Board of Directors
David Madeira is currently serving as the vice chairman of America’s Automotive Trust. David has centered much of his life around cars and motorcycles. David’s elevation to vice chairman is the latest exclamation point on his 15-year leadership at ACM – and later AAT. During that time, he oversaw the initial fundraising and construction of ACM. The steady growth and success of the Museum served as the anchor point for a vision that became AAT. David has a lifetime of experiences that qualify him as an exceptional leader in the movement to secure America’s heritage, so that collector automobiles, motorcycles and boats will always have a place in our society and a following of passionate enthusiasts for generations to come. The Trust includes a number of entities, including America’s Car Museum, the RPM Foundation, Club Auto and the Concours Club each with distinct roles in their shared commitment to securing America’s heritage.
When it comes to old cars and boats, T.G Mittler had no choice but to become an enthusiast. Truthfully his sister was less interested in being dropped off at school in a Lamborghini Espada. For T.G., however, when the choice was the back of Mom’s Town and Country or a seat on the parcel shelf of a DB4 the choice was a no-brainer. His first two cars were Alfa Romeos and while one still resides in his garage the other, with luck, has mercifully rusted back into the earth. He received his education in art history and photography from Ithaca College in update New York, enhancing his understanding of the value of art, craftsmanship, engineering, collecting and aesthetics. T.G. is an active founding member of the Santa Fe Concorso, an event that is proving to be the southwest’s premier Councours D’Elegance. In addition to ongoing philanthropic and entrepreneurial endeavors Mittler enjoys participating in classic car touring and track events and boating in the summer in southern Michigan. He is currently working on a book project documenting racing boats of the teens and twenties titled “Power to Burn.” Mittler resides in Santa Fe, New Mexico.
Dan serves the RPM Foundation Board as Treasurer and is currently the Vice President of Accounting and Controller at Hagerty. Dan is a Certified Public Accountant and views this “extra assignment” as contributing his expertise to one of the great resources within the collector vehicle community. In 2013, Dan drove more than 1,200 miles behind the wheel of a 1970 Oldsmobile Vista Cruiser Station Wagon for a summer vacation road trip with his wife and two daughters, then ages 11 and 13.
When I was 15, my Dad and I built my first car. I have been known as a Gear Head ever since. In fact my wife says I have gear lube running through my veins. I owned Industrial Magnetics for 37 years. When I sold the company, I started Great Lakes Motor Works, a restoration shop. This allowed me to follow my two great passions. Building and collecting old cars and working with young people. We hire high school and college students to work in our shop. We encourage these young people to follow their dreams and give them the tools and experience to accomplish their goals. John McLeod was one of these young employees, he had a dream of owning his own business and also had a passion for cars. We were able to buy Classic Instrument, and worked with John for three years and then sold it to him. John and his company are doing very well.
Dawn and her husband, Michael, are owners of MFD Classic Motors, Inc., a multi-faceted facility in Traverse City, MI that caters to the needs of collector vehicle enthusiasts, including premier storage, restoration services, consignments and member events. She has vintage road raced with a (pink!) 1972 Lotus Super 7 for more than six years and has instructed for Audi Club Driving Schools at more than 150 events nationwide since the early 1990¹s. In addition, Dawn has owned and operated various businesses for more than 30 years, including being CEO and majority owner of Fred, Inc., a 100% woman owned institutional manufacturing company known for its custom stainless equipment. Her civic duty has included being a Concours Club member of the RPM Foundation as well as successfully establishing Fishtown a century-old fishing and commercial hub in Leland, MI as a National Historic Site, giving it a permanent legacy for generations to come.
A lifelong car lover, Keith began his career in the restoration business while attending high school. He started his own business in 1988 when he launched a full-service restoration facility. Keith has earned a reputation for quality collector car restorations and attention to detail. His fantastic restoration work on Mr. Bulgari’s 1942 Buick Special Estate Wagon led to his current role as curator and chief advisor for the Bulgari Collection, as well as Allentown Classic Motor Car, Inc. and the NB Center for American Automotive Heritage, which are both co-founded by Mr. Flickinger and Mr. Bulgari. Many of the Bulgari cars that have been restored by Keith have been recognized at major concours and other prestigious competitions – including the Buick Nationals, Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance, Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance and Antique Automobile Club of America meets, among many others.
