2018 Dealer Education Awards Recipients Announced

Owners and dealer principals in auto marketing who have made noteworthy contributions to public or private education are recognized


Midland, MIMarch 6, 2018 — Northwood University has announced the recipients of the 2018 Dealer Education Awards. Annually, Northwood recognizes owners and dealer principals in the automotive marketing field who have made noteworthy, individual contributions to public or private education.

“Successful business leaders never stop learning, and we commend this year’s group of owners, dealer principals and partners who share that perspective with Northwood University,” said Keith Pretty, President and CEO of Northwood. “This year’s recipients are excellent role models for tomorrow’s automotive industry leaders.”

This year’s honorees include:

  • Birgit Behrens, Business Manager, ZDK Bonn, Germany
  • J. Steven Brown, Dealer Principal, Brown Motors, Inc., Petoskey, Michigan
  • James V. Gramm, President, Safford Automotive Group, Fredericksburg, Virginia
  • Irving J. Matthews, President & CEO, Matthews Automotive Group, Mount Dora, Florida
  • Daniel E. Reineke, Co-Owner, Reineke Family Dealerships, Tiffin, Ohio
  • Mark N. Scarpelli, President, Raymond Chevrolet; Raymond Kia, Antioch, Illinois
  • Jeffrey D. Smail, Sr., Partner/Owner, Smail Automotive Group, Greensburg, Pennsylvania

Four recipients—Brown, Reineke, Scarpelli, and Smail—are alumni of the automotive marketing and management program at Northwood. Scarpelli also received an Honorary Doctorate from the university when he spoke at Northwood’s commencement in 2017.

Current Northwood students enrolled in the automotive marketing and management program will be at NADA, including those who will present the awards presentation. They will gain hands-on experience and exposure to some of the most successful dealers in the automotive industry, while networking and learning about internships and career opportunities.


The awards are presented at a breakfast at the National Automobile Dealers Association Annual Convention on March 24 at the Paris Las Vegas Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada. Media are invited to attend; please email kastlm@northwood.edu to confirm your seat.

About Northwood University

Northwood University is committed to the most personal attention to prepare students for success in their careers and in their communities; it promotes critical thinking skills, personal effectiveness, and the importance of ethics, individual freedom and responsibility.

Private, nonprofit, and accredited, Northwood University specializes in managerial and entrepreneurial education at a full-service, residential campus located in mid-Michigan. Adult Degree Programs are available in multiple states and online. The DeVos Graduate School offers day, evening, weekend programming in Michigan and Texas, and online. The Michigan-based Alden B. Dow Center for Creativity and Enterprise provides system-wide expertise in family enterprise, entrepreneurship, creativity and innovation, and new business development. International education is offered through study abroad and in Program Centers in Switzerland, China (Changchun and Wuxi), Malaysia, and Sri Lanka.

For additional information regarding Northwood University, go to www.northwood.edu.

Media Contact

Mackenzie Kastl, Director of PR, Northwood University, 989.837.4251 (o), 989.289.5616 (m), kastlm@northwood.edu

Press Release

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