teen-driving-training

DrivingMBA Trainers and Staff

Trainers (All DrivingMBA trainers are MVD Certified)

Kathleen Ryan – Director of Curriculum & Instruction – Kathleen has 12 years of experience working with children and adolescents in a variety of settings including seven years in the public school system. She has experience in special education as well as working with cross categorical special needs students. Her goal is to individualize instruction to meet and support all students. She places a high emphasis on establishing rapport with students by creating a safe learning environment that facilitates the students’ learning process.  Kathleen has been with DrivingMBA since it’s inception.  She has been instrumental in developing programs and adaptations to programs to meet the needs of students and she is particularly adept at working with students with special needs.

Richard Starr – Beginner, Defensive Driving & On-Road Programs Trainer Richard has taught in the public school system since 1999, including 10 years teaching English in Gilbert and 5 years teaching computer skills in Escondido, CA, his home town. He is married and has three adult children, a son living in California and a son and daughter attending Northern Arizona University. He is a fan of the Diamondbacks and the Padres and enjoys camping and movies in his free time. He loves teaching and driving and is grateful for the opportunity to help his students develop skills to make them safer behind the wheel.

 

 Frances Cooke – Beginner & On-Road Programs TrainerFrancesFrances is a high school educator with her Masters Degree in Secondary Education from Grand Canyon University, and has worked in the public education system in Arizona for over 13 years. She is passionate about teaching adolescents and understands the importance of helping students learn safe driving practices. Her interests include motorcycling and volunteering for the American Red Cross. She has five grown children and three grandchildren who live nearby, so she spends much of her free time with them.

Maggie Shelton – Beginner & On-Road Programs Trainer – MaggieMaggie was born in California but spent her childhood and young adult years in Africa, South America and the Middle East.  After obtaining a degree in business she and her husband supported their family of six by running their own businesses. Sharing a taste for adventure, they took their family around the world to scuba dive, sail, and fly in one of the several small airplanes they owned while the children were growing up.  Maggie has received various licenses and certificates as an operator for various modes of transportation including powerboats, sailboats, airplanes and motorcycles.  She’s always enjoyed driving, starting with the Willy Jeep she learned in while living in Brazil, to the Land Rovers she drove on game reserves in Africa, the 2-cylinder Citroen Geon she owned in Iran, mopeds in Asia, and her dirt bike in Baja, Mexico.  Maggie is a published author, and her works have appeared in print and online magazines as well as in stand alone publications of both fiction and non-fiction.  She lives with her husband in Gilbert, AZ and enjoys the opportunity to work with young people at DrivingMBA teaching them to be capable and safe drivers.

Devrae Rowan – Beginner & On-Road Programs Trainer –  Dev was born and raised here in Scottsdale, AZ, and absolutely loves it. She graduated from Saguaro high school in 2008. After high school, she went on to college for her degree in special education. In 2013, she graduated from Arizona State University with a degree in Elementary and Special Education. Once out of college, she started working for a middle school in Scottsdale Unified School district, as a Special Education teacher for students with Autism. In her free time, she enjoys volunteering with a non-profit charity group that promotes children’s literacy through cosplay. She really loves working with students and helping them develop skills that will ensure that they are safe and responsible people.

Randa Williams – Beginner & On-Road Programs TrainerRandaRanda was born in Cortez Colorado and raised in Southern California.  She met her husband of 30 years in Ruidoso New Mexico.  Her 2 older children were born in Stockton California where they ran a Boys Group home.  Randa and her family moved to Payson Arizona where she and her husband were youth pastors at a local church.  They then moved to Mexico to work with pastors in their churches.  Later they moved to Gardnerville Nevada where their 3rd child was born.  They moved to Texas where she and her husband were assistant pastors at a church, they moved from Texas to Bremerton Washington where their 4th child was born.  Randa and her family have now been in Phoenix for 14 years where she worked for 7 years in home health care.  Randa was looking for a change in occupation so she came to DrivingMBA to make a difference in young peoples lives; making them safer and smarter drivers.  All 4 of Randa’s children live in Arizona as well as her first Grandson.

Annette Strmic – Beginner & On-Road Programs Trainer – AnnetteAnnette was born and raised in Chicago. While growing up she was involved in sports and developed a love for music and began playing piano. Annette was a chauffer for a professional limousine service in the late 1980’s. Annette has been happily married for 25 years. She, her husband and her son moved to sunny Arizona in 1996.   Annette owned and operated a Child Care Center for 10 years where she cared for children from newborn to 12 years of age. As an instructor at DrivingMBA she is utilizing the skills she has developed over the years to teach students how to be safe and responsible drivers.

