Submitted by LeMay – America’s Car Museum
Automotive restoration and preservation education is entering the motorsports realm, thanks to record-breaking racer Lyn St. James, who was named an ambassador of the Hagerty Education Program at America’s Car Museum (HEP). HEP, a program dedicated to preparing young adults for careers in automotive restoration, supports hands-on, career based training for students in the United States and Canada. HEP is a program of ACM, the largest automotive museum in North America.
Embracing HEP’s mission, St. James joins the team to increase visibility of the program. She has made significant contributions to motorsports both on and off the track, making history as the first woman to win the Indy 500 Rookie of the Year award in 1992. Additionally, St. James has raced for more than 40 years and has had victories at the 24 Hours of Daytona, 12 Hours of Sebring, Watkins Glen and Elkhart Lake races, set-closed course speed records of over 225 mph and launched a foundation to help women advance their careers in motorsports.
As a HEP ambassador, St. James will connect the program with motorsports influencers to increase awareness and funding. Her service will help provide students and programs with grants and apprenticeships to launch successful careers in the automotive restoration & preservation industry.
“With the growth of vintage racing and the excitement of motorsports, we need to create a pipeline of skilled and passionate people to restore and preserve extraordinary vehicles,” said St. James. “I look forward to working with the Hagerty Education Program at America’s Car Museum, as it will attract the best and the brightest students for the job.”
Support for HEP comes through various methods, including corporate sponsorships, partnerships with colleges and universities and fundraising events at America’s Car Museum in Tacoma, Wash. With St. James’ connections to vintage racing enthusiasts and motorsports movers and shakers, HEP National Director Diane Fitzgerald plans to get the program in front of a larger audience.
“We’d like to see more racing enthusiasts join the movement to protect America’s automotive heritage by supporting educational programs of restoration and preservation,” said Fitzgerald. “Lyn’s passion for education and inclination for paying it forward make her an ideal fit for this next period of expansion for the Hagerty Education Program at America’s Car Museum.”