With almost 270 men and women among its ranks, the Automotive Hall of Fame has already recognized some of the automotive industries most significant pioneers, visionaries, and success stories, so the folks behind the hall decided to revisit almost 30 of them – including Corvette engineer Zora Arkus-Duntov and GM styling director Harley Earl – as celebrated alumni.
Harley Earl with Firebirds I, II, and III. Photo courtesy GM.
Introduced last year “as a way to recognize previously inducted individuals for their accomplishments,” according to the hall’s website, the alumni celebration focuses on hall members both living and deceased with induction anniversaries. Thus, this year’s celebrated alumni includes inductees from 1971, 1975, 1981, 1985, etc. through 2006.
That includes both Arkus-Duntov, the man considered the godfather of the Corvette who managed to turn it from a six-cylinder sports car pretender into a V-8-powered contender, and Earl, an automotive designer who became the first full-time styling director not only of GM but of any American car company. The hall of fame inducted Arkus-Duntov in 1991 and Earl in 1996; it then re-inducted Earl – the only member to be re-inducted – in 2013.
Other celebrated alumni for this year include Carl G. Fisher, K.T. Keller, Harlow Curtice, Richard H. Grant, J.E. Henry, and Jesse G. Vincent (class of 1971); Carl Breer and Errett L. Cord (class of 1976); Horace E. Dodge, Carlyle Fraser, Walter F Carey, Martin Goldman, and J. Irving Whalley (class of 1981); Fred Young (class of 1986); Harold Draper, Sir Fredrick Henry Royce, J. Harwood Cochrane, W. Edwards Deming, and Rene C. McPherson (class of 1991); Frank J Campbell, Edward Davis, Henry T. Ewald, Wilhelm Maybach, Frank Duryea, Nickolaus A. Otto, Perry S. Thomas, Francis E. Stanley, and Freelan O. Stanley (class of 1996); Joe Girard, Denise McCluggage, Ralph Lane Polk II, William B Stout, Roy Warshawsky, and Charles E. Sorenson (class of 2001); and Wayne Huizenga, Shojiro Ishibashi, Bruno Sacco, Arjay Miller, Nuccio Bertone, Dale Earnhardt Sr., and Bill France Jr. (class of 2006).
They will join the yet-to-be-announced class of 2016 at this year’s induction ceremony, which will take place July 21 at Cobo Center in Detroit. For more information on the Automotive Hall of Fame’s induction ceremony, visit AutomotiveHallofFame.org.