Dean Beyett

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Five Star Car Stereo

  • Position: Installation Manager
  • Location: Clearwater, FL
  • Biography: I have been installing car audio for the past 30 years. I have been with my current employer, Five Star Car stereo, for the past 8 years. There I handle the business’s website, Instagram page, and manage custom installation sales. I also, with my partner Fernando, do all the day to day installation work. I own Smash Force Productions. We produce Five Star Car Stereo and the Boring Life of Dean and Hailey YouTube shows. We have created thousands of videos on the subjects of car audio and being a dad.

Phil Cantu

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Mobile Toys Inc.

  • Position: Fabricator
  • Location: College Station, TX
  • Biography: Phil Cantu is a fabricator and member of the Mobile Toys Automotive Design Division in College Station Texas. He holds over 15 years professional installation and fabrication experience and has held MECP Advanced Certifications since 2009. He is a three-time top 12 finalist for Mobile Electronics Magazine installer of the year award as well as a two-time finalist for trusted tech. He enjoys networking and collaborating with his peers to take projects to greater heights.

Chris Cook

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Mobile Electronics Association

  • Position: President
  • Location: North Andover, MA
  • Biography: Mr. Cook serves as President of the Mobile Electronics Association the U.S. trade association representing over 1,000 mobile electronics companies and owning and producing four annual KnowledgeFest tradeshows, and the trade publication Mobile Electronics Magazine. Cook is an accomplished 20-year executive focused in the automotive electronics sector. He has a wide array of experience focused on forward-looking solutions that realize a connected lifestyle in every consumer environment. Cook is a speaker, thought leader and presenter at technology changing shows and conferences for over 20 years.

Jayson Cook

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  • Position: Sales Manager
  • Location: Columbus, OH
  • Biography: My name is Jayson Cook I have been in the industry professionally for over 20 years. I graduated from Mobile Dynamics Toronto campus in 1996 with the hopes of becoming an installer. In 1998 I was hired on at Columbus Car Audio to be a sales person with the intent of becoming an installer at some point…that never happened. Instead I became their top salesperson for most of my career. So much that my role now is to continuously teach, and train my staff to sell based off of standards that I have learned and have implemented into my daily routine. I was fortunate enough to win the 2019 Mobile Electronics Salesperson of the Year this year and I really want to help grow the sales side of this industry. I have learned so much from many coworkers and friends in this industry and I want to give back as much as I can. I feel that there is a strong need to help teach and train the techniques of selling and working face to face with customers on a daily level in a professional manner that our industry lacks, and also to be able to work as a team with the technicians to give the best experience possible to our clients.

Kevin Hallinan

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  • Position: Principal
  • Location: Boston, MA
  • Biography: Kevin Hallinan is a Principal of WINNING, Incorporated and has over 30 years of sales, training, and management success. An engaging and dynamic trainer and mentor, and an award-winning sales producer, Kevin has provided training and coaching to hundreds of companies in numerous industries. Kevin has been involved in almost every aspect of sales and sales management throughout his career. His experiences range from small private companies, to family run businesses, to the corporate setting where he has successfully sold both products and services. He is a former business owner, industry leader and constant overachiever, having earned numerous sales awards including Producer of the Year and Top Account Executive, and holds two yet unbroken company records for Highest Weekly Sales and Highest Quarterly Sales.

Rob Haynes

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JL Audio

  • Position: Product Trainer
  • Location: Miramar, FL
  • Biography: Joining JL Audio’s training team in 2014, Rob Haynes has over 18 years of mobile electronics experience. Rob transitioned to 12-volt in 2004 when he took over an Al & Ed’s Autosound franchise in Southern California. In 2008, he moved to Seattle, Washington where he was hired into management by Car Toys. It was with Car Toys where his affection for training developed. In 2011 he returned to Southern California and worked for the Al & Ed’s Autosound corporate office, handling both their Social Media accounts and sales for their distribution company. Rob moved to the manufacture side in 2013 as a product trainer and later joined JL Audio in 2014. Since joining JL Audio, Rob has trained countless dealers across the world on JL Audio products, technologies, sales & installation techniques.

