FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) — On Thursday, TIME announced local automotive dealer Tom Kelley has been named as one of 48 candidates up for the 2023 TIME Dealer of the Year award.
The winner will be selected Jan. 27 at the 106th annual National Automobile Dealers Association Show in Dallas, Texas.
TIME’s award recognizes the nation’s most successful auto dealers who also demonstrate a long-standing commitment to community service.
Dealers are nominated by executives of state and metro dealer associations around the country.
“The most rewarding aspect of my automotive career is being able to carry on my father’s legacy, and to do so in the fluid and challenging landscape of the automotive industry,” Kelley said.
Kelley started working at Kelley Automotive Group in 1973 before purchasing his first Buick store from his father in 1983.
Now, Kelley is the president of Kelley Automotive Group and oversees nine dealerships in Fort Wayne and Decatur.
“None of this success would have been possible if it wasn’t for the extraordinary support from my wife, Patty, and family, but also the dedicated and hardworking employees that have played integral roles in helping grow our group to the size it is today,” Kelley said.
Aside from Kelley Automotive Group, Kelley also helped found the Boys & Girls Clubs of Fort Wayne, where he is currently a board member, and created the Jim Kelley Career Pathway Center to offer learning labs for children.