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Ford Announces Salute To Dealers Award Winners Honoring Dealer Contributions to Their Communities

DEARBORN, Mich., April 20, 2022 – Salute To Dealers is a Ford Motor Company initiative that recognizes and honors Dealer Principals who have made an extraordinary commitment of their time and resources to help improve the lives of others by providing support for countless meaningful causes.

Now in its 22nd year, Salute To Dealers was founded by Edsel B. Ford II and is championed by Henry Ford III. “I am honored to recognize our dealers for all they do to support communities across the globe every day. They have made such a positive impact on our world and made it a better place while doing so,” Ford said.

This year, 60 Dealers from around the globe were nominated for the 22nd annual Salute To Dealers award. From this group, a panel of judges selected the Honorees based on the Dealer’s individual activities, length of participation and personal motivation. In recognition of the Honorees’ service to their communities, Ford created a Salute To Dealers Video Tribute, highlighting each Dealer’s extraordinary contributions. The video tribute is available to view here.

In further recognition, the honorees receive an exclusive painted portrait featuring a montage of their philanthropic efforts and involvement in their communities. Copies of the portraits will be on display in the Salute To Dealers display in the lobby of Ford’s World Headquarters in Dearborn, Michigan for year-round viewing. Once again this year, Ford Motor Company Fund is donating $10,000, in the Honoree’s name, to a charity of their choice.

Ford’s 2022 awards recognize the following Dealers for their unparalleled generosity and commitment to their communities:

Bess R. Wills-Avila
Gresham Ford - Gresham, Oregon

Bess Wills-Avila has a passion for the well-being of her community and local non-profit organizations, giving freely of her time and resources to a myriad of causes. She is personally involved in countless activities, touching education, health, safety, and other areas of critical importance to her community.

Numerous local schools, as well as the Gresham Barlow Education Foundation, have directly benefited from her support. She has been instrumental, along with other local businesses, in an annual Fill-A-Bag food drive for SnowCap Community Charities, a local non-profit organization created to provide food, clothing and advocacy to those in need. In addition to providing donations of food and funds, she has helped raise awareness of hunger and its effects in the community, showing that businesses can make a difference when they work together.

Bess is also an avid supporter of Gresham’s first responders, and an advocate of My Father’s House where homeless families are not separated. Through her dealership’s “Contribute to the Community” initiative, she donates a percentage of each customer’s service bill, and a fixed amount per vehicle sale, upon request, to the charity of the customer’s choice. Extremely active in the local Chamber of Commerce, Bess produces an annual Christmas Charity Breakfast where she writes a script, performs the skit, and pays for the actors’ costumes, with all proceeds going to a local charity.

Bess Wills-Avila’s kindness, generosity, and willingness to give of her time, ideas and resources make her an extraordinary asset to the Gresham community and an exemplary example for others.

  • Richard T Collins AM: Jarvis Ford - Adelaide, Australia
  • Rob Gregory: Rochester Ford – Rochester, Minnesota  
  • Francisco Mieres: Andrade La Viga - Mexico City, Mexico
  • Vince Sheehy: Sheehy Auto Stores - Fairfax, Virginia
  • Ye, Zaifu: Furui Auto Group - Beijing, China

1 Based on total U.S. reported sales (2021 calendar year)

 2 Assembled in the U.S. with domestic and foreign parts.

3 See owner’s manual for important operating instructions.

4 Based on latest competitive data (available 8/15/2021)

5 Available on vehicles with embedded modem or equipped with approved plug-in device (PID). May require modem activation. Ford Pro Telematics and Ford Pro Data Services require a purchased subscription. Terms and conditions apply. Telematics service and features, and access to vehicle data depend on subscription and compatible AT&T network availability. Evolving technology/cellular networks/vehicle capability may limit functionality and prevent operation of connected features.

6 Eligible vehicles receive a complimentary three-year trial of E-Telematics services that begins on the new vehicle warranty start date. Requires modem activation. Terms and conditions apply. Telematics service and features, and access to vehicle data depend on compatible AT&T network availability. Evolving technology/cellular networks/vehicle capability may limit functionality and prevent operation of connected features. After the three-year trial, annual service contract is required for E-Telematics service. Call 1-833-811-3673 to activate E-Telematics service.

About Ford Motor Company

Ford Motor Company (NYSE: F) is a global company based in Dearborn, Michigan, that is committed to helping build a better world, where every person is free to move and pursue their dreams. The company’s Ford+ plan for growth and value creation combines existing strengths, new capabilities and always-on relationships with customers to enrich experiences for and deepen the loyalty of those customers. Ford develops and delivers innovative, must-have Ford trucks, sport utility vehicles, commercial vans and cars and Lincoln luxury vehicles, as well as connected services. Additionally, Ford is establishing leadership positions in mobility solutions, including self-driving technology, and provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company. Ford employs about 182,000 people worldwide. More information about the company, its products and Ford Credit is available at