Zachery Green – Beginner & On-Road Programs Trainer – Zachery has been working as special needs provider for the past three years.  He also does a lot of work with charity groups, organizing and customizing events for kids and individuals in need.   Zach has begun a new chapter with DrivingMBA and is excited to work with teenagers to help them develop safe driving skills.

 

 

Michael Tate – Defensive Driving & On-Road Programs and Classroom TrainerMichaelMichael is a retired police officer with 30 years of service starting in Texas and culminating in Phoenix. He is a Phoenix native who majored in music education and criminal justice and has been a youth baseball, softball, and bowling coach since the age of seventeen. He’s also been happily married for 23 years and has a son who is a college baseball player.  During his career, Michael not only patrolled our streets to keep them safer but also served as a detective, crime scene investigator, school resource officer, field training officer, police instructor, and as a full time instructor of various law related programs in our public schools and in the community.   Michael says “I had seen too much death, destruction, and families being torn apart so I had to find a way to make a more positive difference.” So, the last eight years of his career, Michael turned his attention to investing in our youth by running after-school and summer programs that focused on social responsibility, problem solving, and conflict resolution.   Michael believes in the old saying of, “an ounce of prevention is worth more than a pound of cure… which brings us to present day.  When I saw the work being done at DrivingMBA, I knew I had to be a part of their program. I’m convinced that DrivingMBA is the very best at what they do and their passion to make a positive difference is inspiring. I’m very proud to be a part of their team.”

Art Eckstat – Defensive Driving Program Trainer – AEckstatThumbnailArt is a retired automotive and aerospace engineer with multiple engineering and business degrees including an earned doctorate. Art has been teaching defensive driving classes for over 8 years in Arizona with the goal of making our roads safer for everyone. He joined DrivingMBA for the opportunity to further this goal by teaching and evaluating defensive driving techniques to both new and experienced drivers utilizing our state-of-the-art simulators. Art also serves as a consultant and expert witness in engineering, business, and product liability matters. He was honored as a Contributor to Aviation History at the Smithsonian National Air & Space Museum in 1997.

 

Larry Urbanek – Defensive Driving Program Trainer- LarryLarry, is a retired police officer with 29 years of service in Illinois.  He moved to Arizona in 2004. He specialized in accident reconstruction and traffic safety. Having been a certified police motor officer/instructor and a MSF (Motorcycle Safety Foundation) instructor where he taught both Motorcycle and ATV training. Larry has helped many learn the safe and responsible way to ride. Larry also developed a 2 day driver awareness class which is still being taught to high school student in the south suburbs of Chicago. After seeing what DrivingMBA had to offer the students it was an easy transition and he has now refocused his training to helping our students here at DrivingMBA.

 

 

Ken Zwilling – Defensive Driving & On-Road Programs TrainerKen moved to Arizona from Minnesota in 1993 after selling his auto repair business of 18 years. He joined Universal Technical Institute as an automotive instructor in 1993 and became Campus Education Director in 1996. Ken moved to the UTI home office in 1999 as Director of Education and then as Curriculum Director 3 or 4 years later. He then moved to Regional Education Director until he retired from UTI in 2010.

 

 

Rose Willis – On-Road Program Trainer – Rose is a retired supervisor from the CA Department of Transportation where her 20-year career brings to DrivingMBA a multitude of driving skills. Rose did statewide training of employees on safe equipment operations in inclement weather on highway, rural and mountain roadways. As a result of having to respond to many highway accidents in her career she has made a personal dedication to want to make a difference in making the roads a safer place for all. Rose also was a trophy-winning competitor in Equipment Rodeo Competitions. And although these times have passed she now has settled in to training others and enjoys mostly spending quality time with her Grandchildren, where they explore nature, garden and play music together.

 

Linda Hulverson – Classroom Trainer –  Linda was born in Wisconsin and moved to Arizona after graduating from the Univiersity of Wisconsin-Stout in 1985, with a Bachelor’s of Business Degree in Business Administration. While attending Arizona State University for her Post Baccalaureate degree in Elementary Education she worked in the pool industry.  In 1995, she received her Post Bac degree and has been teaching in the public school system in Arizona for 16 years.  She received her master’s degree in Elementary Education in 1999 from Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff. She is also a certified CPR and First Aid training instructor as well as a swimming instructor.   Linda has one son, Matthew, who has just entered the navy.

