[vc_row row_type=”row” use_row_as_full_screen_section=”no” type=”grid” angled_section=”no” angled_section_position=”both” angled_section_direction=”from_left_to_right” text_align=”left” background_image_as_pattern=”without_pattern” padding_bottom=”20″][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text el_class=”milepost-dateline”]MilePost – The Journal of the Motor Press Guild / Vol. 24, No. 6, June 2014[/vc_column_text][vc_single_image image=”16506″ alignment=”center” border_color=”grey” img_link_large=”” img_link_target=”_self” img_size=”full”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row row_type=”row” use_row_as_full_screen_section=”no” type=”grid” angled_section=”no” angled_section_position=”both” angled_section_direction=”from_left_to_right” text_align=”left” background_image_as_pattern=”without_pattern”][vc_column width=”3/4″][vc_column_text]

MPG on the Road & Trails: Droptops & Dirt

MPG’s new spring driving event gave our members time behind the wheel in off-road vehicles, convertibles and side-by-sides for evaluation, comparison  … and fun.


Jeep Cherokee Trailhawk, BMW M6, Honda Pioneer ATV. (photos by Myles Regan/Carrie Kim/Myles Regan)

Over 50 journalists and automotive professionals participated in MPG’s new spring driving event, Droptops & Dirt, on May 13th at scenic Calamigos Ranch in Malibu. In addition to the 13 vehicles available for off-roading, nine convertibles were added for some twisty scenic road drives. Also, this year featured the inclusion of ATV’s from Polaris and Honda which provided some extra dirty fun to the event. Based on the feedback from our members, it’s clear that the addition of the new types of vehicles enhanced the event and made for a more newsworthy day of driving.

dd-aaron miata3

L: Droptops & Dirt Chairman, Aaron Gold, kicks off the day’s activities. (photo by Carrie Kim)
R: Three Generations of Miata (photo by Myles Regan)

Trails were designed by Land Rover staff and lunch was graciously provided courtesy of Nissan. Our members had direct access to reps from Acura, BMW, Chrysler, GM, Honda, Jaguar/Land Rover, Lexus, Mazda, Mercedes-Benz, Nissan, Toyota and Volkswagen. See the full list of vehicles here.                                                                                                  

Also lending sponsorship to Droptops & Dirt was Mothers, who provided the large bags of swag at check-in, filled to the brim with car care products. A raffle of Mothers car care products was also held, won by MPG member Kyuhyuk Kwon.


L: Mothers raffle winner Kyuhyuk Kwon with MPG President, Joni Gray. (photo by Myles Regan)
R: MPG Member Jessica Gottlieb behind the wheel of the Jaguar F-Type. (photo by Carrie Kim)

After a full day of driving and networking, MPG members headed to the Four Seasons Westlake Village for a “Miss the Traffic Afterparty.” This was yet another opportunity for networking and enjoying the company of friends and colleagues instead of battling gridlock on the drive home.


MPG Members enjoying the afterparty at Four Seasons, Westlake Village. (photos by Right Track Motoring)

Watch the video recap by Right Track Motoring:

(Click here if the video does not appear in your browser)

Click here to see more photos by Myles Regan and Right Track Motoring

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johnodellAlternative Fuel and Powertrains Panel at May meeting

MPG “goes back in time to discuss the future” aboard the Queen Mary.

MPG held a panel discussion and happy hour aboard the Queen Mary in Long Beach on May 20th. Moderated by John O’Dell, Senior Editor of fuel efficiency and green vehicles at Edmunds.com, the discussion offered insight and perspective on the state of alternative fuels and powertrains.

Leading the panel discussion was John O’Dell, Edmunds.com  (photo by Albert Wong)

From biodiesel to hydrogen fuel cells to building up the EV infrastructure, much was covered by our five panelists during the hour long discussion. Each from varied backgrounds, the panelists were:

  • Gilbert Castillo, Senior Manager of Alt. Vehicle and Advanced Vehicle Strategy — Hyundai Motor America
  • Michael Coates, Diesel Technology Forum
  • Michael Dovornay, Manager, Product Strategy — The CARLAB
  • Praveen Penmetsa, CEO/Founder — Motivo Engineering
  • Rick Sikes, Fleet Superintendent — City of Santa Monica

Also announced that evening was information about the All American Soap Box Derby’s “Queen’s Cup” coming to the Queen Mary this August 23-24. This weekend of low-speed, gravity-fueled competition will be held on a constructed ramp in the parking area which will catapult area youngsters up to 12 miles per hour, giving them their first taste of motorsports competition.

