2021 Auto Finance Excellence Awards Presented

  • Skylar Taylor
  • October 28, 2021
  • Press

GM Financial, Toyota Financial Services among the five winners

LAS VEGAS (Oct. 28, 2021) – Three companies and two industry executives were honored with Auto Finance Excellence Awards at the 21st Annual Auto Finance Summit in Las Vegas today.

NextGear Capital, Bank of America, and Toyota Financial Services were presented with Excellence Awards at the Auto Finance Summit. Additionally, Sandra Broderick, Head of Operations at Santander Consumer USA, and Dan Berce, President and Chief Executive at GM Financial, both received Excellence Awards for leadership and their contributions to the auto finance industry.

The Auto Finance Excellence Awards are presented annually by Auto Finance News, the industry’s leading publication on vehicle lending and leasing, and by Royal Media, publisher of Auto Finance News and the Auto Finance Summit’s producer. Today was the 17th annual presentation of the Excellence Awards.

NextGear Capital was presented with an award for Operational Excellence for its efforts to improve its operations and services amid the maelstrom of the pandemic. During the pandemic period, NextGear, which provides financing to more than 20,000 independent dealers, initiated a series of new initiatives. Some of these initiatives included a floorplan program called Flex Pricing that gives dealers greater cash flow to invest back into their businesses by reducing the principal paydown rate to 0.01% per period. NextGear also launched a Dealer Advisory Board to provide independent-dealer feedback on today’s ever-evolving industry, as well as implemented a “new and improved” dealer referral program.

Bank of America received an award for Operational Excellence for its innovation in product development, specifically to further electric vehicle financing and environmental sustainability. Since 2019, Bank of America has steadily advanced its streamlined lending program specifically for electric and hybrid vehicles. Bank of America’s product suite today includes vehicle loans to consumers purchasing or refinancing EVs, available via direct and dealer channels, and lease options to consumers offered only via strategic alliances with the vehicle manufacturer. The company continues to work diligently to grow its EV lending program.

Toyota Financial Services was awarded an Excellence Award recognizing its efforts in community service. Despite the pandemic, Toyota Financial Services last year leaned on its proprietary app, Toyota for Good, to advance its community service initiatives amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Toyota has focused on virtual visits with the elderly during the pandemic to give seniors a “lifeline of community” at a time when personal interactions were limited. The company has also used virtual mentorships to continue its youth development work with the Girl Scouts, Junior Achievement and the Boys and Girls Club of America. Toyota Financial Services plans to continue the virtual connectivity – along with in-person volunteering – in order to further expand the scope of the communities it reaches.

In addition, this year two awards were presented for leadership. The first was awarded to Sandra Broderick, Head of Operations at Santander Consumer USA, for her contributions to the industry. Sandra this year marked her 25th year in financial services. Her many years of great contributions – as a female executive of great regard when too few women were in senior industry executive roles — culminated earlier this year with her appointment to chair of the vehicle finance division of the American Financial Services Association. The 2021 Excellence Award recognizes Sandra’s remarkable service, determination, and dedication to the auto finance industry.

The final leadership award was presented to Dan Berce, President and Chief Executive Officer of GM Financial, for his career accomplishments. Dan has served as GM Financial’s President and CEO since the company’s predecessor business, AmeriCredit Corp., was acquired by General Motors in October 2010. During his 30 years of executive leadership, Dan has been at the helm of a tremendous amount of evolution, progress, and innovation. This Excellence Award recognizes Dan’s tremendous achievements and contributions throughout his career.

“Our 2021 Excellence Award winners exemplify the best of this dynamic industry and show the strength that is possible during even the most difficult of situations,” said JJ Hornblass, Executive Editor & Publisher of Auto Finance News and Chairman of the Auto Finance Summit. “We congratulate all of the 2021 winners.”


The Auto Finance Excellence Awards, presented annually since 2004, recognize achievement and contribution to the automotive finance industry. Recipients are chosen from nominations by members of the industry and after the careful consideration of the senior editorial team at Auto Finance News. The goal of the Awards is to recognize members of the industry for their hard work, persistence, skills, and/or lifetime efforts in automotive lending and leasing. The awards are presented by Auto Finance News (www.AutoFinanceNews.net), the industry’s leading information resource, at the annual Auto Finance Summit (www.AutoFinanceSummit.com). Both Auto Finance News and the Auto Finance Summit are services of Royal Media (www.royalmedia.com), a New York-based information company.