by Gwen Moritz
Posted 2/10/2014 12:00 am
Updated 10 months ago
Jeff Teague, president of Teague Auto Group in El Dorado, was named Time magazine’s national Dealer of the Year for 2014 at the National Automobile Dealers Association’s recent convention in New Orleans.
Teague, 59, was among 56 auto dealers nationally who had been nominated for the award, now in its 45th year and co-sponsored by Ally Financial.
A panel of faculty members from the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan then selected four finalists from each of the NADA’s geographic regions and one Dealer of the Year: Teague.
A 1973 graduate of Dumas High School, Teague earned a degree in math from Ouachita Baptist University in 1978. According to a biography provided by the NADA, he worked in auto sales and for Arkansas Power & Light Co. until 1981, when he and his father bought a Chevrolet-Oldsmobile dealership in Walnut Ridge.
It was the first of four distressed dealerships that he would buy and nurse back to health. He bought a Chevrolet dealership in El Dorado in 1990 and shortly thereafter added Oldsmobile and Toyota to the lineup. In 1999, he built a new facility and added Ford, Lincoln and Mercury products.
Teague, who was nominated for the Time award by Dennis Jungmeyer, president of the Arkansas Automobile Dealers Association, is also chairman of the board of directors of Citizens Bank of Batesville, which was founded by the grandfather of his wife, Sarah.