Golling’s career in the family car business started when his father, A. William Golling Jr., opened a Volkswagen dealership in Troy, Michigan, in 1966. “I went to work during high school at the VW store where I would scrub floors, wash cars, help with maintenance, work the parts counter and more,” he said. “My love for the automotive business grew from there.”
After earning a BS at Michigan State University in East Lansing in 1972, he returned to work full-time at the family’s Chrysler Plymouth dealership in Bloomfield Hills, where he held several jobs before being named president of Golling Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram in 1983. In 1986, he bought the business from his father, and today he oversees five Michigan dealerships in Bloomfield Hills, Warren, Birmingham, Lake Orion and Chelsea, representing brands Alfa Romeo, Buick, Chrysler, Dodge, Fiat, GMC, Jeep, Ram and Toyota. His two sons, Michael and Matthew, are the next generation to run the enterprise.
“I’m proud to be able to help people grow their careers and deepen their passions for the industry,” Golling said of his team. “And I have the privilege to provide transportation of the highest quality to thousands of families each year.”
Golling is active in the Detroit Auto Dealers Association, having served as president, vice president, treasurer and secretary. He currently is a member of the board, as well as advisory committee member for the group’s charitable foundation fund. He supports the association’s initiative, Courageous Persuaders, a national scholarship competition that invites high school students to create a commercial to warn middle school students about the dangers of underage drinking and texting while driving.
In 2019, Golling chaired the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, a celebrated event which features a Charity Preview gala that raises money for children’s charities, including the Boys & Girls Clubs of Southeastern Michigan; Boys Hope Girls Hope of Detroit; the Children's Hospital of Michigan Foundation and March of Dimes Metro Detroit, to name a few.
“We raised more than $4 million in 2019, the largest annual single-night fundraiser in the world,” he said. “I believe that what automotive dealers do in and for their communities is far more important than any recognition they get for themselves.”
Golling was nominated for the TIME Dealer of the Year award by Rod Alberts, executive director of the Detroit Auto Dealers Association. He and his wife, Lynne, have two children.