When the industry veteran chosen as the 2012 national TIME Dealer of the Year got a taste of the car business, he said he knew it was where he belonged. And in honoring this year's winner, the industry makes it evident it agrees.
After Auto Remarketing published the nominee profiles leading up to the NADA Convention and Expo in Las Vegas, the winner was announced Sunday at the event.
This year’s honoree is Mike Shaw, dealer principal of Mike Shaw Chevrolet Saab in Denver.
Shaw was named the 2012 national TIME Dealer of the Year by Kim Kelleher, worldwide publisher of TIME, and Tim Russi, executive vice president of North American Operations – Auto at Ally Financial, at the formal opening of the convention.
This event was expected to draw more than 20,000 individuals involved in the automobile industry, officials noted.
Shaw was oringinally nominated for the prestigious award by Tim Jackson, director of the Colorado Automobile Dealers Association, and was chosen to represent the association in the national competition.
He was one of only 50 dealers, from 17,000 nationwide, nominated for the annual award — which is sponsored by TIME Magazine and Ally — officials noted.
“Auto dealers have a tremendous impact on the vitality and strength of communities across the U.S.,” said Russi. “Ally is proud to support these extraordinary dealers who are truly making their communities better places to live and work."
As part of its support for the program, Ally will make charitable contributions to local community causes on behalf of all 50 nominated dealers across the United States. In addition, the 2012 national TIME Dealer of the Year winner will receive a $10,000 contribution for a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization of his or her choice. To celebrate the valuable contributions of dealers across the U.S., Ally has also launched a digital hub (allybizhero.com) featuring engaging content celebrating auto dealers and their philanthropic achievements.
Highlighting the winner in more detail, as a 1964 graduate of Welasco High School in Welasco, Texas, Shaw then went on to earn a degree in business management at Texas A&M University.
And after college, it wasn’t long before he discovered his love for the automotive industry.
He worked in the industry before serving as an officer in the U.S. Army and spent one year in Vietnam. But it was back to the car business when Shaw returned to the states.
“I fell in love with the car business and knew instantly that was where I belonged,” Shaw explained.
And after managing and owning a string of dealerships, he launched the “Mike Shaw” branded stores in 1994 with Mike Shaw Chevrolet Saab in Denver.
And he didn’t stop there.
Today, he has six other dealerships in Colorado, Louisiana and Texas.
Commenting on his success, Shaw noted, “My actions and ethics as a dealer have helped me become one of the largest minority-owned car dealers in the nation.
“My mantra in business is that quality comes first, customers are always the focus and integrity is never compromised,” he also stressed.
His two sons also work for the business.
But his work doesn’t stop when leaving the dealership; he is also active in various community service avenues, as well.
“Shaw incorporates his business expertise to advance his philanthropic causes,” officials noted.
For the past 17 years, he’s been involved with numerous projects and organizations, including Boys & Girls Clubs of America, Urban League of Denver, Make-A-Wish Foundation, Colorado Aids Walk, Food Bank of the Rockies, American Cancer Society (golf classic), Crime Stoppers, Executive Women International and Seniors Inc., to name a few.
“Family, ethical behavior and education are values that have guided me to success,” Shaw says. “I am in the business of selling, and I bring those same skills to the community organizations I serve.”
Further illustrating this point, he helped the Boy Scouts turn their popcorn fundraiser from a $200,000 program into a $3 million event.
“I set it up as if it was one of my dealerships, and the Scouts were salesmen,” Shaw added.
His efforts have garnered numerous awards, but Shaw says that the one that means the most is the "Scouting…Vale La Pena!" award, a national Boy Scout award given for service to Hispanic-American/Latino youth.
“I am honored and humbled as the first recipient,” Shaw says. “Since from an early age the Boy Scouts were instrumental in molding me and instilling my ethical and core values, it is such an honor to be recognized for giving back and impacting the lives of our future leaders in this way.”
But, that’s not all.
He has also been an adviser and on the boards of the National Western Stock Show, St. Joseph Hospital Foundation, Denver Zoological Foundation, Texas State Aquarium, Kempe Foundation and many others. He has also worked to spearhead numerous fundraising events.
“I am a person who deeply cares about kids and their education, especially kids who come from low-income backgrounds. I am convinced the key to success is education, and thus, my commitment to kids and education is a driving force. I also believe that what you give, you get back tenfold,” Shaw concluded.
To view other nominee profiles, see the following Auto Remarketing stories:
TIME Dealer of the Year Award Nominees Highlight Diverse Backgrounds