Ottawa, Ontario — September 18, 2013 — The Automotive Industries Association (AIA) of Canada has announced several appointments, promotions, and role redefinitions at its national headquarters in Ottawa. A statement from AIA says the reorganization and the addition of some key staff will benefit the membership as it will allow the association to deliver better services across all areas of its operations.
The first of these changes is the promotion of Andrew Shepherd to Senior Director of Industry Programs and Executive Director of I-CAR Canada. In this capacity, Shepherd will continue to oversee the I-CAR training program and direct AIAâ€™s overall collision sector strategies, but he will now also manage all of AIAâ€™s market research efforts in collaboration with the Market Research Committee.
Leanne Jefferies has now officially joined AIAâ€™s collision team as Director of Collision Programs and will work to organize and administer the Canadian Collision Industry Forum and to help expand AIAâ€™s role and involvement in the collision industry across Canada.
Therese Santostefano has been promoted to Senior Director of Operations and Finance and Executive Director of the Heavy Duty Distributor Council (HDDC). HDDC recently renewed its management contract with AIA following a very successful inaugural year, and Santostefano will continue to assist the Board and be responsible for all activities of staff in relation to the day-to-day management of HDDC. She will also continue to oversee all of AIAâ€™s operational and financial activities.
Given the importance of AIAâ€™s government relations activities and the associationâ€™s plan to expand its reach by building stronger relations with provincial governments, the decision was made to restructure the existing policy and communications team. As of October 1st, Jason Kerr will now act as Manager of Government Relations and will focus all of his energy on building partnerships with all levels of government across the country, providing input to various policy working groups, and working on issues such as telematics, provincial inspection programs, and the Canadian Automotive Service Information Standard (CASIS).
As part of this same restructuring, AIA is pleased to announce the appointment of Jennifer Stewart to the position of Manager of Communications, a newly-created position that will oversee all communications-related strategies, projects, and programs on behalf of AIA. Many members may be familiar with Stewart as she has worked closely with AIA for the past 18 months as a senior consultant on several government relations and communications initiatives. She will now bring her wealth of experience and expertise in communications and media relations to AIA on a more regular basis by working closely with the communications team starting October 1st.
Lisa Leblanc-HÃ©bert has also been officially promoted to Senior Coordinator of Membership and Programs. This spring Leblanc-HÃ©bert took on a number of new responsibilities within the Membership and Programs Department, and her new title now reflects those added responsibilities. She will work more closely with members from coast-to-coast on all related membership service programs.
Finally, in addition to her work as Assistant to the President and CEO, Didina Kyenge will now assume responsibility for the administration of AIAâ€™s scholarships and the maintenance of committee, council, task force and division listings in AIAâ€™s new CRM database. Kyenge will work more closely with the membership team to ensure that members are well served at all times.
AIA is very excited about all of these changes and believes that this reorganization of roles will truly benefit its members. As always, AIA is committed to providing the highest quality of service to meet the needs of its membership and feels that now, more than ever, it is in the best position to do so.