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Advocacy must extend beyond NADA Washington Conference

October 16, 2020
By Rhett Ricart, 2020 NADA Chairman
 
Despite the unpredictable disruption we’ve faced this year, dealers like you and I are standing tall and stronger than ever. Our doors are open, customers are safely back in our showrooms and our employees are back to work. 
While we have been busy navigating operations during this tumultuous year, the NADA has been behind the scenes tackling every single dealer issue — big and small — to keep America’s dealerships alive and running. I have never been prouder.
The NADA moved at the speed of light in advocating for the auto retail industry throughout the coronavirus pandemic. Early on, we were able to ensure that auto dealers were declared essential businesses. When most of America was shutting down, our service centers stayed open for our customers to keep America rolling safely, and we were able to get our sales offices open almost everywhere over the critical next weeks.
 
We advocated for the Paycheck Protection Program and for dozens of measures to keep our businesses thriving, as well as interrupted dozens of federal regulations. Dealers were always front and center.
I was able to speak to many of you last month about our advocacy efforts at the NADA’s first-ever all-virtual Washington Conference. While the event didn’t look like it has in past years, one thing was clear: The dealer voice matters in Washington, now more than ever before.
For generations before us, the new-vehicle dealer titans have been advocating for our industry. Their advocacy efforts laid the groundwork for us today and we must provide the stewardship in our industry for the dealers who will follow us.
Each dealer has a pivotal role to play in our advocacy. Now that the 2020 Washington Conference has come and gone, our advocacy and grassroots work must continue. 
In fact, this is when we need to kick it into higher gear. We need you to get more involved by having more virtual meetings with your elected officials in Washington and hosting more congressional members for dealership tours, when appropriate. The tours are easy, I’ve done them for years. Contact your state or metro organization for details.
We are greater than the sum of our respective dealerships. The NADA is stronger and more united than ever! The dealer associations can get us through these challenges, but not without your help.
Let’s go out and passionately advocate for the industry that supports our families and our employees and drives our local economies forward!
 
 

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