100 Years of Leadership
Over its 100 years, NADA has been fortunate to have a long list of talented, dynamic leaders. For the first 81 years—up until 1998—their title was president, and thereafter, chairman. These dealers usually came up through the ranks, serving in various positions on the NADA board and helping spearhead industry initiatives.
1930s: The Depression years
NADA almost didn’t survive the Great Depression. But help came from the New Deal’s National Recovery Administration and the new Code of Fair Competition for the Motor Vehicle Retailing Trade.
1940s: NADA and WWII
In the 1940s, NADA moved from Detroit to Washington, D.C., to work more closely with government agencies and keep tabs on legislative events. NADA also worked with automakers to obtain many changes in factory policy favorable to dealers.
1950s: Dealer-automaker relations
The post-WWII years bring more challenges for NADA and its dealer members.
1960s: The imports arrive
In the early 1960s, Japan entered the competition and swiftly grew to the world’s fifth-largest auto producer. In the late 1960s, NADA started its 20 Group program.
1970s: New NADA initiatives
As imports increased in the 1970s, trade became an issue in Congress and elsewhere. NADA went on record opposing a trade bill that would have imposed quotas if imports reached a certain percentage of the market.
1980s: Emergency measures
Entering the 1980s, car dealers were in real trouble. NADA urged President Carter to decontrol oil prices and sought emergency measures from automakers, such as 30-day floorplan assistance and cash incentives to dealers for slow-moving models to help with cash flow problems caused by bloated inventories.
1990s: A new millenium
In the 1990s, NADA continued battling on the regulatory front, including new rules for the Clean Air Act, higher proposed CAFE standards, EPA ozone standards, and a desire by Northeastern states to adopt California clean-air standards.
2000s: Decade of uncertainty
The 2000s were full of change and challenges. The decade began calmly enough, with no Y2K meltdown of the world’s computers. But soon dealers would be fighting for their very survival during The Great Recession,
2010s: Bouncing back
NADA spends the better part of the 2010s supporting its recession-battered members, battling the CFPB, seeking favorable action on SBA-guaranteed loans, stabilizing the estate tax, preserving LIFO and other issues.
Century Award Dealers
The NADA Century Award recognizes those new-car dealerships that have been in the transportation business for 100 years or more.
Chairman Dave Westcott Delivers Keynote at the 2014 NADA Convention & Expo
Conventions Past and Present
The NADA Convention’s goal is to refresh and inspire NADA members through speeches, workshops, franchise meetings, networking events and, of course, the expo. Over its 100 years, NADA has had to cancel only three conventions (blame World War II) but has always adapted to changing trends and technologies—just like dealers do every day in their stores.
Dealer Stories
Dealers tell their stories to help NADA tell its story and celebrate the 100th anniversary of the association in 2017.
Logos Past and Present
A brand is perhaps a company's most important asset. Through the years, NADA and ATD have updated their logos, sometimes to keep up with the times and other times as part of a major corporate rebranding. Check out the variety of logos throughout the history of NADA/ATD.
Moving forward
NADA is always looking to the future, and that is especially true as the association turns the corner on its first 100 years. NADA remains committed to ensuring that the state franchise system is the dominant way vehicles are sold and serviced going forward.

NADA Celebrates Its 100-Year Anniversary
NADA is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year. Festivities for the centennial begin at the 2017 NADA Convention and Expo in New Orleans starting on Thursday, January 26.
NADA Chairman Forrest McConnell Explains the True Benefits of the Franchise Dealer Network at the 2014 New York Auto Show
NADA Chairman Mark Scarpelli Announces New Initiative, Pledges Total Support of Auto Dealers
In his first official speech as 2017 chairman of the National Automobile Dealers Association, Mark Scarpelli on Saturday unveiled a new initiative designed to help local dealerships showcase all the benefits they bring to their millions of customers, the 1.1 million dealerships employees in the U.S., and to countless communities across the nation.
NADA Chairman: 100 Years of Standing Up for Our Customers
We should never forget that this association's genesis was in 1917 when dealers wanted to defend their customers from unfair policies in Washington, D.C. And a century later, we are doing the same thing on behalf of our customers and this great industry.

NADA celebrates its 100th anniversary in 2017 with various events, including the NADA 100 convention in New Orleans. The NADA story began when 30 dealers traveled to the nation’s capital in 1917 to persuade Congress not to impose a luxury tax on cars. They successfully argued that the automobile is a necessity of American life, not a luxury. From that group effort, NADA was born.


The NADA Story
NADA's history: The association was born in 1917 when a group of dealers set out to change the way Congress viewed automobiles. Thirty dealers from state and local associations went to Washington to convince Congress that cars weren’t luxuries as they had been classified, but were vital to the economy.
TIME Dealer Award: How It Became a Big Deal
If the Saturday Evening Post hadn’t folded in 1969, there may never have been a Time Dealer of the Year award. That’s because the Post had been sponsoring the quality dealer award since 1960. Upon that magazine’s demise, Time stepped in to do the honors.
Visual History of NADA