Auction Academy Students Making Impact

FRANKLIN, Tennessee — Auction Academy’s Class Group 7 is making its mark on the remarketing industry, and four of its class members have recently been promoted into significant management positions, reports Auction Academy President, Penny Wanna.  Recently announced promotions include Houston Gordon as Assistant General Manager at Greensboro Auto Auction, Danny McNelis as Director Auction Relationships at NextGear Capital, Stacy Brown as Vice President of Digital Sales at Dealers Auto Auction Group, and Chris Karwoski as Assistant Vice President of Reconditioning Operations at Manheim/Cox Automotive.

“It is exciting to see Auction Academy students and graduates progress in their careers as they pursue intensive industry training with Auction Academy,” said Wanna.  We congratulate these four members of Class Group 7 on their promotions and know they’ll contribute a high level of skill and professionalism to their respective companies.”  

 Houston has worked for the Greensboro Auto Auction since 2018, although his relationship with the auction has been a lifelong one as the grandson of the auction’s president and CEO.  He worked in dealer registration at the auction during summer breaks in his youth, and has served as Outside Fleet Coordinator, National Sales Manager and Arbitration Manager in the five years since joining the auction team full-time.

McNelis has spent more than 22 years in the automotive industry and began his career with NextGear Capital in 2012, where he served as a Client Solutions Executive before transitioning to Account Executive in 2014. In 2017 he served as a Performance Consultant for Cox Automotive before rejoining the NextGear Capital team in 2017 as a Senior Client Solutions Executive.  He joined the newly-formed Auction Services Team as Director of Auction Relationships in January.

Brown has been an active player in the remarketing industry for more than 24 years, fostering long-term relationships with dealers and consignors across the Southeast.  In her new role as VP of Digital Sales at Dealers Auto Auction Group, Brown and her team will promote, facilitate and expand the DAAG digital platform across the United States.

Karwoski began his career at Cox Automotive nine years ago, starting in sales before moving to operations as the AGM overseeing Recon Operations at Manheim Statesville.  He transferred to the company’s Recon Team in August of 2022, taking the lead on developing initiatives and strengthening strategic partnerships.  As AVP of Reconditioning Operations he is responsible for leading the recon teams that support the East and Southeast Regions.

Wanna notes that these promotions follow three others which were announced earlier in the Class Group 7 term:   Becky Anderson, President CARS Recon; Whitney Gerkin, Associate VP of Operational Excellence at Manheim/Cox Automotive; and Andrew Schaefer, General Manager at Indiana Auto Auction.  Class Group 7 has posted more advancements while in session than any previous Academy Class Group.

Said Auction Academy Co-Founder and CEO, Pierre Pons: “From the beginning we have been impressed with the skill and devotion exhibited by the those who have pursued industry training through Auction Academy.  It’s a great pleasure for all of us involved to work with them, to watch their progress at the companies they work for, and to observe the impact they are making on the remarketing industry.”   

Auction Academy is a continuing education program developed by TPC Management Company (TPC) for professionals in the auto auction industry.  Auction Academy’s two-year program provides a training and development experience for auto auction professionals, structured like an Executive MBA program.  With faculty drawn from expert practitioners around the country, Auction Academy’s programs are designed to enhance essential skill sets, promote best practices and yield better auction performance. The curriculum includes site visits, field trips, technical certifications and work with industry experts in all areas of auto auction operations.

For additional information about Auction Academy, contact Penny Wanna by telephone: (615) 591-4544; or by email:, or visit the web site