Howard loves everything about cars. Since his teens he’s enjoyed knowing why engines do what they do and how to make them purr.
Howard combines a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Southern Utah University with hundreds of hours of advanced training in the automotive field. He has 15 separate Auto Service Excellence certifications.
For years Howard put his expertise to work for others, as shop manager at a dealership and then 16 years with GM managing a factory service center and as a field engineer (regional trouble shooter for the Northwest and Alaska).
In 2001 he opened Mackert Automotive. When he’s not managing his team of dedicated people, he’s helping customers understand the complexities of what’s going on under the hood, and conducting regular quality checks to be sure Mackert Automotive continues to delight its loyal customers.
Howard is a member of the Auto Service Association of Washington and USA, Rotary International, the Chamber of Commerce of Gig Harbor and is President of the Gig Harbor Cruiser’s Car Club.
When Howard isn’t attending car shows and races of all kinds, you’re likely to find him playing golf, squash at the Y, or cheering on the Huskies.
He and his wife Rhonda (a gifted piano composer and performer) met in the mountains of Colorado in the late ‘80’s. Customers often ask about the lovely music they hear playing in the shop—yes, that’s Rhonda. Brought to you by her biggest fan!
Being the Assistant General Manager calls on Ben to wear several hats at Mackert Automotive, from working with the team of technicians to computers to coordinating parts orders to prioritizing the work efforts. He stays up-to-date in his field with regular automotive continuing education classes and seminars, earning him over 20 certificates, including Bosch Electronics.
Evenings and weekends you’ll find Ben mountain biking, snapping incredible photos or enjoying his extensive music collection—from jazz to classical and just about everything in between.
Ben grew up in the Midwest, moving to the Puget Sound area in his late teens, where he graduated from Kelso High School. He and his wife Brie are active in their community and church where you’ll often find them volunteering together.
Arlene often test drives repaired vehicles as part of Mackert Automotive’s quality assurance program, making sure everything is performing 100% before we’re ready to say ‘ready’ for our customers. In addition, she’s likely to be the one picking up a part when it’s needed right away.
Arlene’s background includes a BA in Medical Technology from the University of California at San Jose and experience working at Chicago Title, Cost Plus Pharmacy and Rideout Hospital in California.
In her free time you’ll find Arlene active in The C. S. Lewis Fellows Program and enjoying reading, primarily Christian non-fiction.
His focus is on engine repair, electronic systems, transmissions, suspension and steering, brakes and electrical systems. If it’s imported, Kevin’s the guy who will be under the hood, making sure each vehicle is at peak performance.
Although Kevin joined the Mackert team in March, 2011, as ‘car guys’ he and Howard go way back. Kevin brings an extensive background in the automotive field including previous experience at area dealerships.
You’ll often find Kevin on his motorcycle or with his wife Cheryl, taking cruises to all kinds of fun destinations … oh, and of course, spoiling their grandchildren.
We call him our “Rock Star”. If you need something done right and finished on time, Lukas is the man.
Before coming to Mackert Automotive ‘horse power’ had a whole different meaning for Lukas—he worked on a horse farm doing everything from grooming and exercising horses to cleaning out stalls.
Lukas is definitely a car guy! In his spare time you’ll find him working on older European cars or going to local car shows with friends.
Justin joined our staff early October 2015 and instantly showed his ability to do more than repair cars. With a change in the front office staff, Justin jumped right in with both feet and has almost single handedly run the customer side of the business. Ben, the general manager, give guidance and assistance when needed and we all answer phones when Justin is tied up.
Many people have commented on the permanent smile on Justin’s face, he really is a joy to work with.