Jim Ellis group kicks off giving campaign for first responders


Jim Ellis Automotive Group announced recently that Jimmy Ellis, president of the family-owned and operated dealership network, has decided to launch a giving campaign that will benefit local first responders in Atlanta.

Each of the group's 14 locations will participate in the first responder campaign. A portion of the profit from every new or pre-owned vehicle purchase made throughout the month will be donated to first responders within its dealership areas, according to the group.

“Local first responders came to mind as a group that we would not only like to donate to during the month of May, but a group that we want to honor throughout the year with special incentives to say, ‘Thank you for all you do and the support you have given our business over the last 46 years,’” Ellis said in a news release.

“We are also so thankful for our customers that rally behind us in supporting each of these giving campaigns. Let’s see what we can do in May to give back to those who sacrifice daily for our safety and well-being!”

Along with the cash donations for local first responders, Jim Ellis Automotive said it will also extend special discounts to all eligible first responders throughout the rest of the year.

All qualifying first responders can take advantage of $500 off any vehicle purchase, in addition to a 15 percent discount off parts and service at any Jim Ellis dealership.

Additionally, the group said it will be working with first responders to set up additional “Thank You” events this year at both its dealerships and at local police precincts and fire stations.

Last year, the group had a similar campaign for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Atlanta, which raised a $65,000 donation.

“After seeing the generosity of our dealerships and the support of our clients during the campaign with Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Atlanta, I wanted to identify another local group that could benefit from more of this generosity,” Ellis added.

Cancer & AIDS research foundation to honor Facebook auto director


The T.J. Martell Foundation for Leukemia, Cancer and AIDS Research has announced that it will honor Facebook's U.S. Automotive director Stephanie Latham at the Women of Influence Awards and Luncheon next week.

Latham, a breast cancer survivor and passionate supporter of the cause, will join five other women in accepting their awards during the foundation's fifth annual event at the New York Plaza Hotel on  May 12 at 11:30 a.m.

“The awards celebration honors six outstanding women who have achieved tremendous goals in both in their business and personal life and will benefit ovarian and breast cancer research,” the foundation said in a news release. 

Latham joined Facebook in 2011 and in her current role as head of its U.S. Automotive team, she works alongside marketers and agencies to forge solutions across platforms that boost brand awareness in efforts to sell more vehicles.

She also held leadership positions on Facebook’s Retail, Financial Services and Restaurants teams before leading on the Automotive team.

Prior to joining Facebook, Latham served as the executive director of Account Service at the Barbarian Group, where she managed the GE, CNN and Google accounts.

Latham received her MBA from New York University’s Stern School of Business and a B.A. from the University of Virginia.

She currently resides in Northern California with her husband and their 2-year-old daughter.

For more information about the 2017 Women of Influence Awards and Luncheon's other honorees and to obtain tickets for the event, visit .

Manheim sets 3 conservation goals for 2017


In celebration of Earth Month, Manheim announced the following three sustainability goals for the year: offsetting carbon emissions by 3,000 tons at its facilities, saving 2.5 million gallons of water and achieving zero waste to landfill at one site.

“Conservation is a big part of Manheim’s culture, fueled by the ongoing commitment to sustainability that runs throughout all divisions of its family-owned parent company, Cox Enterprises” Manheim said in a news release. 

This year’s efforts are a part of, Cox Conserves, the company-wide sustainability program, which is celebrating its 10-year anniversary.

“Being sustainable is as good for the business as it is for the environment, and we are fortunate to have leaders who recognize and support these important efforts,” Manheim senior director of corporate responsibility Stephanie Valdez Streaty said. “Beyond identifying projects that will help us reduce our impact on the environment while saving costs, we are also focused on engaging our team members and supporting them in their own conservation efforts at home."

Manhiem said it is committed to sending zero waste to landfill by 2024 and becoming carbon- and water-neutral by 2044.

Last year, Manhiem implemented a rain harvesting system and adopted multiple high-efficiency aerator projects which have saved 4.2 million gallons of water, according to the company.

