Spec Sheet
November 2009

Rick Nicoletti

Editor's Notebook

by Rick Nicoletti, Napleton Fleet Group

November…how did we get to the end of another year this quickly? I know that this is a very busy time of year for everyone with work and the upcoming holidays. But please take a few minutes out of your day to read through this latest issue of Spec Sheet. I know you’ll find it informative.

It still may be 2009 but the AFLA Conference Committee is hard at work putting together the agenda for the 2010 conference. A theme has been selected – “Turn Change into Opportunity”– which fits nicely with our 2009 conference theme – “Managing the Matrix of Change.” We certainly have seen plenty of change in the past 18 months and the past AFLA Conference gave attendees the opportunity to review the change and look ahead to the coming year. I’m sure the 2010 conference will offer attendees the same educational and networking opportunities. By the way, take a moment now and mark your calendar with the date for the 2010 AFLA Conference – September 8-10, 2010 at the JW Marriott Resort and Spa in Las Vegas, NV.

This latest issue of Spec Sheet covers a whole range of topics regarding AFLA and its members. Some of the highlights of this issue include:

  • The President’s Message from Tom Donato.
  • Survey results on where to hold the 2011 conference.
  • A review of our LinkedIn initiative by Dico Akseraylian.
  • A report from Terry Langness on the newly-created Education Committee and their goals.
  • And lastly a fun look at Jim McCarthy’s passion for music.

The Communications Committee’s dedicated members spend a considerable amount of time each month putting together your newsletter. We would like to hear from you regarding Spec Sheet. Tell us what you like, tell us what we should add or tell us where we can improve. This is your newsletter. Your input can only make it a better newsletter. Email me at editor@aflaonline.com – we really want to hear from you.

Best wishes to all for a very Happy Thanksgiving!


Registration Now Open for 2010 Conference!

If you attended the 2009 AFLA Conference or spoke to anyone who did, you know the value that this event offers to advanced fleet professionals. In terms of networking opportunities, high-level content, and affordability, there’s no industry event that’s better for corporate fleet managers.

AFLA is continuing this trend with its 2010 Annual Conference in Las Vegas, Nevada, September 8-10, 2010 at the Marriott Las Vegas Hotel. Ger signed up today so you can take advantage of what promises to be another unbeatable fleet conference.

Registration is now available online at www.aflaonline.com.

Terry Langness

Donna Bibbo

AFLA Education Committee Report

by Terry Langness

The newly-formed AFLA Education Committee is chaired by Terry Langness of PARS. Vice chair is Donna Bibbo of Novo Nordisk. Fellow committee members include, Suzen Moye (Sanofi-Aventis), Kimberly Fisher (Cardinal Health), Kevin McGrath (FleetStreet Remarketing), Bill Carey (Auto Truck Group), Mick Morris (Mercedes Benz USA), Steve Johnson (Mike Albert Leasing), Jim Piccoli (Chapman Auto Group) and Scott Okun (Auto Driveaway). View the full committee HERE.

The initial goals and objectives of the committee for 2010 include continuation of the monthly whitepapers, launching a regular scheduled series of webinars on targeted topics, serving as a sounding board for future conference speakers and developing an E Learning Center for the website. These goals revolve around providing increased value to all AFLA members.

Other goals including working with the communications committee on setting up a Wikipedia page on corporate fleet management that would potentially be managed by AFLA volunteer leaders and what topics would be appropriate for any social networking tools that are developed i.e. Facebook, LinkedIn etc.

The subjects or topics that we are reviewing include safety, hybrid tax credits, CMV (commercial motor vehicle) regulations and light duty truck fleets, taxable benefits, alternative fuels (CNG, Propane, etc), nutrition and others. Member feedback is extremely important on any and all topics of interest. Please share your ideas with our committee or email Terry Langness at tlangness@parsinc.com.

Continue this discussion on LinkedIn HERE. Find out more about LinkedIn here.


What Do First-Time Attendees Think of the Annual AFLA Conference?

There were a record 104 first-time attendees at the 2009 AFLA Conference held last September at the Arizona Biltmore. Listen to Dean Yerem of Nestle, a first-time attendee, as he explains why AFLA is such a valuable conference for commercial fleet managers and why he plans to attend every year.

Shouldn’t you attend your first AFLA conference? But, don't take our word for it!

Listen to Dean Yerem’s own words and discover why everyone in the commercial fleet management industry is so excited about AFLA’s annual conference.

