An ADESA auction at the NADA Convention and Expo raised $94,423 for the NADA Foundation, which supports Canine Companions for Independence.
Retired Army Sgt. Steve Blackman and his service dog, Gottlieb, attended the auction to represent Canine Companions.
Robert Bassam, founder of Eastern’s Automotive Group in Sterling, Va., placed the first winning bid of $39,000 for a 2015 Polaris utility task vehicle (UTV). He then donated the UTV back to ADESA to be re-auctioned.
Joe Verde, president of Joe Verde Group in San Juan Capistrano, Calif., and longtime supporter of Canine Companions, made the second winning bid of $26,000. He also donated the vehicle back for re-auction.
Bassam’s son, Joel Bassam, director of marketing for Eastern’s Automotive Group, placed the final winning bid of $28,000.
Attendees gathered at the ADESA booth during the auction made $1,423 in cash donations to bring the final contribution to $94,423.
ADESA auctions over the past six NADA conventions have raised more than $334,400 for the NADA Foundation’s Frank E. McCarthy Memorial Fund, in whose name the Canine Companions donation is made. McCarthy was NADA chief executive from 1968 to 2001.