People Who Have Made A Difference:

Troy Ladd
Hollywood Hot Rods and Troy Ladd have become recognized as prominent contributors to this hobby, building two AMBR finalists and SR's 2012 Road Tour '40 coupe.

It's very easy for me to say that without STREET RODDER magazine there would not be a Hollywood Hot Rods. My story began when I inherited a '66 Mustang and, for purely purposeful reasons, I fixed it up as high school transportation. No one in my family was into cars or fixing them up, so I had to learn how to do it all myself by reading books and magazines. Right after I graduated high school, I spotted my first copy of STREET RODDER and knew that even though I didn't know what all the different cars were yet, I really loved what I was looking at.

It didn't take long for me to track down a '36 Ford five-window coupe that I fell in love with because of the lines. I sold my trusty Mustang and invested all of my $1,900 from the sale into the Ford I knew absolutely nothing about. I remembered all the information and advertisements I found in STREET RODDER and was anxiously awaiting each new issue to learn as much as I could. With the limitless enthusiasm of a teenager, I spent long nights and weekends turning my old '36 into my personal dream car. The time soon came when I put my car on the street and I was having a blast. I attended my first car show, The Great Labor Day Cruise in Orange County, California, and was overwhelmed when people actually crowded around my car and started asking me questions. The difficult part came when no one believed a 19-year-old kid had put the '36 together as his first street rod without any outside assistance. Most believed my dad had built it or even just bought it for me finished. It took a lot of convincing for anyone to believe that I had done all the work myself.

That weekend closed like so many in Southern California with some excellent weather under clear sunny skies and I just looked forward to more of the same in my fixed-up Ford. My biggest moment of excitement came a few months later when STREET RODDER chose to include a picture of MY CAR in the event coverage of The Great Labor Day Cruise. Nothing could have made me more excited … my car in a magazine! I carried around that issue for months, showing it to all who would listen. I still have that well-worn issue in my files, lovingly tucked away and hold it above all the other magazine mentions and stories that have come since.