First car owned: A 1959 Chevy Parkwood station wagon, featuring a big block Chevy motor and a 2 speed power glide transmission. It was a very unremarkable car, but it only cost me $300. After that I bought a 1967 Volvo 122S wagon, on which I learned how to rebuild the engine and retune S.U. carburetors. I loved that Volvo!
Favorite things to do outside of work: Hiking in the woods with Vicky and our dog, Sailor Moon. Boating is my absolute favorite thing. In the past we have sailed all around the San Juan Islands, Gulf Islands, and Desolation Sound and I hope to do more of that soon! I like tinkering around the house, fixing and building things.
Favorite things about working at Matt’s Import Haven: Being part of a great team! I enjoy brainstorming with the technicians on troublesome problems.
School / work background: I took my brother’s motorcycle apart when I was 6 years old (he was very angry, and no I did not put it back together). I attended Rogue Community College, Grants Pass, OR. At 16, I started a pole peeling business and a car repair business, in Southern Oregon. Three years later I got a job as a millwright, within 2 weeks of working there I became the lead millwright on the night shift. I moved to Whidbey Island in 1979 and became a partner at the Shell Station in Clinton, as the mechanic. A friend and I opened Sound Motors, an auto repair shop at Bailey’s Corner, in 1981. After that I worked as the lawn mower mechanic for the Useless Bay Golf Club for a couple of years. My next big adventure was opening Matt’s Import Haven in 1986!
First car owned: I inherited my Mom’s 1976 2-door Dodge Dart Swinger (dark green). I drove that car everywhere! I set off for college in it with my plug-in 8 track tape player. The poor thing rusted out from under me (the hazards of living on the East Coast). It served me well!
Favorite things to do outside of work: Taking walks and hikes with Matt and our dog, Sailor Moon. My favorite hobbies are x-country skiing, boating, reading, cooking and I have aspirations of becoming a Sport fisherperson.
Favorite things about working at Matt’s Import Haven: I get to come to work every weekday and spend 8+ hours with a great group of people, my work family. I respect their individual talents and knowledge. It’s super awesome how we can put all those skills together and provide a great service to our customers. We have a lot of fun and work hard! I like how I am always learning new things about people and cars, even after 20+ years on the job. I love building relationships with our community.
School / work background: I grew up on the East Coast (NY/NJ area). After attending Skidmore College and working in NYC as the Editorial Director of a small medical publishing company, I moved out to Whidbey Island in 1990 (it’s a long story…). I met and married Matt and we have 2 wonderful children (Dinah & Quinn), of whom I am very proud. Can’t wait to see what the next 27 years of marriage brings!
Forrest (Service Manager)
First car owned: A 1980 Dodge St. Regis, it was an ex Washington State patrol car. I bought it when my Dad was out of town, as I knew he wouldn’t approve. It took me all over and lasted a little over a year, I think!
Favorite things to do outside of work: Spend time with my family. I like hiking, camping, fishing, yardwork – just about anything outside really.
Favorite things about working at Matt’s Import Haven: I work with a great group of passionate people!
School / work background: I went to college to study Law Enforcement, but didn’t finish. I wasn’t quite ready to grow up and be serious just yet. I started working in the automotive field in 1995. I’ve always had a passion for things mechanical.
First car owned: When I turned 16, my family helped me buy my first car. It was a silver 2004 Hyundai Sonata that I put 50,000 miles on in the first 2 years. I drove that car across the state 4 times until it needed a major repair that put it out of service at 200,000 miles. I repaired it in my mom’s small garage with a new cylinder head after saving all of my paychecks to buy the parts I needed. I bought it for $2,000 and sold it for $1,450. I loved that car!
Favorite things to do outside of work: I like to do projects around the house with my fiancé Annie. We take our dogs Bear and Darwin on walks, the beach, and about everywhere else we go. A large hobby of mine is electronics, small and large, either repairing them, installing them, or modifying them. Some of my time also goes into my Subaru WRX whether it be tuning, repairing, or just driving it -- it’s my pride and joy! Most of all I love spending time with Annie and starting our own life adventures, not to mention spending time with both of our families.
Favorite things about working at Matt’s Import Haven: Working with my coworkers and my bosses. To me, they make all the difference in the world. To work as a “family” and to get to know one another personally and professionally is just amazing. I learn something new every single day!
School / work background: I attended the South Whidbey School District until my sophomore year in high school. I transferred into the Running Start program and began as a freshman at Cascadia College, where we shared facilities and faculty with the University of Washington Bothell campus. I transferred from there to Everett Community College after a year to pursue an Associates Degree in Pre-Nursing, but found that my love for the automotive industry was much bigger than practicing any sort of medicine. Before working at Matt’s I was a dishwasher at Gordon’s On Blueberry Hill for almost 3 years, which was also my very first job.
Blaine (Senior Technician)
First car owned: 1976 Dodge Charger, pea green with pea green interior. I was 13 and I built it from the ground up. I spent all my college savings working on that car. My first, but not last, muscle car!
