Meet Owner & Technician Nathan Sparks
& His “Ever-Smiling” Shop Mascot Trixie
Nathan’s father, Jack Sparks, must be proud. Not only did his son follow him in the same chosen profession, but Nathan has taken over the reins of DMV Clinic and he’s brought it to a new level of proficiency.
“What I like about the industry,” says Nathan, “is that every day presents different challenges, from performing diagnostics and repairs, to tooling and making parts. We kind of stick our neck out doing fabrication, because if anything comes back and fails, it’s on us, liability-wise. The primary reason we’ll fabricate parts is that some parts are obsolete — we can’t get them.”
Nathan takes a lot pride in DMV Clinic’s recognition as an “honest shop,” where people are treated with respect and with the utmost courtesy. “We’ve always been considered a quality shop by our clients and even other community auto shops, ” says Nathan. “It’s really the only way we know how to do business.” Away from work, Nathan enjoys collecting and selling artwork, and restoring old and collectable stereo equipment.
Meet Service Advisor Colleen Sparks
“Our Family Serving Your Family”
Many factors go into being a quality-minded service advisor at DMV Clinic: answering phones, writing work orders and estimates, tracking parts, and being the go-between customers and technicians. “I’m personable and really enjoy assisting our clientele,” says Colleen. “Many come in concerned about car issues and expenses. It’s important that they feel confident in our work. I project an air of assurance because the technicians are pros — they can fix anything!”
Having worked in customer service positions for years, Colleen believes she relates well to the public, particularly women — who make up 50 percent of DMV Clinic’s customer base. She says, “I don’t purport to have the technical knowledge as do our techs, however, I do have experience as a diesel mechanic and electrician while serving in U.S. Navy.
Colleen’s first job was at DMV Clinic when she was 15; she worked in the office as well as the warehouse. “I’m now back with family and it feels good,” says Colleen. “This is a quality shop, as the crew is proud of its excellence in workmanship as well as customer care. I am honored to work for my brother, Nathan.” Colleen has a BA in Studio Arts with a focus on Coastal Studies. Ask about her love of diatoms, “the smallest microscopic food source on the planet.” Go on, ask!
Meet Consultant & Customer
Relations “Guru” Jack Sparks
Original owner and master technician Jack first opened DMV Clinic in 1976. A”smart shop” was born. Jack’s philosophy, “Fix it before it breaks,” was ahead of its time. After all, what he always professed is now known as preventive maintenance. Jack had first learned the importance of preventive maintenance while working as a jet aircraft mechanic in the Air Force and drew upon those invaluable experiences in his business.
Humorous and a down-to-earth straight-shooter, countless longtime DMV Clinic clients have always appreciated the shop’s wonderful work as well as Jack’s dedication to our local community and beyond. Jack taught automotive classes in Nepal “his dime” with an emphasis on reducing air pollution.
“I still like being active in the business,” says Jack, who semi-retired in 2013. “I’ll open the shop each morning and ask the technicians how they’re doing and how was their weekend. I’ll suggest things to Warren and he’ll pretend he doesn’t hear me, which is fine! I know about 98 percent of our clientele, and enjoy giving them rides home after they drop off their vehicles. I’ll let them know why we’re doing such-and-such service.” After all, once a mechanic always a mechanic.”