WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Rick Hendrick, 64, tireless philanthropist, creator of an automotive empire and the most successful NASCAR owner of the modern era, has been named the 2014 recipient of the Keith Crain/Automotive News Lifetime Achievement Award.
He will be presented the award on Wednesday, Jan. 22 during the 71st Washington Auto Show.
"Rick has become an auto industry icon through his charity, hard work, grit and determination," said Keith Crain, Chairman of Crain Communications and Editor-in-Chief of Automotive News. "He has achieved unimaginable success as an automotive dealer and NASCAR owner and he has persevered through unspeakable grief and continues to give back and that combination makes him unique and the perfect recipient of the lifetime achievement award."
Hendrick is the founder and chairman of Hendrick Automotive Group, the nation's second-largest privately held automotive dealership group and the sixth-largest automotive dealership group overall andHendrick Motorsports, winners of 13 NASCAR owner's championships and more than 200 victories in the elite Sprint cup Series.
Hendrick Automotive Group operates 87 dealerships representing 28 nameplates, 121 franchises and 24 collision centers and three accessories distributor installers in 13 states. The company employs more than 9,000 people. Hendrick Motorsports currently fields four teams that are in embroiled in NASCAR's playoffs, The Chase for the Sprint Cup, with drivers Jimmie Johnson, Jeff Gordon, Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Kasey Kahne.
Hendrick also established the Hendrick Marrow Program in 1997 after he was diagnosed with leukemia. Even though he did not need a marrow transplant himself, he wanted to help other patients waiting to find a marrow match and a second chance at life.
The Hendrick Marrow Program works with Be The Match Foundation to support the work of the National Marrow Donor Program®. Specifically it raises money to add more potential marrow donors to the Be The Match Registry, increasing the chances that more patients can find their match. It also helps patients with uninsured transplant costs, which are often a barrier to treatment.
Since inception, the Hendrick Marrow Program has raised more than $12 million, added more than 100,000 marrow donors to the Be The Match Registry, and eased the financial burden of over 8,000 patients with grants from the Hendrick Family Fund for Patient Assistance.
"We are pleased to honor Mr. Hendrick, whose ingenuity and achievement reflects the ingenuity of a true entrepreneur," said Kevin Reilly, president of Alexandria Hyundai and chairman of the 2014 Washington Auto Show.
The Keith Crain/Automotive News Lifetime Achievement Award will be presented at the close of the 2014 Washington Auto Show Public Policy Preview Day at The Walter E. Washington Convention Center, where thousands of industry and government leaders will convene for key announcements, networking and an evening Sneak Peek reception. The award presentation will begin with a reception at 6:30 p.m., followed by a dinner and program at 8:15 p.m.
Previous recipients of the Keith Crain/Automotive News Lifetime Achievement Award include: Edsel Ford II, Roger Penske, Carroll Shelby, Ralph Nader and Congressman John D. Dingell (D-MI).
The 2014 staging of the 71st Washington Auto Show in Washington, DC, known in the industry as "The Public Policy Show", will offer a showcase of more than 700 vehicles from over 42 domestic and import manufacturers and a special exhibit of the world's most luxurious rides. In addition, The Washington Auto Show has been accredited by OICA, the industry credentialing organization for the top auto shows in the world, as one of the five top tier Auto Shows in America.