Founders and Staff

Maria Wojtczak, Co-founder, COO
Maria has over 20 years of organization development experience working with a wide range of organizations. In addition to the use of traditional organization development techniques, she is highly skilled in large systems change and organization learning, with formal training in both specialties. She has extensive experience in the field of adult learning concepts, and in the design and facilitation of adult learning experiences and interventions at all levels, and sizes of organizations. Maria coached senior leaders in a variety of companies and consulted in this capacity with senior executives of large automotive business units, high level education personnel, and senior personnel in other organizations. Maria is certified in the use of the Myers Briggs Personality Indicator (MBTI) assessment. She is a graduate of the University of Michigan. Maria is responsible for the DrivingMBA operation as well as marketing for the organization.

Richard Wojtczak, Co-founder, CEO
Richard has over 30 years of diversified information systems experience and over 20 years of management experience within the automotive industry. His experience in Information Technology provides him with a solid appreciation of the possibilities for application of high technology tools. He brings a solid business background and possesses an MBA. Richard has training and practical experience in Organization Development and has consulted with diverse companies in the general area of organization development, including strategic planning, executive and team development, and skill building. Richard is highly skilled in problem analysis and change implementation.

Charles Sobczak, Partner Charlie has a diverse background ranging from a traffic agent responsible for weight and balance of aircraft to hazardous material coordinator, customer service supervisor as well as sales for Flying Tigers in Detroit Michigan.   From 1993 to 2003 Charles was in charge of certification and on-going training of sales personnel in automotive retail. Charles has significant experience in customer interaction, both from his time in automotive sales and from his efforts in conjunction with his wife in the restaurant business. He is particularly adept at developing strong working relationships with a wide variety of contacts. Charlie and his wife Laura came to DrivingMBA as an investor/partners in August 2005.

Laura Sobczak, Partner, Scottsdale Site Manager, Accounting & Administration LauraLaura's responsibilities include office management and book keeping for DrivingMBA. She also handles various administrative functions. Laura has a diverse background of experience ranging from being the first female traffic agent for Flying Tigers in Detroit Michigan to real estate and property management while living in Arizona. From 1992 until 2004 Laura managed the accounting and administrative aspects of her family's restaurants.

 

Sherri Katz - Enrollment CounselorSherriSherri is a credentialed Multiple Subject & Art Teacher with more than 25 years of experience teaching.  She also works in the insurance industry selling Long Term Care Insurance and Annuities for Retirement Planning.  Sherri worked as a creative designer at Hallmark Cards.  Her favorite hobby is illustrating with acrylic paint and watercolor pencils.  She enjoys making a difference in people’s lives and has found that at DrivingMBA.  Working with Teens, families and novice drivers gives her a sense of fulfillment and satisfaction.  Sherri lives in Scottsdale with husband David and dog Giles.  One daughter Dani, son in law Josh and two grandkids live in Scottsdale.  Her son Brandon attends Georgia Southern University.

Misty Negrete - Front Desk Administrator - MistyMisty comes with a six year administrative background, working in a mental health, then later working as a case manager for court ordered, probation ordered and MVD ordered treatment.  She has attained a number of certificates and attended numerous training's in her previous employments. To name some, Misty has certificates in Customer service training, Cultural and Diversity training, Business Program(s) training, Respect and Compassion training, Adult/Pediatric CPR/AED and Universal Basic First Aid training and has a Level One Fingerprint Clearance for the SOA-Department of public safety. 

Joan Rothstein - Front Desk AdministratorJoanJoan's career included years as the personnel director of Abraham and Strauss, a major retail department chain on the east coast.  She has also worked in the travel business servicing the corporate travel needs of General Electric employees both domestic and international and most recently in leisure travel working with Norwegian Cruse Line.  Joan's personal journey began in Queens, New York then onto teen years in Massapequa Park, Long Island.  College days took her from New York to Fairbanks, Alaska....as did marriage. Her husband served on the Army base in Fairbanks and Joan worked in Administration with the Dean of Students at the University of Alaska, while finishing her degree in Business Administration.  Joan has 4 children.  She has lived in New York, North Carolina, Florida, California and Zurich, Switzerland. With grown children and young grandchildren her passion has taken a focus on writing and ballroom dancing, though not at the same time....but both of which she embraces wholeheartedly.  Dancing the Tango in competition at the Luxor Hotel in Las Vegas stands as a personal shining moment for Joan.  She brings this passionate spirit to the work and service of DrivingMBA and the commitment of safety and education to the community.