TROY, Mich., Jan. 22, 2016 /PRNewswire/ — The Detroit Auto Dealers Association (DADA) Education Foundation reminds students that the deadline for entry into the Courageous Persuaders video competition is almost here. The deadline for entry is February 11, 2016. Courageous Persuaders offers over $27,000in scholarship awards.

“The DADA, along with many important partners, strive to take an active role in our local communities by educating our youth on the dangers of underage drinking and distracted driving,” said Ryan LaFontaine, DADA president. “The messages conveyed in the commercials these young adults create are truly very powerful.”

Courageous Persuaders is a competition-based scholarship program that invites high school students to create a 30-second commercial about the dangers of underage drinking. The commercials are targeted toward middle school-aged children, with the winning entries aired on television and via streaming video on The Michigan Department of State also shows the winning commercials in select Secretary of State (SOS) branch offices. The winners will be announced at a gala Awards Celebration to be held in May.

The Courageous Persuaders program was created in 2000 by the late Oakland County District JudgeMichael A. Martone and John Barczyk, a retired local McCann-Erickson advertising executive.  In 2007, the DADA Education Foundation became the primary sponsor and administrator of the Courageous Persuaders. Last year, the contest drew 489 entries from 727 participating students from throughout the U.S., Canada, Puerto Rico and the Armed Forces.

Winning entries are eligible for the following scholarship awards:

Dangers of Underage Drinking and Driving:

  • Grand Prize: $3,000
  • First Place: $2,000
  • Second Place: $1,000
  • Third Place: $500

Dangers of Texting While Driving:

  • First Place: $2,000
  • Second Place: $1,000
  • Third Place: $500

Additionally, Courageous Persuaders partners present:

  • State Farm Fan Favorite Award: $3,500. Determined through independent votes of videos posted on a dedicated YouTube channel, a $2,500 cash prize will be presented to the classroom of the school that produced the video that garners the most votes, and a $1,000 scholarship will be awarded to the student.
  • Lindsey Renee Cianciolo Family Memorial Scholarship: $3,000. Two $1,500 Michigan-based scholarships are donated by Lindsey’s father, Michael, her sisters, Allie and Mary Cianciolo and friends of Michael. Lindsey died on January 5, 2005 at the age of 20 in a motor vehicle accident which was largely caused by underage drinking.
  • Detroit Auto Dealers Association (DADA) Award: $2,000. DADA, the primary sponsor and administrator of the Courageous Persuaders program through its DADA Education Foundation, will also provide a $2,000 scholarship.
  • Adcraft Club of Detroit Award: $2,000. The Adcraft Club award is presented to the student(s) whose commercial best conveys factual information about the dangers of alcohol use.
  • Michelin Award: $2,000. The Michelin Award is presented to the student whose video commercial best illustrates the dangers of underage drinking and its effects on driving.
  • AutoTrader Award: $2,000. AutoTrader is proud to support Courageous Persuaders and its focus on educating and informing today’s youth on the dangers of underage drinking and driving with a$2,000 scholarship.
  • Dangers of Texting While Driving Award: $2,000. The DADA has expanded the Courageous Persuaders message to also include a new $2,000 Dangers of Texting While Driving Award.
  • State Farm Insurance: $1,000. State Farm will select the winning commercial based on persuasiveness and creativity on the dangers of underage drinking and driving.
  • College for Creative Studies (CCS) Award: $250. The CCS award is chosen based on the cognition, creativity, and craftsmanship of the commercial.
  • Wall Street Journal (WSJ) Courageous Leader Award. The WSJ Courageous Leader Award is presented to a teacher for his or her extraordinary support of the Courageous Persuaders program.

To view last year’s winning commercials and/or enter the 2016 competition, visit, or contact Sandy Herp at 248.283.5138 or For complete rules, visit

About the DADA Education Foundation
The mission of the DADA Education Foundation is to promote excellence in education through quality programs and leadership.

About Detroit Auto Dealers Association (DADA)
The DADA was founded in 1907 by 17 local car dealers, and has grown to more than 220 member car and truck dealers who donate their time and resources to a host of community activities. Currently, the DADA members collectively employ more than 16,500 people. Many members participate in the NAIAS, LLC, which is responsible for the production of the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS). To find out more about Detroit Auto Dealers Association, visit To find out more about the NAIAS,

SOURCE Detroit Auto Dealers Association

For further information: Sandy Herp, 248.283.5138,