Favorite things to do outside of work: Hanging out with my family. My wife Katy and I have 3 kids: Scarlett (5 years old) and twin boys, Hank & Hunter (2 years old). We all love to be outside together any chance we get. We go the Everett Children’s Museum often. My personal hobbies are yard work and restoring furniture.
Favorite things about working at Matt’s Import Haven: Love my 9 minute commute! Best thing is that there is no drama at work, we all get along together. The shop is nice (warm in the winter), light, and clean. My family can stop by to bring me coffee.
School / work background: I went to Meadowdale High School in Edmonds. In 2000, I attended Universal Technical Institute in Arizona and then moved into the Ford Factory Training Program there. I worked in the automotive industry in Arizona for 4 years before returning to the Pacific Northwest. Prior to joining Matt’s Import Haven in 2016, I worked for Doug’s Cadillac in Shoreline, Mini of Lake City in Seattle and several other independent shops in the Seattle area.
Chris (Service Assistant)
First car owned: My first car was a 2004 Hyundai Elantra, which I still own to this day. I’ve had it for nearly a decade and put well over 100,000 miles on it. Someday we’ll have to part ways, but hopefully not anytime soon!
Favorite things to do outside of work: I like to explore and learn about new developments in computer networking and cybersecurity, both passions of mine since I was in high school. The more I learn, the more I realize I don’t know. But that hasn’t stopped me from accomplishing some pretty neat things: My latest achievement is the release of a website I developed for the Skagit-Island CPTS. The Skagit-Island Community Partnership for Transition Solutions (whew!) connects formerly incarcerated individuals to transition resources.
Favorite things about working at Matt’s Import Haven: It has to be the general “vibe,” for lack of a better term. We support each other through good times and bad—not unlike a family would. My coworkers are all-around outstanding people, and make me laugh on a regular basis.
School / work background: I graduated from South Whidbey High School, then attended WSU for a period of time. I decided to move back due to the massive financial burden that is higher education, instead earning an associate’s degree at Everett Community College.
David (Facilities Manager)
First car owned: A 1972 Toyota Hilux pickup truck.
Favorite things to do outside of work: I am an artist; painting (easel to mural), sculpture (mostly multidimensional box constructions), woodworking and graphic work. I also continue to work on the house I built in 1996 and in our 10 acres of forest. To see my work you can go to davidiles.com.
Favorite things about working at Matt’s Import Haven: I clean the shop by myself. I like how quiet it is when I am there and the paycheck I receive from my work.
School / work background: I graduated from Evergreen State College in 1982. I spent 5 years working on a flower farm, 12 years as a caregiver for a quadriplegic, 6 years as an early learning teacher working with toddlers, and 5 years as part of a two person portable sawmill business. I have worked for Matt’s Import Haven for 8 years now. I have been lucky enough to be able to work these jobs part time so as to pursue my artwork as my prime occupation.
Mark (Senior Technician)
First car owned: 1977 Datsun 280Z, dark metallic blue. This once modified beater still showed signs of its glory days with shiny paint in between the dents and scratches. It had no carpet and holes in the floor. Sadly I got rid of this car shortly after purchasing it. My appreciation of the car grew after I got rid of her.
Favorite things to do outside of work: Boating with my son Matias (7 years old). If you know me or work with me then I have probably talked your ear off about my boat. Any chance to get her in the water year round I will quickly take. Exploring the Puget Sound and fishing are my favorite off work past times.
Favorite things about working at Matt’s Import Haven: I love Matt’s stories about working at the sawmill. It's great being so close to my house so I can quickly get my boat in the water on work days.
School / work background: I spent K-12 on Whidbey Island, so it was very important as an 18 year old to move away after graduation. I got my first technician job at a GM dealership after moving to Olympia. I also attended the South Puget Sound Community College Automotive Technology program. After my son Matias was born I made the decision to move back to Whidbey Island. So glad to be living back on Whidbey, it’s a great place to have a boat!
Megan (on maternity leave)
First car owned: A 1995 Honda Civic, red 2-door coupe. I bought it all by myself from my uncle with money I saved up from my birthdays and Christmas. I was so excited! Drove it all over, took my sister and myself to school every day. Sadly it got stolen out of my driveway one night and was totaled. I sure loved that car!
Favorite things to do outside of work: Spending time with my 9 year old son, A.J. I love to be in the sunshine! Summers are my favorite. I love walks on the beach and going hiking with my family. Bonfires are the best! Love going fishing and cooking dinner with my sweetie.
Favorite things about working at Matt’s Import Haven: I love working with our crew! We have a great work family. We have fun, and work really hard. I enjoy working with all our customers!
School /work background: I grew up in the Kent/Covington area. Graduated from Kentwood High School in 2006 and went directly into the work force (school wasn’t for me). I’ve always had a strong work ethic and enjoy working. In 2012 I started working at Studio A, in Freeland, by 2013 I was enrolled in beauty school and graduated in 2014 as a licensed cosmetologist. By 2016 I decided hair wasn’t for me and began my career at Matt’s Import Haven as a Service Advisor. I have truly found the shoe that fits! I wouldn’t change a thing, I’m very happy.