Retail | Wholesale | Food | Beverage 2023: JAMES GRAMM
PRESIDENT, SAFFORD AUTOMOTIVE GROUP, SPRINGFIELD
In 1983, barely five years after graduating from high school in Alexandria, Gramm sold two new cars on his first day as a sales rep at a dealership in Vienna. “The retail automobile business,” he says, “has been in my blood ever since.”
Gramm worked in car sales in Virginia and Maryland, rising to vice president of Maryland Motors before buying his first dealership, Safford Dodge and RV in Fredericksburg, in 2002. In November 2022, Safford purchased Brown Automotive Group, which includes 16 stores in Virginia and Maryland, and more than doubled Safford’s store count. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. The leadership team at Brown, based in Fairfax County, joined Safford, and the combined privately held company is now Safford Brown Automotive Group.
In 2023, Safford was ranked No. 87 on Automotive News’ list of the top 150 new vehicle dealership groups nationwide, a jump of 17 places from the previous year.