5. Martin Management Group

Despite an almost 24% decline in 2008 revenues, Martin Management Group (1997 BE Auto Dealer of the Year) remains one of the nation’s leading black-owned auto empires.

Celebrated BE 100s CEO Cornelius Martin, who was tragically killed in a 2006 motorcycle accident, built the Bowling Green, Kentucky-based Martin Management Group from humble beginnings more than 24 years ago. His first dealership, Martin Cadillac of Bowling Green, Kentucky is still in existence today.

The auto powerhouse has since grown to include 18 car dealerships in six states, two Harley-Davidson dealerships, and an aviation service company. The late entrepreneurs’ wife, Gail Martin, and Co-CEO Lee Michaelson currently manage the legendary dealership group.