Countdown to SAC 2023


Click here to download the SAC 2023 Fact Sheet & Price Guide. Book now for best pricing!

Attendee Registration

Attendee Registration


Non-member – $649

Member – $549

Exhibit Booth Registration

Exhibit Booth Options

Super Early Bird pricing does NOT apply to exhibit booths.

Standard Exhibit Booth – $1,995

Double Exhibit Booth – $3,850


Matchmaking Session

Kick off this year’s conference with our VIP Matchmaking Event on Wednesday, October 18!

Cost: Sponsors & Exhibitors – $100; Attendees – $150

Many thanks to this year’s sponsors: Elwood Staffing and Siemens Digital Industries

Confirmed sponsors and exhibitors will receive a link to register at a special discounted rate.
Attendees can select to register on the attendee registration form.

Check out THIS VIDEO from Jean Marie Thrower with Supplier Development Systems for more information on how it works.


  • 10:30 – Registration in Azalea ballroom.*
  • 11:00 – Schedule appointments with OEMs and Tier 1 suppliers.
  • 1:00-5:00 – Appointments in Azalea ballroom.

*All sellers must report for registration in order to guarantee four appointment slots with buyers.

How it Works

  • Sign in at Matchmaking registration to receive a wristband, appointment card, and voucher.
  • View a list of OEMs and Strategic Tier 1 Suppliers and sign up for appointments with your target buyers.
  • Schedule a minimum of 4 one-on-one meetings, five minutes each
  • Extra time? Report to the bullpen for opportunities to schedule with additional OEMs and Tier 1s.

How to Register

  • Confirmed sponsors and exhibitors will receive a link to register at a special discounted rate.
  • Attendees can select to register on the attendee registration form.

VIP Matchmaking Participants

Committed OEMs:

  • Honda
  • KIA
  • Mazda Toyota
  • Nissan MS
  • Toyota
  • Mazda
  • Hyundai

Committed Tier 1 Suppliers:

  • DNUS
  • Eissmann Group Automotive
  • WKW
  • Mahle
  • TI Fluid Systems
  • Plastic Omnium

Pending Participants:

  • Polaris TI
  • Kasai
  • Hella
  • E&E
  • IAC
  • Minth

Keep checking our website to see our growing list of committed OEMs and Tier 1 Suppliers.

Agenda At-A-Glance

Wednesday, October 18


  • Exhibit Hall Booth setup
  • Registration for Suppliers (Sellers) for Matchmaking Event
  • Please Note: OEMs and Large Tier 1s at Matchmaking receive complimentary registration to the entire SAC


  • Matchmaking Event – For Sponsors, Exhibitors, and attendees (for an extra fee). B2B Meetings with OEM & Large Tier 1 Purchasing representatives


  • Wednesday Welcome Reception (Great food, beverages, and live entertainment) – All registered attendees are welcome to attend this opening night reception in the Exhibit Hall at the Gas South District Convention Center. Exhibit Booths will be open for early business prospecting.

Thursday, October 19


  • Exhibit Hall Booths


  • Breakfast and morning networking opportunities
  • Keynote Speakers: Peter Ricchiuti and Joseph McCabe


  • Exhibit Hall Focus and networking opportunities
  • Stars of Southern Manufacturing Awards including presentation by Governor Reeves
  • OEM Panel
  • Town Hall (NEW to SAC for 2023!)


  • Auto Industry Celebration hosted at Morgan Freeman’s own Ground Zero Blues Club

Friday, October 20


  • Hotel check-out and exhibit booth tear down

A Brief History of SAC

SAC 2023 will mark the 16th year for the conference that serves the automotive industry associations and companies based in the southern region, namely Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Texas, as well as the Southern Automotive Women’s Forum (SAWF).

The conference rotates between four states each year, from Alabama to Georgia to Mississippi and Tennessee, and then repeats the rotation. The hosts of SAC represent a governing group called the Southern Automotive Manufacturing Alliance (SAMA) which exists to promote the automotive manufacturing industry across the South and to foster growth.

The SAC has grown in stature and attendance every year mirroring the phenomenal rise in companies locating their facilities in the region including game-changers like Mazda Toyota, Rivian, Ford (Blue Oval), and Tesla.

The southeastern United States continues to boast the fastest-growing automotive industry in North America. Known for its world-class automotive production and sound business environment, the region’s supply base has thrived while OEMs and major suppliers continue to invest.

The Southern Automotive Conference (SAC) selected the Beau Rivage Resort in Biloxi, Mississippi for the 2023 event.

Images from past SACs


Keynote Speakers

Joseph McCabe

As President and CEO of AutoForecast Solutions LLC (AFS), Joe leverages his decades of industry experience and knowledge to provide production forecasting and advisory services to the global automotive community. Joe manages the automotive turnkey operations at AFS including the global light vehicle, powertrain, drivetrain, and alternative propulsion forecast as well as a suite of AFS proprietary opportunity and sales planning software. AFS supports all tiered suppliers, VMs, government agencies, financial institutions, and the academic community with data, planning solutions, and a personalized support to help identify new business opportunities while mitigating risk. Joe’s 25+ year career in automotive forecasting ranges from his tenure at AutoFacts, PwC, AutomotiveCompass, and now as founder of AutoForecast Solutions LLC (AFS). Joe earned his Bachelors of Chemical Engineering degree at Villanova University and an MBA at Pennsylvania State University.

