UNDER GRACE MINISTRIES*
“THE OUT FOR LIFE AWARD”
THE EXODUS PROJECT
CHENAL COUNTRY CLUB
10 CHENAL CLUB BOULEVARD, LITTLE ROCK, ARKANSAS 72223
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 27, 2018
RECEPTION 6:00 PM ~ DINNER 7:00 PM
OUT FOR LIFE AWARD – STEVE LANDERS, SR.
Steve Landers currently serves as a member of the advisory board of RLJ-McLarty-Landers Automotive.
In 1989, Mr. Landers purchased the Jeep, GMC and Oldsmobile dealerships in Benton. Within two years, Chrysler awarded Mr. Landers the Chrysler and Dodge franchises. Under his management, the stores flourished, and his Chrysler dealership became the world’s largest for several consecutive years, selling over 10,000 vehicles annually and setting the standard all other Chrysler dealers measured their success against. In addition to the significant sales volume, the Chrysler dealership earned the Gold Level Recognition for customer satisfaction from Chrysler each year. In 1995, Mr. Landers sold his dealerships to publicly traded United Auto Group, the second-largest automotive retailer in the United States.
Recognizing his management excellence, Roger Penske of United Auto Group hired Mr. Landers as President of their South Central Region, where he was responsible for all of UAG’s operations in Arkansas, Texas, Tennessee, Louisiana and Mississippi. Mr. Landers oversaw the acquisition of an additional 21 dealerships in his region for UAG. Under his leadership, the South Central Region became UAG’s most profitable, earning in excess of $40 million annually.
In 2003, Mr. Landers left UAG and reentered the independent dealership business, purchasing a Toyota franchise in Little Rock, Arkansas, with his two sons, Steve Landers, Jr. and Scott Landers. In 2004, Mr. Landers formed McLarty-Landers Automotive with Mack McLarty and joined the company as President. As President of McLarty-Landers, Mr. Landers oversaw the acquisition of the company’s first two stores — Landers Dodge in Shreveport, Louisiana, and Landers-McLarty Ford/Jeep in Bentonville, Arkansas.
In 2012, Mr. Landers retired as president of McLarty-Landers Automotive and became a member of the advisory board. From 2012 to 2014 Landers reunited with his sons to grow and build new and existing family dealerships. In June 2014, Mr. Landers sold his remaining shares in the Steve Landers Toyota and Steve Landers Chrysler Dodge Jeep dealerships to Minnesota based Luther Automotive Group. Today, the dealerships remain under operational control of his son, Scott Landers, while Steve Landers has turned his focus on a variety of new venture opportunities.
OUT FOR LIFE VOLUNTEER AWARD – ERIC S. HIGGINS
Eric S. Higgins has been chosen to recieve the Exodus Project’s 2018 Out for Life Volunteer Award. Eric is a 30-year veteran of the Little Rock Police Department. He retired as Assistant Chief of Police in 2015. While at the police department, he reinstated the Police/Youth Live-In Camp, which is still in existence today. He was also instrumental in establishing the O.K. Program (‘Our Kids’, a mentoring program for African American boys) in Little Rock. Presently, he is the Law Enforcement Management Consultant for the National O.K. Program. Mr. Higgins earned a B.S. in Multidisciplinary Studies: Government and Business and a M.A in Human Services: Executive Leadership and Counseling from Liberty University. He is a member of the Volunteers in Public Schools (ViPS) Executive Board; Institute for Law Enforcement Administration Alumni, Leadership Greater Little Rock Alumni. Additionally, he serves as President of the Governing Board of Lisa Academy. He has been married for 27 years and has two daughters.
OUT FOR LIFE GRADUATE AWARD – TARA BENNETT
Tara Bennett has been chosen to receive the Exodus Project’s 2018 Out for Life Graduate Award. She was introduced to the Exodus Project Academy while she was incarcerated at Arkansas Community Corrections. After an 18-year meth addiction, Tara was ready to make a change and she graduated from the Academy in 2016. After her release, Tara moved into a transitional house in Little Rock called Hope Rises where she excelled in the Goodwill Industries of Arkansas Transitional Employment Opportunity Program (TEO). After graduation she landed a job as a Data Management Specialist. Now, 3 years later, she is living in Greenbrier with her beautiful daughter Ava. Tara is still employed by Goodwill and is now the Coordinator of the TEO program that helped her re-enter society.
For more information, please contact Allison Johnson, 501-960-8778, email@example.com
*The Exodus Project is an initiative of Under Grace Ministries 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization focused on reducing recidivism in our community through the education of prisoners upon reentry to society. It is designed to equip men and women to successfully reenter the work place and community through four streams of study: Ethics and Character, Career Development, Resource Management, and Recovery. Working in partnership with Arkansas Department of Community Corrections, they have helped restore hundreds of inmates to their families and communities.