Virtual 77th Annual ARA Convention & Expo: Leverage Your Edge

Sep 1, 2020 | Industry

Gain keen insight and valuable business connections at the first-ever virtual automotive recycling industry event that could turn your possibilities into probabilities – without even leaving your facility!

By Caryn Smith 

Do you want to rejuvenate your business, revive your business profits, reframe your current perspective, refresh your team’s skills, and recharge your personal energy?

It has been a long challenging year that has offered up unprecedented obstacles and unforeseen opportunities. It’s time to take a few days for yourself, your business and your employees, to reevaluate your mission, goals, strategies, profitability, processes, efficiencies, and more. Finding new perspective may be just what you need to go into 2021 with a clear plan of action and renewed energy … and a boost to the bottom line.

Look no further, the Automotive Recyclers Association (ARA) is offering this, and more, and encouraging participation of the entire industry, not just its members. Access to valuable, business-changing information and services is going to be, literally, at your fingertips!

In fact, you’d be crazy not to take advantage.

What is the Opportunity?

ARA has just what you need in “EDGE 2020!” This is the first-ever virtual automotive recycling industry event that serves as ARA’s 77th Annual ARA Convention & Expo – happening over three days, November 11-13 –and it’s coming directly to you in the comfort of your home or office! Register now at

EDGE 2020 offers opportunities to learn from industry experts, network with peers, and participate in a world-class Exposition boasting cutting-edge products and services from forward-thinking experts in their fields that are bound to revolutionize your business.

There is even an APP for it, so you won’t miss anything!

While ARA’s best laid plans were to have attendees come to Reno, Nevada in November as an in-person convention and expo, the ARA leadership pivoted to bring the event TO auto recyclers in a virtual format as the best way to build up the whole industry with opportunities for growth, and quite frankly, a chance to regroup from a very stressful year. While other times in history have impacted auto recyclers in critical ways, never before has the entire world and the world-wide industry endured such a trial at the same time.

“For the first time, we have the capability to help and engage with more auto recyclers than ever through the top-notch virtual convention platform, and bring it right to their office and to their teams,” says Scott Robertson Jr., ARA’s President, and owner of Robertson Auto Salvage, in Wareham, MA. “If ever there was a year to assist those who fall beyond the ARA fold, this is it. We hope recyclers of all kinds from all around the globe take advantage of the possibilities within EDGE 2020.”

What’s in Store?

ARA has assembled an expert line-up of speakers and peer-leader panels who will share strategies for growth, efficiency, productivity, and recovery from the most challenging year in modern history. Some sessions include:

• Two Keynotes – “Working Less and Making More,” with Blake Stratton; and “Overcoming Adversity,” with Jason Redman

• Surviving 2020

• Finding & Developing the Right People

• Electric & Hybrid Vehicles – A New Chapter

• Inventory Acquisition: The Single Most Important Thing You Do

• Hybrid/EV Battery Recycling/Battery Safety

• Maximize Core and End of Life Revenue

• How to Kick A** at a Self-Serve Auto Facility

• The Future of Auto Recycling

• Engaging Sales Growth

• Are We Really Meeting Customers’ Expectations

• “Tech Talks” with technology companies

… And more!

ARA eagerly anticipates the return of Jason Redman (left) as the EDGE 2020 closing keynote speaker. He is named as the “ARA 2020 Industry Coach,” and has already led four pre-convention “Facebook Live” events geared to help auto recyclers stay strong in the chaos and crush their goals (recordings are on ARA’s Facebook page).

As a decorated retired Navy SEAL officer who was severely wounded in Iraq in 2007, Redman used his experiences to become a New York Times bestselling author, speaker and coach, helping individuals and companies through adversity. Reflecting on the resilience of the auto recycling community, Redman says, “I think resilience is the ability to endure hard and uncertain times, but also to recognize the opportunities it presents. We will explore this and more, and convention attendees will walk away with actionable plans to implement following the event.”

Where’s the Innovation?

How often do you get – directly in your office – an abundance of industry suppliers who want to educate you on ways to innovate your business, all at your fingertips and all in one room?

How many times do you get to connect your specific team members (who use the products and services every day) with the opportunity to talk directly to suppliers and gain information and data that will improve their skills or help make critical production decisions?

With this in mind, the virtual Exposition might be the most important aspect of the event for participants. Registered attendees go into the “Expo Hall,” and can immediately see every company that is exhibiting at a glance. Then, attendees can:

• Choose the vendor booths they want to connect with (just like a live trade show);

• Set up a one-to-one appointment with the company to occur during a time-frame convenient to both;

• Live video chat with a booth representative;

• Learn about the company through their in-booth video or other in-booth options;

• For participating exhibitors, watch an informational webinar in the booth, and ask questions right away;

• Email the company questions and requests for follow-up later;

• Download information, documents and videos into an attendee “eBag” for viewing later at their leisure. (This helpful feature allows attendees to grab the information they want to review later in more detail and share with their management or teams.)