Keith is also involved with other automobile organizations, such as America’s Car Museum (Tacoma, WA) and the Restoration Learning Center at America on Wheels (Allentown, PA). The Restoration Learning Center will teach visitors about the auto restoration process from start to finish, which Keith hopes will inspire the next generation of potential craftsmen and women.
McKeel is CEO of Hagerty and currently serves as 2016-2017 Chairman of the Board of the Young President’s Organization. He is an avid enthusiast and collector and is highly recognized as a classic car expert. He is the youngest judge to ever serve for the prestigious Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance and has served for more than ten years. McKeel represents the classic car community on numerous boards and advisory groups, including McPherson College Automotive Restoration and the REVS Institute, and appears regularly in various media outlets including CNBC, Fox News and Discovery channels. At age 13, he began work on a 1967 Porsche 911S and completed the restoration himself with the help of his father, finishing in time to enjoy it as his daily driver in high school. He still owns that very car today and understands firsthand the value of working with ones’ hands and pride that comes with a completed project.
Tabetha Hammer is the Advocacy & PR Manager for Hagerty, a global company specializing in insurance and products for people who love cars. She oversees the Hagerty Youth Programs to introduce the next generation to collector cars and works closely with the RPM Foundation and the Historic Vehicle Association, both of which Hagerty founded through philanthropic support and continue to contribute to. Tabetha graduated from McPherson College with a Bachelor’s degree in Automotive Restoration with an emphasis in Communications. She serves on the National Board of Directors of the Antique Automobile Club of America and the Steering Committee to the board of America’s Automotive Trust. In 2011, Tabetha and her husband, Adam, also a McPherson College graduate, opened an automotive restoration shop, called Hammer & Dolly Automotive Restoration, in Traverse City, MI.
Jim could be considered a sort of “turn-around artist” in the publishing world. Jim turned around several publications before one of his publications, “Boston Business Journal” was acquired by American City Business Journals. When ACBJ purchased Hemmings Motor News, ACBJ Chairman Ray Shaw asked Jim to become publisher of Hemmings. Since joining Hemmings, Menneto and his team have launched four new magazines and “brought the business journal style to the magazine”, improving content and design to readers approval.
President and COO, LeMay – America’s Car Museum
Paul E. Miller, a native and lifelong resident of Tacoma, Washington, serves as ACM President and Chief Operating Officer. A former Tacoma City Councilmember and Deputy Mayor, Paul’s work with America’s Car Museum ultimately allows him to continue his longstanding efforts to improve his hometown.
Paul was the first ACM Board Chairman and continues as a longstanding member of ACM’s board. Paul also oversaw the construction of the four-story Museum building project adjacent to the Tacoma Dome.
Paul has devoted thousands of hours as a board member to numerous civic organizations, including Chairman of the Sound Transit Board, Chairman of the Pierce Transit Board, Member of the Puget Sound Regional Council and Pierce County Board of Health. Paul has served as a Donor Advisor to the Greater Tacoma Community Foundation and as a Senior Fellow of the American Leadership Foundation, among other civic efforts. His involvement in the community has also included a stint as Chair of the Tacoma Symphony Board, a post on the Organizing Committee for the Chihuly Center for Glass, District Chairman for the Boys Scouts of America and many other roles with local groups.
Paul has been Managing General Partner of Miller Investment Partnership (since 1979), a real estate investment and asset holding firm, and President of Leisure Development Co. (since 1982), a land development and commercial construction company. He is also a licensed commercial broker and owner of Paul E. Miller Brokerage, with a CCIM designation.
Paul was born and raised in Tacoma’s west end, where he currently lives with his wife Gloria and daughter Michelle.
Diane Fitzgerald is the President of RPM Foundation – Restoration. Preservation. Mentorship. – continuing the work of the Collectors Foundation and the Hagerty Education Program at LeMay – America’s Car Museum to promote America’s heritage and the interests of the collector community.
Prior to this, she was director of National Club Auto, expanding the reach of LeMay – America’s Car Museum beyond the museum’s campus in Tacoma, WA with programs, events and activities for Club Auto and higher members. From 2002-2012, Diane was a member of the Museum’s Board of Director’s Steering Committee, notably as one of the first non-Tacoma members.
