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Meet the Mentors

Our volunteer mentors teach the Speedster Class students skills in automotive mechanics, metal fabricating, woodworking, spray painting, automotive electrical, metal casting and foundry work, upholstery, safety, teamwork and car show etiquette.

Jack Adams


Speedster mentor Jack Adams was born in Dearborn, Michigan and raised in Allen Park, Michigan.  During high school / college Jack worked his summers in a Model T production plant for Henry Ford. After attending the University of Michigan and later the University of Oregon, he worked as a high school math teacher. While in Eugene he met his wife Missy after selling her a 3-speed bike. Jack has two children Michael 38, a Film Production worker, in Los Angeles, and Ted 36, a high school counselor in Portland. Jack enjoys collecting old cars and memorabilia. His favorite food is Curry Beef, TV show Michigan Football, actor Steve McQueen, and sport is tennis.

Don Blain


Speedster mentor Don Blain was born and raised in Shawnee, Oklahoma. Don has been a mechanic all his adult life. While in the military, he worked on aircraft engines and then after returning to civilian life became a heavy equipment mechanic. He met his wife Joanne Lou through a friend while in Tucson, Arizona. They have five children, Robin, Terri Rae, Brian, Lori, and Jeffrey. Eight grandchildren and 12 Great Grandchildren. Don’s hobbies are collecting antique cars and coining’s. Mexican is his favorite food, shows on the history channel favorite TV, Bob Steele actor, football and car racing favorite sports. Don is one of the original mentors who started the Speedster program.

Arlen Buck


Mentor Arlen Buck was born and raised in Salem where his is currently retired from the upholstery business. Arlen met his wife Debra while living across the street from each other here in Salem. He has one son, Jim, and one grandchild Kiara. Arlen’s hobbies are cars and photography. His favorite food is steak & potatoes, favorite TV show: Alaska; actor: Kurt Russell; and sport: Motocross.

William Kent

Speedster mentor William (Bill) Kent was born in Corvallis in 1947. The major portion of his up bringing was in Astoria and McMinnville. Although Bill is now retired, he worked many years as a juvenile counselor. He enjoys documentary TV shows, basketball, and anything connected with antique cars.

John Larson


Speedster mentor John Larson was born and raised in Newberg, Oregon. He attended Newberg High School then Parkrose High School in northeast Portland. John met his wife Gwynne while registering for classes at Eastern Oregon College in La Grande, Oregon. They have two children, Ryan 44 an Electrical Engineer in Portland and Carey 40, an IT teacher at Portland Community College. Currently there are no grandchildren. John’s hobbies include metal fabrication, old cars, and drag racing. Favorite food is BBQ, favorite thing to watch is car shows, favorite actor is Bruce Willis, and college football and baseball are his favorite sports.

Dave Mulheron


Speedster mentor Dave Mulheron was born and raised in Vincennes, Indiana. Before retiring Dave worked in a Lumber Yard, Plywood Mill, Rare Metals plant, and was a millwright. Dave married Gwendolyn Boswell, who lived across the street from him while growing up in Vincennes. He has two children: Matt 55 and Cynthia  53. Old cars and cutting grass are Dave’s hobbies. Favorite food is pie and ice cream, TV show is anything on cable channels (no ads), Morgan Freeman is his favorite actor and, the Indy 500 is Dave’s favorite sport.

Pat Patterson


Mentor Pat Patterson was born and raised in Sacramento, California. He worked for Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD) where he was a Software Developer and later a Supervisor. Now retired, Pat met his wife Stephanie in 1981 while attending Shasta College in Redding, California. Model Trains and steam tractors are his hobbies.

Bob Pipkin


Mentor William “Bob” Pipkin is a retired Property Appraiser who was born in Oklahoma and raised in Oregon. Bob has two children: (Charisse a CNA in Montana and Carmelle a teacher in Vancouver). He also has six grandchildren (Ian 35, Jake 33, Ashley 31, Amelia 10, Abby 8, and Caleb 7). During his spare time Bob enjoys birding, traveling, and restoring old cars. His favorite food is Mexican, TV show is Jeapordy, actor is Tom Hanks, and Drag Racing is his favorite sport.

Robert Rhines


Speedster mentor Robert Rhines was born in Toledo, Oregon and raised in Amity, Oregon. Before retiring, Robert worked as a professional truck driver. He met his wife Chris here in Salem and does not have children. His hobby is building, working on and driving dragsters. Roberts’ favorite food is steak, favorite actor John Wayne, and sport is basketball.

Rick Simmons

Rick Simmons

Mentor Rick Simmons was born (in 1957) here in Salem Oregon. He met his wife Kim in 1990 while working at the Fairview Training Center. Rick has two children (Josh, Kristina) and two grandchildren (Chris, Zoe). Since his retirement in 1999, he has been able to focus on his longtime hobby, antique car restoration. His favorite food is pizza, favorite TV show Street Outlaws, favorite actor Morgan Freeman, and favorite sport hunting/fishing.

Tom Winterrowd


Mentor Tom Winterrowd was born in Seattle in 1951 and raised in Portland. After attending Portland State University, Tom sold electrical products and then became an organic farmer. Driving antique Model A Fords is his hobby and badminton is his favorite sport. He enjoys any type of food that’s BB&Q on the porch in the summer.

Home | About Us | Car Shows | Join Us | Events Calendar | Exhibits | Speedster Program | Meet the Mentors | Newsletter Archives | Lifestyle Exhibits | Contact Us |