Dear Colorado Dealer:
Welcome to The 101 – that’s the theme for CADA in 2015. It’s the 101st year that we’ve been an association. It’s a new era and a New Year, always a good time for starting fresh, considering new ideas and strategies and setting some goals. As the new chairman of the Colorado Automobile Dealers Association (http://www.coloradodealers.org), I’ve been putting quite a bit of thought into it. Last year was tremendous for both the automobile business and for our association, but there’s always plenty more to do.
My name is Thom Buckley. I’m co-owner of Red Noland Cadillac-Infiniti-Jaguar-Land Rover in Colorado Springs. I am honored to be the 2015 chairman of CADA and hope to build on outgoing chairman Bill Hellman’s successful record. I hope for lots of input from the member dealers because the strength of our organization lies in your willingness to be active in pushing our goals and agenda.
A little bit about me: In contrast to many automobile dealers, I came up through the ranks on the service side of the business. I’m a Colorado Springs native. A year after I graduated from high school, and realizing I needed more education about newer vehicles, I went back to my high school auto shop teacher and asked for some advice. He directed me to a General Motors program at Arapahoe Community College, the Automotive Service Education Program. Participation required working at a dealership and in 1984 I was accepted for a job at Red Noland Cadillac. I went full time there as a line tech when I got my associate’s degree in automotive technology.
With excellent opportunities and advice I worked my way through the service department to be the service manager and when our Land Rover store opened in 1994 I was given a chance to be the general manager. In 1999 I became a partner in the business and started overseeing all the import brands. Last year my business partner, Mike Jorgenson and I completed our buy-out of Red Noland. I continue to manage the international nameplate lines and Mike manages Cadillac, our Collision Center, Pre-Owned Center as well as our Business office.
I’ve been married 23 years to Lisalynn and we have a daughter in college at the University of North Texas and a son in high school. They’re both competitive swimmers and we spend a lot of our free time following their activities. I also volunteer at the high school and with the American Heart and Alzheimer’s Associations.
I'm looking forward to working with you on CADA's activities this year and meeting the members I don't already know.
I’ve been lucky enough to be in the right place at the right time, although I’ve worked hard and always showed an interest in something beyond the normal scope of my job, and I hope to bring those same qualities to my year as CADA chairman.
My top goal for The 101 is to continue improving service to our members and communicating better the value of membership in CADA. Our great staff is doing an excellent job and I want to focus on the benefits of our association – including the many hidden benefits and work that gets done every day that’s funded by income not related to members’ dues. One way we hope to do this is with a regular blog that will include these monthly letters to the membership along with any other direct communications important to you and/or the public.
I’m looking forward to working with you on CADA’s activities this year and meeting the members that I don’t already know, beginning with the legislative session and our grassroots meetings with state lawmakers. I also hope you’ll mark your calendars now so you can participate in some of the outstanding CADA events coming up this year:
- Show Week Denver – Colorado Convention Center
- Innovative Dealer Summit: April 7-8
- Charity Preview Party: April 7
- Denver Auto Show: April 8-12
- CADA Annual Member Golf Event – Rolling Hills Country Club, Golden: July 27
- CADA Project DC and NADA Washington Conference: September 27-30 (for Board Members)
- CADA 101 Annual Meeting and Gala: Dates & Location TBD
If you have suggestions during this year that you think might improve the association, please contact me directly. I’m always interested in what you have to say. My direct cell phone number is 719.494.5350 and my email is ThomB@RedNoland.com.
2015 CADA Chairman