RKM Management

  • Rob Kauffman Rob Kauffman Owner & Chairman
    RK Motors, LLC
    Close Rob Kauffman

    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.

  • Joseph Carroll Joseph Carroll President & C.E.O.
    RK Motors
    Close Joseph Carroll

    Joe Carroll, a lifelong entrepreneur, has had a fascination with cars from a young age. At the age of 6, Joe & his best friend built a soap-box derby car and the rest was history. From slot cars and dirt bikes as a child to muscle cars in his teen years, Joe was always drawn to anything with wheels.

    Joe founded his first business, Hudson & Keyse, Inc., a financial services company, in 1986, at the age of 21. Joe served as the founder & President of the company for 21 years, through early 2007. During Joe’s tenure at HKI, the company was a two-time Inc. 500 honoree and is, to this day, the only debt recovery company in the history of the Ohio Better Business Bureau to be nominated for a BBB Torch Award.

    Joe and his wife, Kelly Carroll, founded Best of Show Automotive in Mentor, Ohio in 2007 and quickly grew the business through the financial collapse of 2008. Joe followed this up by creating RK Motors, LLC in November, 2010 for the owner, Robert Kauffman. Thanks to a talented team of devoted employees and a relentless commitment to innovation, RK Motors has gone on to become the most viewed car dealer website in the world. In 2013, Hot Rod Magazine named the RK Motors Charlotte showroom as their top destination in the US for car fanatics.

    In 2011 & 2012. Joe created MyClassicGarage, LLC and launched a commercial version of what has become the most popular social network for classic car owners. In late 2012, MyClassicGarage launched DealerAccelerate, a cloud-based enterprise platform for specialty car dealers, which Joe personally designed and created. DealerAccelerate is now the standard for the top classic/high performance car dealers in the US.

    Joe loves and appreciates all classic cars, but is especially drawn to mid 1960’s Mopars. Check out the black & white 1967 Plymouth HEMI GTXs in our inventory—both restored by Best of Show Automotive in 2009 & 2010. Like his partner, Rob Kauffman, Joe believes that cars were made to be driven!

    Joseph.Carroll@RKMotorsCharlotte.com

  • Donald Berard Donald Berard Sales Manager
    RK Motors Charlotte
    Close Donald Berard

    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.

    Donald.Berard@RKMotorsCharlotte.com

    (704)773-4648

  • Tony Klein Tony Klein Acquisitions Manager
    RK Motors
    Close Tony Klein

    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.

    Tony.Klein@RKMotorsCharlotte.com

  • Gerry Notara Gerry Notara VP of Operations
    RK Motors
    Close Gerry Notara

    Gerry joined RK Motors Charlotte as Vice President of Operations after holding several positions with BMW of North America. As part of the team that introduced the MINI name to the North American market, his experience with sales, marketing, distribution and dealership development offers a unique insight into the complexities of the classic car marketplace. Gerry graduated St. Clair College with a degree in Business Administration, though cars have remained a lifelong passion. An avid Ford enthusiast, his first personal automotive project was the restoration of 1971 Mach 1 Mustang.

    Gerry.Notara@RKMotorsCharlotte.com

  • Jeff Spiegel Jeff Spiegel Marketing Director
    RK Motors
    Close Jeff Spiegel

    Jeff has an extensive background in marketing and advertising strategy and brand campaign development and implementation. Throughout his career he has spearheaded various online marketing strategies and fully integrated marketing/communications programs within a variety of industries, including entertainment. His in-depth background includes major brand development in a variety of business and consumer markets. Jeff earned his bachelor’s degree in Business from Northeastern University in Boston, MA. His passion for all things with motors and speed, especially cars and motorcycles, brought him to RK Motors and the Charlotte area. Originally from the North he is living the dream of working in the motorsports industry and a much longer and warmer motorcycle riding season.

    Jeff.Spiegel@RKMotorsCharlotte.com

Sales Department

  • Joseph Carroll Joseph Carroll President & C.E.O.
    RK Motors
    Close Joseph Carroll

    Joe Carroll, a lifelong entrepreneur, has had a fascination with cars from a young age. At the age of 6, Joe & his best friend built a soap-box derby car and the rest was history. From slot cars and dirt bikes as a child to muscle cars in his teen years, Joe was always drawn to anything with wheels.

    Joe founded his first business, Hudson & Keyse, Inc., a financial services company, in 1986, at the age of 21. Joe served as the founder & President of the company for 21 years, through early 2007. During Joe’s tenure at HKI, the company was a two-time Inc. 500 honoree and is, to this day, the only debt recovery company in the history of the Ohio Better Business Bureau to be nominated for a BBB Torch Award.

    Joe and his wife, Kelly Carroll, founded Best of Show Automotive in Mentor, Ohio in 2007 and quickly grew the business through the financial collapse of 2008. Joe followed this up by creating RK Motors, LLC in November, 2010 for the owner, Robert Kauffman. Thanks to a talented team of devoted employees and a relentless commitment to innovation, RK Motors has gone on to become the most viewed car dealer website in the world. In 2013, Hot Rod Magazine named the RK Motors Charlotte showroom as their top destination in the US for car fanatics.

    In 2011 & 2012. Joe created MyClassicGarage, LLC and launched a commercial version of what has become the most popular social network for classic car owners. In late 2012, MyClassicGarage launched DealerAccelerate, a cloud-based enterprise platform for specialty car dealers, which Joe personally designed and created. DealerAccelerate is now the standard for the top classic/high performance car dealers in the US.

