Conferences and Events

Ford Neighborhood Awards Bound for Atlanta

DEARBORN, Mich. - 

The Ford Motor Co. will host its 2014 Ford Neighborhood Awards for the eighth consecutive time this weekend. For the first time in Atlanta, the ceremony, hosted by Steve Harvey, will continue its tradition of honoring local leaders and organizations for their contributions to their neighborhoods.

For the second year, a $30,000 check will be given for the winner of the Community Leader of the Year Award, which will be used as a donation to the winner’s nonprofit organization of choice.

The Neighborhood Awards will kick off on Friday with Ford’s first-ever “Pink Friday,” which will raise money for breast cancer research via the Susan G. Komen local affiliate from the Ford Warriors in Pink, who will donate $20 for each of the first 250 test drives the company offers at the event.

Shawn Thompson, Ford’s manager of multicultural marketing, looks forward to continuing the event’s legacy of giving back to those who give to their communities.

“Our goal as a brand is to not only go further when it comes to our products, but also as it relates to our communities,” Thompson said. “With this award and donation, we are able to play a role in directly impacting the local community of this year’s winner – extending our involvement beyond the actual awards show.”

Thompson added: “For eight years, Ford has remained committed to this event and what it represents. We look forward to recognizing everyone who is being honored this weekend, in addition to sharing some of our newest products and technologies with attendees.”

Described as “the Oscars with an urban flair,” there will be a bevy of awards presented at the event. Ford will also be showcasing several of their new models on site including the 2014 Fusion and 2015 Expedition. For more information about the event, visit the 2014 Ford Neighborhood Awards website .

Rainbow PUSH's Auto Summit Headed to Motor City


The Rainbow PUSH Coalition, the civil rights organization headed by the Reverend Jesse L. Jackson Sr., announced this week the organization’s annual automotive conference will be held in Detroit in October.

The 15th Annual Rainbow PUSH Global Automotive Summit will take place on Oct. 13 at the MGM Grand Detroit Hotel, featuring “over 500 automotive executives, entrepreneurs, suppliers, dealers, consumers, government and elected officials, advertising agencies, automotive manufacturers, media outlets and others,” according to the organization’s press release.

The event is held annually to discuss the opportunities for African-Americans in the automotive industry.

Jackson, who formed the organization in 1996 by merging People United to Serve Humanity and the Rainbow Coalition, believes that, although the automotive industry has made great strides to level the playing field for members of various ethnicities, there is still room for improvement.

“Progress has been made by some automotive companies who know and understand the importance of ethnic consumers and business owners,” Jackson said, “but more can and must be done to yield parity and growth for people of color.”

Ford, GM and Toyota are all three national sponsors for the event.

For more information about the 15th Annual Rainbow PUSH Global Automotive Summit, visit the Rainbow PUSH Coalition’s website .

Power 300 Digital Edition on Tap This Week

CARY, N.C.  - 

Keep your eyes peeled this week for the all-new digital edition of the Aug. 1 issue of AuSM, which features the publication’s annual special report: The Power 300 — The Most Powerful Companies in the Pre-Owned Business. 

The Power 300 is a compilation and listing of the most influential, innovative, impactful, and, of course, powerful companies doing business in the pre-owned market today (non-dealers). 

Joe Overby, editor of AuSM commented, “The companies you will find listed and profiled in the Power 300 are the major players in the used-car and remarketing worlds.

“Some are well-known pillars of the business; others are just getting their feet wet, but they are nonetheless making waves. These companies have each made the list for different reasons, but they all have made a significant impact.” Overby said.

“We focus our June editions on the top pre-owned dealers, publishing one edition each for franchise and independent dealers,” said Bill Zadeits, publisher of AuSM.

“This collection of the industry’s heavy-hitters covers nearly every aspect of the used-car and remarketing business, from the certified pre-owned segment, the auction world and rapidly advancing technological firms to auto lenders, inspection companies, dealer associations and much more.”

The special edition will spotlight several of the companies with informative Power 300 features, which share more about what makes these players so influential in the pre-owned industry.

Many of the companies and executives listed in the Power 300 will also be participating in AuSM’s Used Car Week, Nov 10-14 at the Red Rock Resort in Las Vegas.  Used Car Week, , provides executives and companies with four high-value conferences that serve as the industry standard. The events include:

  • , presented by
  • , sponsored by Dealertrack Technologies, Black Book Lender Solutions and Fiserv
  • (Repo, Recovery, Remarketing), presented by DRN and Primeritus
  • , presented by SmartAuction

For more information on The Power 300, AuSM, or Used Car Week, please visit or email Bill Zadeits, [email protected].


Leno, Bush to Keynote NADA Convention

McLEAN, Va.  - 

The 2015 National Automobile Dealers Association Convention & Expo, which will be hosted in San Francisco from Jan. 22 through Jan. 25, announced a few prominant keynote speakers on Monday, including Jeb Bush, Jay Leno and Beck Weathers.

The NADA convention, in its 16th time in San Francisco since 1948, will have its first keynote address on Jan. 23 from former Florida Gov. Bush and current NADA chairman Forrest McConnell, III. The following day will feature keynote speakers Leno and NADA vice chairman Bill Fox, with Weathers closing out the keynote speeches on Sunday, Jan. 25.

