February 26, 2024

Message from the Executive Director, Dr. A.V. Fleming – 4th quarter 2023

Dear Members and Supporters,

Greetings Dear Members and Supporters,

Peter Drucker was born November 19, 1909, and is a well known Austrian American management consultant, educator, and author. Drucker’s contribution through his writings and principles are believed to be the foundation of modern management theory. Drucker’s contributions in the classroom and popular readings, investigated and explored how people are organized in public, private, and the not-for-profit sector. He is also well known for the decisive importance of marketing, and the emergence of the information society with its necessity of lifelong learning. Drucker once said, “Culture eats strategy for breakfast.”

What makes Ford MDA one of the strongest if not the strongest ethnic minority dealer association in the retail automotive industry is our culture which is made up of Asian, African American, and Hispanic, and Native American dealers, pulling in one direction. And that direction is leaving no one behind by creating parity in the industry. Further, by having unwavering support for minority dealers from Ford Motor Company and Ford Motor Credit Company has solidified Ford MDA as an organization that will be around for years to come.

No matter who is at the helm of the association, our leadership has been true to carry out the mission of the association, thereby enriching the culture and making all members feel that they have a role to play in making the association better. Elder members as well as newly established members share equally in contributing to the good of the organization.

Our current Chair, Mr. Robert Valdes’ term ends December 31, 2023. Robert, like other Chairmen has put his mark on the association. Under his leadership, we have enjoyed an increase in minority dealer’s being appointed. In one of his years as our Chair, Ford Motor Company had the largest increase in minority dealer appointments. That was contributed to our board of directors working closely with Ford, and with Robert’s leadership keeping our message out front that parity is important.

One of the Chairman’s duties is to appoint a chairperson for the standing committees that our association has with Ford and Ford Motor Credit Company. I am happy to report that all committees are up and running with a chairperson from our association in place, supporting and advocating for dealers, following Robert’s lead. Our executive Committee is comprised of the past chair (Ray Fregia Jr), chair (Robert Valdes), secretary (Merlton Branderberg), treasurer, (Anthony Gordon), and the Executive Director (A.V. Fleming). At times, the committee must meet and provide leadership on short notice. With Robert leading, the Executive Committee has been able to assist and advocate for the association moving our agenda forward. The main result is that our culture is intact for the near future.

On January 1, 2024, Mr. Anthony Gordon, of Jarrett- Gordon Ford takes over as chair of the association. Mr. Gordon is no stranger to the board and the culture that is put in place by previous Chairmen. Anthony is the current treasurer of the association. Further, he is also a member of the Executive Committee. As Anthony continues to solidify the culture of the organization, he will work closely with the board. To give him added support there will be new members that will be part of the Executive Committee. The Executive Committee starting January 1, 2024, is Past Chair (Robert Valdes), Chair (Anthony Gordon), Secretary (Zach Brandt), Treasurer (Luis Somano) and Executive Director (A.V. Fleming). We believe that with our new chair, executive committee, and board members, Ford MDA’s leadership is poised to take the association to the next level and continue to build on the legacy of a strong and cohesive culture.

In 2024 and beyond, it is our goal to continue improving tools and resources for our dealers to be profitable and meet all metrics. Further, we want to continue the momentum we harnessed over the years. Please keep our board and staff in your prayers as we conduct the mission of this grand and illustrious association.

Best Regards,
Dr. A.V. Fleming
Executive Director

Our Vendors

The Muldrow Group

Brian Muldrow
President, The Muldrow Group


Christine Rocha
Senior Director Sales Alliance

Strategic Marketing

Bill Tabor
President / Executive VP of Sales


Jon M. Anderson
Senior Business Development Representative
(630) 338-3320

COX Automotive

Polly Penna, Director, Industry Partnerships


Daniell R. Patterson, CPA, Partner
(248) 502-2737