Tomas Keenan

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Step It Up Academy

  • Position: CEO
  • Location: Dallas, TX
  • Biography: Tomas Keenan is best known for his humble beginnings and lengthy career as a custom car audio installer. He is the epitome of a technician turned COO. After co-founding an industry-leading GPS Tracking and Dashboard Camera installation company and growing it to a 7-figure business, Tomas moved into the coaching space as a high-level business and success coach for other industry leaders and business owners. Tomas works with Entrepreneurs who refuse to be average and are crushing 7+ figures in business. His success as an elite business coach led him to move his family from NYC to Dallas, Texas, to focus full-time on his newest company, Step It Up Academy. His expertise and vast experience have repeatedly put him on the top industry magazines' pages. He has been featured in Forbes, Mobile Electronics Magazine, CE Outlook, CEO Blog Nation, Fit Small Business, The Startup Growth, The Goodmen Project, and several Blogs, in addition to countless podcasts. Tomas is also a sought-after public speaker, 2X bestselling author, and Step It Up Entrepreneur Podcast host. He has interviewed industry leaders, influencers, high-level business and success coaches, business owners, and entrepreneurs who are impacting their communities and the world at large. He states the key to his success is making progress every day, regardless of how small it may be.

John Kowanetz

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Whats Your Pathway

  • Position: Sales Manager
  • Location: Pheonix, AZ
  • Biography: Having spent more than half of his life working in the automotive aftermarket industry, Jon Kowanetz has held almost every position there is, but the one he is most known for is as the owner of Handcrafted Auto Marine & Offroad in Chandler, Arizona. Over the course of 15 years, Jon started and built this business from a mere idea, into a multiple award-winning company with a strong local reputation and a loyal team. After selling Handcrafted in late 2022, Jon started his new company, Pathways Coaching & Consulting with the goal of using everything he has learned in both professional and personal development, to help other business owners get from where they are now, to where they want to be, both professionally and personally.

Jason Kranitz

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Major League Fab

  • Position: Owner
  • Location: Las Vegas, NV
  • Biography: In 2006, Jason Kranitz opened Kingpin Car and Marine Audio in Wilsonville, Oregon after 14 years of professional installation at local retailers. A strong marketer, Kranitz built the Kingpin brand through partnerships and support of area causes. His work was recognized by the mobile electronics industry as he was awarded the Retailer of the Year award in 2008, and again in 2017, by Mobile Electronics Magazine. The trade publication also honored Kranitz personally as Installer of the Year in 2013. Kranitz started Kingpin University out of his store in 2015 to share his business and technical experience. Since its opening, he has taught thousands of industry professionals how to plan for success, overcome problems and improve efficiencies, on the sales floor and in the bay. The dynamic curriculum employed by Kranitz comprises tried and trusted solutions from the day-to-day operation of a retail mobile electronics facility. This experience has also molded his training method into lessons that are easily teachable, repeatable in practice and predictable in results. Kingpin Car and Marine Audio, as well as Kingpin University, were relocated to Las Vegas in 2018 to provide a more central location for students and manufacturing partners. Due to COVID-19, Kingpin University reached students through virtual classes while the store continued to build a customer base in Las Vegas. In 2020, Kranitz was again recognized by the mobile electronics industry, this time for his acumen on the sales floor. Mobile Electronics Magazine awarded him Sales Pro of the Year through a virtual ceremony. In addition to Kingpin University, Kranitz has shared his experience with store owners, sales professionals, technicians, and installers by teaching at KnowledgeFest events over the past decade. He has also worked with prominent manufacturers to train their dealers to lower return rates and become more efficient. 2022-2023 Jason turned his attention to new projects and business models. Polarity Check Marketing Group, Vegas Hardbags, and Major League Fab - Tools and Training.

Justin Kush

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Mobile Toys, Inc.

  • Position: Head Fabricator and Design Engineer
  • Location: College Station, TX
  • Biography: Head Fabricator and Design Engineer for MTI Automotive Designs. He has worked For Mobile Toys Inc. for the past three years blending his modern artistic concepts with European automotive styling. Justin is an 18-year veteran of the 12-volt industry, starting his career with stops at Circuit City, Car Toys and Epic Customs. Kush is a former MEA Installer of Year and has an Associates of Applied Arts degree from the Art Institute of Seattle.

