Duane Spader Leadership Development Scholarship
in partnership with the Mike Molino RV Learning Center

September 2024: Applications Available

This scholarship was founded to honor the RV industry service of Spader Business Management founder Duane Spader, as well as his leadership philosophy of life-long learning. The recipient of this scholarship receives tuition to attend the NCM Leadership Development Program (LDP)
 (a $13,850 value). The recipient is only responsible for travel expenses. The sessions are held in Albuquerque, NM and other locations in the U.S. 

About the NCM Leadership Development Program
The NCM Associates Leadership Development Program is a 12-to-18-month program for current and future leaders that involves five three-day sessions, with participation capped at 24 attendees. In between sessions, participants are tasked with putting what they’ve learned to work in their dealership and tracking the results of those efforts through assignments and one-on-one sessions with an NCM coach. Check Leadership Development Program for program's schedule of sessions. The scholarship is provided by NCM Associates.

Previous Recipients
2023      Dean Taggert, Wilkins RV
2022      Mike Hochstatter, Hilltop Camper & RV
2021      Emma Falbo, Lazy Days of Milwaukee
2020      Keryn Lynn, Holly Acres Marine, Inc.
2019      Chase Youngblood, Youngblood’s RV
2018      Kaleigh Morgan, Hemlock Hill RV 
2017      Aaron Sparks, Johnson RV 
2016      Ian Isley, Affinity RV
2015      Tony Clark, Ron Hoover RV

How to Apply
Along with a completed online application form, submissions must include a 500-1,000 word essay describing why a leadership development program would be beneficial to the applicant, their business and the industry. Also, provide two or three letters of recommendation. If selected, the recipient must provide a photo and agree to being publicly recognized by RVDA and NCM Associates. The recipient of the 2025-2026 scholarship will be announced at RVPro's 40-Under-40 reception, on Tuesday, Nov. 12 at Paris Las Vegas. The reception is held annually at the RV Dealers Convention/Expo in Las Vegas. Applicants need not be present to accept the scholarship. Contact Karin Van Duyse, Executive Director, Mike Molino RV Learning Center by email: kvanduyse@RVDA.org or phone: 703-591-7130, x108 if you have any questions.

1. Applicant must be employed by an RVDA (U.S.) dealer member.
2. Applicant must directly apply for the scholarship.
3. Should they be chosen, the applicant must be able to commit to the time, travel, and expense required to complete the five in-person sessions.

Chase Youngblood Receives 2019-20 Leadership Scholarship

General manager Chase Youngblood of Youngblood’s RV Centers in Tennessee and Missouri has been chosen as the 2019-2020 recipient of the Duane Spader Leadership Development Scholarship. The scholarship, valued at nearly $15,000, will allow him to attend an 18-month Spader Leadership Development Program. The scholarship is one element of the strategic alliance between Spader and the Mike Molino RV Learning Center.

Youngblood, 27, has worked in the family’s business since childhood and sold his first camper at age 13. He has held every job at the dealership during his apprenticeship, learning the ropes from his father, Roger Youngblood, who started the business in 1977. Coming from a family-owned business, Youngblood says he understands the importance of building relationships with both customers and employees. “Looking at the smaller mom-and-pop dealerships that have been purchased by bigger corporations, it appears the customer gets lost in the monotony of corporate decisions,” he wrote in his application. “When a customer comes to our dealership, we want them to feel as though they’ve joined our family. I never want a customer to feel like we don’t care or that we don’t want their repeat business.”

As large corporations buy up smaller dealerships, Youngblood said, “the smaller people are losing their voice…and the customers also lose theirs.” Youngblood says being selected to attend the Spader program will give him the insight and management tools to grow his company and ensure it can keep pace with a changing industry. And, he adds, “I intend to continue building relationships with industry leaders and pushing for changes to benefit our industry as a whole.”

Parts and Service Manager Tony Clark of Ron Hoover RV Receives the First Spader Scholarship*

Parts and service manager Tony Clark of Ron Hoover RV and Marine, Houston, is the first recipient of the Duane Spader Leadership Development Scholarship. The award will allow Clark to attend an 18-month Spader Leadership Development Program and is a new facet of the strategic alliance between Spader and the Mike Molino RV Learning Center. The scholarship is named for Spader founder and former RVDA chairman Duane Spader. The joint arrangement will promote leadership development programs for RVDA members and provide one annual scholarship.

Clark came to the Ron Hoover Companies in 2004 as a flag technician, although he was already an experienced service manager and had owned his own RV service business. When the service manager position at Ron Hoover came open, he was prepared to step into the job. “Tony has worked tirelessly alongside the general manager of our Houston store,” says Chris Hoover, president of the Ron Hoover Companies. “One of our largest operations, the role of service manager there is a demanding one. Tony regularly rises to the challenge and many times surpasses our expectations. Any additional training and education he receives will only enhance his already stellar performance history and couldn’t happen to a nicer guy.” *Source: RV Executive Today