We pride ourselves on our commitment to quality service. Here are the people working for you every day to repair your vehicle.
Kevin Braker, General Manager
Kevin was born not too far up the road in Carthage Missouri. He did move around a little bit and lived in Lamar, MO, Remington, IN, Roanoke, IL, Indianapolis, IN and finally right here in Rogers. He is a graduate of Roanoke-Benson High School in Roanoke, IL.
He has two sisters Karel and Michelle. Kevin is married to his lovely wife Janice and has three grown children. They have two sons Jonathon and Jake and a daughter Kelly.
His Dad is the kind of guy who can fix almost anything so for as long as he can remember, he has been taking things apart and putting them back together just to see how they worked. He advanced to tinkering with cars and found his vocation. He loves cars and working on engines. He is a graduate of Quincey Technical School for Automotive and Diesel Technologies. He's worked in the industry for the last 32 years so he has quite a lot of experience under his belt. He has owned and operated his own shop for a while, he was Service Manager at a General Motors Dealership where he graduated General Motors Manager Training, he managed a successful high performance engine building business and most recently managed a Firestone Store.
Kevin and Janice found, after their youngest graduated, that Indianapolis was not the place that they wanted to continue to live and retire, so the search was on. The criteria were that they wanted to be on or near a lake, closer to relatives, able to find good jobs (Janice is a Nurse), and beautiful topography. In general, just a great place to work and retire. They did a thorough investigation and decided to look at N.W. Arkansas settling on the Rogers area. Janice will be working at one of our local Hospitals and Kevin will take over the Management of The Kar Shop allowing one of the partners, Jack, to slow down a bit.
Kevin has varied interests. He loves music, live or recorded. He's huge into boating and fishing. In fact, that's one of the reasons he picked Rogers, for its proximity to Beaver Lake. He's also a big fan of Motor Sports and Demolition Derbies. We'll introduce him to the one at the Springdale Rodeo Grounds. He also loves playing the board games Acquire and Rail Barron and anything that involves spending time with his family. He is also into grilling and smoking meats.
He has tremendous respect and honor for all veterans. His father-in law, several uncles and son have all served and we thank them for their service. Kevin really enjoys the interaction with customers and, like the rest of us, he doesn't like liars or mean people. We're looking forward to Kevin helping us grow and serve you better for years to come.
Charles Whitford, Front Desk Associate
Charles is our newest friendly face at the front counter. He's an only child, born in San Antonio, Texas and has lived in Austin, Texas and Phoenix, Arizona. His family moved to Centerton when he was about 8 so he's been here a while and grew up right here in Arkansas. He attended Ambassadors for Christ Academy in Bella Vista through high school. He's also graduated from Motorcycle Mechanics Institute in Phoenix, Arizona. He has worked on small engines for a number of years and just enjoys tinkering with all things mechanical and electrical. He also has specialized training and certification in Auto CAD by Auto Desk USA and is very computer savvy.
He still lives in Centerton, Arkansas and is married to his beautiful wife, Ashley. They have been married since 2011 and have a young son named Trey.
Charles comes to us with about seven years of front counter experience. He most recently worked at Williams Ford Tractor in Springdale as a Service Advisor and 'jack of all trades'. He is a people person and discovered a passion to work with people and to help them with their automotive needs. The Service Advisor title fit the bill to a tee. He gets to be involved in things mechanical and take care of our customer's needs.
Charles is multitalented and in addition to wrenching on small engines he enjoys fabricating and welding, motorcycle riding and considers himself a grille master. He's a kind of Rube Goldberg and enjoys building lighting and electrical accessories out of spare parts in his free time. He does not like the cold weather and politics drives him crazy.
Charles is a very intelligent and a fast learner. He has a desire to do things right and will do a great job helping us take care of your vehicles. We look forward to working with Charles for a long time.
Will Weber, ASE Master Technician
Will was born and raised in the wide open country of Douglas Wyoming and has a younger sister named Catie. His dad was kind of a "jack of all trades" likely out of necessity to be self-sufficient. Will liked working with his dad whether he was doing landscaping, building cabinets, fixing cars or whatever. He learned a lot of skills but decided that he liked working on cars the most. He attended Douglas High School and Casper College in Wyoming majoring in Automotive Technologies.
Will likes John Wayne movies, hunting, shooting sports, video games and horses. Not the "on-the-hoof" kind but the kind you find under your hood. I think he has added horses to everything he has ever owned. Will also enjoys riding his motorcycle and playing bass guitar. A few things he doesn't like are; bad drivers, crowds and ladders.
Will was ready for a change when his best friend was making plans to move to Northwest Arkansas several years ago. He decided that he was up for the adventure and came with his friend and his friend's wife, Gram and April, and another friend named Mike. All lifelong friends. He has since met a pretty young thing named Ashley and they are becoming very close.