Peter Ricchiuti

Peter Ricchiuti (Ri-Shooty) is the business professor you WISHED you had back in college! His humor and insight have earned him numerous teaching awards at Tulane University where he created and runs the nationally acclaimed Burkenroad Reports ( student stock research program. Peter is a graduate of Babson College and began his career with the investment firm of Kidder Peabody in Boston. He later managed Louisiana’s $3 billion investment portfolio while serving as the assistant state treasurer. Peter has addressed more than 1400 groups in 47 states and several countries. He has been featured in BARRON’S, Kiplinger’s, The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal. He also hosts a popular weekly business show on National Public Radio in New Orleans called “Out To Lunch.” Peter is a husband, dad and author who has attended baseball games at all 30 current major league ballparks.

Stars Award Presentation

Gov. Tate Reeves

As the 65th Governor of Mississippi, Tate Reeves continues to show his commitment to making Mississippi the best state in the nation to live, work, and raise a family. As Governor, he guided the state through 14 federally-declared disasters in his first 14 months in office. Historic flooding and tornadoes, a worldwide pandemic, and the failure of the capital city’s water system didn’t slow him down. Governor Reeves used his steady hand and common-sense to protect the lives and livelihoods of Mississippians. Mississippi is in excellent financial shape and its economy is thriving. Governor Reeves delivered the largest tax cut in Mississippi history, reached record-low unemployment rates, and had the largest annual increase in employees since the last century.


Bill Cork

Bill Cork is an economic development executive with extensive experience in the areas of transportation, logistics, defense, aerospace and chemicals development in the state of Mississippi. He was previously CEO of the Hancock County Port and Harbor Commission where he led the economic development efforts for Stennis International Airport, Port Bienville Industrial Park and the Port Bienville Railroad, while also working with Stennis Space Center. Cork also founded Cork Consulting Group, a real estate, urban planning and public finance consulting firm. Prior to his consulting work, he was CEO of TexAmericas Center in New Boston, Texas. He also is a veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps.

Diane Bohman, CPA

Diane joined Elwood in 2019 and quickly made major growth contributions to the company. In result of her impact and capabilities, Diane was promoted into executive leadership. She then became the first female and non-Elwood family president in the company’s history. Diane has spearheaded the company towards expanding Elwood’s sales force and its evolving development plan. She has also been placing focus on traditional brick-and-mortar expansion into new markets for the company. Diane also implemented a new operational system to aid in consistent and superior service delivery for Elwood applicants. This has helped aid in the company’s market service promise by making applicants feel they are the company’s number-one priority. Diane’s contributions to the company have cemented herself as one of its most influential figures, and most certainly will continue to grow Elwood into new markets.

Mike Oatridge

Michael Oatridge serves as the Alabama Mobility and Power Center Executive Director. AMP was recently established in partnership with Alabama Power Company and Mercedes-Benz U.S. International Inc. as a research and workforce development center to meet the needs of the emerging electric vehicle market. Oatridge worked for Honda Motor Company for more than 30 years, retiring in 2021 as Senior Vice President of Honda Manufacturing of Alabama. Oatridge joined Honda in 1989 as an engineer, taking on increasing responsibilities at its manufacturing plant in Ontario, Canada. He came to the plant in Lincoln, Alabama in 2001 and became Vice President of Manufacturing Operations in 2010, a position he held until 2016 when he was promoted to Senior Vice President. He has been an Executive Board member of the Alabama Workforce Committee, Economic Partnership of Alabama and the Birmingham Business Alliance, and he has served as Chair of the Boards for the Japanese American Society of Alabama and the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute.

Jesse Vance

Jesse leads NAOS Staffing, which joined the Elwood Staffing family in March of 2023. Jesse founded NAOS in 2010 with a specialization in on-site staffing for large-scale operations. Jesse started his career in the staffing industry in 1982 as a Regional Manager for Norrell Corporation. In 1990, he went on to become the S.E. Division Vice President for Talent Tree Staffing. In 1994, after Talent Tree sold and having worked for two very successful entrepreneurs, Jesse started two staffing companies: APS Group and Pinnacle H.R in Atlanta. The companies grew to $125 million in annual revenue and sold shortly thereafter. Jesse is originally from the state of Florida and a graduate of Florida State University. Jesse has been married to Nancy Pharr Vance for 40 years and they have three sons plus three grandchildren and counting.


Download our sponsorship prospectus to learn more about the new features available at this year’s conference and how your company can get involved.

For more information about sponsorship opportunities, please contact Sheila Wardy at [email protected].


Thank You to our 2023 Sponsors!

Book Your Stay

Book your stay at the Beau Rivage, the premier destination of the Mississippi Gulf Coast. Offering sweeping views of the coast and historic downtown Biloxi, the Beau Rivage offers the perfect blend of southern hospitality and luxury.

Interested in exploring more of the Mississippi Gulf Coast? Click below to discover everything there is to enjoy along Mississippi’s 62 miles of shoreline.


The Beau Rivage is currently experiencing issues with their online booking system. Please call 888-567-6667 to reserve your room, and reference the SAC block.

We recommend that you book your hotel directly using the link above (which has been provided to us by the hotel), or book directly with the hotel. No convention or booking agencies have been authorized by SAC. We recommend that you be careful in securing your reservation with only firms you know and trust.

Media Toolkit

Let others know about your participation at SAC! Our 2023 Media Toolkit contains images, logos, and banners tailored for a variety of different uses. View our toolkit and spread the word!




SAC is presented jointly each year by the automotive manufacturers associations of Alabama (AAMA), Georgia (GAMA), Mississippi (MAMA) and Tennessee (TAMA). The South Carolina Automotive Council (SCAC), Kentucky Association of Manufacturers (KAM), Texas Automotive Manufacturing Association (TXAMA), and Southern Automotive Women's Forum (SAWF) are affiliates of SAC.