Manhiem said it also offset 1,855 tons of carbon through solar installation, LED lights and HVAC projects.

“Since the Cox Conserves program launched in 2007, projects at Manheim locations have offset 22,934 tons of carbon, diverted 23,579 tons of waste from the landfill and saved 57 million gallons of water,” Manheim added.

“With 127 traditional and mobile locations in North America, Manheim plays a significant role in helping the company achieve its sustainability goals.”

For more information on Cox Conserves and sustainable projects in progress, visit 

Roundup: Auction anniversary, fundraising & sales

CARY, N.C. - 

Greater Kalamazoo Auto Auction, an XLerate Group auction, will celebrate its 41st year anniversary on Thursday with a special sale.

In honor of its anniversary, GKAA said it will award more than a total of $15,000 in cash and prizes to a number of potential dealer customers who attend the sale this week.

Each Thursday, the auction holds its dealer sale at 10 a.m., with 600 dealers in attendance, according to GKAA.

GKAA was founded in 1976 and currently consists of a 26,000 square foot facility on 65 acres.

The auction also has a 9-bay reconditioning facility, a full-service mechanical repair shop and transportation department.

“By taking advantage of the many services offered by Greater Kalamazoo Auto Auction, each customer expands his own automotive marketing efforts and benefits in terms of time and financial return,” GKAA general manager Daryl DeVries said in a news release.

“Above all, each customer, whether buying or selling, returns time and time again because of the special qualities that set GKAA apart from the rest.  We have a strong team of loyal employees that goes the extra mile each and every week.”

IAG names fundraising challenge winners

The Independent Auction Group recently announced the winners of its March Madness bracket challenge, a fundraising effort the group held in collaboration with Dyer Auto Auction last month. 

Participants were asked to mail in a dollar for each bracket to be put into a trophy.

IAG's top three finishers for this year were women. The first place title went to Britney Egbert, fleet/lease manager at Dealers Auto Auction of Idaho.

Each year's winner gets to keep the trophy filled with the bills for one year until the next challenge and a new winner is chosen. The funds accumulated are to be used for any charitable effort of the winners choosing.

GAA launches two promotions

ServNet recently announced that auction group member Greenville Auto Auction (GAA) recently kicked off its BB&T/Regional promotion, X-Factor, along with  a new promotion that allows its dealers to enter a pool to win a quad.

The newly adopted quad promotion is a three-month event that will end in June.

Additionally, GAA said recently the acution has had a notable number of strong sales, which include its AdrenaLANE Sale, a sale that highlights specialty units such as powersports, sports cars, golf carts, and RV's, according to auction general manager Billy Willis.

“Greenville Auto Auction is eager to continue building great relationships with dealers and is looking forward to the auctions ahead,” GAA said.

CarMax set to bring first stores to Puget Sound Area


CarMax will open two new stores in the state of Washington — the used-car retailer’s first locations in the Puget Sound region — the company announced on Friday.

One store will be in the city of Lynnwood at 202 Valley Avenue Northwest and the other will be located in in the city of Puyallup at 21317 Highway 99.

CarMax said the new locations will provide more than 200 new jobs to the area and will supply customers with around 200 to 400 vehicle options of nearly every make and model.

In addition to the vehicles ready to purchase at each location, customers can ask for transfers of just about any vehicle at other locations nationwide, according to the retailer.

“Our company is committed to making every step of the car buying process stress-free for our customers, and we look forward to serving the Puget Sound region with the great customer experience CarMax is known for,” Bill Nash, president and chief executive officer of CarMax, said in a news release.

At a grand opening celebration on Friday, CarMax said the CarMax Foundation was set to give out $25,000 in grants and donations to local organizations, including Junior Achievement of Washington and Communities in Schools of Puyallup.

Associates of Lynnwood and Puyallup locations chose the two organizations and have participated in volunteer events with both groups, according to CarMax.

