DETROIT (WWJ) - The North American International Auto Show Charity Preview took center stage among the ultramodern auto designs within the halls of Cobo Center.
The Charity Preview benefits many children's charities, like the Judson Center.
Cameron Hosner is the charities' president and CEO, he spoke to WWJ about the show's impact.
"It's just enormous, this is our single largest opportunity to raise philanthropic support for a charity and we serve over 6,000 children and families across 12 counties in Southwest Michigan," said Hosner.
Governor Rick Snyder was on hand for the charity event boasting the number of Michigan made items within exhibits:
"We should be so proud of all the made in Michigan products," said Snyder. "I went to Ford, GM, Chrysler exhibits and each one had multiple Michigan made products, that are absolutely incredible. It's because of hard-working Michiganders, in many cases that did the research, design and are making these products."
Ford Motor Company Chief Operating Officer, Mark Fields spoke with WWJ about the importance of "connectivity" in today's new models.
"Will it replace great design or great power-train or great fuel economy or performance. I don't think it will eclipse that but I do think it's an important part for any successful OEM goingn forward to make sure that connectivity is there so it can connect, no pun intended, with the new consumers," said Fields.
The Charity Preview has raised more than 91 million dollars for children's charities since 1996.
With nearly 14,000 tickets reportedly sold for this year's event, the Charity Preview raised $4.8-million for various children's charities.
The auto show's nine-day public run begins Saturday, with doors opening at 9:00 a.m.
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