Staff

RK Motors Management

Rob Kauffman

Chairman & CEO

Rob Kauffman is the Owner & Chairman of RK Motors, LLC. Additionally, Rob is also a founding principal of Fortress Investment Group, a NYSE listed global fund manager, and is responsible for their European operations. However, he has always had a significant interest in all things automotive, motorcycling and racing related. In 2006, he decided to create what would become RK Collection LLC with the goal of creating an enterprise which would produce some of the nation’s best restored and most sought after muscle and collectible cars. In addition to RK Motors, LLC, Rob also has a significant interest in the world of NASCAR as the co-owner of Michael Waltrip Racing in Cornelius, NC.

Donald Berard

Vice President - Sales

Don comes to RK Motors with 37 years of experience in the automotive industry. In addition to regional and national management for companies such as Hooker Headers, Koni America, and Bilstein Corporation, Don also has an extensive background in operating retail automotive franchises. He worked as both General Manager and Operations and Managing Partner for Ford and Chrysler dealerships. Don has received honors and certifications from NADA, Honda Council of Leadership, Pontiac Master Salesman Guild, and Ford 300-500 Masters Club and was the founder of the Taurus SHO Club..

Tony Klein

Acquisitions Manager

Tony knew from a very young age that he wanted to be involved in the Classic car industry. Fresh from the family dairy farm in Iowa, Tony set off for Laramie, WY to acquire specialized training from WyoTech. Directly out of school, he began restoring investment grade muscle cars in a two man shop, gaining knowledge of all aspects of restoration. Since his recent move to Charlotte, Tony has been enjoying doing exactly what he set out to do: work with classic cars and others that love them as well.

Sales Department

Donald Berard

Vice President - Sales

Don comes to RK Motors with 37 years of experience in the automotive industry. In addition to regional and national management for companies such as Hooker Headers, Koni America, and Bilstein Corporation, Don also has an extensive background in operating retail automotive franchises. He worked as both General Manager and Operations and Managing Partner for Ford and Chrysler dealerships. Don has received honors and certifications from NADA, Honda Council of Leadership, Pontiac Master Salesman Guild, and Ford 300-500 Masters Club and was the founder of the Taurus SHO Club..

John O'Neill

Internet Sales Manager

Bio Coming Soon.

Chalamar Stephens

Sales Administrator/Title Clerk

Born and raised in the cool state of Connecticut, Chalamar decided at an early age that she wanted to move closer to brighter days and warmer climates. Shortly after college she migrated south and ended up right here in the piedmont of North Carolina as the Sales Administrator at RK Motors. The classic car hobby is extremely interesting for Chalamar, as she has grown quite fond of 1970 HEMI 'Cudas. Chalamar's dedication to teamwork and excellent customer service is a major asset to the RK Motors operations.

Steve Mezardjian

Sales Advisor

Steve comes to RK Motors with a knowledge, insight and passion that was acquired over the past forty years in the automotive and electronics industry. His love for cars began while attending a Vo-Tech school for four years studying Automotive Technology. Upon graduation Steve worked as a mechanic for several years until he refocused his skills and interest towards auto parts sales, including outside industrial sales for a national warehouse. He eventually cut his teeth in automotive sales working for Corvette Guru, Terry Michaelis, as well as many years of selling high-line foreign, domestic and commercial vehicles. Steve also has a passion for photography and his quality work allowed him to be a published amateur and now works professionally.

Shannon Alva

Sales Advisor

Bio Coming Soon.

Production Department

Matt Stephens

Production Manager

Born in Germany, and raised in Greenville, North Carolina, Matt has been a car enthusiast ever since he was in diapers. Growing up in Europe, German sports cars and Italian exotics caught his eye at an early age. By the time he was 3, his mother says he was able to spell 'Lamborghini' backwards, as well as ID cars by their emblems. His passion for cars and performance brought him to Charlotte in 2002 to pursue a college degree in Motorsports Management. Since then, Matt has also obtained a B.S. in Media Production at East Carolina University and has been fortunate to combine his two degrees in his professional career. From Z cars, BMW M cars, and sport bikes, Matt seeks to experience performance anyway he can.

