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January 21, 2012

Women's Automotive Association Salutes 2012 Spirit of Leadership Honorees

Jodi Kippe, Crowe-Horwath; Cherie Watters, Puente Hills Hyundai; Audrey Zavodsky, Professional Racer, to Receive Top Honors


In recognition of their professional accomplishments and contributions to the automotive industry, three distinguished businesswomen have been chosen to receive the coveted Spirit of Leadership Award, presented annually by the Women’s Automotive Association International (WAAI).

 This year’s honorees are Jodi Kippe, partner at Crowe-Horwath, a public accounting and consulting firm specializing in audit, tax, advisory, risk, and performance services; Cherie Watters, general manager of three southern California dealerships—Puente Hills Hyundai, Mazda of Puente Hills and South Bay Hyundai; and Audrey Zavodsky, PhD, professional race-car driver and head of human resources, leadership and professional development, for Ford Motor Company.

The women will be honored at the 13th Annual Spirit of Leadership Awards Dinner on Saturday, February 4, 6:30 p.m. – 10:00 p.m. at The Venetian in Las Vegas, Nevada. The awards dinner, hosted by WAAI, is being held in conjunction with the 2012 NADA/ATD Convention. Proceeds from the event will be contributed to the WAAI International Scholarship Program, which provides tuition assistance to qualified students pursuing careers in the automotive industry.

“The women selected as this year’s honorees have a proven track record of exceptional professional achievements and as role models and mentors in both the automotive industry and their communities,” stated Lorraine Schultz, WAAI founder and CEO. “We are privileged to recognize these accomplished women.”

Founded in 1995, WAAI centers it efforts on recognizing the achievements of women in the automotive industry, providing networking and relationship-building opportunities, and encouraging growth through mentoring, ?educational endeavors and scholarships.

For additional information on the awards dinner, including sponsorship and advertising opportunities, and to purchase tickets, visit the WAAI website, Or email to Lori Sousa, event coordinator,


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