She is an avid microcar and motorcycle enthusiast and has travelled the world by four- and two-wheels, often to exotic places like Bhutan and India. In between her active hobbyism, Diane used her two Visual Arts degrees and one MBA to build her world that blended the experiences of corporate, small business and not-for-profits. Fruit of the Loom, Andersen Consulting, Lotus Tours, The Habitat Company and Marwen each provided lots of experience in new business development, project management, marketing & communications, operations and fundraising.
Diane was a teacher for 17 years as well as the founding executive director in 1986 of a not-for-profit in Chicago which thrives today. Chicago is home base for Diane and her work with RPM.
Diane and her husband, Burt Richmond, are major donors of ACM and RPM, restore historic buildings, and collect microcars and vintage motorcycles & scooters. Restoration is part of their collecting. Driving them is, too!
Nick Ellis is RPM’s Mentorship and Grants Administrator in our Chicago office, and is in charge of evaluating our grant requests as well as establishing and maintaining the relationships between automotive restoration students and the shops who will someday employ them.
From collecting vintage cameras and floor model radios to restoring cars and motorcycles from the teens to the 1970s, Nick has a great love of all eras of mechanical design. He turned that love into a restoration and sales business with his father for several years—buying, restoring, and selling all different types of collector cars and motorcycles with an emphasis on Fords and Mercurys from the 1930s and 1940s. He’s traveled to auctions and car shows all over the US, and even to Italy to bring back a very rare engine for a vintage race car.
Nick believes that collector vehicles are meant to be driven and enjoyed, and is thrilled to be a part of ensuring that the next generation of restoration specialists are there to keep those classics on the road.
Linda Daro has always had an interest in cars. Her first car was a convertible and she has retained a top-down love for sunny days and summer nights ever since. From the Indy 500 to the local Saturday night dirt track, she has enjoyed watching racing in all its forms. Eventually she was able to merge her love of cars, racing and history. Having stumbled on a “ghost track” in her own back yard, she was amazed to learn that many of the racing greats she had watched as a child raced right here in Illinois! Through her involvement with various racers, shops, restorers and just plain old great storytellers, she realized that there is a tremendous amount of history that could be lost in the blink of an eye. Therein lies her interest…the promotion and preservation of the motorsports, vehicles and people who are part of that history. She went on to found MiRPA – Midwest Racing Preservation Association (which began as Meadowdale Raceways Preservation Association).
“There is a new audience to the history of the automobile and motorsports. It requires effort and dedication to ensure that the days of race weekends and Sunday drives are not lost. It is in the future that this rich legacy must live!” – Linda Daro
Collector and enthusiast Pat Barnes has always been fascinated by cars and motorcycles. He could identify vehicles at the age of 4, when he and his brother played games of Name-That-Car. He has owned motorcycles for over 50 years and currently owns two collector cars and one motorcycle – a 2007 Suzuki v-Strom. It is important to Pat that he uses what he has, so he doesn’t own or collect vehicles he can’t ride!
In 2014, Pat met Diane Fitzgerald at a Seattle auto show where he was volunteering, and she introduced him to RPM Foundation. Pat started volunteering with LeMay – America’s Car Museum in 2002, but his ability to spend time at the museum was limited after moving to Portland, Oregon in 2013. Becoming an RPM Ambassador was the perfect way to stay involved while living outside the Tacoma area.
Pat believes that when it comes to vehicles and restoration, it is critical for young folks to learn from older generations. He has experience as an educator, and brings that perspective to his role at RPM: “I love the idea and practice of hands-on education. I want to see more programs and expansions – not just auto repair in schools, but restoration and preservation as well. We need to spread the word!”
FUN FACT: In 1976, Pat’s grandparents bought an AMC Pacer and it has been in the family ever since. The car was first driven by his grandmother, then his mother, followed by Pat, his daughter, and now his grandson. That’s five generations!