Listen to his video testimonial by clicking on the video frame below or clicking on this link:

Continue this discussion on LinkedIn HERE. Find out more about LinkedIn here.

Tom Donato

Message from the President

by Tom Donato, Automotive Resources International

In last month's message, we discussed AFLA's sharpened focus on increasing value for our members and sponsors.

More specifically, we want to improve our year-round educational and informational capabilities through the use of the latest web-based technologies that make learning available 24 hours a day through PCs, laptops, MP3 players, smartphones and PDAs using online social networks, blogging and rich media.

What are the possibilities for learning?

  • Download podcasts on fleet and business topics to review wherever and whenever it's important to you.
  • Check, copy and contribute information from a daily or weekly blog.
  • Use social networks to "discuss" topics being reviewed as a group.
  • Attend web-based, rich-media presentations in real-time or time-shifted. Rich media can involve a range of digital interactive media that is downloadable and can be viewed or used offline with media players, or it may be embedded in a webpage.
  • Upload podcasts or web-based presentations to encourage interactive, peer-driven learning.

The Education Committee is charged with ongoing strategic education and is already busy identifying topics of interest to members as well as potential presenters. In addition, we are currently forming a "Technology Task Force" to support the committee’s efforts through the implementation of these new technologies. We are looking for volunteers who either have first-hand experience with web e-learning tools or have access to their company's web technology experts for implementation advice. If you can help, please contact Paul Hanscom at 651-290-6274 or paulh@aflaonline.com.

On the topic of education, I'm pleased to report terrific progress by the Conference Committee, under the direction of AFLA executive vice president Lori Rasmussen and vice president Theresa Belding, on next year's conference, to be held at JW Marriott Las Vegas from September 8-10. The 2010 conference theme is firm – "Turn Change into Opportunity." The schedule is being developed, and we will soon open the online registration.

Finally, I want to encourage every member to become involved with any of the initiatives mentioned here or any of the AFLA committees, please call me or any officer or committee member.

Have a great Thanksgiving!

Tom Donato
AFLA President

Lori Rasmussen

2011 AFLA Conference Site Survey Results

by Lori Rasmussen, PARS

Thank you to all who took the 2011 Conference site survey. Please check out the results below:

  1. Please select the area that most appeals to you for the 2011 conference.

  2. Would you be in favor of rotating the annual conference to a location other than the Southwest every third year? In other words, two years at a Southwest location and the third year in a different area of the country.

  3. Which week do you prefer the conference to be held?

  4. Which conference format do you prefer?

Dico Akseraylian

Get "LinkedIn" with AFLA

by Dico Akseraylian

One of the goals of the Communications Committee is to find new ways to communicate and stay in touch with AFLA members. AFLA has a created a group on LinkedIn for AFLA members and there are currently 100 members who have joined. For those who are new to this business social media website, you may be asking yourself the benefits of LinkedIn. You can post a blog, submit a news article, join a discussion topic or start a new one, read a variety of news and information and reach out to other AFLA members. The Communications Committee will also be using LinkedIn to communicate with AFLA members through announcements and discussion topics.

For those who have not yet joined the AFLA group on LinkedIn, we will be sending you an email invitation shortly. Or, if you are currently a LinkedIn member but have not yet joined the AFLA group, you can simply find the AFLA LinkedIn page by typing in "AFLA" in the search box under the "Search Group" category. We hope you will join us and utilize this new tool to better collaborate as a group.


Fall Market Trend Continues...

by Ricky Beggs, Black Book

Listen to Ricky Beggs' discussion on Fall Market Trends by clicking on the video frame below or clicking on this link:


White Paper: The Economic and Environmental Impacts of a Corporate Fleet Vehicle Purchase Program

The “greening” of corporate vehicle fleets presents an opportunity to move a substantial number of highly efficient, clean fuel vehicles onto the road in a relatively short timeframe—with results that are both environmentally and economically positive. A newly released report by the Sustainable Transportation and Communities group at the Center for Automotive Research (CAR), an Ann Arbor-based nonprofit research organization, examines the economic and environmental contributions of converting corporate fleets from gasoline to compressed natural gas (CNG) and hybrid vehicles. Download the full White Paper HERE.

