Keynote speakers for the 2017 NADA Convention and Expo in New Orleans – which runs from Thursday, Jan. 26, to Sunday, Jan. 29 – include NADA Chairman Jeff Carlson and NADA Vice Chairman Mark Scarpelli, and New York Times best-selling authors, comedian Jim Gaffigan and motivational speaker Amy Purdy. A fifth speaker will be announced in the coming weeks.
Jim Gaffigan (Friday, Jan. 27)
Gaffigan, an entertainer and father of five children, has achieved major accomplishments in stand-up comedy, acting and writing, including two New York Times best-selling books, Dad Is Fat, and Food: A Love Story. He recently wrapped up the first season of his semi-fictitious television show, “The Jim Gaffigan Show,” which TV Land picked up for a second season. In addition to his television show, Gaffigan has guest starred on many television comedies, dramas and movies. With multiple projects in motion, Gaffigan is currently traveling the world with his stand-up tour, “Contagious.” He is one of only 10 comics in history to sell out Madison Square Garden.
Jeff Carlson (Friday, Jan. 27)
Carlson is president of Glenwood Springs Ford and Glenwood Springs Subaru in Glenwood Springs, Colo., and co-owner of Summit Ford in Silverthorne, Colo. As NADA’s 2016 chairman, Carlson is leading franchised new-car dealers through some of the most pressing legislative and regulatory challenges they have faced in years, including attacks on indirect auto financing and the dealer franchise system. Carlson started in the auto business in 1973, working for Ford Motor Co. In 1979, he joined Glenwood Springs Ford-Lincoln-Mercury as a sales manager. He purchased a stake in the dealership in 1982 and became president in 1986 and expanded the business to three dealerships. He represents Colorado’s new-car dealers on NADA’s board of directors. Carlson is a past TIME Dealer of the Year nominee representing Colorado.
Amy Purdy (Sunday, Jan. 29)
Through poignant and inspirational stories, Purdy informs audiences on how to use their challenges to push past their limits and live life without barriers. She lost her legs, kidneys and spleen to bacterial meningitis at age 19. Today, she is a top-ranked adaptive snowboarder, author of the New York Times best-seller On My Own Two Feet, actress, model and clothing designer. Purdy competed on ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars” and was the show’s first double-amputee contestant.
Mark Scarpelli (Sunday, Jan. 29)
Scarpelli is NADA’s 2016 vice chairman, as well as president of Raymond Chevrolet/Kia in Antioch, Ill. His keynote address at the upcoming NADA Convention will highlight the association’s key priorities for 2017. Scarpelli, a second-generation dealer, worked his way up learning all areas of the dealership. In 1986, he was hired by General Motors as the district sales manager for the Boston zone, and three years later returned to the family-run dealership. He represents Metropolitan Chicago’s franchised new-car dealers on NADA’s board of directors.
The four-day NADA Convention, which will be held at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, is considered the auto industry event of the year. The convention includes dealer franchise meetings, workshops, an exhibitor showcase, NADA 100 Carnival and numerous networking events.
The American Truck Dealers (ATD) Convention and Expo runs concurrently with the NADA Convention.
Online registration and hotel selection for the NADA convention open on Monday, July 25. NADA members and their managers who register by September 9 will receive a $100 discount from the onsite rate. To register or for more information, visit www.nadaconvention.org.