Longtime Colorado Auto Dealers Association CEO Tim Jackson, a high-profile voice for dealers in the state and nationally, parted ways with the organization on Friday.
In a release, the board said it has appointed Matthew Groves, its vice president of legal, regulatory and compliance, as interim CEO, effective immediately.
Jackson, 66, has been CEO of CADA since 2004. Among his most recent dealer advocacy efforts, this year he championed a legislative effort to force automakers to reimburse dealers for warranty work at the higher rates dealers charge retail customers.
"The ultimate decision to depart was a joint one with Tim and the [CADA] board," Groves told Automotive News on Friday. He said he "has a great relationship with Tim, who gave me a job when I first got to Colorado. I'll continue to keep the train running" as interim CEO. "I understand he's got big plans for the future, and we'll be happy to support him with his new venture."
Jackson confirmed Friday his departure was a mutual decision and said he will announce his next position soon. "My plan is to stay in automotive, but it will not be with another association. It will be in the automotive space within consultancy, media or representation."
Jackson said he was proud of what CADA had accomplished during his tenure, including annual board trips to Washington to meet with federal lawmakers and the association's nonstop relationship-building with Colorado's political leadership. All of that work has paid dividends for Colorado dealers, he said.
"We've had 23 bills, changes to our franchise laws, that we've pushed over the last 18 years, and they've all been enacted with greater than 90 percent support in the Legislature, including this most recent one, which is now on the governor's desk," Jackson told Automotive News.
He said one of the main reasons dealers have received such support is an effort he began years ago that he calls "legislative grassroots" meetings, in which CADA and a cadre of local dealers meet with state legislators in their hometowns and at a location of their choosing. CADA hosts 40 to 60 such meetings per year among the state's 100 elected legislators.
"It's been a really aggressive effort, and it's paid large dividends," he said.