NEW YORK - Forty-seven new car dealers out of more than 16,500 nationwide have been nominated for the 2018 TIME Dealer of the Year award, which is now in its 49th year.
One of the nominees for the prestigious honor is Sam Roberts of Roberts Motors, Inc., of Alton.
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Sam has been a business and community fixture in the Riverbend area for many years.
Nominees, finalists and the national Dealer of the Year will be celebrated at the formal opening of the convention, which is expected to draw more than 20,000 individuals involved in the automobile industry. The announcement of this year’s nominees was made by Meredith Long, senior vice president and general manager, News, Luxury & Style, TIME, and Tim Russi, president of auto finance for Ally Financial.
The TIME Dealer of the Year award is one of the automobile industry’s most highly coveted honors. Recipients are among the nation’s most successful auto dealers who also demonstrate a long-standing commitment to community service.
The award is sponsored by TIME in association with Ally Financial, and in cooperation
John Roberts said he is proud of his dad for the recognition and said he looks forward to going to Las Vegas to enjoy his dad’s honor.
“We will be in Las Vegas March 23 for the awards show,” John Roberts said. “To be one of 47 of 16,500 dealers involved is a big thing, I think. My dad has never been one to toot his own horn. There are a lot of things he is involved in and has done in the community that nobody knows. He is very passionate about the business and the community. He really doesn’t want to be recognized when he does things above and beyond.”
John Roberts said his father was out of the country when this news came in about his TIME recognition and said he knows he will be surprised to hear about it.
Sam Roberts attended Southern Illinois University after graduating from Marquette Catholic High School. Sam is a strong supporter of veterans and served in the Marine Corps for 30 years. Sam started his career in the car business in 1964. In 1967, Sam and Bill Roberts acquired a Ford franchise in 1967, and eventually Sam became the sole owner.
John Roberts, Sam’s son, is the present general manager of Roberts Motors. Sam Roberts Jr., his late son, also was part of the dealership management until he died in 2014.
Sam and his wife, Sharon, have four children and six grandchildren.
A panel of faculty members from the Tauber Institute for Global Operations
at the University of Michigan will select one final nominees for the 2018 TIME Dealer of the Year award. The nominees are:
- Gino (Ambrose) Barbuto, East Syracuse Chevrolet, East Syracuse, New York
- Michael Basil, Basil Toyota, Lockport, New York
- James Benson Jr.,Benson Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram, Greer, South Carolina
- JP Bishop, Bob Bell Ford, Glen Burnie, Maryland
- Garry Brayko, Archie Cochrane Motors Inc., Billings, Montana
- Brad Brotherton, Brotherton Cadillac Buick GMC, Renton, Washington
- Brent Brown, Brent Brown Toyota, Orem, Utah
- Wallace Camp Jr., Rowe Ford Sales, Westbrook, Maine
- Mike Carpino, Mike Carpino Ford, Columbus, Kansas
- Raymond H. Cottrell Sr., Ray’s Ford Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram, Brandenburg, Kentucky
- Sid R. Dillon, Sid Dillon Chevrolet, Fremont, Nebraska
- Ryan Dolan, Dolan Toyota, Reno, Nevada
- David Edwards, Edwards Chevrolet Cadillac, Council Bluffs, Iowa
- Steven Ewing, Wade Ford Inc., Smyrna, Georgia
- Joe Falzon, Signature Ford Lincoln, Owosso, Michigan
- William Fenton, Toyota of Keene, East Swanzey, New Hampshire
- Dorothy Fitzgerald, Fitzgerald Subaru, Rockville, Maryland
- Gregory Gagorik, Toyota of Scranton, Scranton, Pennsylvania
- Frank Hanenberger, MetroWest Subaru, Natick, Massachusetts
- William Hatfield, Hatfield Buick GMC, Redlands, California
- Art Hudgins, Holiday Chevrolet Cadillac, Williamsburg, Virginia
- Dave Jachter,Wilsonville Toyota, Wilsonville, Oregon
- Jim Janke, Tommie Vaughn Ford, Houston, Texas
- Peter Kolar, Kolar Toyota, Duluth, Minnesota
- Elsie MacMillan, Sierra Toyota, Sierra Vista, Arizona
- Marcy Maguire, Windsor Nissan, East Windsor, New Jersey
- Paul Masse, Paul Masse Chevrolet, East Providence, Rhode Island Todd Maul,
- John Elway Chrysler Jeep Dodge Ram, Greeley, Colorado
- Matt McKay,All Star Toyota of Baton Rouge, Baton Rouge, Louisiana Carlo Merlo,
Glendale Chrysler Jeep Dodge Ram, St. Louis, Missouri
- John Miller, Apple Valley Chevrolet, Martinsburg, West Virginia
- Flor Navarro, Stadium GM Superstore, Salem, Ohio
- Michael Niethammer, King Windward Nissan, Kaneohe, Hawaii
- Mark Peterson, Peterson Toyota, Boise, Idaho
- Tony Petro, Petro Nissan, Hattiesburg, Mississippi
- Samuel Roberts, Roberts Motors Inc., Alton, Illinois
- Harry G. Robinson Jr., Harry Robinson Buick GMC, Fort Smith, Arkansas
- Jack Salzman, Lake Norman Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram, Cornelius, North Carolina
- Ted Serbousek, Ritchey Cadillac Buick GMC, Daytona Beach, Florida
- Sam Slaughter, Sellers Buick GMC, Farmington Hills, Michigan
- Wally Sommer, Sommer’s Subaru, Mequon, Wisconsin
- Kevin Ward, Dallin Motors, Rawlins, Wyoming
- Steven Watts, Town & Country Ford, Bessemer, Alabama
- Rodney G. Wilhelm, Don Wilhelm Inc., Jamestown, North Dakota
- Isaac Willis, Willis Chevrolet Buick, Smyrna, Delaware
- Edward Witt, Witt Lincoln, San Diego, California
- George Youmans, Youmans Chevrolet, Macon, Georgia
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