As maintained by ARA's unofficial historian, Jim Stephens:
The A.R.A.; the beginning, 1958.
Alfa owners, would stop and talk, in the early days. The earliest accounts are that owners would meet at a place to eat and drink, and talk about their cars. With only two dealers in the area, Griswald and Minzes, Alfa Romeo cars in the Bay Area were rare.
Jack London Square was a well known place for such gatherings; with a few phone calls, they would come. The Fat Lady (still there, 2010) as was the Elegant Farmer, long gone, was visited many times during the early years.
It became a standing date to just drop by for a drink and share your Alfa adventures. Going for a ride, to planning trips for an overnight stay, picnics, and sharing your ownership woes.
The sports car races at Monterey, and the call of the Coast Highway, north and south.
As ownership grew, the telephone was replaced with written and mimeograph sheets, with plans for events, and owners' names and addresses.
By the early '60s, talk about forming a club with about 50 people was becoming a reality and some printed fliers were sent out.
Preston Ericksen, an attorney and an Alfa owner, with an office in Jack London Square, started drawing up papers of incorporation to formally become a club.
Since the Alfa Owners Club on the East Coast had already started forming, we could not use that name. So the Alfa Romeo Association was born, and we were legalized in 1965.
1958 A gathering of Alfa Romeo owners at Jack London Square, in Oakland (about 10 owners). The first formal meeting was held at the Highlands Inn, in Monterey, CA, late 1958.
1959 Pres. Ericksen. Events planned and more owners contacted, and a roster was made.
1960 Pres. Dick Chilingarian. Forming a club was being considered. Driving evnents were held. Preston Ericksen completed the incorporation (non profit Jan., 1960). Joined AROC.
1961 Pres. Jacques Du Bois. Club was started. A list of owners was created, and meeting started.
1962 Pres. Bill Smyth (dues were $3.00 ??? per year) Due. Jan. 1st.
1963 Dick Cummins was the first President.
1964 Pres. Marian A. Fawcett. Treas./Editor Haig Ajamian. Incorporation of club. Alfa Romeo Association (A.R.A.) So as not to be cofused with AROC (Joined AROC) June 1, 1964. Membership 50. (org. copy of club roster) (M.F. Dillenius and Dough Dodds, oldest continued paid). May 1st, the first autocross was held at Cotati airstrip, the second at Vaca Valley Raceways. Newsletter started. Giulia Tubolare Zagato #7500060 was built June 1964, sold as a new street car, by Charlie Rezzaghi's Alfa Romeo dealership, on Hyde St. in San Francisco. Marnix Dellanius bought it for $4,500 from Griswold's used car lot in Berkeley. It has been actively raced since 1971.
1965 Pres. Russ Potts. VP Haig Ajamian; Sec. Doug Dodds; Treas. Fred Amigo; Memberships Joe Mathes; Ed. Haig Ajamian; Mem. Tec. Steve Griswold. A drivers school #6 to be at Cotati. An autocross is held. The first official meeting, and recorded election of officers, Jan. 13 1965 at Holiday Inn, Airport Blvd. S. San Francisco. 77 members. Club meets on 1st Tuesday nite.
1966 Pres. Haig Ajamian; VP Doug Dodds; Tr. Herb Brach; Sec. Jim Anderson; Ed. Haig Ajamian; Mem. Larry Rhoades. 85 members. Board members: Joe Mathes; Larry Rhoads; Mac Macgowan. Drivers school at Cotati, three auto crosses were held. $5 national and $7.50 local dues.
1967 Pres. Doug Dodds; VP Joe Mathes; Tres. Herb Beach; Sec. Rick Chafian; Mem. Larry Rhodes; Ed. Haig Ajamian (Jim Stephens, new member). Newsletter started - no name. Spring and fall drivers schools were held at Cotati. The autocross was in Burlingame.
1968 Pres. L. Rhoads; VP Jim Ashton; Tr. Herb Beach; Sec. Bob Richardson; Ed. Rick Chafin. Two day drivers school at Cotati. Auto crosses were held in the Ampex parking lot. When we questioned a dues increase, AROC said that our complaints were "pathetic bleatings" in the March, 1969 owner. 110 members
1969 Pres. Jim Ashton; VP Dave Burns; Tres. H. Beach; Sec. Bob Richardson; Ed. Dave Burns; Mem. Norm Snart. Drivers schools at Cotati and Vacaville airport raceways. Dr. S.I. Haykawa attended the fall drivers school, and handled his Duetto very well. He has papers verifying it to be the Duetto of movie fame. Sears Point strts auto races as a spectator track. Autocrosses held at Ampex. August closed the contest for a newsletter name: "Over Heard Cams". Sept. was the first month for the first name.