Contact: TIME Dealer of the Year Hotline (212) 522-8200
Dennis E. Jungmeyer
Arkansas Automobile Dealers Association
Jim Ross Wins National Recognition for Community Service
and Industry Accomplishments at NADA Convention
(New York, NY, October 23, 2014) – The nomination of Jim Ross, president of Ross Ford Toyota in Wynne, Arkansas, for the 2015 TIME Dealer of the Year award was announced today by TIME.
Ross is one of a select group of 55 dealer nominees from across the country who will be honored at the 98th annual National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) Convention & Exposition in San Francisco, California, on January 23, 2015. The announcement of this year’s nominees was made by Jed Hartman, group publisher, worldwide, TIME, and Tim Russi, president of Auto Finance for Ally Financial.
“The dealers nominated for this award are dedicated business owners, auto lovers and, most importantly, champions for their local communities, with a willingness to give back on a grand scale,” said Russi. “Ally is proud to honor and support these dealers as they work today and tomorrow to build better places to live, work and do business.”
In its fourth year as exclusive sponsor, Ally will recognize dealer nominees and their community efforts by contributing $1,000 to each nominee’s 501(c)3 charity of choice. Nominees will also be recognized on AllyDealerHeroes.com, which highlights the philanthropic contributions and achievements of TIME Dealer of the Year nominees.
The TIME Dealer of the Year award is one of the automobile industry’s most prestigious and highly coveted honors. Recipients are among the nation’s most successful auto dealers who also demonstrate a long-standing commitment to community service. Ross, 52, was chosen to represent the Arkansas Automobile Dealers Association in the national competition – one of only 55 auto dealers from 17,000 nationwide – nominated for the 46th annual award. The award is sponsored by TIME in association with Ally Financial, and in cooperation with NADA. A panel of faculty members from the Tauber Institute for Global Operations at the University of Michigan will select one finalist from each of the four NADA regions and one national Dealer of the Year.
“I have employed many fine people, full-time, part-time and seasonally,” nominee Ross said. “These relationships have helped us bring our rural community a viable and thriving place to do business without the 50-mile drive that would otherwise be involved.”
A 1980 graduate of West Memphis High School in West Memphis, Arkansas, Ross earned a B.S. in agriculture at Arkansas State University in Jonesboro in 1984, where he also majored in economics. After college, Ross worked as sales manager for a transportation company in West Memphis before opening a Ford-Mercury dealership in Wynne with his father, Ray. Today, he is the sole owner of Ross Ford Toyota and has been the recipient of the Toyota President’s Award and Ford President’s Award. “In 2009, we were the first rural Arkansas dealer to win the Toyota President’s Award,” he said. “And we have won it four out of the last five years."
Ross is very active in his state dealer association, currently serving on the board of directors and on the legislative committee. He has also served as chairman of the board, vice chairman, regional vice chairman and treasurer, among other leadership positions. He understands how important the retail automotive industry is to the local economy and community.
"During the past couple of decades, most of the franchised new car and truck dealers in our area were closed due to the General Motors and Chrysler bankruptcies or through attrition,” Ross said. “This left a huge void in the area of philanthropy which was supported by these dealers, and we have tried, to the best of our ability, to broaden our support.”
Ross Ford Toyota currently provides vehicles to both public and private schools and supports the local chamber of commerce, food bank, community festivals, sports teams, Boys & Girls Clubs and scouting program. “Everyone in our community knows that our dealership will help whenever and wherever possible,” Ross said.
A member of Rotary International, Ross was named a Paul Harris Fellow in 2012. He is a member of First United Methodist Church of Wynne and has served on the advisory club for the Wynne school board.
“Managing a successful business has given me the funds to support our local organizations, which thrive on donations to survive,” Ross said. “I feel these clubs and groups have fostered a stronger community and made our area a better place to live and to raise our families."
Ross was nominated for the TIME Dealer of the Year award by Dennis E. Jungmeyer, president of the Arkansas Automobile Dealers Association. He and his wife, Susie, have three children.
TIME is a global multimedia brand that reaches more than 60 million people and includes the domestic and international magazine editions, Time.com, tablet versions, mobile, social and TIME for Kids. Time.com's network of sites draws more than 35 million unique visitors per month (August 2014 comScore).
About Ally Financial Inc.
Ally Financial Inc. is a leading automotive financial services company powered by a top direct banking franchise. Ally's automotive services business offers a full suite of financing products and services, including new and used vehicle inventory and consumer financing, leasing, inventory insurance, commercial loans and vehicle remarketing services. Ally Bank, the company's direct banking subsidiary and member FDIC, offers an array of deposit products, including certificates of deposit, savings accounts, money market accounts, IRA deposit products and interest checking. Ally's Corporate Finance unit provides financing to middle-market companies across a broad range of industries.
With approximately $149.9 billion in assets as of June 30, 2014, Ally operates as a financial holding company. For more information, visit the Ally media site at http://media.ally.com or follow Ally on Twitter: @Ally.