Diana’s patience and leading-edge creativity have made her the perfect fit as Next-Level’s Project Manager and Instructional Designer.
At Next-Level, she enjoys combining her organizational and time management skills with her interest in the automotive industry. Diana has been surrounded by the automotive world her entire life. Her father has a strong passion for working with cars, and he owned his own auto shop in Romania. She was frequently helping her dad in his shop, taking cars apart, and putting them back together again. The intricacy of the different processes to get a car running again fascinated Diana, and that fascination has stayed with her into her adult life.
Diana loves problem solving any obstacles that arise and transforming them into resolutions. Her passion for travel, video documenting, and connecting with people from all walks of life, have all extended into her role at Next-Level. We have a very diverse multi-generational team, and Diana’s exceptional interpersonal and collaborative skills have helped her successfully carry projects from conception to completion.
Although Diana is a mountain girl at heart, she currently lives in Florida. When she’s not working, Diana enjoys being outdoors and exploring nature as much as possible. She loves camping and walking on trails and leaving nature a little cleaner and better than how she found it. She also enjoys kayaking, biking/rollerblading along the beach, swimming in the ocean, and traveling to hike as many mountains as possible around the world.
Ray began his career in the automotive business over 47 years ago, working in every facet of the dealership for the first 21 years and consulting/developing others for the next 26 years. Ray started in the sales department learning the business from the ground up. He also worked in parts and service, completing his dealership career with ten years as a Fixed-Ops Director.
Ray guided a large metro store that operated two shifts, open daily from 7:00 am – midnight. His dealership was top ten in the country for CSI, always profitable, and had a staff that remained together for years.
Dean Estep provided Ray with the opportunity to launch a second career as a facilitator by permitting him to teach a class with only 24 hours to prepare. Ray studied the material, taught the class successfully, and the next (as they say) is history.
Ray’s dealership foundation launched the second half of his career where he naturally took to developing and consulting for dealerships and the aftermarket. For the past 26 years, Ray has worked with over fifteen manufacturers in various roles including: facilitator, corporate team leader, remote learning host, coach, webinar presenter, course designer, focus group moderator. He joined Service Operation Specialist, a national recognized training company where he progressed from project manager to National Field Manager. Ray also has experience in assessing, consulting and training coaches and staff for Bombardier Powersports dealerships in the US and Canada.
Ray’s thorough understanding of Fixed Operations leads to instant credibility among dealership personnel and he is thrilled to rejoin Dean Estep and the Next Level Automotive Group team.
In his spare time, Ray enjoys restoring older vehicles, riding motorcycles and boating.