Josh Baum is a working automotive conservator and former RPM grant-recipient. He has always been fascinated by what he calls “our built environment as influenced by the automobile,” which explains why he once owned and began restoration on a 1940s Sinclair filling station in his hometown of Hays, Kansas. Josh has an MA in Historical Preservation from the University of Georgia and wrote his thesis on an examination of the Historic Vehicle Association’s (HVA) steps in creating the National Historic Vehicle Register. He is also a member of the HVA. After graduation, Josh applied his education and passion on the West Coast in an effort to save old cars. Since 2015, he has worked for a private collection in southern California, where he cares for several completely original vehicles as an automotive preservationist. Before landing his dream job, however, Josh interned at LeMay–America’s Car Museum in Tacoma, Washington. Through a grant from RPM Foundation, Josh practiced much of what he does now — maintenance on the museum’s collection — and also helped stage exhibits and update the museum’s vehicle research database. The three-month internship led to a full-time position as assistant curator. In many ways, the museum’s mission — to honor “America’s love affair with the automobile” — meshed perfectly with Josh’s own interests, specifically wanting “to tell the story not just of the cars, but how the cars have affected us as people.”
Herb Clark is an avid hobbyist who has been a car lover since the 1960s. He taught classes on the history of the automobile, which allowed him to meet a number people with car knowledge and plenty of car stories to share. He currently has a few cars in his personal collection, chosen with no rhyme nor reason.
Herb was introduced to RPM Foundation when he applied for a grant to support his car club’s community activities. He had been passionate about cars for a long time, but it wasn’t until talking with Diane Fitzgerald and learning about RPM that his desire to help others really took off. “Her mentoring has been a big help in my efforts. Now I have been asked to help several other communities start a club like ours.” Herb started a non-profit charitable car club called Automotive Restoration Club of Sun City West to promote auto restoration – it now has almost 700 members! The club, which opened in January of 2016, built a 6,000-square-foot restoration shop where they teach all aspects of restoration.
The “master networker,” Herb has boundless energy and an ease with connecting the dots – to help us all be aware of each other and the work that we do!
Drew Feustel grew up near the Motor City (Lake Orion, MI) and has been surrounded by cars, motorcycles, and boats his entire life. Before riding his custom 1974 Honda CB750F to Purdue University, Drew spent his childhood years racing motorcross and BMX bicycles. He later began racing Karts after high-school while attending Oakland Community College and working at a Jaguar restoration facility near Detroit. His first car was a 1967 Mustang Convertible that he received when he was 15. He spent the next five years restoring it, and has had an automotive project in his garage ever since. Growing up near Lake Michigan meant lots of time spent on the water with boats – his father owns a 1948 Crosby 10’ b-utility runabout that Drew restored when he was a teen. He has owned and restored several automobiles over the years and currently houses three classic BMW’s (3.0CS, Bavaria, E28) and an Austin Healy Sprite (spridget) that he purchased for his wife as a wedding present 26 years ago. “Looking back now, I suppose there was no way for me NOT to fall in love with cars, motorcycles, and boats!”
Drew got involved with RPM to help promote not only automotive restoration, but also the development of mechanical aptitude in younger generations. He is strongly committed to encouraging the youth of today to get their hands dirty – either under the hood of a car, in a wood shop on a boat, working around the home, or by formally pursuing engineering and technical degrees that will allow them to be employed in industries where those talents are needed. “After 16 years in my current profession as an Astronaut, I can truly say that my success can be attributed to the technical and mechanical skills that I picked up in the garage, nearly as much as my formal training as a scientist.”
“I do believe that our world needs people with strong mechanical, manufacturing, and trade skills. We always will. RPM can strive to promote and nurture those skills and help to ensure globally that we are well equipped to enable the mechanics, restoration professionals, and trade skill workers of our future.”
UPDATE: Drew is heading to the International Space Station in 2018 and RPM Foundation will be “joining him there” via video transmissions! Click here to learn more.
Ryan Levesque is the next generation – a collector and restorer with a passion for historical transportation designs and engineering. He currently owns a 1972 Volkswagen campmobile – a restoration project, a 1966 MG 1100, and a 1956 Massey Harris 50 tractor. Ryan discovered his love for cars at Pennsylvania College of Technology (PCT) when he took a chance and enrolled in a restoration elective course and helped bring a 1978 Pontiac Firebird back to life. While attending school, he worked at a restoration shop called Higgins Restoration, specializing in Brass Era vehicles. After graduation, he was chosen by RPM Foundation to be the first Apprentice to train under Keith Flickinger – owner of Precision Motor Cars and curator/restorer of the Nicola Bulgari Collection. Originally from Unionville, PA, Ryan now lives in Grapevine, TX and works at KIP Motor Company where he is responsible for wielding, fabrication and restoration assembly.
