Sauer Nominated for Time’s Auto Dealer of Year Award

WARREN, Ohio –Diane Sauer, owner and operator at Diane Sauer Chevrolet Inc. here, is one of 50 auto dealers across the country nominated for the 2016 Time Dealer of the Year award.

Sauer was chosen to represent the Automobile Dealers Association of Eastern Ohio in the national competition for the 47th annual award. She was nominated for the award by Stephen J. Chos, ADAEO executive vice president.

The award, considered the industry’s most prestigious, is sponsored by Time in association with Ally Financial, and in cooperation with National Automobile Dealers Association. A panel of faculty members from the Tauber Institute for Global Operations at the University of Michigan will select one finalist from each of the four NADA regions and one national dealer of the year.

The awards will be presented in April at the NADA’s convention and expo in Las Vegas.

“The retail automobile business has given me the opportunity to be of service to others,” Sauer said in a statement. “When our customers need assistance, and when my staff is courteous, prompt and efficient, the customers are so very grateful. My employees and their families are also appreciative of the jobs we provide.”

Sauer graduated from Coldwater High School in Coldwater, Ohio, in 1972. She earned a B.S. in business administration in 1975 from The Ohio State University in Columbus, where she majored in accounting and was a member of Phi Beta Chi, an honorary fraternity for women in business.

Upon graduation, Sauer took a job as an accounting clerk at Martin Chevrolet, a move that would set her on a successful career path in the retail automotive business. “My starting wage was $2.25 an hour, a nickel over minimum wage,” Sauer remembered. She rose to office manager in 1977 and general manager in 1983, giving her experience in different areas of the dealership. In 1994, Sauer became the dealer and by 2004, she owned the dealership, renaming it Sauer Chevrolet.

Sauer is committed to helping women succeed in nontraditional professions. Working with Kent State University at Trumbull, she participates in “The Road Not Taken” program, which allows high school female sophomores who excel in math and science to interact with women trailblazers in the community. Sauer also established the Diane R. Sauer Undergraduate Scholarship at The Ohio State University Fisher College of Business.

An active member of the Rotary Club of Warren since 1988, Sauer’s most important civic achievement is the creation of the Warren Community Amphitheater, which was launched while she was the first female president of the Rotary. “It sits in the middle of beautiful downtown Warren, the historic capital of the Connecticut Western Reserve,” Sauer said. “The amphitheater serves the community in so many ways and is a testament to the power of creating synergy within the public and private groups in a community to accomplish a desired goal.”

Sauer is a charter member of the Trumbull 100, a group of community leaders who contribute $1,500 annually and earmark the funds for local projects that beautify the region, improve facilities and stimulate economic development.

She has also provided leadership to the Youngstown Warren Regional Chamber, Children’s Rehabilitation Center of Warren, Community Foundation of the Mahoning Valley; Mahoning Valley Economic Development Corp. and the Catholic Diocese of Youngstown Foundation.

She and her husband, Kurt, have two children.

Pictured: 2015 nominees pictured in a display at NADA’s convention last year.

Copyright 2024 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.