Brian Webber Executive Director
Brian led the reorganization of the Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance’s front office in 2011. A 1991 Business Administration graduate of The Citadel, Brian comes from a military family and spent several years in Germany. Naturally, that sort of childhood summons visions of fast cars and autobahnen. “I am a businessman, and I’m also a car guy,” Brian admits, “But not a hard core race car guy to the same extent that some people around here are.” He has a soft spot for Datsun’s original Z Car, Porsche’s front-engine GTs coupes and Corvettes. He’s owned several of each. His office library and décor reflect that passion. “For the Concours to thrive and grow, it must be run in a businesslike manner,” said Brian, “I am responsible for the day to day financial health of the Concours.” Brian comes to The Amelia with a background in public accounting and finance as the former CFO of a building supply company and vice president of a 53-location convenience store chain. In 1994 Brian married Demery Warner who is a board member of Spina Bifida Jacksonville. Their daughter, Lindsey was born with the birth defect. The Amelia’s charitable mission as a 501 (c) (3) organization is especially important to Brian. “We love what we do and we have fun doing it. The real bonus is that we can give back to the First Coast. And this place really attracts some extraordinary events and extraordinarily interesting people.”
N. Mark Becker Vice-Chairman
Jacksonville car collector and attorney N. Mark Becker joined the Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance staff in 2013 as the organization’s first vice-chairman. A member of The Amelia’s Board of Directors since 2005, Becker is the husband of Hilary Becker, the Amelia Concours’ Hospitality Liaison Director and an Antique Automobile Club of America (AACA) National Vice President. They live in Jacksonville’s Mandarin neighborhood. Mark is a graduate of Orange Park High School and Jacksonville University, where he earned an MBA in Marketing and Management. He earned a law degree from the University of Bridgeport, Ct. “Having Mark in this new role gives us the management talent, flexibility and depth required to keep The Amelia on course and growing,” said Bill Warner, Founder and Chairman of the Amelia Island Concours. Mark has been part of every Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance since the founding event in 1996, initially as a volunteer and then as a board member. “Mark is a serious car guy who understands exactly what we do, and that The Amelia is not just a charity but is meant to be the, “fun Concours’,” said Warner. Mark is a Vice President of the Town and Country (Chrysler) Chapter of the National Woodie Club, a member of the AACA (Antique Car Club of America), the Classic Car Club of America and the BMW Car Club of America. Mark and Hilary own a 1939 Bantam woodie wagon and two 1947 Chrysler Town and Country woodies, a sedan and convertible. In 2013 their Catalina Tan Chrysler “Woodie” sedan won Best of Show at the Ponte Vedra Concours and followed up with a Best In Class – “Post War Classics” – at the Lake Mirror Classic Concours in Lakeland last October. “It is rare to do for a living what is also your passion,” said Mark. “It is not lost on me how fortunate I am to be associated with the Concours. The fact that we benefit Community Hospice of Northeast Florida and other deserving local charities is the icing on the cake.”
George Phillips Historian, Ticket Master and “Volunteer of the Year”
Very few of the Amelia’s 700 or so volunteers have permanent offices at the Amelia Concours’ headquarters in Jacksonville, but George Phillips is one of them. Since 1997 George has been the source of those little black and white placards that identify every entry at each Amelia on the field. Writing them is an art requiring an orderly intellect, encyclopedic knowledge, plus precision, accuracy and brevity to convey the critical information regarding each car on the concours field. Then there’s his unseen, unnoticed job on Concours morning. “Actually, in 17 years, I’ve never seen the show,” George admitted. He’s simply too busy with the details of The Amelia’s trophy presentations. From early Sunday morning George sits near Chairman Bill Warner as the results of the judging are tabulated. When the ribbons come out, George is responsible for getting accurate and correct information on every car and every award to announcer Ed Lucas. The prize giving takes over four non-stop hours and in 17 years George hasn’t allowed Ed to miss once. George had to make up his job as he went. He retired from a 38 year tour with CSX just in time to become part of the Amelia Concours in 1997. His first job was to design and format the placards. Then he had to fill each one with accurate and entertaining information … in 200 (or fewer) words from the material provided by each owner. “Some entrants send ten words with their entry forms; some send a book,” said George. No matter. He reads each one very carefully. The cars closest to his heart are the American prewar classics; especially Pierce-Arrows. “When I was a kid I helped my dad cut up a 1931 Pierce Arrow for scrap. It still had the bud vases in the back seat,” said George. “Turned out all that was wrong with it was a cracked piston.” George shakes his head. There’s still a sense of loss. Even though George is one of the Concours’ ranking “car guys” – he has to describe each car with brevity and precision – his recollections of The Amelia are usually about the people. “Not the celebrities,” said George, “But the folks who I work with: Mike Kulina, Doug Stickles, John Hartman, Ron Hays, to name a few. And my wife Vicki. Lots of husband and wife teams volunteer for the Concours; that’s one of the best things about it.” But 2001 Honoree John Surtees put a lump in George’s throat with his gracious bearing. “I asked John Surtees to autograph my program,” said George. “When he was done, he stood. I thought he was leaving. But he stood just to shake my hand. Can you believe that? An eight-time World Champion, and he stood just to shake my hand. What a gentleman.” George’s car stories inevitably become people stories. As a member of the BMW Car Club, George has passed his passions for the Bavarian marque along to two generations. (George is a grandfather and a great-grandfather.) His eight year-old great grandson Mikey sits on his lap – just as all of George’s kids have – and steers his 328IS. “It’s Mikey’s favorite; he likes the BMW’s steering wheel best.” On April 8, 2005, George’s quiet efforts for The Amelia were honored on the stage of the Kodak Theater in Hollywood, CA as Meguiar’s “Volunteer of the Year” by Barry Meguiar. “I looked into the audience at Bill (Warner) when Barry Meguiar presented me with the award and gave him thumbs up and said, ‘Life is good!’” The trigger to George’s dedication to the Amelia Island Concours came via an unlikely route. Extended contact with the volunteers at the hospital when his wife was being treated for breast cancer moved him profoundly. “The compassion those people showed was unbelievable. I thought, I’ve got a pick-up truck, I’ve got computer skills. I’ve got to do more.” Since 1997, George Phillips has continued to do just that.