Philip Lindsey

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Titan Motoring

  • Position: Owner
  • Location: Nashville, TN
  • Biography: Philip Lindsley has been a mobile modification specialist in Tennessee for over 22 years. His pursuit for perfection, customer service, and high-end automotive products has brought Titan Motoring from a one-man garage operation to Nashville’s premier 1 stop custom automotive shop in a matter of a few years. The foundation of his continued success is in securing dealer work that started with landing the Carmax account over a decade ago, to this day we continue to be the longest running vendor for them. It has also proved to be the springboard that launched Titan Motoring into establishing other Auto Dealer accounts which generate a consistent revenue stream. While many in the industry may have accumulated multiple degrees, certificates and awards, Phil has risen from being a tech working out of his van to owning a successful shop by learning from industry experts and acquiring skills through self-education. His rise to the top through hard work and discipline is an inspiration; especially to those just starting their career or who just took the plunge into opening their own shop. Phil's continued success proves that anyone with the passion to learn and a strong work ethic can achieve greatness.

Nando Lopez

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Five Star Car Stereo

  • Position: Installer
  • Location: Clearwater, FL
  • Biography: Fernando is an installation technician at Five Star Car Stereo in Clearwater, FL. He has over 10 years of car audio installation experience . Along with installation, he is responsible for Five Star!s FaceBook page, and all Spanish installation sales. He is also part of the company, Smash Force Production that produced the successful "Five Star Car Stereo" ,” Dean and Fernando's Car Stereo Clips” and "The Boring Life of Dean and Hailey” YouTube channels. With is knowledge of 12volt, he has also done trainings and translating in Spanish for Manufactures.

Keith McCumber

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SoundsGood Auto Services

  • Position: Owner
  • Location: Coquitlam, BC
  • Biography: Keith is the owner of SoundsGood Auto Services of Coquitlam, BC.

Brian Mitchell

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Liquid Trends of Modesto

  • Position: Owner
  • Location: Modesto, CA
  • Biography: Brian is currently the Owner/Installer of Liquid Trends Modesto as well as the Inside Sales manager for Arc Audio. He has worked professionally in the 12 Volt industry since 1985 and owned his first store in 1992 in Modesto California. Brian sold that store in 1999 and became a Sales Rep at a Northern California Rep firm until 2005 when he started at Liquid Trends Modesto. Brian has been on the Car Audio Competition Circuit since 1992 and has won 37 World Championships and National Best of Shows in IASCA, Usaci, MECA and EMMA USA. The Championships include 5 Triple Crown Wins in IASCA its highest award, and three Best of Show Install, Three Zenner Best Overall, and the highly coveted Culberson Cup Sound Quality Best of Show in MECA. Brian is directly responsible for DSP Tunning Training across the country for Arc Audio as well as tech support for car audio and DSP. His most recent industry accomplishment was winning the 2023 Installer of The Year award.

Chris Pate

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Mobile Toys, Inc.

  • Position: Owner
  • Location: College Station, TX
  • Biography: Founder and CEO of Mobile Toys Inc. Mobile Toys Inc is the parent corporation for MTI Automotive Designs, MTI Acoustics, and Mobile Toys. Chris is a 29-year veteran of the 12-volt industry with stops at Circuit City, Sound Waves, Audio Video and Car Toys of Tulsa. Chris blends his modern styling with forward thinking automation to create innovative automotive designs. Pate is a former MEA Installer of the Year and Retailer of the Year.

Carlos Pinto

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Elite Audio

  • Position: Owner
  • Location: Hermosillo, Sonora, Mexico
  • Biography: Carlos es un joven empresario Ingeniero Electrónico egresado de ITH, que escogió el car audio como profesión siguiendo su pasión por la música y los automóviles, actualmente cuenta con su propio taller en Hermosillo, Sonora, y es una de las cabezas de entrenamiento en el Proyecto Quetzalcóatl México donde se potencializan talleres de todo el país para el crecimiento de la industria nacional. Carlos is a young businessman, Electronic Engineer graduated from ITH, who chose car audio as a profession following his passion for music and automobiles. He currently has his own shop in Hermosillo, Sonora, and is one of the heads of training in the Quetzalcóatl Mexico project where workshops from all over the country are potentiated for the growth of the national industry.

Ricardo Rangel

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Monster by Rangel

  • Position: Owner
  • Location: Mexico City, Mexico
  • Biography: Ricardo studied Industrial Design at Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education. He feels that the car, the equipment, the configuration and the industrial design are just a pretext, here we experience our music, we become addicted to that experience, we seek to reproduce it in more intense ways over and over again.