This undistracted time with vendors is an efficient way to do business and get all the facts needed to find win-win opportunities.

EDGE 2020 SPONSORS: Platinum – Hollander and IAA; Diamond –, LKQ and URG; Gold – Brock Supply and Peddle; Silver – Copart, PMR, and RAS. 

Other companies already committed to the event, with more to come, are Advanced Remarketing Services, Brock Supply Co., Belanger Converter Recycling, Buddy Automotive Innovations,, CCC Information Services, Commercial Forms Recycler Supply, Copart, Crush/S3 Software Solutions, EZ-Suite, Hollander LLC, Mike French & Co., Inc./Auto Recyclers Toolbox, Peddle LLC, PMR Inc., Rebuilders Automotive Supply, Recycling Today Media Group, ScrapCATapp, Texn Rewards LLC, United Catalyst Corporation, United Recyclers Group, Vortex De-Pollution & Recycling Equipment, We Buy Key Fobs, Worldwide Facilities formerly GJ Sullivan Co. (Sponsor and Exhibitor list is as of 9/28/2020.)

What Can You Achieve?       

“Recovery for the automotive recycler means rethinking everything going forward,” says Robertson. “No matter if business is going well, or if it is struggling, 2020 has changed the landscape of business. If you add in other factors, such as the OEMs infringement on the marketplace and the electric vehicle and technology gaining traction, automotive recyclers need to be smart about their decisions in 2021 and beyond.”

“If an auto recycler wants to connect with their peers, get back on their feet, stay ahead of trends, and take their business to the next level, we can help them accomplish that – which, in turn, is good for the whole industry,” says Sandy Blalock, ARA’s Executive Director. “Our mission is to protect the marketplace from detracting intruders, offer pathways to progress with industry education, certification, and recognition, and provide ways to connect recyclers to their peers and to the quality service providers who bring innovation to the industry.”

“The industry missed so many opportunities to gather, learn and connect,” says Blalock. “ARA is hosting the best virtual experience possible so that you can get your EDGE and plan for success in 2021.” Don’t miss all EDGE 2020 offers as the industry event of the year. 


INDUSTRY RECOGNITION  Automotive Recyclers Association Welcome & Ribbon Cutting.

President Scott Robertson Jr. welcomes attendees.

Automotive Recyclers Association Awards & Gavel Passing Ceremony.

See your peers get the recognition they deserve!


Chat with your peers by topic or just hang out!


Tech Talks from:  Buddy Automotive Innovations,, CCC, Crush, eBay and Hollander.


B&R Auto Wrecking Facility welcomes attendees for an Insider Tour. Plus: Info you need to know is located in the industry resource center!


Enter the Wellness Lounge for a Brain Break and Wellness Check. Take advantage of what this lounge has to offer!

Sessions to Sharpen Your Edge

(Highlights as of Sept 28, 2020)

Opening Keynote: THE DOUBLE WIN

Blake Stratton, Michael Hyatt & Co.

In this signature talk from Michael Hyatt & Co., you will learn the Four-Step System for growing your business while working less. Following this process has resulted in our clients growing their business an average of 67 percent in their first year, while cutting an average of 11 hours from their workweek. We've compressed and customized this message to equip you to start winning

at work and succeeding at life quickly!

Powering the Auto Recycling Industry with Interchange

During this discussion, Hollander will review how they continue to power the industry with Interchange, their recent data center move and the long-term advantages for the auto recycling industry. Afterwards, will address the enhancements they add to the Interchange and their commitment for the future.

Surviving 2020

Greg Daurio; Tom Andrade; Shan McMillon; Ryan Falco; Becky Berube, Moderator

The unforeseen challenges of 2020 have disrupted and changed our business world in more ways than any of us could ever imagine. Join our panel discussion with auto recyclers from across the country to review the impact of COVID-19 on auto recycling, crisis management techniques utilized, and how this has forever changed our business.

The Future of Auto Recycling

Don Porter with Q&A Discussion to include: Nick Daurio; Jim Watson; Doug Reinert

Turn the clock forward a few years and attempt to imagine the auto recycling industry of the future. What will it look like? How will we cope with advancements in vehicle design, advanced ADAS technology and push for Artificial Intelligent estimating applications? How will these innovations affect the way we do business, the vehicles we purchase, part types we sell, and how we market and sell our inventory? Who will be the consumer of tomorrow? Join us as we discuss the future of auto recycling.   


Electric and Hybrid Vehicles – A New Chapter

Andy Latham

Following the release of the latest updated and in-depth Electric and Hybrid Training Manual from the Automotive Recyclers Association, Andy Latham will discuss latest insights into the safe handling and recycling of high-voltage batteries along with the steps taken to remove batteries from all vehicles prior to vehicle crushing and scrapping. Andy is one of the leading experts in the world on this subject matter, so you will want to take notes!

