22–24, and you must be registered with PWA to attend the mixer, which is quickly becoming a PWA tradition and is a great evening “starter” after a full day of meetings. The mixer is sponsored by the Manufacturers Representative Network (MRN), Motorsports Parts Manufacturers Council (MPMC), Light Truck Accessory Alliance (LTAA) and Young Executives Network (YEN), but all industry professionals are welcome to attend!
The SEMA Young Executives Network (YEN) is helping young entrepreneurs by announcing the first-ever “SEMA Launch Pad” competition. This new competition offers executive-level innovators under the age of 40 a platform to showcase their business plans for marketing new automotive products or services.
Five finalists will have their business plans reviewed by industry leaders at the 2013 SEMA Show in Las Vegas in front of a live audience. The winning company will be awarded an array of prizes, including a 10x10-ft. booth at the 2014 SEMA Show, an ad in Hot Rod or 4-Wheel & Off-Road magazine, a Family Events sponsorship, web design, graphic design and PR consultation packages and much more. Even entrants who don’t win may be promoted to thousands of industry professionals curious to learn more about their innovative products or services.
The SEMA Young Executives Network (YEN) Fellowship program helped to fund travel expenses to the 2012 SEMA Show for 10 member-company employees under the age of 40. The participants were asked to take part in a number of specific Show events—including the SEMA Awards Banquet, YEN Reception and SEI education seminars—focused on developing their business skills and expanding their professional networks. Nine of them provided a few words to SEMA Member News about their experiences.
The YEN Vanguard Award is presented to an individual, business, organization or sanctioning body that has had a positive affect on the careers of young executives within the automotive industry. The following criteria are used in determining each candidate: Must be a current or past member of SEMA (no age requirement), and must have demonstrated exceptional service, integrity and business ethics. The Vanguard Award is presented to a person, company or sanctioning body that has influenced the professional growth and/or cultivation of talent for young executives through its actions, mentoring, visions and/or contributions for the past, present and future.