Soft pull solutions – how to use them at your store and stay in compliance

700Credit invites dealers to participate in this complimentary webinar. Soft Pull, Prescreen, Pre-Qualification – these terms are gaining popularity in discussions at dealerships across the country. What do they all mean? Where are they utilized throughout your dealership? How are they the same or different? What are your compliance obligations around using a soft-pull?

Many vendors offer these solutions today but not all are created equal.  In this session, we will review the terms, the technology, and most importantly, your compliance obligations in using these solutions at your store.

Learn more or register here >>  

NADA Show Registration is Open

The Auto Industry Event of the Year returns to San Francisco January 24-27, 2019! NADA Show 2019 will deliver the latest news, innovations and trends in the auto industry, along with the information and solutions you need to that will help you drive your dealership into the future.

Reconnect with NADA and gain insight from the auto industry’s top influencers.  With four days of member-focused programming, you’ll get to experience can’t-miss events and sessions like these:

  • Inspiring keynote speakers – On Friday, Jan. 25, Wes Lutz, 2018 NADA chairman and Kat Cole, FOCUS Brands’ chief operating officer and president, North America. On Saturday, Jan. 26, Charlie Gilchrist, 2018 NADA vice chairman and Dana Carvey, Emmy Award-winning actor and comedian. And on Sunday, Jan. 27, inspirational speaker Major Dan Rooney, a decorated U.S. Air Force fighter pilot, professional golfer and philanthropist.
  • Education Programming – More than 100 industry workshops, including our popular Distinguished Speaker Series and a preview of the new NADA Professional Series for managers. Featured industry leaders and experts will bring you the tools you need to build and improve all areas of your dealership—Dealer/Executive, Employee Recruiting and Retention, Marketing, Legal and Regulatory, Parts and Sales.
  • NADA Expo – The industry’s premier marketplace, where more than 500 exhibitors will demonstrate exciting new products and trending technologies you’ll want to know about first.

The best hotel selections fill up quickly, so don’t delay. Register before September 14, 2018 to save $100 off the on-site price

We can’t wait to meet you in the City by the Bay for NADA Show 2019! Learn more at

Disability Management: Workers’ Comp & The FMLA

Running your workers’ compensation claim in conjunction with the Family and Medical Leave Act is important (critical!) to the efficient management of your Workers’ Compensation and Disability Management program. MADSIF and Colombo & Colombo are inviting MADA dealers and staff to attend this complimentary workshop to gain additional knowledge on the sometimes complicated aspects of workers’ compensation and the rules and regulations as they relate to FMLA laws.

More information and registration form.

Tuesday, August 21, 2018
MADA office
1500 Kendale Blvd, East Lansing
Workshop from 9:30-11:30 am
Attendee Q&A will follow

Tina Castle and Brian Francis, MADSIF
Eric Bowden, Colombo & Colombo P.C.

Dept. of Treasury training in Marquette and Gaylord

Do you need some guidance to help properly file your Michigan Treasury Online / MTO quarterly reports? (You definitely wouldn’t be the only dealership!)   

Can you take a gasoline tax credit for vehicles sold with a full tank of gas?

MADA has worked with the Michigan Department of Treasury to coordinate training sessions for new car dealers and staff who would like to learn the compliance requirements of sales and use tax laws with respect to vehicle sales, body shop activity, parts/service departments and the Michigan Treasury Online (MTO).

The Treasury has offered to tailor this program to those in attendance so we highly encourage you to let us know in advance what questions you have. This will allow the Treasury to come prepared to discuss the needed topics.

(max. 36 seats)
Dept. of Treasury Training
Location: Hampton Inn Marquette
July 11, 2018 ▪ 10 am – 1 pm
GAYLORD Workshop
(max. 40 seats)
Dept. of Treasury Training
Location: The Otsego Club & Resort
July 12, 2018 ▪ 10 am – 1 pm

A light, working lunch will be provided for both sessions.


The state has generously offered their time to present this information in a workshop specifically for new car dealers. While there is no fee for MADA dealers and staff, space is limited and pre-registration is required by July 1, 2018. If you have questions, please call MADA at (800) 292-1923.

Registration Form


Michigan History: Cawood Auto (1918)

Stayed in business during WWII by selling and servicing used vehicles.

Cawood Auto has been a staple in Port Huron, Michigan since 1918 when John Cawood began selling the now long-gone Essex and Dort brands.  In 1933, Cawood added Pontiacs and Buicks to their line.  It was also the first dealership in the area to start offering unheard of warranties on used cars. In the early 1940s, during WWII when no new vehicles were being produced, Cawood stayed in business by selling and servicing used vehicles.

