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ARLINGTON, Texas — Scott Lilja is taking his industry experience and background with the National Automobile Dealers Association to the National Independent Automobile Dealers Association.

The NIADA has named Lilja as its new vice president of member services. He takes on this role as of March 1.

NIADA is tasking Lilja with creating special programs for the association's 20,000 members throughout the U.S. Lilja also will be charged with initiating business alliances to reach dealer audiences through activities that benefit both members and vendors.

Association leadership stressed that Lilja is quite familiar with the organization through his time as an executive with NADA and other industry posts. In 2002, Lilja received NIADA's Ring of Honor, the highest award given to individuals whose contributions to the association and the used-vehicle industry far exceed the norm.

A native of Minnesota, Lilja spent 12 years in various leadership roles with NADA beginning in 1997. He served as vice president and chief operating officer of NADA's Analytical Services Group, which produces both electronic and print versions of vehicle pricing guides within the NADA Used Car Guide

Lilja also worked as a staff consultant with NADA Insurance, which is based in McLean, Va.

Prior to his stint with NADA, Lilja was director of marketing for FinishMaster, one of the largest auto refinish distributors in the United States.

"Scott is one of the best known players in the automotive industry and he brings a unique perspective to our organization and its members," stated NIADA executive vice president and chief executive officer Michael Linn.

"We consider ourselves extremely lucky to have him join NIADA," Linn added.