“I believe the future is bright for RPM and the restoration industry. The ‘talk’ about old cars is getting louder and more people are becoming enthusiasts, collectors, and restorers. More and more young people want to work on vintage cars and as they become more collectible it will only drive the industry to grow!”
Bennett Logan can trace his love of Ferraris to the time he first sat in an ’87 Flying Mirror Testarossa at Foreign Cars Italia in Greensboro, NC when he was ten years old. From then on he was hooked, dragging his father on monthly trips to the dealership.
While in high school, this love of cars naturally progressed when he became an intern. While attending college and performing his duties as a Sergeant in the North Carolina Army National Guard, he began working full time at Foreign Cars Italia specializing in the ordering and speccing of Ferraris.
The son of a “muscle-car guy,” Bennett considers himself a post-war European-car guy with a particular affection for Ferraris. He recently started his own company, Tailored Motor Company, in Dallas, TX. While he specializes in collector car sales, his passion is in creating and guiding automotive experiences around the world for his clients.
His thirst for automobile knowledge and experiences has taken him all over the world. “I’m fortunate to be able to build my career around my love of cars,” Bennett says. Each job and location has helped him craft his business model. Bennett is pleased to join forces again with former employer and Collector’s Car Garage owner, Burt Richmond – another RPM Ambassador.
Bud McIntire has been a car guy since the age of seven when he went on a road trip with his father to retrieve a 1952 MGTD. Years later, he developed a life-long love for Alfa sportscars after attending a Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) racing event at Virginia International Raceway. But it wasn’t until the end of college that he bought his own red Alfa GTV. Numerous vintage Alfa’s have come into his life since the GTV and he has even restored a few – including a rare 1960 Giulietta Spring Special. Mixed in with the cars were a variety of motorcycles. Today, Bud’s go-to bike is a 1983 BMW R80ST, but there is also a 1983 Suzuki Katana GS1000 and a 2005 Honda Superhawk in the garage for more vigorous riding.
After nearly 40 years of school and professional practice in architecture, Bud retired to pursue a passion for wooden boat-building and restoration. He completed a nine-month program at the Great Lakes Boat Building School in Michigan and an apprenticeship at the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum. He was later recruited by the school to return as their Director of Student Service and to teach summer classes. During his time at the school, he became acquainted with Bob Knechel, former CEO of The Collectors Foundation, and Diane Fitzgerald, who at the time was Executive Director of the Hagerty Education Program (HEP). Grants to the school were used to fund scholarships and gave Bud a personal view of the value of this funding for highly-qualified students.
“Given the goals of RPM and my background, volunteering as an Ambassador seemed like a perfect fit. I look forward to helping this worthwhile program in any way I can here in the Southeastern United States.”
Cars have been a lifelong passion of Jason’s – something that was deeply instilled in him before he was old enough to walk. However, committing to a career path in automotive restoration happened later. Jason spent nearly fifteen years working in supervisory and leadership roles and transitioned into Human Resources before realizing his dreams of working on classic cars full time in a restoration shop.
While Jason is most knowledgeable about post-WWII American cars, he also appreciates the “oddball” or orphan vehicles. “When it comes to classic cars, I believe they’re all special and unique in their own way.”
In 2017, Jason graduated from McPherson College with a degree in Automotive Restoration Technology and Business. He is an RPM scholar and grant recipient who earned a 10-week summer internship at LeMay – America’s Car Museum (Tacoma, WA) as the Collections Management Technician. He has also interned at Shade’s Classic Corner (Hastings, NE), Goldfield Trim and Upholstery (Des Moines, IA) and SEVEN LLC (Columbus, OH).
Today, Jason works at SMS Auto Fabrics in Canby, OR and has taken on variety of different roles from customer service to inventory, project management, etc. to some door panel fabrication and everything in between.
