Big Ten Coach of the Year winner Mel Tucker Joins the 40th Annual Drive for Life, Event to Match Donations by 150%


Big Ten Coach of the Year winner Mel Tucker Joins 

the 40th Annual Drive for Life, Event to Match Donations by 150%


Zeigler Auto Group today announced MSU football coach Mel Tucker as its special guest speaker for its 40th Annual Drive for Life Foundation Gala. The Big Ten Coach of the Year winner will be speaking in benefit of the American Cancer Society and other local charities on Monday, September 12, 2022 at 6:00p.m. at the Radisson Plaza Hotel at Kalamazoo Center. Charity gala tickets are now on sale, with each $300 ticket admitting two guests for a social cocktail hour, silent auction, live auction plus, a raffle to win a new 2022 Honda Accord or $30,000 in cash. All donations this year will be matched by 150%, with last year's event bringing in over $800,000.


Kalamazoo, Mich. (July 11, 2022) -- MSU coach Mel Tucker will be this year's special guest speaker at the Drive for Life Foundation Gala taking place on Monday, September 12, 2022 at 6:00 p.m. at the Radisson Plaza Hotel located at 100 W. Michigan Ave, Kalamazoo, Mich. The gala, now in its 40th year, is presented by Zeigler Auto Group, Greenleaf Trust and Huntington Bank and benefits the American Cancer Society, MRC Industries, the Make-a-Wish Foundation, as well as other local charities.


As a former NFL and current MSU football coach, Tucker has long been in the national spotlight for his competitive and illustrious career spanning over 25 years. Recently named both the Hayes-Schembechler Coach of the Year and the Dave McClain Coach of the Year, the Big Ten Coach of the Year winner continues to lead by example both on and off the field by giving back to the community. 


"I am honored to be a big part of this night where we are able to touch so many lives right here in our community. There is no change without intention, and the Drive for Life Foundation embodies this philosophy by bringing us all together to create real change in our community," said Tucker.


Last year the gala broke records by surpassing its initial goal of $750,000 by bringing in well over $800,000 in donations. This year, the organization has announced that all donations will be matched by 150% thanks to the support of two anonymous donors. 


Joining Tucker on stage will be event host Aaron Zeigler, president and CEO of Zeigler Auto Group. "We are so grateful to be able to continue our legacy of giving back to the community. We are even more grateful to count on the generous support of all of our donors, sponsors, volunteers, and guests that make this event possible.Also, having Mel Tucker, who is as generous giving back to community as he is competitive on the gridiron, as special guest at our event speaks volumes to how much we come together when it matters," said Zeigler.


Tickets for the gala are now on sale online at driveforlifefoundation.org, with each $300 ticket admitting two guests and good for one entry into the night's main raffle for a new 2022 Honda Accord or a cash prize of $30,000.The event will also include a social cocktail hour, silent auction, live auction and much more.    


Sponsorship opportunities are still available, please contact Monty Porter at montyporter@zeigler.com for more information.


About the Drive for Life Foundation Gala

For four decades, the Drive for Life Gala has attracted the support of business leaders, sponsors and volunteers; bringing the Kalamazoo community together for an extraordinary night of charity.


The Drive for Life Gala debuted in 1982 with a starting ticket price of just $1, raising less than $20,000 for the American Cancer Society. Today, the annual Drive for Life Gala -presented by Zeigler Auto Group, Greenleaf Trust and Huntington Bank- benefits the American Cancer Society and other local charities with over $800,000 in annual support.


About Zeigler Automotive Group

Zeigler Automotive Group is one of the largest privately-owned dealer groups in the U.S. with 78 franchises across 35 locations in Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana, and Michigan. Vehicle brands represented include all of the domestic and the majority of the imported manufacturers.

 

Besides its extensive automotive portfolio, the organization owns and operates Zeigler Motorsports, an 85,000-square-foot motorsports dealership and action park, offering 19 different powersports brands, plus its own onsite restaurant: Trak Houz Bar & Grill. Additionally, Zeigler Motorsports houses the Elevate Leadership & Team Building Academy, an executive training company.

 

The Kalamazoo-based dealer group also owns and operates Zeigler Pre-Owned of Chicago, a Carquest Auto Parts store, three Byrider franchises, three finance companies, several insurance firms, and a leasing firm.

 

Founded in 1975, the organization employs over 2,300 people, ranking among the top 1% of automotive dealers in the nation with estimated annual sales of $2.2 billion for 2022. The family-owned and operated company is well known for its commitment to both customer service and employee satisfaction. Zeigler is regularly recognized as one of the Best and Brightest Companies to Work for in the Nation, also earning similar accolades in Wisconsin, Chicago, and Michigan.