John Schwartz

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Perfectionist Auto Sound

  • Position: Owner
  • Location: Anchorage, AK
  • Biography: John has loved car audio all his life. He has been in the industry for 33 years starting as an installer and working his way up to CEO of Two-Time Retailer of the Year Perfectionist Auto Sound in Anchorage, Alaska. He has been with Perfectionist for 24 years and was also part of the original team at Firstech which owns CompuStar. Join John while he shows you what it takes and the mindset you need to build a multimillion-dollar company.

Cabe Sipes

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Custom Audio Reimagined

  • Position: Owner
  • Location: Lafayette, IN
  • Biography: Cabe Sipes has been involved in Car Audio for over 30 years and he's loved every minute of it. The first days of his installing career were spent as an installer Best Buy. Those days were also some of his favorites because of the comradery between himself and the other installers. That comradery helped him build his skills, knowledge, and confidence which led to him competing in DB Drag events and attending car audio shows regularly. After years in the install bay Sipes' work began gaining recognition and he was invited to be on Team East Coast in the 2004 Installer Challenge. This is where he first met those who he viewed as "real" installers and fabricators, like Jason Ewing and Jason Schreier. At the time he was best known for his fiberglass work and the speed at which he could fabricate, so during that 2004 competition that was his area of focus. Cabe's work caught the attention of the owner of Ultra Custom Boats who offered him a job fabricating custom fiberglass enclosures for his boats. At the same time Jason Ewing was offered a job wiring the audio setups in those same boats. This led Sipes and Ewing to their first TV show, Rock The Boat. After a season of Rock The Boat, Sipes was offered a spot as an off camera fabricator on MTVs Pimp My Ride. Sipes and Ewing had become pretty much a combo deal by then so Ewing was also offered a wiring position. After a couple episodes Sipes was offered a contract as an on air cast member and became the Fabricator on Pimp My Ride. After 4 seasons of Pimp my Ride Sipes moved back to Indiana onto his family farm where he built a shop and eventually a house. For Sipes, who was taking a few years off to spend with his family, the shop started out as a hobby. Over the past 8 years he's grown that hobby into a very successful business known as Custom Audio Reimagined. He specializes in custom audio and new car integration. Sipes has recently expanded the business to include a new fabrication facility, to be finished in mid-2023.

Meredith Soleau

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424 Degrees

  • Position: CEO
  • Location: Maumee, OH
  • Biography: Meredith is the Co-Founder of Attagirl Media and President of 424 Degrees, one of the oldest and most distinguished social media agencies in the country. Her boutique agency offers a full-service suit, specializing in manufacturing, car dealerships and automotive repair shops, and restaurant clients. Meredith built this bootstrapped 7-figure revenue business on a dream and a prayer without even so much as a business loan. Meredith is a Facebook Developer, a Meta Marketing Partner, a TikTok Agency Partner, and co-hosts the #1 Kids & Family Podcast in the world. With 10+ years of entrepreneurship under her belt, previous Human Resource Management and even car sales experience, she has been there and done that in the business world. Follow Meredith on Facebook & Instagram.

Dalton Trainer

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Car-Tunes, Inc

  • Position: Lead technician and fabricator
  • Location: Greenville, MS
  • Biography: I work for Car-Tunes, Inc my family business owned by my mother Kimberly. I've literally been around car audio since I was five (5) when mom bought the business. I started doing basic installations at the age of 12. As I've grown up in the business, I've constantly pushed my limits to become better at my profession and expand my skills to where I am now. I've been a MEA top 12 installer for the last 3 years and Top 50 before that. I'm primarily the lead technician and fabricator with Car-Tunes, Inc. I specialize in OEM integration and fabrication. I also help with sales and system design for premium installations. This is not only my career but my lifestyle 24/7 365 I'm 100% dedicated to the mobile electronics industry.

Kimberly Trainer

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Car-Tunes, Inc

  • Position: President & Owner
  • Location: Greenville, MS
  • Biography: Kimberly Trainer is Owner & President of Car-Tunes, Inc. in Greenville, MS and has been since 2001. She is an active Member of the Mobile Electronics Specialists of America, the Mobile Electronics Association, and the National Federation of Independent Business. She serves on the Knowledgefest Educational Committee formulating relevant content & current topics to educate the Mobile Electronics Industry. Her is a consistent participant of Mobile Electronics Industry events including Knowledgefest Las Vegas, MESA Leadership Summit in Scottsdale, AZ, and the MESA Summit St Louis, MO. She is featured as Valued Partner in Dealer Spotlight on current Compustar Website, Dealer Spotlight on current SoundShield Website, Dealer Spotlight in RaceSport 2020 Product Catalog, and several Covers of Mobile Electronics Magazine. Her award-winning staff includes multiple Top 50 and Top 12 Mobile Electronics Installer of the Year Awards and the first ever Sales Pro named Mobile Electronics Rookie of the Year for 2022. Carr-Tunes, Inc has multiple Top 50 and Top 12 Mobile Electronics Retailer of the Year Awards and has been honored to be The 2020 Mobile Electronics Retailer of The Year.