Josh Leatherwood

Content Specialist

Born into a family of gearheads that participated in early NASCAR racing, Josh was always very close to cool cars and the fond memories that accompanied them. Not surprisingly, he bought his first muscle car, a notorious 1973 Camaro Z28/RS, one day before he passed his North Carolina driver’s test; and his second muscle car, a 1968 Camaro SS, right after he turned 18. In 2006, the Appalachian country boy relocated to a restored textile mill in Charlotte’s historic arts district to complete his degrees in Sociology and Psychology. Today, Josh is very passionate about anything that’s old, made of metal or has a motor. And he spends most of his free time at car shows, air shows, railroad exhibits, motorsports events and expanding his industrial photography portfolio.

James Helms

Marketing Assistant/Creative

From an early age in Texas and later Charlotte, North Carolina, a heavy diet of comics, science fiction along with an intense passion for cars, planted a seed that began to fuel an interest in visual media. Picking up a camera as a teenager and later studying graphic design at UNC Charlotte, laid the groundwork for James to combine his passions.

Dom Mann

Photography Specialist

For Dom, cars have been in his blood since an early age. He grew up surrounded by cars, helping his Dad restore and repair various vehicles, including his 1960 MGA full restoration project. Dom himself picked up a full-caged 1968 Sunbeam Stiletto for his first car at 15, and since then, he's owned and modified several vehicles. Regularly attending car shows/get togethers also developed a passion for shooting them. Coming down with the full blown shutterbug, Dom blends his passion for all things automotive with his natural eye for capturing great images on film. He is the man behind many of the photos you see on our site, as well as additional creative shoots seen in our marketing.

Jose Otero

Porter

Bio Coming Soon.

Performance Center Staff

Darell Johnston

QC Paint/Fab Manager

Originally from St. Louis, Missouri, Darell grew up hanging out in his father's auto body shop and his grandfather's upholstery business. He received his first car at the young age of 13, a 1957 Chevy Bel Air. Once Darell had a taste of car ownership and the thrill of how it felt to complete his first project, his desire to re-build cars from the ground up was ignited. Darell completed Ranken Technical College's program in Advanced Automotive Technology, receiving accolades as one of their 100 Outstanding Graduates in Ranken’s 100 Year History. He has been involved in racing from Sprint Cup NASCAR, ARCA REMAX, USAC, NHRA, and Winston West NASCAR. He has also helped build wicked rides for Sammy Hagar and Michael Anthony of Van Halen fame, Bud Brutsman – the producer of Overhaulin', a Bullitt clone for Steve McQueen's son Chad McQueen, as well as the rap artist 2Face Priceless.

Mike Miller

QC Technician

Mike’s first car was a 1968 GTO, which he still owns today. He has been working on cars since high school, where he graduated from his Auto Tech class with a “Star Tech” award. Mike received his ASE Master Tech certification in 1990 and also has his Chrysler Gold Tech certification. Additionally, Mike is factory trained in GM, Mercedes, and BMW, but classics are his true passion. Mike is very attentive to detail and knows how to treat the cars with the care and respect they now deserve. Says Mike, “working at RK Motors is truly a dream job.”

Jon Sipple

Service Manager

His passion for cars started at age 12 when he bought his first car, a 1968 Firebird 400 4-speed, with his grass-cutting money. Self-taught on tinkering with old vehicles, Jon decided to make a career in automotive work, and graduated from Delaware Tech for Automotive Technology. Jon achieved his ASE Master Tech certification in 1996 and Chrysler Gold Master Tech certification in 1998. He also has factory Toyota, Ford Nissan and Infiniti training. Jon has owned and restored many vehicles throughout the years and treats his customer's cars with tremendous care, as if they were his own.

Anthony Jenkins

QC Technician

Bio Coming Soon

Kyle Arias

QC Technician

Bio Coming Soon.

Gregory Smith

Transport Manager

Greg Smith is a North Carolina native who has 15 years of experience in the detailing business and 10 years in the body shop. Even his hobbies have ties to the automotive industry, including 1/8 scale RC racing and being a car stereo enthusiast. Greg raced go karts in the late ‘80s and sport bikes in ‘90s. His first car was an ’84 Ford Escort EXP, which he painted, lowered, and installed a custom stereo.

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