You are here


Auto dealers head finds strength in membership diversity

After first year as NADA president, Peter Welch says his job change has been more of a jump in magnitude than in substance

March 21, 2014


Peter Welch was born in Detroit and grew up in Dearborn, Mich., home of the Ford Motor Co. But cars weren’t the family business. His father was a physician, and Welch left Michigan in 1979 for law school in California. “It was basically by chance that I ended up with a law firm that specialized in automotive financing and dealer work,” Welch said. “People say [working in the auto industry] is genetic, but I don’t know about that.”

That said, cars have figured prominently in his career. Before becoming president of the National Automobile Dealers Association last year, Welch spent 22 years with the California New Car Dealers Association, combining two regional associations, doing advocacy work and eventually becoming CEO.