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Honda Executive VP John Mendel to Open 2016 Washington Auto Show With Keynote Remarks on Public Policy Day

WASHINGTON, Dec. 3, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- With mobility and sustainability as its driving forces, The Washington Auto Show® announces a keynote speaker representing a company that embodies these very ideals.

John Mendel, executive vice president of the Automobile Division of American Honda Motor Co., Inc., will discuss Honda's vision for the future of sustainable mobility and its contribution to empowering drivers to take the wheel of a greener, cleaner world, including the path to a hydrogen energy society.

Mendel's speech, which will launch the Washington Auto Show's Public Policy Preview Day on Thursday, Jan. 21 at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center, follows the world premiere of the Honda Clarity Fuel Cell at the Tokyo Motor Show this fall.

"Honda has become synonymous with innovation, and we are proud to set the stage for this company's game-changing leadership and ideas," said Washington Auto Show Chairman Geoff Pohanka.

Known as the "public policy show" on the global auto show circuit, The Washington Auto Show capitalizes on Washington's unique address to draw Members of Congress, regulatory officials and their staff to witness the latest technologies advancing the automotive industry and bolstering the U.S. economy.

Mendel's address, sponsored by the Washington Automotive Press Association (WAPA), and the International Motor Press Association (IMPA) will kick off a daylong schedule of press announcements and special events culminating in a "Sneak Peek" reception for officials in government, industry and media.

The address is traditionally opened by a leader of a major automobile manufacturer; past speakers have included such luminaries as DaimlerChrysler Chairman Dieter Zetsche, Volkswagen CEO Stefan Jacoby, Ford CEO Alan Mulally, GM CEO Dan Akerson and Johan de Nysschen, global president of Cadillac.

As executive vice president of the Automobile Division of American Honda, Mendel holds responsibilities as the head of U.S. sales and marketing activities for both the Honda and Acura brands as well as Acura Parts and Service field operations and Honda and Acura market representation, customer marketing, dealer business management and product and sales information.

Prior to joining American Honda 11 years ago, Mendel spent 28 years with Ford Motor Company. He began his career with Ford Motor Company's U.S. operations in 1976 and held numerous sales and marketing positions, ultimately serving as executive vice president and chief operating officer for Mazda North American Operations. Mendel holds undergraduate degrees in business and economics and a master of business administration from Duke University.

Featuring more than 700 new vehicles from over 42 manufacturers, The 2016 Washington Auto Show opens to the public from Jan. 22-Jan. 31 at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center and is produced by WANADA.

Founded in 1917, WANADA represents more than 225 franchised new vehicle dealers and 75 kindred-line members (related vendors) in the District of Columbia, Northern Virginia and Suburban Maryland.

Representing hundreds of journalists and industry executives throughout the Baltimore-Washington area, WAPA seeks to improve communication between automotive journalists in the Baltimore-Washington area and the automotive industry, regulators and other groups; further the accuracy and quality of automotive journalism; offer networking and information-sharing opportunities and ongoing education for its members; and provide a forum for newsworthy people and products.

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For more information about WAPA, visit:, IMPA, visit

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SOURCE The Washington Auto Show

For further information: Barbara Pomerance, 800-697-7574,