THE AUTOMOTIVE LEADERSHIP ROUNDTABLE & AWARDS
Dealer magazine sponsored the Automotive Leadership Roundtable (ALR), where the automotive industry's top selling dealers and thought leaders joined Tony Bennett and his celebrity friends at Bennett's 85th Birthday Party Dinner Concert at New York City's Lincoln Center. The intimate dinner concert was part of the Automotive Leadership Roundtable's Fall Series experience, a two-day, high-impact event featuring five-star entertainment and insights from today's industry pioneers
As the second of the Automotive Leadership Roundtable's two annual events, the ALR Fall Series gave attendees the chance of a lifetime when they joined Tony Bennett and his closest friends at Bennett's 85th Birthday Party Dinner Concert at the Metropolitan Opera in New York City's Lincoln Center. There they spent the evening with President Bill Clinton, who chaired the event, and host Alec Baldwin, as they enjoyed the sounds of Elton John, Aretha Franklin, Alejandro Sanz, and other world-famous artists who performed duets with Bennett. Among Bennett's invited guests were Bill Underriner, incoming chairman of NADA, and Mr. Yoshimi Inaba, President of Toyota, who sat alongside the likes of Whoopi Goldberg, Richard Gere, Katie Couric, Robert De Niro and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, among other notable guests. All guests came together to celebrate Bennett's birthday and support his Exploring the Arts Foundation.
The Roundtable was hosted the next day at the Le Parker Meridien Hotel. From its penthouse ballroom, where 360-degree views showcase Central Park and the entire borough of Manhattan, the industry's top performing dealers, thought leaders, and motivational speakers gathered to share their best practices and strategies for thriving in their businesses and in life. Among the speakers were Underriner, President of Underriner Motors; Keith Watts of Facebook; Jim Dunn, Vice President of JM Lexus, the #1 selling Lexus dealership; Jack Jackintelle, President & COO of Rick Case Automotive; Courtney Cole, owner of Hare Chevrolet; Bill Holiber, President & CEO of the New York Daily News; Joni Flynn of American Honda Company; Brett David, CEO of Prestige Imports, the #1 selling Audi dealership; and Hagen Durant of Classic Chevrolet, the #1 selling Chevrolet dealership. From hiring employees to streamlining vendors and meeting facility requirements, industry leaders spent the day sharing the strategies that have enabled their growth even during the toughest of economies. The Roundtable was wrapped up with a tour of Paragon Honda in Woodside New York, where Vice President and General Manager Brian Benstock led a tour of the facilities and shared best practices for the dealership's meteoric growth over the last two years.
Through such high-impact networking opportunities, the ALR connects the country's top selling dealers and OEM executives, and enables them to interact in intimate environments to develop lasting relationships. In addition to Bennett's birthday dinner concert, examples of events include the US Open Tennis Championship Finals, where attendees are given luxury suite access; backstage experiences at major concerts, including U2; The Masters Golf Experience, and others. ALR events are hosted twice per year, featuring other industry renowned speakers that include Chip Perry of Autotrader; Dale Pollack of vAuto; and Grant Cardone, sales expert and author. Outside of the auto industry, the ALR invites other renowned leaders from outside industries who also share their best practices for thriving in their respective fields. These include Stephen Croix of Sony Ericsson, the leading mobile provider in North and Latin America; the Bryan Brothers, the #1 tennis team now and in history; and Eduardo Verastegui, actor and film producer.
In addition to the Roundtable events, the ALR hosts an annual five-star Awards Dinner at the world-famous Versace Mansion in South Beach to recognize and celebrate the accomplishments of the top selling dealers in each brand. Last March, these top performing dealers were joined by OEM executives and other industry thought leaders at the exclusive dinner which is hosted on a By Invitation Only basis. The Awards Dinner began with a wine and champagne reception in the mansion's charming courtyard, where attendees continued to connect after a day of exchanging insights. The champagne and wine reception was followed by a gourmet dinner alongside the Mansion's 10,000 Mosaic pool. Guests enjoyed a five-star dining experience that was accompanied by the sounds of one of Miami's most famous Cuban bands and other live entertainment. In true Miami fashion, guests were treated to fine cigars that were hand-rolled on-sight by an authentic Cuban cigar roller. After a celebratory toast with Louis XIII cognac, guests had access to the entire Villa, from its uniquely designed suites, to the famous Versace Lounge, and rooftop terrace with views of the ocean.
To uphold tradition, the ALR will celebrate its next Roundtable and Awards Dinner in Miami on March 19th and 20th to once again recognize the top performing dealers in each brand. Upon arriving to Miami, guests will attend a charity dinner concert hosted by Tony Bennett that will feature Grammy-winning artists from his Duets II album. The dinner concert will be hosted in one of Miami's most prominent landmarks, the Vizcaya Musem & Gardens, which houses within its incredible foliage an Italian Renaissance-style villa built in 1916 right on the bay.
The next day, on March 20th, attendees will gather for the Roundtable, which has become the industry's most unique networking and learning opportunity for dealers and industry leaders to date. Among the next Roundtable's speakers are Doug Frisbie of Facebook; Cesar Conde, President of Univision; Bill Underriner, incoming Chairman of NADA; the
Roundtable will be followed by another memorable Awards Dinner at the Versace Mansion on the evening of the 20th. Dealers interested in attending will be offered tickets on a first come, first serve basis, once all RSVPs are collected from invited guests; these tickets grant access to Tony Bennett's Charity Dinner Concert and the Roundtable meeting. The organization will announce availability on its website. Access to the Awards Dinner, however, is By Invitation Only due to the capacity limitations of the Versace Mansion's outdoor dining space.
"It's the Oscars of the auto industry."Click here to download a PDF of the article