The annual conference of the Southeast Governmental Fleet Management Association (SGFMA) brought together nearly 500 fleet professionals in Myrtle Beach, S.C., Oct. 11-14.
SGFMA President Doug Ingle presided over the business lunch, where he announced the recipients of four scholarships going to members’ children as well as winners of the association's awards. The City of Rock Hill, S.C., earned the Jan Smoak award for quality fleet management, having saved $40,000 in electronic equipment installation.
Judy Lucas from the South Carolina Forestry Commission and Jimmy Hunsinger from Renewable Water Resources in South Carolina received Outgoing Board Member service plaques, and Karen Hyatt from Sumter County, S.C., earned the President’s Award for dedication to the SGFMA. Ingle, a retired fleet manager from the City of Hickory, N.C., received the Lifetime Achievement Award and recognition for two years of service as president of the association.
Members also voted in a new board. Garland Veasey, director of research farm services at Clemson University in South Carolina, was named the new president.
“In the coming year, we’re going to continue our membership drive. We have incentives for our members to bring in new members, and the way this organization is going to continue moving forward is by bringing in new members,” Veasey said.
Mark Kostos, automotive shop supervisor for Charleston County, S.C., is the new vice president; Blanche “Cookie” Harrison, fleet manager for the City of Lenoir, N.C., remains as secretary; and Karen Hyatt, assistant Public Works director for Sumter County, remains as treasurer. The group also voted in regional directors.
The four-day conference included presentations about Tier 4 emissions issues for off-road equipment, technology in the shop, HVAC technology, Government Fleet’s Leading Fleets award, new vehicles from the Detroit 3, diagnostic equipment, shop safety, and tires.
It also included a large exhibit hall and numerous networking opportunities.
“The best part about this is networking,” Ingle said of the event.
The SGFMA has about 950 members in North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Tennessee, and Virginia. The group began as a statewide association in South Carolina and expanded to the rest of the Southeast in 2005. This is its 23rd annual conference.