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Detroit Auto Show Producer Names Successor to DADA Executive Director Rod Alberts

May 2, 2024

Crain’s Detroit Business
May 2, 2024
Sherri Welch

The Detroit Auto Dealers Association has named Michigan Association of Broadcasters CEO Sam Klemet as co-executive director.

Klemet will join Rod Alberts, the longtime executive director of DADA and the Detroit Auto Show.

Alberts, 67, will step down as director after the 2025 Detroit Auto Show in January, capping 34 years at the helm of the organization. A spokeswoman for the organization did not comment on whether he will retire or transition to another role at that point.

“We are grateful for Rod’s continued leadership in assisting with this transition and for his significant contributions over three decades,” DADA President Todd Szott said in a release. “We are confident in our future direction with his support and collaboration with Sam. And we look forward to evolving our association and auto show as the winds of the industry continue to change in the years to come.”

Klemet, 39, has led the Michigan Association of Broadcasters as president and CEO since 2021. In that role, he led advocacy initiatives, continuing education and awards programs on behalf of 285-member commercial TV and radio stations and 30 public TV and radio stations. He also coordinated legislative initiatives in Washington, D.C., and Lansing.

Prior to that, Klemet spent six years with the Indiana Broadcasters Association and Indiana-based Arland Communications, where he oversaw advocacy and compliance initiatives for more than 270 member TV and radio stations.

Before moving into association management, Klemet was a broadcast journalist, producer and news director at commercial and public stations in Indiana, Minnesota and Illinois. He has a Bachelor of Arts degree in broadcast journalism from Michigan State University.

“Sam has a unique skill set blending association management expertise with behind-the-mic experience, both of which are a perfect complement to our organization and its trajectory for the future,” Alberts said in the news release.

“This is a transformative time in our industry, and my goal is to leave this association in the best possible place as we move forward in this new age of mobility. And, after 34 years with the DADA, it’s an ideal time — especially as we lead up to a new Detroit Auto Show in January — to set the wheels in motion for an eventual hand-off to the next generation.”