NASCAR champion crew chief joins line-up of top collision industry speakers

CIECA announced that Chad Knaus, NASCAR champion crew chief and current vice president of competition for Hendrick Motorsports, will be a guest speaker during the upcoming CIECA CONNEX Conference. The in-person event is being held in Charlotte, North Carolina, September 14-16. In addition to a line-up of top industry speakers, there will be networking opportunities, a gifting ceremony by the National Auto Body Council® (NABC) as part of its NABC Recycled Rides® program for two deserving Charlotte residents, and a tour of Hendrick Motorsports.

As vice president of competition, Knaus oversees the technical development of all Chevrolet race cars for 13-time NASCAR Cup Series champions Hendrick Motorsports. The Rockford, Illinois, native is responsible for personnel dedicated to the organization’s four NASCAR Cup Series entries, including crew chiefs, pit crews, engineering, fabrication, assembly and other team-related staff. Knaus, 49, is a seven-time Cup Series champion crew chief, all with driver Jimmie Johnson, and a winner of 82 races. From 2006 to 2010, the duo won an unprecedented five consecutive titles. At the top level of stock-car racing, only Hall of Fame crew chiefs Dale Inman and Leonard Wood have more race victories, and just Inman has more championships.

During the CIECA CONNEX Conference, Knaus will touch on topics including advancements made in the racing industry not only through engineering but also through correlations in the production vehicle market. His appearance will be presented by conference sponsor Axalta, which is also a longtime Hendrick Motorsports partner. Following Knaus’s presentation on September 16, conference attendees will have the opportunity to tour the Hendrick Motorsports facility. All industry stakeholders, including CIECA members and non-members, are invited to attend the conference and tour.

This year’s theme is “Racing to the Future: The Digital Transformation of the Collision Industry.” Presentations will focus on current and future trends and technologies that will affect how data standards are created in the future.

“During the two-day conference, attendees will hear about current and future industry challenges and opportunities,” said Paul Barry, CIECA’s executive director. “It’s also a great opportunity to network with CIECA members and industry colleagues from all industry segments.”

This year’s sponsors of the conference include: AirPro Diagnostics, Allstate, asTech, Automotive Recyclers Association, Axalta, Caliber Collision,, Claim Genius, Comsearch, Enterprise, IAA, LKQ Corporation, Precision Body & Paint, Audatex, a Solera Company, and United Recyclers Group.

Some of the notable attractions in Charlotte include the NASCAR Hall of Fame and Charlotte Motor Speedway, which will hold the National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) Carolina Nationals September 17-19 following the CIECA conference.

For more information about CIECA CONNEX, including the agenda and sponsorship opportunities, visit

Early-bird registration and discounted room rates at the Hilton Charlotte University Place are available until August 15. Register today!

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