“We are honored to support these organizations and admire their dedication to serving area youth,” David Thompson, location general manager of the CarMax in Lynnwood said. “The community has been very welcoming of CarMax and we look forward to being a great regional partner, while serving customers for years to come."

Additionally, CarMax announced it also has plans to invest approximately $95,000 to fund a Puget Sound area playground, which has been projected to be built next year through a partnership with KaBOOM!, a national nonprofit that encourages children to get the balance of play they need to grow into healthy and successful adults.

TIME, Ally recognize 2017 Dealer of Year


Ally and TIME held a celebration event in Kentucky on Monday to honor the 2017 TIME Dealer of the Year winner — Carl Swope — a second-generation dealer who currently oversees six dealerships representing nine brands in Elizabethtown, Ky., and Radcliff, Ky.

Swope was selected from a group of 49 nominees from across the country who are successful auto dealers that demonstrate a long-standing commitment to community service, Ally said.

The event was held at Swope Toyota in Elizabethtown. Business leaders from TIME and Ally joined local government officials and dealership personnel in attendance.

Ally said Swope has been chosen for his community involvement, support of civic activities, and dedication to local nonprofit organizations such as Hardin Memorial Health Foundation, Habitat for Humanity and Project United.

"On behalf of all of us at Ally, we are honored to recognize Carl Swope and his commitment to doing right and bettering the community and the state of Kentucky," Ally president of auto finance Tim Russi said in a news release. "Carl Swope embodies the character and type of leader that the Time Dealer of the Year program was built to recognize."

Swope and his family of dealerships have particularly supported the Community Health Clinic of Hardin and LaRue Counties since its founding in 2002.

In honor of Swope being named dealer of the year, Ally donated a $10,000 grant to the clinic.

"We are so grateful for Carl Swope's involvement with the Community Health Clinic of Hardin and LaRue Counties," chairman of the board of directors Dr. William Handley said. "We are elated that Carl has been chosen for this prestigious award, and we cannot thank him enough for his contribution to this organization. Day in and day out he continues to inspire and encourage thousands of community members."

Swope was first announced as the TIME Dealer of the Year at the National Automobile Dealers Association Convention in New Orleans on Jan. 27.

For more information about the award program, or to read about this year’s nominees, visit .

Manheim Orlando honored for community service


Manheim Orlando, one of the largest operating facilities of Manheim North America, was recently named Big Business of the Year by the Orlando Chamber of Commerce in recognition of the location’s local economic impact and the team’s dedication to community service.

The Orlando Chamber of Commerce presented the Manheim Orlando team with its Big Business of the Year award at the organization’s Big Orange Awards on Feb. 6.

“To be recognized for investing in our community and for doing what we enjoy as a team is quite an honor,” Manheim Orlando general manager Butch Herdegen said in a news release.

“We are always looking for opportunities to partner with people and organizations that make a difference for families who live and work in Orlando, and we’ll continue to serve others in 2017.”

Last year, Manheim Orlando supported Christmas in July, Arnold Palmer Children’s Hospital, the Epilepsy Association of Central Florida, Orlando Science Center, Christian Service Center, the YMCA and the Pet Alliance of Greater Orlando.

The team was also recognized by the Orlando Chamber of Commerce for partnering with Ben’s Maintenance, Mike’s Security and Danny’s Outside Ops to host the Chamber’s Hob Nob and Straw Poll event.

About 350 full-time and part-time members make up the Manheim Orlando team.

According to Manheim, an estimated 3,300 independent, franchise and commercial dealers visit the 286-acre location weekly, and it facilitates more than $3 billion in wholesale automotive transactions annually.

NADA looks to improve financial literacy via Junior Achievement partnership

TYSONS, Va. - 

The National Automobile Dealers Association and the NADA Women Directors, in partnership with Junior Achievement USA, is teaching financial education courses to students through a volunteer program.

The initiative, termed the NADA Financial Literacy Program, was launched during the NADA Convention in New Orleans in January. It grew from insight gathered over the past few years at the Women Dealers’ Networking Event, held during NADA.