Will is our resident "hippie". If you see him come through the waiting area you'll recognize him by his pony tail but, don't judge a book by its cover, he is a very experienced and qualified technician.
Will has completed the Automotive Technologies Training at Casper College and has recently earned his ASE Master Technician Certification. He comes to us with seven years of repair experience and continues to hone his skills as all of us in this field do.
Truen Taylor, ASE Master Technician
Truen is a true native Arkansan, unlike most of the people we meet who came here from all over the country for some corporate reason. He was born in Springdale and has lived in Springdale, Huntsville, Kansas City and now in Rogers. He lives with his wife, Summer, and their two year old son Beckett.
He graduated from Huntsville High School where he took several automotive classes. He did very well and was chosen to represent Huntsville High at the State Ford/AAA automotive competition.
After graduation he joined the Marine Corps and served our country for the next ten years. We thank him for his service. Honorably discharged, he used the GI Bill to attend Northwest Technical Institute and continue his studies in automotive technologies. He was also chosen to represent NTI at the State Skills USA Competition between technical schools. He is obviously a good student and as we have found out, he is becoming a very good technician. He currently has his Student ASE Certifications and when he completes his experience requirement he will be eligible for the ASE Standard Certification tests. Those he will start to take very soon.
Truen is an easy going kind of guy and loves spending quality time with his family and also enjoys many outdoor activities (including but not limited to) hiking, canoeing, camping, riding his dirt bike and all sort of team sports. He loves a challenge. That's a very good thing because this automotive field is constantly changing and it will continue to be a challenge to keep up with all the new technologies coming down the pike.
We look forward to our relationship with Truen and will do everything we can to tutor him into being the quality technician that is within him.
Justin Yates, ASE Certified Technician
Justin joined our team early in 2018. He came close to being an Arkansas native but was born in Springfield, MO. He grew up in Aurora, MO. where he attended grade school. At 14 his family moved to Oklahoma where he graduated from Colcord High School.
Along the way Justin has lived in Missouri, Oklahoma, and currently in Siloam Springs, Arkansas. He is married to his sweetheart Jamie and they have two children, a boy Logan and a girl Kinsley.
As a young man with a family, Justin has worked several types of jobs trying to find one that he could enjoy and make a career. He started working at Superior Dodge in Siloam Springs as a lube tech and discovered that he really liked the automotive field and developed a strong curiosity to know more about how they worked. As he progressed in that job, he found that his interest in knowledge of all things automotive was not being satisfied as quickly as he had hoped. He found that The KAR Shop was looking for a lube tech to add to our team, he did some research and found that this is a place where he felt that he could learn. He applied and we found him to be a good fit with our crew and hired him. Our promise to him was to teach him and to expose him to all aspects of automotive repair and to give him the opportunity to actually perform repairs under supervision as we feel he is capable of doing them. We have found him to be a quick learner, capable and thorough in what he does. His goal is to continue to progress in his knowledge and skills and to begin his ASE certifications as soon as possible. We will continue to mentor him toward that goal.
Justin enjoys time with family, watching movies, working on cars, fishing swimming, canoeing and recently was exposed to and really enjoys the shooting sports to add to that list. As a hobby, he enjoys computers and learning about cars.
We look forward to Justin continuing to develop his knowledge and skills to become ASE Certified and to provide our customers with the best car care available.
Joel Groomer, DOT Certified Technician
Joel is a local boy and a true Arkansan. Born and raised right here in Rogers and Bentonville. He has a younger brother in college in South Carolina named Derek and a lovely wife named Amanda.
He attended and graduated from Rogers Heritage High School and Northwest Technical Institute from the Automotive Technologies program.
He has had a few other jobs before coming to The KAR Shop. He is DOT Certified in Diesel Engines, Kingpin Repair and Air Brakes as well as Student ASE Certifications from Northwest Technical Institute and has worked on heavy trucks. He did not enjoy the heavy work so he migrated to the automotive and light truck repair industry.
Like most technicians, he has always wanted to know how things worked so, at around 15 years old he started to take things apart and put them back together to try to figure all that out. Most of the time, if they worked before, they worked afterwards, but not always. It was a learning experience. The Auto industry has been a fascination to him from a very young age and he knew that someday he would be up to his elbows in dirt and grease fixing cars and trucks.
He likes the older Muscle cars and he is in the process of restoring a 1965 Buick Skylark, a labor of love that he enjoys immensely. When he's not here he and his wife enjoy traveling and playing with their two dogs, a Bernese Hound dog and a Yellow Labrador Retriever.
He also enjoys cooking although he dislikes cottage cheese and ranch dressing.
We're glad to have Joel and look forward to mentoring him to ASE Master Status.