In the late 1950s, Charlie Barrett Sr. bought the dealership from his father-in-law, John Cawood. After graduating from the University of Michigan in 1965, Tom Barrett came to work for his father, joined by his brother Charlie in 1973, following his graduation from Northwood University. In 1979, the brothers bought out their father and became the dealers. Tom is now the sole owner of Cawood Auto, with his cousin, Ted Barrett III as general manager.

The dealership has moved, rebuilt after a catastrophic fire and added and lost franchises, but Cawood’s four generations continue to proudly serve their customers in the Port Huron area.

Michigan History: Bob Mathers Ford (1917)

In business at 224 Water St. in Boyne City since 1917.

Boyne City, Michigan first welcomed Ford motor cars on September 22, 1917.  At that time, customers of the new Northern Auto Co. had one vehicle option – the Ford Model T.  Robert G. Mathers worked for the dealership as a high schooler in the late 1940s before moving out of town for a while.  When he and his wife Shirley came back in 1962, they operated a gas station where Robert repaired and sold used cars.  The couple later purchased the Ford dealership’s body shop, and the following year acquired the remainder of his old dealership, changing the name to Bob Mathers Ford. With the passing of Robert and Shirley, the business is now owned by their children Robert, Cheri, Trish and Wendy.  The dealership has received some updates through the years, but Ford has maintained its presence at the same address on Water Street in Boyne, Michigan 100 years.

Interesting facts about Eagle Eye Golf Course

The upcoming MADPAC golf outing on Monday, June 4 will again be held at Eagle Eye Golf Club, which was ranked as #5 in the nation by Golf Advisor raters in 2017.  The course was designed by Chris Lutzke, in collaboration with renowned course architect Pete Dye, to be a rolling “links” style championship golf course featuring magnificent shot values on every hole. Eagle Eye provides a challenge from any of five sets of tees… and the signature “Island Green” #17 is simply not to be missed.

More information about the golf outing is available here.

Here are a few interesting facts about the course…

  • The site was previously a sod and potato farm.
  • More than 800,000 cubic yards of dirt were moved during construction.
  • The transformation to lush fairways framed by huge mounds was accomplished by excavation, which created eight distinct bodies of water that come into play on twelve holes.
  • Ninety-seven bunkers – ranging in size from three square yards to over two acres – complete the challenging course.
  • The green complexes vary in size, shape, and slope. They are complimented by hazards and run-offs – so try and avoid errant approach shots!


Michigan History: Graff Automotive Group (1914)

Gave stock to the bank to continue serving customers during the depression.

In 1914, with $600 and high hopes, Otto P. Graff launched the Ford Sales Company in Flint, Michigan.  He signed an agreement with the Ford Motor Company to sell 125 cars a year – he reached 150 the first year.  Soon after, the dealership was renamed Otto P. Graff Motor Sales. The business continued to grow and in 1924 a new sales peak of 2,400 vehicles was reached, but then the depression hit. To keep the dealership open, Otto gave all stock in the corporation to the bank, which held it until 1948 when he made the final repayment to the bank.

In 1936, Max H. Graff, fresh out of college, went to work for his father.  When Otto’s second son, Rex, returned from WWII, he was put in charge of the motor rebuilding department. Max’s son, Max H. “Hank” Graff, Jr., joined the family business in 1971, and a few years later he purchased his uncle Rex’s portion. The dealership is now in its fourth generation with the addition of Hank’s son, Chris Graff, and daughter and son-in-law, Kim and Keith Whitmore.

The family has added numerous franchises and locations, but more than 100 years and four generations later, the Graff family continues to operate the business with the high standards developed by Otto in 1914.

Michigan History: Frei Chevrolet (1913)

Transitioned to Chevrolet when Ford required dealers to start selling tractors.

Somewhere around 1913 Clayton Frei and Elmer Jones partnered on a Ford store, called Jones & Frei Motors. As the story goes, the dealership transitioned to Chevrolet in the 1920s when Ford’s business plan included painting every car black and stipulated that for every car a dealer sold they had to sell one tractor. Tractors were understandably a hard sell with the Upper Peninsula’s rock-laden ground.  At this juncture, Clayton bought out Elmer Jones and Frei Chevrolet was born.

In 1945, Gerry Grundstrom married Clayton’s daughter, Virginia. Gerry was with the Air Force in India predicting weather for raids on Japan when he asked Clayton to put the engagement ring on Virginia’s finger. Gerry later took over at Frei in the early 1970s when Clayton Frei passed away.  Passing along the reigns, Gerry and Virginia’s son, Jim Grundstrom, became president of Frei Chevrolet in 1990, and as tradition goes, the fourth generation, Andy and Jill, are now working in the family dealership.