“A goal of the partnership is to get new-car dealers or dealership representatives in communities across the country to become volunteers in the program,” said Michelle Primm, managing partner of Cascade Auto Group in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio.

Primm provides financially focused curriculum to students in her local school district through Junior Achievement. 

“We are thrilled to be working hand-in-hand with NADA and NADA’s Women Directors who have demonstrated commitment to the financial literacy initiative,” said Laura Goodman, vice president of volunteer engagement for Junior Achievement.

“We look forward to working with and exceeding the expectations of NADA and their dealer members in an effort to impact young people across the country,” Goodman continued.

To learn more about how to become a volunteer in the program, Deborah Stevens at [email protected] or call (703) 827-6861.

Seeking Workforce Study participants

NADA is also inviting dealerships to participate in its Dealership Workforce Study. The DWS provides unique analysis of dealership pay plans and benefit packages, retention and turnover, employee benefits, work schedules and demographics.

Dealerships who participate in the study will receive two complimentary reports: Automotive Retail: National and Regional Trends in Compensation, Benefits and Retention and a custom report, which includes comparisons of the dealership(s) to peers nationally, regionally, by state and brand.

To take part in the study, visit . All data must be submitted by April 28. Questions can be sent to [email protected]

Ga. auction hosts annual sale, donates over $4K to Shriners Hospital


Southeastern Auto Auction of Savannah announced that it raised more than $4,000 to give Shriners Hospital for Children and hosted its annual “Cars, Cash & Caring Sale” earlier this month.

“It was a great day for Shriners Hospital for Children thanks to our generous dealers,” Southeastern Auto Auction vice president Bill McCready said in a news release.

“In 2016 we were able to donate over $10,000 to this great organization. Our goal is to beat that number this year and we are off to a good start.”

The auction raised a portion of the donation at the third annual sale event through 50/50 drawings and over the previous five weeks collected an auction contribution for every transaction made.

Regardless of a child’s family’s ability to pay, Southeastern Auto Auction of Savannah said, Shriners Hospital for Children is committed to providing the best care for children in the areas of orthopedics, burn care, spinal cord Injury and cleft lip and palate.

Additionally, at the sale event, the auction featured a large run of vehicles as well as record consignment of fleet/lease/bank and rental units, according to the auction.

“Our institutional business has grown rapidly over the last two years and it was on display for this sale. It was a great day for both buyers and sellers. Katie Rushing (national remarketing manager for SEAA) offered a record number of vehicles from her accounts,” McCready added. 

Following the sale, $25,000 in cash and prizes was given away.

The giveaways included $10,000 in cash, a 75 inch Samsung television, Bose sound systems, Yeti coolers, custom office furniture, chrome seafood steamers and more, according to the auction.

AUL releases 5-year charitable contribution total

NAPA, Calif. - 

Over five years, AUL Corp. has contributed $173,619.00 to 80 different non-profit organizations, according to the warranty and vehicle service contract administrator.

AUL announced that it publicly disclosed its recent charitable contributions on Thursday.

"At AUL, we believe that getting involved in charity programs contributes to strengthened professional skills, team building, thinking creatively, and contributes to job satisfaction overall — that's why we've created this wonderful opportunity within our company," Luis Nieves, president and chief executive officer of AUL said in a news release.

AUL formed a committee dedicated to coordinating charitable contributions in 2012.

The committee consists of non-management employees who discuss and facilitate contributions.

“This group is staffed by people who were identified by their peers as wonderful ambassadors of AUL and our community,” AUL said.

Non-profit organizations the service contract administrator has given to since 2012 range from Napa, Calif. community food banks to local children's charities, according to AUL.

“One of AUL Core Values is 'Appreciation;' if you ever work with us or spend time in our office you will hear 'Thank you' a lot,” AUL chief operating officer Jimmy Atkinson said.

“We also believe this commitment should be extended to our community. This committee has done a beautiful job."