AFLA White Paper Library

Check out our archived section of member-only White Papers online in the Resource Library at www.aflaonline.com. Some of these great topics include:

  • Distracted Driving Studies
  • Mapping Technical and Operational Challenges of Mobile Computing Deployments
  • Facing Rising Reimbursement Costs: How Company Vehicle Programs Help Businesses Run on All Cylinders
  • The Impact of Electronic Toll Collection on Fleet Managers and Leasing Companies
  • The Business Case for Full Compliance: "Best Practices" Performance at Lower Cost
  • Greening Your Fleet
  • And many more!

To keep the AFLA Whitepaper Series as an important benefit, we invite your contribution of material for publication. To learn more about how you can participate in the AFLA White Paper Series, contact Paul Hanscom at paulh@aflaonline.com.

Visit the Resource Library and download a White Paper today!

Jim McCarthy

Questions and Answers with Fleet Managers We Are Curious About

Jim McCarthy, SIEMENS

by Scott Okun

Jim McCarthy has been in the fleet business for over 16 years. He was fleet manager of the year in 2005. Jim oversees a shared services operation covering vehicles for 18 Siemens clients and three non-Siemens clients. So what does Jim do when he is not managing one of the largest fleets in the United States, or spending time with his 3 grandchildren? One of his joys and pastimes is his love of music!

  1. What was your first concert?

    I guess my first real, or at least first memorable concert was Paul Revere & the Raiders at the Northbrook Skating Rink in 1966, and to this day, they remain one of my favorite 60's bands.
  2. What was your last concert?

    My last concert was a few weeks back in Madison Square Garden where I had the opportunity to see Aretha Franklin, Jeff Beck (with Lou Reed), Metallica (with Ozzy Osborne) who, by the way, did a two song jam with Ray Davies from the Kinks – Metallica & the Kinks, who would have thunk it. Also performing was U2, who ended up jamming with Bruce Springsteen, Patti Smith & Mick Jagger. And speaking of Springsteen, I'm probably the only guy from Jersey (a Chicago transplant) who prefers the Jersey Shore sounds of Southside Johnny over Bruce.
  3. How many songs are on your IPOD?

    Right now I have 16,500 songs on my IPOD covering all musical genres from Classical to Gothic Rock, and 250 true one-hit wonders (my favorite genre), from Hedgehoppers Anonymous to Whistling Jack Smith, and from the Jaggerz to Napoleon XIV.
  4. What new music group are you listening to?

    Having grown up in the 60s where size did matter (a song really couldn't be longer than 2 ½ minutes or so if it wanted significant radio play), I have developed a real affinity for jam bands, and a few of my favorites are probably Tea Leaf Green, Umphrey's McGee, Ekoostic Hookah and Widespread Panic. Additionally, I have to admit that I have developed a real liking for all Fountains of Wayne music, especially their latest album "Traffic & Weather."
  5. What are your favorite cites for seeing live music?

    I would have to say Chicago – Chicago blues are the best. But additionally, I grew up in Chicago in the Garage Band era of the 60s with the likes of The Buckinghams, Shadows of Knight, New Colony Six, Cryan' Shames and Ides of March. Also, it's pretty hard to beat Beale Street in Memphis or Bourbon Street in New Orleans.....wall to wall music, from one end to the other.
  6. Any famous artist/rock star sightings or meetings?

    Absolutely – my brother-in-law spent some time on the road with the original CTA, now known as Chicago. So I have had the opportunity to meet the band and spend some quality time backstage. Also, last year my wife and I went to a garage band reunion concert (CaveStomp) in Brooklyn featuring The New Colony Six and The Strawberry Alarm Clock….and since I knew the drummer from the NC6 we were able to spend time in the band’s hospitality suite before and after the show….what a treat!
  7. Believe it or not category

    When I buy a new car, the first thing I look for, before performance, options, price, looks and, I'm sorry to say, safety, is the sound system. If the sound system doesn't measure up or sell me first, I move on.
  8. Favorite Songs

    As you can image, this is not an easy choice, and is subject to change daily...however, over time I would suggest that my favorite two albums are:

    #2 - Sgt. Pepper - The Beatles (surprise, surprise)
    #1 - Derek & the Dominos - Live at the Fillmore

    And my five favorite singles, in order, would probably be:

    #5 - Aqualung - Jethro Tull
    #4 - Question - The Moody Blues
    #3 - Signs - Five Man Electrical Band
    #2 - Feelin' Stronger Every Day - Chicago
    #1 - Reflection of My Life - The Marmalade


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