DETROIT —Ally Financial has announced that 55 U.S. auto dealers have been selected as nominees for the 2015 TIME Dealer of the Year award. Now in its 46th year, this prestigious and highly coveted honor recognizes the nation's most successful auto dealers who also demonstrate a long-standing commitment to community service.

The nominees are part of a select group of dealers from across the country that will be honored at the 98th annual National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) Convention & Exposition in San Francisco on Jan. 23, 2015. The announcement of this year’s nominees was made by Jed Hartman, group publisher, worldwide, TIME, and Tim Russi, president of Auto Finance for Ally Financial.

“The dealers nominated for this award are dedicated business owners, auto lovers, and most importantly, champions for their local communities, with a willingness to give back on a grand scale,” Russi said. “Ally is proud to honor and support these dealers as they work today and tomorrow to build better places to live, work and do business.”

A recent survey by Ally and NADA found that more than 70% of U.S. dealers increased their charitable giving in 2014 compared to 2013, with the bulk of dealers (around 90%) supporting community service and local organizations. The survey also found that more than 65% of dealers organize staff volunteerism in the community.

In its fourth year as exclusive sponsor, Ally will recognize the 2015 nominees and their community efforts by contributing $1,000 to each dealer’s 501(c)3 charity of choice. The 55 nominees will be highlighted on, which showcases the philanthropic contributions and achievements of auto dealers and stories of their charitable outreach in local communities.

 In previous years, nominee grants have supported various local community organizations, including youth athletic leagues, educational programs, cultural offerings and local nonprofits. Past winners have included Jeff Teague of Teague Auto Group in El Dorado, Ark., Michael Alford of Marine Chevrolet in Jacksonville, N.C., and Mike Shaw, of Mike Shaw Chevrolet Saab in Denver, Colo.

Along with the help of Ally grant funds, these dealers have helped make a difference by ensuring local organizations can continue to serve their local communities – from providing supplies to a local Boys and Girls club, to ensuring students can participate in after school programs, or attend Scout camp. 

To learn more about the 2015 TIME Dealer of the Year nominees, click here.