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THE EXPERTS

MASTER TRAINERS

 

Learn from the best, the Garage Guru Master Trainers. Experts in the automotive repair industry, our Master Trainers are ready to share their knowledge with you.

 

John Dixon | Skokie, IL

Certifications:

  • ASE-Certified Master Technician
  • ASE L1 Advanced Engine Performance Specialist
  • Bachelor's Degree in Business Management

Bio:

Based out of the Northern Illinois area, Master Trainer John Dixon calls the Skokie Garage Gurus Training Center his home TSC. His professional career spans over 25 years in the automotive industry where he has worked as both a technician and trainer. His background as a technician includes time as a dealer technician as well as working on vintage European and domestic automobiles and performance vehicles. In addition to training at shows and expos, John looks forward to hands-on activities in his workshops and enjoys sharing his years of experience and approach to diagnostics with his students.

Favorite Car: 

1956 Ford Crown Victoria

Fun Fact:

John is married and has a daughter and three sons. When he is not working on (and cruising in!) old cars with friends and family, he enjoys live music and Chicago sports.

Dave Cerveny | Skokie, IL

Certifications:

  • ASE-Certified Master Technician
  • ASE L1 Advanced Engine Performance Specialist

Bio:

Based out of the Chicago area, Dave is responsible for developing curriculum and technical training for DRiV. His technical career spans over 35 years, including 15 years in the aftermarket repair business as an ASE technician and over 15 years in the automotive education field as an instructor/trainer. Dave enjoys his unique role within the automotive industry and the many opportunities he has to meet students and guide them along with their careers.

Favorite Car: 

1958 Chevy Impala

Fun Fact:

Dave enjoys the outdoors and also has an interest in bringing old cars and motorcycles back to life, along with playing and building guitars.

Mark Ingram | St. Louis, MO

Certifications:

  • ASE-Certified Master Technician
  • ASE L1 Advanced Engine Performance Specialist
  • ASE L2 Electronic Diesel Engine Diagnosis
  • ASE L3 Light Duty Hybrid/Electric Vehicles
  • Bachelor’s Degree in Automotive Technology from SIU Carbondale 
  • Master’s Degree in Workforce Education Development from SIU Carbondale

Bio:

Mark has been on the Garage Gurus team for over five years and enjoys learning and teaching the latest technologies. He likes the challenge of presenting the class so it gives both the advanced and the novice student something of value they can take away from each training session for use on the job. Before joining the Gurus, Mark worked as an aftermarket instructor for an independent parts supplier, traveling and teaching hands-on classes and seminars to independent technicians and at events including MACS and the VISION trade show in Kansas City. Mark enjoys electrical troubleshooting and recently helped develop and present an ADAS program at VISION.

Favorite Car: 

1979 BMW R100RT motorcycle; additionally, a 1959 GMC pickup patiently awaits restoration in his garage.

Fun Fact:

Mark enjoys hunting, bicycling and recently went backpacking in the Grand Tetons.

Mark Isaac | St. Louis, MO

Certifications:

  • ASE-Certified Master Technician
  • Automotive Certificate from SIU Carbondale

Bio:

As a master trainer for Garage Gurus, Mark teaches chassis, brake and drivability classes and field clinics within St. Louis and beyond. Mark joined the Garage Gurus team after working at the MOOG training center where he helped develop and teach air conditioning and electrical product courses. Mark started his automotive career working in general repair shops while attending the Southern Illinois University Automotive Program, as well as a stint as a technical representative with Everco Industries in the New England/NYC area.

Favorite Car: 

1962 Pontiac Catalina 421 SD

Fun Fact:

Mark loves fishing with family and friends, drag racing his old car, and helping with facility maintenance at church.

Mark Kenyon | St. Louis, MO

Certifications:

  • ASE-Certified Master Technician
  • ASE-Certified Master Engine Machinist

Bio:

As a Master Trainer for DRiV, Mark’s automotive career started with a position as a college-certified mechanic working for a GM dealership. Since then, he has held positions of increasing responsibility and skill within the independent repair industry, and currently delivers training across all vehicle systems. Mark enjoys the challenges that come with the job and continues to pursue excellence and professionalism, with an emphasis on the needs of the customer, as his driving source for gaining more knowledge and information. His goal is to teach the next generation of technicians to understand the complexities of advancing automotive technology, training technicians to effectively diagnose and repair vehicles of today and to prepare them for vehicles of the future.