Stacy Puckett Taylor grew up attending car shows with her parents. In fact, she went to her first car auction while her mother was pregnant with her! In 2004, Stacy received an Associate’s Degree in Automotive Restoration Technology at McPherson College in Kansas, and before that, a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from The School of the Art Institute in Chicago. She believes that automobiles are the ultimate combination of technology, mechanics and art. After graduating from McPherson, Mercedes-Benz Classic Center offered her a scholarship in Fellbach, Germany to become a Mechanic’s Apprentice. Next stop? LeMay – America’s Car Museum in Tacoma, WA where Stacy was employed as the Collection Manager and Curator. Stacy currently lives in Michigan with her husband, Haydn, who also loves cars. Together, they own seven Audi vehicles and a few motorcycles. She works for Seven Vehicle Management Group as Operations Manager, overseeing all aspects of the classic car service provider, based in Columbus, OH – a job that requires a great deal of technical knowledge.
Stacy has just ended a 16-month position with RPM, as Interim Grants Administrator.
“I want RPM Foundation to become a clearing house of information for and about the restoration industry – a place where students, instructors and shops can all find what they need and what they’re looking for.”
Burt Richmond is a partner at Collectors Car Garage in Chicago and enjoys driving anything with two, three, or four wheels. He has been captivated by vehicles, especially old ones, since the age of 13 when he was introduced to a 1939 Crosley convertible at the family home on Long Island. By age 14 he had built his first car with help from his brother and father. Burt was living in Chicago in 1966 when he bought his first motorcycle – a Honda Super 90 – and has not been without a motorcycle since. Today, he and his wife, Diane Fitzgerald, have a collection of microcars and vintage motorcycles and scooters, some of which are on display inside their historic Chicago home.
Burt studied Industrial Design in college to become an automobile stylist. His first design job in New York was designing furniture and products, which over time evolved into Interior Architecture. In 1988, at age 50, he resigned from his 180-person architectural firm, with offices in 7 cities, to start a motorcycle touring company. By 2007, he had guided over 8,800 riders across 150 countries. His list of racing and driving accomplishments is long and includes a 16,000 kilometer long drive that took seven weeks to complete from Beijing to Paris in a 1953 Citroen 2CV. He has restored dozens of vintage motorcycles and a handful of microcars. Burt loves the challenges that come with repairing vehicles to keep them running, and the end result is all about pride of accomplishment.
“RPM holds the reins for creating awareness and the need for craftsmanship and development of hands-on problem solving of mechanical devices.”
David Rising was born and raised in Tacoma, WA and his fascination with cars started when he was young, thanks to the many family vacations spent traveling to all corners of the US and parts of Canada. He currently lives in Esslingen, Germany and works for HWA AG, which runs the Mercedes Benz AMG DTM Team, supports all Mercedes powered Formula 3 teams, and manufacturers all Mercedes GT3 race cars. He is a vehicle dynamicist working mainly with full vehicle simulation, but is also involved with performance analysis, tire testing and mathematical modeling. In college, David participated in a student project called Formula SAE. The goal was to design, build and compete with their own small, open-wheeled race car. The many years of experience on that project led to his first job as a race engineer for a NASCAR truck team. He has been involved with racing ever since! David was looking for a way to get involved with LeMay – America’s Car Museum and use his enthusiasm for all things automotive when he found RPM Foundation. We’re lucky to have him along for the ride!
FUN FACT: “I have only once purchased a car that was younger than ten years old. It was a great car, but sadly didn’t have any character. That is, it never broke down!”
Clinton W. Sly, Jr. is the Senior Vice President of Financial Services at Hagerty. He has more than 25 years of business growth experience specializing in global marketing, brand strategy, public relations, event marketing, digital commerce, broadcast media, print and digital publishing, data and analytics. Prior to joining Hagerty, Clint served in several senior management positions including President of duPont Publishing, Inc. His in-depth non-profit involvement has ranged from the development of a 25-year growth plan for the City of Portland to being a charter member of the St. Peter Foundation, serving single mothers, the homeless and providing emergency relief.