Bush, brother of former President George. W Bush, currently runs a consulting business, Jeb Bush and Associates, and lives in Miami. Leno is a well-known former host of “The Tonight Show” and currently works as a stand-up comedian while also working on his popular Web show, “Jay Leno’s Garage.” The final keynote speaker, Weathers, is a pathologist who is best known for surviving a 1996 storm atop Mt. Everest, inspiring the Jon Krakauer book Into Thin Air and the movie still in production “Everest.”

For more information about the speakers or scheduled events, visit .

Attendance and housing registration opens July 21. For more information, visit the NADA Convention website here: .

Deadline for NADA Convention Workshop Proposals Approaches

McLEAN, Va.  - 

If you have an idea for a car or truck industry discussion topic, the National Automobile Dealers Association is taking proposals for workshops for the 2015 NADA-ATD Convention now through May 2.

The deadline to submit is 5 p.m. EST on May 2.

NADA is expecting thousands of dealers and their employees to attend in addition to other auto industry professionals.

“Each workshop should be new content not previously presented to auto and truck dealers on a timely topic of broad interest to the automotive industry.  The presentations should generate lively discussions and exchanges among attendees,” the association said in a release.

The boards of directors for NADA and the American Truck Dealers will choose speakers, and those chosen speakers will present their workshops as many as three times during the convention, which is scheduled for Jan. 22 through Jan. 25 in San Francisco.

The workshops will be grouped into four tracks covering various aspects of a dealership’s business, including:  Dealer/Executive, Internet and Marketing, Human Resources, Legal and Regulatory, Sales, Business Office/F&I, Parts, and Service and Body Shop.

Organizers are asking that each proposal include the following: title, synopsis, learning objectives, presentation format and 60-second video clip covering the workshop’s main focus. 

The NADA and ATD board workshop selection panels are scheduled to meet in June. If you submit a proposal, officials say you be advised of the proposal’s status by July 18 at the latest          

Instructions for submitting a proposal (including a video clip) can be found at

“There’s no other opportunity like this in our industry to share creative growth strategies and solutions with such a large group of auto retail professionals who are all looking for a competitive edge,” said Wesley Lutz, chairman of NADA’s Dealership Operations Committee and a new-car dealer in Jackson, Mich.

Ryan Scheduled to Appear at AIADA Summit


Former vice presidential candidate and Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan is the newest addition to the speaker lineup for the eighth annual International Auto Industry Summit orchestrated by the American International Auto Dealers Association.

The event is set for May 7 and 8 in Washington, D.C.

Along with Ryan, the agenda includes appearances by Cook Political Report editor Charlie Cook, former White House budget director Jim Nussle, and best-selling author and viral ideas expert Jonah Berger.

AIADA president Cody Lusk also pointed out the summit is designed so dealers will have the opportunity to visit their lawmakers on Capitol Hill.

“This spring, America’s international nameplate dealer community faces challenges from all corners of Washington,” Lusk said. “To help dealers understand these hurdles and how they can use their influence to change them, AIADA will host its annual International Auto Industry Summit.

“If you haven’t already, I hope you’ll make plans to join us for this two-day event designed to connect you and your dealership with Washington, D.C. We’re putting together a program designed with dealers in mind,” Lusk went on to say.

AIADA has reserved a special rate at the Hyatt Regency Washington Capitol Hill for summit attendees, but dealers must the hotel by Tuesday to take advantage of this special price.

Registration for AIADA’s event can be completed by clicking .

NAAA Convention to Join with NRC in ’16

FREDERICK, Md., and CARY, N.C.  - 

The National Auto Auction Association has reached an agreement with Cherokee Automotive Group, publishers of AuSM, to combine its annual convention with CAG’s National Remarketing Conference, beginning in the fall of 2016. The combined meeting will be known as the National Remarketing Conference and National Auto Auction Association Convention and will be held each year during CAG’s Used Car Week.

Beginning in 2016, the event will be billed as the National Remarketing Conference/NAAA Convention. Used Car Week that year will be held at the Red Rock Resort in Las Vegas.

“We are extremely pleased that NAAA now will hold its annual convention in combination with the NRC,” said Bill Zadeits, CAG president. “The addition of NAAA’s convention to Used Car Week is a natural fit for everyone concerned and allows industry professionals to concentrate their networking.”

Dave Angelicchio, a past NAAA president who spearheaded the effort for a combined meeting, said, “I am extremely pleased that we have reached agreement to combine our conferences beginning in 2016.” He went on to say that one of the many benefits to be realized will be when people can make one conference trip instead of two. Current NAAA president Jack Neshe also expressed support, noting that the combination of the two meetings could not be accomplished until 2016 because of existing hotel contracts.

The two organizations, noted Zadeits, will begin working more closely together this year to lay the groundwork for the combined NRC/NAAA meeting in two years. “We will be meeting soon to find the common ground to build a solid foundation upon which to grow,” he said.

One registration fee will be used for the NRC/NAAA, said Frank Hackett, NAAA’s chief executive officer. He said that some professionals who normally attend a NAAA convention but not the NRC will now be able to network with other industry professionals, and the same is true in reverse, as there are some people who traditionally attend NRC but not NAAA. “This will be a great value to everyone involved,” he said.

Ron Smith, CAG’s chairman, said the new relationship with NAAA further enhances the value and importance of Used Car Week. “The vision we’ve always had for UCW was that professionals from different segments of the industry can meet over a one week period to get to know each other better and find common areas where it is beneficial for them to work together,” he said.

Other events held during Used Car Week include the CPO Conference, Sub-Prime Forum and Re3 (repossession, recovery, remarketing) Conference. More information can be found at