Contract Auction Specialist
The Contract Auction Specialist is a two-day course that shows Contract Auctioneers how to treat what they do as a business, covering marketing, sales, professionalism, and money management including the tax and insurance implications of working for yourself.
Requirements for the CAS
The requirements to register for CAS are the standard ones (Pass the prerequisite exam or hold another NAA Designation). Here’s the timeline for someone to achieve the CAS Designation: Register for the CAS class. Attend both days of the designation class. After the class, to obtain the designation, candidates must submit four evaluations from a contract auction.
What CAS can do for you

Earning any designation demonstrates your commitment to continuing education both to the public and members of the industry. It also enables members to network with like-minded individuals in the classroom and through additional networking events, but here are some specific benefits of a CAS designation.

Not only does the CAS designation help contract auctioneers up their game, but it makes them more attractive as potential employees. This class sheds light on the concept of seeing your contract auctioneer position as a business to be managed rather than just a job position. It goes beyond the auction event itself and covers the importance of running a business and marketing your auctions. The class exposes students to niches and industries that may not have been previously considered to help grow their business.

CAS Instructors


Registration opening soon for the next CAS session at Designation Academy December 2019





“CAS reinforces the value of professionalism needed to keep the contract auctioneer a viable asset in today’s competitive market and teaches the value of becoming a master marketer and a master business owner, not just a master bid caller.”
 — Doak Lambert, CAS
Charles Nicholls, CAS
Charles Nicholls is the founder and chairman of the board of Nicholls Auction Marketing Group. He, along with his wife Jean, founded the company in 1968 and together they have devoted their professional lives to building a successful business. Charles graduated from the Reisch Auctioneering School (now World Wide College of Auctioneering) in Mason City, IA, in 1968. He is a member of the National Auctioneers Association and the Virginia Auctioneers Association where he has served on the Board of Directors and numerous committees. For 40 years, Charles Nicholls was the head auctioneer at the two largest auto auctions in the state of Virginia. He is a licensed realtor, a certified appraiser by C.A.G.A., and one of the first holders of the Contract Auction Specialist designation. Charles is a trustee and active member of Spotswood Baptist Church, and he is very active in the Fredericksburg community serving many non-profit organizations for 50 years. He was awarded the Bernie Hart Memorial Award by the National Automobile Auction Association in October 2004 in Nashville, TN. This award recognizes a lifetime of superior achievement, leadership, and overall professionalism in the industry. In 2006, Charles was honored by being named to the Virginia Auctioneer's Hall of Fame. Charles, a gifted teacher and mentor to many, is a true legend in the world of auctioneering.
Peter Gehres, CAI, CAS, CES
Peter is an Auctioneer and Realtor with the Real Estate Showcase Auction Company and owner of Belhorn Auctions. He is also an auctioneer for Mike Brandly, Auctioneer, the Akron Auto Auction, and Brinkman Auctions.
Doak Lambert, CAS
Doak grew up with an interest in the cattle business. While in college, he also became interested in the auction business, and in 1986, graduated from the Missouri Auction School in Kansas City, Missouri. Lambert started in the auction business in 1986 with a focus on purebred cattle auctions, and over the years, he has presided over some of the most prominent livestock auctions in U.S., including selling champion stock at the Ft. Worth Stock Show, Houston Livestock Show and the American Royal Livestock Show in Kansas City.
Shane Ratliff, CAS
Shes is a founding partner of Estate Auction Group, LLC and is one of the most decorated auction professionals in the world. Mr. Ratliff is one of the elite auctioneers to hold the distinguished titles of NAA International Champion Auctioneer as well as World Champion Automobile Auctioneer. Mr. Ratliff is President and CEO of Ratliff Auctioneers, Inc. which oversees over 600 auctions annually, working extensively with major automobile and power sport manufacturers on a weekly basis. In addition, Mr. Ratliff has helped non-profit organizations around the world reach their goals through fundraising auction services for over 20 years. Along with celebrity fundraising events, Shane is often seen on national television defining auctioneering excellence for Barrett-Jackson Auction Company, the "world's greatest collector car auctions." In recognition for a lifetime of professional achievement, Shane Ratliff was the recipient of the NAA Auctioneer of the Year award in 2007.