After the presentation and panel discussions, the Queen Mary hosted members to happy hour hors d’oeuvres and a free tour of the ship.

maypanelFor more on the May MPG Meeting:
Click here to see the video recap by Right Track Motoring

Click here to listen to an audio recording of the panel discussion

Click here to see photos by Albert Wong and Right Track Motoring

Panelists L-R: Gilbert Castillo (Hyundai Motor America), Michael Coates (Diesel Technology Forum), Michael Dovornay (The CARLAB), Praveen Penmetsa (Motivo), Rick Sikes (City of Santa Monica)
photo by Albert Wong
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MPG June Meeting: 2015 Ford F-150 Presentation
at Ford Design Studio, Irvine

Tuesday, June 17th 5:30-7:00pm

F-150 Marketing Manager Eric Peterson will be at the Ford Design Studio in Irvine to discuss the all-new F-150. You won’t want to miss checking out the new “all aluminum” F-150 for yourself. In addition to the short program, Ford will host “happy hour” refreshments and plenty of time for networking.

Ford Design Studio, Irvine
3 Glen Bell Way • Irvine, CA 92618  For directions, click here.

Members: $10 // Non-Members and Guests: $15
(Cash/check at door, no reservations)[/vc_column_text][vc_separator type=”normal” position=”center” thickness=”2″ width_in_percentages=”” up=”40″ down=”40″][vc_column_text]


larryrusznakMPG Thanks Larry Rusznak

After several years with the organization and service as both our MPG Business Operations Manager and Track Day Producer, Larry Rusznak has moved on to other professional pursuits. He will be greatly missed, and the Motor Press Guild Board of Directors appreciates the hard work and dedication he exhibited during this time.

As we transition to fill the position permanently, contact Joni Gray at joni@motorpressguild.org with any questions, concerns or comments.

Thank you, Larry!

Job Opportunities

PR Account Executive and PR Account Coordinator
ASG Renaissance

asglogoASG Renaissance, a full-service marketing communications agency, is searching for both an enthusiastic public relations account executive and a public relations account coordinator. The candidates will join an experienced and award-winning PR and design team dedicated primarily to two prestigious, luxury automotive brands.

Download the Account Executive job listing for more details and how to apply >>
Download the Account Coordinator job listing for more details and how to apply >>

pcglogoAccount Executive and Account Coordinator
Pacific Communications Group

Pacific Communications Group is an integrated marketing and communications agency located in Torrance.

The Account Executive candidate should be a professionally aggressive team member with excellent writing and verbal communication skills and have knowledge of principles of public relations and marketing communications normally acquired through completion of a Bachelor’s degree or advanced degree with 3 or more years experience in a related field. Automotive and Insurance experience a plus.

The Account Coordinator is an entry level position.  The candidate should have knowledge of principles of public relations and marketing communications normally acquired through completion of a Bachelor’s degree or advanced. Must be detail oriented, be able to write, communicate with clients, and be a team player with a positive attitude.

To apply: Please highlight your qualifications in a cover letter and send with your resume to Marlee Walsh at mwalsh@pacificcommunicationsgroup.com.  Please feel free to contact with questions.

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Summertime is upon us and we are deep into planning for the second half of our 2014 calendar year. Our three most ambitious events, coming this fall and winter, are already in the works. The new and improved track day event this October 14th and 15th promises to be a great one, with new Track Day Committee Chair Russell Datz on board and partnering event company, Nth Degree, handling the details. We’ve taken all the feedback and ideas you’ve given us from past events and put them to use in “re-imagining” the event with the Motor Press Guild’s ultimate goals in mind.

This November, the LA Auto Show will once again allow the Motor Press Guild to host the MPG Motoring Invitational, featuring the best of Southern California car culture and breakfast served from some very delicious food trucks. We’ll again dole out the MPG IVY Awards to two worthy manufacturers, whose vehicles have changed the game in 2014. You can nominate your favorite now — click here to find out how.

In December, we’ll meet up once again at the Petersen Automotive Museum for the annual dinner bash, the Dean Batchelor Awards Banquet, to honor automotive journalism amongst the “Best of the Year” books, articles, photography and audio/visual mediums.

As for the present, MPG is sorting through a transitional period with the advent of our Business Operations Manager, Larry Rusznak, leaving the organization. Although it’s a big loss, we wish him only the best in his future pursuits. Now we welcome Alaia Williams, a new contractor helping us with business administration. Alaia has an amazing background as a small business consultant and event specialist. She helps small businesses and entrepreneurs get organized and use the latest technologies to their specific business needs. She is a welcome addition to our contracted family, so please welcome her at next week’s monthly meeting.