Favorite Car: 

1971 Ford Mustang Mach1

Fun Fact:

Mark loves Mexican food, laughing at a good joke, telling a great story, catching a movie and woodworking.

Gary Kimball | Dallas, TX

Certifications:

  • ASE-Certified Master Technician
  • ASE L1 Advanced Engine Performance Specialist

Bio:

Based out of the Dallas, Texas, facility, Gary recently joined the Garage Gurus trainer team after spending the past five years with the Garage Gurus as a technical product specialist. His career spans over 30 years in the automotive industry, primarily at independent repair shops as a technician, service advisor and manager. Gary looks forward to sharing his knowledge in the service bay as well as his expertise in efficiency and productivity within the shop.

Favorite Car: 

Ford’s infamous GT40

Fun Fact:

Gary is married with two sons and a daughter. When he isn’t in the shop, he enjoys spending time outdoors, hunting and fishing.

Bill McAleese | Baltimore, MD

Certifications:

  • ASE-Certified Master Technician
  • ASE Advanced Level Specialist
  • ASE-Certified Undercar Specialist
  • ASE-Certified Medium/Heavy Truck Mechanic
  • ASE-Certified Collision Repair Technician
  • ASE-Certified Parts Consultant
  • ASE-Certified Service Consultant
  • Master Certified Worldwide Trainer for Volkswagen Corporation  
  • High Voltage Certified Technician
  • Certified Vehicle Fire and Explosion Investigator 

Bio:

Bill has spent his entire career in the automotive industry, from building and racing cars and trucks as a teenager to beginning his professional career at a Ford dealership in the parts department while still in high school. After a short stint there, his desire to wrench took over and he moved into the service department. Since that time, he has performed nearly every service department role imaginable, including body shop roles and even classic car restoration. Bill’s career has now taken him to a position where he specializes in adult learning and customer service as a Master Trainer for DRiV, covering the Northeast region of the United States.

Favorite Car: 

Any one of the Camaros in his personal collection

Fun Fact:

When he isn't working in his own shop restoring a car, you can find Bill in the woods racing/riding dirt bikes, out riding one of his motorcycles, on his boat relaxing or in his basement working toward his Master Modeler certificate.

Ryan Payne | Atlanta, GA

Certifications:

  • ASE-Certified Master Technician
  • ASE L1 Advanced Engine Performance Specialist
  • Mercedes-Benz Master Technician

Bio:

Ryan recently joined the Garage Gurus team and is based out of the Atlanta, Georgia, facility. His career spans over 15 years in the automotive industry. His background as a technician was spent primarily at a high-end dealership as a technician, where he also got to teach High Performance driving classes. Ryan looks forward to sharing not only the information in the workshops but also his knowledge of efficiency and productivity within the shop.

Favorite Car: 

2016 Mercedes-AMG GTR

Fun Fact:

Ryan is married with two kids. In his spare time, he enjoys boating and golfing.

Damian Rodriguez | St. Louis, MO

Certifications:

  • ASE-Certified Master Technician

Bio:

Born in New York City and raised in Puerto Rico, Damian is a bilingual trainer who has been with the Garage Gurus team since 2015. Based out of the Maryland Heights, Missouri, facility, Damian’s career in the automotive industry spans over 20 years where he has worked as both a technician and trainer. His background as a technician includes time within a dealership and also experience working as a retailer technician on all types of vehicles. He also worked as an instructor for Automeca Technical College for the last 15 years in Puerto Rico.

Favorite Car: 

1955 Chevy Bel Air

Fun Fact:

Although Damian studied journalism, he ended up making a career as an automotive technician and hasn’t looked back since. When he’s not working on cars, he enjoys riding motorcycles.

Advantages of
Onsite Training

• Small class sizes for one-on-one attention
• Interactive and engaging classroom sessions
• Modern service bays with the latest tools & equipment
• Hands-on, on-vehicle training with ASE-Certified Master Trainers

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