    Joe loves and appreciates all classic cars, but is especially drawn to mid 1960’s Mopars. Check out the black & white 1967 Plymouth HEMI GTXs in our inventory—both restored by Best of Show Automotive in 2009 & 2010. Like his partner, Rob Kauffman, Joe believes that cars were made to be driven!

    Joseph.Carroll@RKMotorsCharlotte.com

  • Donald Berard Donald Berard Sales Manager
    RK Motors Charlotte
    Close Donald Berard

    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.

    Donald.Berard@RKMotorsCharlotte.com

    (704)773-4648

  • Robert “Rob” Hudson Robert “Rob” Hudson Inventory Sales Specialist
    RK Motors Charlotte
    Close Robert “Rob” Hudson

    Rob comes to RK Motors with well over 20 years of sales and management experience. His desire has always been to represent his clients with respect and honest professionalism. Rob’s courteous and heartfelt hospitality are just a couple of the many attributes that have allowed him to be a success in both his professional and personal life. His passion for Classic Cars started at an early age with his father bringing home a 1957 Chevy Bel Air and with his uncle driving him through the back roads of Alabama on an array of fast and cool Corvette Sting Rays. Rob says that “being a member of the RK Motors Charlotte Team allows him the pleasure of fulfilling his own dreams by helping our clients fulfill theirs - the enjoyment of owning these beautiful Classic and Muscle Cars”

  • Chalamar Stephens Chalamar Stephens Sales Administrator/Title Clerk
    RK Motors Charlotte
    Close Chalamar Stephens

    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 Charlotte. 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 Charlotte operations.

Accounting Department

  • Julia Harrison Julia Harrison Accounting Clerk
    RK Motors Charlotte
    Close Julia Harrison

    Julia has lived in the Charlotte area her entire life. She graduated with a BA in Accounting from Belmont Abbey College in Belmont, North Carolina. Julia has a growing appreciation for racing and classic cars. She regularly attends the NASCAR All-Star race and loves being able to view the "works of art" that are in the showroom here at RK Motors Charlotte.

  • Nick Raines Nick Raines Accounting Clerk
    RK Motors Charlotte
    Close Nick Raines

    Nicholas has lived and traveled abroad for a majority of his life. He graduated with a BA in Accounting and Finance from the University of North Carolina Charlotte. He is fascinated by the wide variety of classic vehicles that are for sale at RK Motors. Nick also has a great appreciation for the time and dedication that it takes to have these vehicles restored to look like they just rolled out of the showroom when they were brand new.

Production Department

  • Matt Stephens Matt Stephens Production Manager
    RK Motors Charlotte
    Close Matt Stephens

    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 Josh Leatherwood Content Specialist
    RK Motors Charlotte
    Close Josh Leatherwood

    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.

  • Jeff Thomas Jeff Thomas Imaging Specialist
    RK Motors Charlotte
    Close Jeff Thomas

    Growing up just north of Charlotte in Greensboro, NC, Jeff found an interest in anything that would give him the opportunity to be creative at an early age. Be it art, music or photography, the medium never really mattered. The desire to turn this passion into a career led him to attend NCSU where he studied graphic design and photography and began an obsession with bold lines and impactful design - an obsession clearly shared with the designers of the cars that enter the RK Motors Charlotte showroom. While Jeff appreciates the aesthetic value of each automobile that arrives at RK, he feels there is an undeniable awesomeness in the classic muscle cars of the late '60s and early '70s.

  • James Helms James Helms Photography/Video Specialist
    RK Motors Charlotte
    Close James Helms

    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.

RKM Performance Center Staff

  • Rick Gauthier Rick Gauthier QC Technician
    RKM Performance Center
    Close Rick Gauthier

    Rick moved to Troutman, NC in 2007 from New Hampshire. His first mechanic job was when he was 17 years old at a Ford dealership. (Yes, he PDI'ed new Ford Pintos.) Since then, he's earned over 500 courses to become an ASE Master Tech as well as being GM certified and a Level One Performance Elect Specialist. He completes every vehicle with a high attention to detail and believe every car has a story. All you have to do is listen.

  • Darell Johnston Darell Johnston QC Paint/Fab Manager
    RKM Performance Center
    Close Darell Johnston

    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 Mike Miller QC Technician
    RKM Performance Center
    Close Mike Miller

    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 Charlotte is truly a dream job.”

  • Jon Sipple Jon Sipple QC Technician
    RKM Performance Center
    Close Jon Sipple

    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.

  • Gregory Smith Gregory Smith Transport Manager
    RKM Performance Center
    Close Gregory Smith

    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.

  • Aaron Turrel Aaron Turrel Service Estimator
    RKM Performance Center
    Close Aaron Turrel

    Aaron has always has a passion for all things automotive. Growing up in a car-centric household, he watched his father and uncle wrench on everything from classics to drag and circle racers. He eventually started racing in Las Vegas – a decision that ultimately lead him to a career in the NASCAR racing series. Aaron has served as both an engine builder and pit crew member for several big names including Robert Yates and Germain Racing. Aside from his on-track experience, Aaron is ASE Certified, licensed in A/C and state certified as a safety inspector. His combined experience makes him a great fit for the RKM Performance Center team.