Lyn St. James is a retired professional IndyCar Driver with 11 Champ Car and 5 Indy Racing League starts to her name. She is just one of seven women who have qualified for the Indianapolis 500 and perhaps best known for her 1992 Indianapolis 500 “Rookie of the Year” award. In addition, Lyn has achieved racing notoriety at a number of other international and national racing events. Beyond her illustrious racing career, Lyn St. James is the recipient of numerous awards recognizing her accomplishments – such as, Sports Illustrated for Women’s “Top-100 Women Athletes of the Century”, one of “The 350 Women Who Changed the World Between 1976-1996” in Working Woman Magazine, 2008 Automotive Hall of Fame Distinguished Service Award, and Member of the Florida Sports Hall of Fame. Lyn is the author of three books, the founder of the Lyn St. James Foundation and its “Women in the Winner’s Circle Foundation”. She previously formed a racing team plus owning and operating several other businesses. Now mostly retired, Lyn is active on numerous Boards and enjoys Vintage Racing, when she finds the time.
“This is an industry that needs new craftsmen as the old craftsmen are retiring. If the students have the desire and passion to learn, then the community needs to help support a program that can teach them and guide them into a career doing what they love! RPM Foundation is at the center of this and I am proud to be part of the movement they started.”
“As far back as I can remember, it seems that I have been working on something with wheels. My earliest memory was with my tricycle, back in 1952, when I tied some cans on the back axle to make noise,” Ronn remembers. These days Ronn is putting an engine together for his 1957 Porsche 356, but he also likes Detroit iron, such as the ‘65 K-Code Mustang he recently restored. Restoration is in his blood.
While pursuing a degree in teaching, he restored and raced motorcycles and a few old sailing craft. During his summer breaks from teaching, Ronn applied his home-building skills to old house restoration, but there was always a car to rebuild in the driveway.
As Ronn worked through a career in public education, first as a teacher and then as an administrator, it struck him again and again how public education under-serves children who want to do something other than pursue a four-year degree in college. By the time that he became a high school principal, he had a clearer picture of the problems involved with motivating youth to explore the world of trades, but also, the administrative hurdles embedded in current educational practice.
The solution always begins with an inspired teacher who will go that extra mile to motivate and mentor students. With this teacher, alliances can be made with programs both within and outside schools to help such students who want to pursue a trade in restoration and preservation.
As Ronn sees it, RPM activities help students begin their careers in restoration and preservation. Graduating and moving on to a meaningful post-secondary career – that’s a win-win for everybody involved!
Haydn is the owner of HT Motorworks & D Speedshop and a lover of all vehicles – which he sees as fascinating and enthralling mechanical marvels. He grew up around the world – but was born in Yorkshire, England – the son of an Engineer, and became one himself after realizing he loved mechanical things. He also grew up watching rallying in the UK in the 80’s and fell in love with the new-to-the-world-at-that-time Audi Quattro – Today, he collects Audis!
Haydn has been racing and building race cars and bikes his whole life and loves both the hands-on work and the driving experience. About 15 years ago, he became an HPDE (High Performance Driver Education) driving instructor and race instructor. He has also been an ADSS (Advanced Driver Skills School) instructor for about 12 years, teaching mostly new drivers car control skills on skid pads. “It is a great feeling to see the joy in a student’s face as they improve.”
“The future of RPM will be an uphill battle to convince not only the kids but the industry that skilled workers require a lot of training and investment on both sides. I am excited to see RPM tackling this issue as there is a huge skills gap in the auto industry right now.”
The RPM Foundation’s first grant recipient, 30-year-old Josh Voss of White Lake, Michigan, is now one of its latest ambassadors.
Voss, who grew up on a farm in Washington and received his driver’s license at age 14, has a long history of mechanical curiosity. As a youth, he and his father would sit together rebuilding carburetors and alternators or working on his 1973 Plymouth Valiant.
Voss entered The Great Race with a 1928 Ford Model A that he and some friends had rebuilt, and caught the attention of Buck Kamphausen of RM Auctions. It was Kamphausen who took note of Josh’s skills and encouraged him to apply to the RPM Foundation (then called The Collectors’ Foundation) for a scholarship.
Voss used the scholarship proceeds to attend Wyo-Tech in Laramie, Wyoming where he graduated under an accelerated one-year Associates Degree program in Business with a certificate in Street Rod and Custom Fabrication. From there he went on to work with Brian Joseph’s Classic and Exotic Service in Troy, Michigan before setting out with his own shop, Cross Action Classics.
Josh is excited to start his new role as a walking success story and ambassador for the RPM Foundation.