Keep your eyes opened for some upcoming summer meet ups and panels that we will be announcing soon. As always, we appreciate each of you and welcome your feedback and we strive to make the Motor Press Guild more helpful and vital to you, its members and supporters.


All the Best,

— Joni Gray
President, Motor Press Guild[/vc_column_text][vc_separator type=”normal” position=”center” thickness=”2″ width_in_percentages=”” up=”40″ down=”40″][vc_column_text]



  • Andrew Chen, Motorhead Media — archen81@gmail.com
  • Jason Connor, Hooniverse — jrconnor80@gmail.com
  • Ben Hsu, Japanese Nostalgic Car — ben@japanesenostalgiccar.com
  • Gil Robertson, Robertson Treatment / Automotive Spin — gilrobertson@earthlink.net
  • Maryanne Wendt, Why This Ride? — whythisride@gmail.com
  • Jay Wentz, The Weekend Drive — jay@theweekenddrive.com

Public Relations

  • Tony De Franze, American Honda Motor Co., Inc. — tony_defranze@ahm.honda.com
  • Cristin Liveoak, LINE-X Protective Coatings — cliveoak@linexmail.com
  • Victoria Petersen, Honda North America — victoria_petersen@hna.honda.com
  • Teppy Wigington, LINE-X Protective Coatings — twigington@linexmail.com


  • Michael Newsom, Chrome Data Solutions — mike.newsom@autodata.net
  • John Pignanelli, Chrome Data Solutions — john.pignanelli@autodata.net
  • Jim Walmsley, Chrome Data Solutions — jim.walmsley@autodata.net

Note that you alone are responsible for managing your profile and contact info in MPG’s database. Log-in to your account at www.motorpressguild.org: Find the “Profile” tab and then click on “Edit.” Make sure to click the “Save” button (bottom left) when you’re done. This is the data published in MPG’s annual Media Guide/Membership Roster and you are the only one that checks its accuracy.[/vc_column_text][vc_separator type=”normal” position=”center” thickness=”2″ width_in_percentages=”” up=”40″ down=”40″][vc_column_text]


Any member is welcome to submit items to this monthly newsletter that are of specific interest to fellow members:

  • Member Chronicle stories
  • Letters to the Editor
  • Job Openings

Acceptance and revision are at the discretion of the Editor. MilePost does not publish general industry PR or paid ads. Member Chronicle stories can be adventures you’ve had, special talents you possess, what you drive, your first car, a car you crashed, one you lived in, epic (or not so epic) drives, etc. In other words, think freely and keep things in good taste. Shoot for 400-800 words and include some images if you have them.

Deadline is seven days before the end of the month. Send both words and pictures (small JPEGs, please) to: milepost@motorpressguild.org

NOTE: Members who wish to publicize non-MPG events or announcements may do so themselves on our Facebook page: www.facebook.com/motorpressguild. And be sure to “like” our page while you’re there.

Motor Press Guild, P.O. Box 4215, Redondo Beach CA 90277 • 323-374-3674[/vc_column_text][vc_separator type=”normal” position=”center” thickness=”2″ width_in_percentages=”” up=”40″ down=”40″][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/4″ css=”.vc_custom_1431038828070{padding-left: 20px !important;}”][vc_column_text el_class=”milepost-sidebar” css=”.vc_custom_1437766142828{padding-top: 10px !important;padding-right: 10px !important;padding-bottom: 10px !important;padding-left: 10px !important;}”]MilePost is the monthly online newsletter of the Motor Press Guild


MPG on the Road & Trail
MPG Talks Alt Fuels and Powertrains
Coming MPG Events
President’s Message
New Members
Contribute to MilePost


Joni Gray, President
Jason Fogelson, Vice President
Darryll Harrison, Treasurer
Jeff Glucker, Secretary
Mike Antich
Shad Balch
Brendan Flynn
Michael Harley
Deb Pollack
Doug Stokes
Chris Woodyard


MPG Web/Communications Manager
Carrie Kim

Media Guide Manager
Pete Evanow


The Motor Press Guild is the largest automotive media association in North America. This exclusive, non-profit organization is dedicated to upholding the highest ideals in automotive journalism and promoting education and information exchange within the motoring press. Members include print journalists, photographers, broadcasters and new media professionals, as well as public-relations representatives, consumer groups, and governmental bodies tied to the automotive industry. Student memberships are available as well.For more information, please visit www.motorpressguild.org.

Motor Press Guild
P.O. Box 4883
Orange, CA 92863[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

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