Inventory Acquisition: The Single Most Important Thing You Do

Stony Rutledge; Bill Stevens

Full-service auto recyclers spend more money on inventory than any other item. It's the single most important factor in maximizing profitability. Discover why inventory acquisition is so important yet so challenging. Leave this session with the information needed to thrive during this unique time of opportunity.

Sales for Self-Service – Thinking Outside the Box

Justin Eves

Move beyond the social media and data-driven techniques of yesterday and into the future! In this session, you will learn how rapidly growing concepts such as geofencing and behavioral targeting can drive business your way. Empower your staff to correctly identify parts, appropriately charge for those parts, and how to improve tracking individual and team performance using a variety of KPIs. 

How to Kick A** at a Self-Serve Auto Facility

Tom Andrade; Michael Pierson II; Gary Lindros

Open panel discussion on the key focus areas of running a successful Self-Service or Hybrid Facility. Topics will include stocking, sales and customer service.  We will also highlight scrap material harvesting.

Closing Keynote: Pointman in Business & Life

Jason Redman

The Pointman. The leader. The navigator. The danger seeker. That legendary military individual who has nerves of steel, an inner compass and GPS rolled into one, and an unworldly 6th sense to detect dangerous ambushes. In my career, I was a Pointman. I also relied on Pointmen to navigate routes, identify the most efficient way to get to objectives, and detect danger. In our careers and personal lives, we seek a clear path to accomplish our goals. We want that uncanny awareness to detect obstacles. We desire to maintain the overcome mindset to stay the course. To do this, we must develop our own Pointman intellect! We will explore the tools you will need in order to become your own Pointman, to crush your goals. 

Day by Day at a Glance

(As of Sept 28, 2020. Changes may occur up to event time.)

November 11, 2020

•  Automotive Recyclers Association Welcome and Ribbon Cutting

•  B&R Auto Wrecking Facility Tour in Corvallis, Oregon – Part 1

•  Tech Talk:  Hollander

•  Tech Talk:  Car-Part

•  Tech Talk:  Crush

•  Exposition Open! Attendees are encouraged to enter the EDGE 2020 EXPO HALL, schedule vendor appointments, engage in live video or text chat with Booth Representatives, watch exhibitor videos and webinars, and download company information into your attendee eBag for future reference! This is your undistracted time to find valuable products, services and machinery from the industry’s forward-thinking companies, that could help you meet your goals towards a profitable outcome in 2021.

November 12, 2020

•  B&R Auto Wrecking Facility Tour in Corvallis, Oregon – Part 2

•  The Double Win – Opening Keynote with Blake Stratton

•  Powering the Auto Recycling Industry with Interchange

•  Surviving 2020

•  The Future of Auto Recycling

•  Tech Talk: eBay

•  Airbag Recalls 2020 – New Programs/Features for Maximum Profitability

•  HR: Finding & Developing the Right People

•  Electric & Hybrid Vehicles – A New Chapter

•  Things Your CPA May Not Know

•  Tech Talk: What’s New in Bid Buddy

•  Tech Talk: What's New with CCC Pinnacle?

•  Getting the Most from Social Media

•  Inventory Acquisition: The Single Most Important Thing You Do

•  Engaging Sales Growth

•  Automotive Recyclers Association Awards & Gavel Passing Ceremony

November 13, 2020

•  B&R Auto Wrecking Facility Tour in Corvallis, Oregon – Part 3

•  Tech Talk:  Hollander

•  Tech Talk:

•  Tech Talk:  Crush

•  Sales for Self-Service – Thinking Outside the Box

•  Full-Service Session on Sales

•  2020 Managing Today‘s Virtual Workforce

•  Are We Really Meeting the Customers‘ Expectations

•  Hybrid/EV Battery Recycling/Battery Safety

•  From Order to Out the Door

•  Automotive Recyclers Association Mentor Program – Discussion with Q&A

•  Tech Talk: Inventory Buddy

•  Tech Talk:  CCC Parts & Pinnacle: Best Practices to Maximize Sales

•  Customer Expectations & Part Types

•  Maximize Core and End of Life Revenue

•  How to Kick A** at a Self-Serve Auto Facility

•  Recyclers Roundtable

•  Pointman in Business & Life – Closing Keynote with Jason Redman


Blake Stratton
Andy Latham
Dalbert Livingstone
Don Porter
Gary Lindros
Jen Wilson
Jeremy Barnett
Justin Eves
Kelly Lawlor
Mike Kunkel
Mike Pierson
Russell Sewell
Tim Wall
Tom Andrade
Jason Redman


Caryn Smith is the editor of ARA’s Automotive Recycling magazine and has been covering the industry for over 20 years.

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