Elias Ventura

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  • Position: Regional Sales & Training
  • Location: Doral, FL
  • Biography: I'm Elias Ventura, a Car Guy at heart, since I was a child and teen years, I knew I wanted to work with anything car related from an early age. I currently work for HKI USA, which represents SounDigital, Ground Zero, Four Connect and TURY Products in the US. I currently cover the Mid-Atlantic Region for HKI, assisting in Training and assisting with Key Accounts. October of this year will be my 17th Year as a 12 Volt Professional. I started in the industry by attending a Car Audio School, Mobile Dynamics in Tempe, Arizona in 2004-2005. In 2005 I got my official start in the Industry at Tweeter, a regional consumer electronics chain store that did Home and Car Audio. I started at Tweeter as an Apprentice Installer, evolved into a Salesperson, and got my first start in Management there. I've had the opportunity to work in different Car Audio Shops which has allowed me to see all aspects of stores, from Small Boutique to Small-Large Chain Stores. In 2017 I was awarded the SalesPro Award by my industry and peers, a surreal and humbling experience. Winning this award has inspired me to give back something that I enjoy doing, from teaching at various KnowledgeFest Events, Regional Distributor Events to Co-Running a Facebook Group "12V SalesPros". I have also made it to the Top 5 Sales Reps for the 2024 industry awards. This Industry has given me so much, I have made it my passion to teach, influence and give back by helping others daily.

David Wall

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Freeman's Car Stereo

  • Position: CEO
  • Location: Cornelius, NC
  • Biography: CEO at Freeman's Car Stereo, Inc, the largest independent retailer for mobile electronics in the Carolina's. We operate six stores in North Carolina and one store in South Carolina. We were honored as the 2023 Mobile Electronics Retailer of the Year in the Multi-store category.

Ken Ward

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  • Position: International Technical Marketing Manager
  • Location: Marignano MC, Italy
  • Biography: Ken has over 35 years in the 12-volt category, and conducted his first dealer training back in 1992. He is also the co-founder of Musicar Northwest in Portland, Oregon, an award-winning 12-volt systems integrator. His skills include product development, sales, account management, technical support, business planning, and technical marketing. Ken is best known for his expertise in both integrating with OEM audio systems and tuning aftermarket audio systems. Ken attends Knowledgefest in two capacities - International Technical Marketing Manager for Elettromedia in Italy, and as the founder and operator of the Educar online community.

Andy Wehmeyer

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  • Position: Owner
  • Location: Monrovia, California
  • Biography: I have more than 30 years of experience in aftermarket auto/sound as a retail installation technician, retail store management, and nearly 20 years as a product/category manager at Harman International. Co-inventor of patented speaker mounting systems and DSP algorithms applicable in the automotive auto/sound industry. He is currently the CEO of Audiofrog Inc

Yamil Widy

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Traffic Jams Motorsports

  • Position: Owner
  • Location: Buford, GA
  • Biography: Yamil has been in the car audio industry since 1997. He has always had a passion for car audio & speed. He started his shop from his mother's garage and opened his first store in 2000 and has never looked back. He took over ownership of Traffic Jams Motorsports in 2006 and converted it into what today is a 28K square foot car audio and performance shop. He is MECP Product Technology Specialist and has 15 employees on staff. Yamil is very well versed in other business ventures such as owning a Real Estate Franchise and Restaurant & nightclub are just a few of his other businesses. He has used his experience and knowledge in those businesses and has applied them to Traffic Jams Motorsports. Yamil success has come from being very dedicated to his craft and a relentless work ethic. Always striving to be better he constantly is training his staff to be the very best. He loves to teach and train our industry so that others can become a success at their own business. 2020 Retailer of the year Runner Up - 2020 Best Store Culture - 2019 Top 12 Retailer - MECP Product Technology Specialist
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