Kelly Harris – Global Director of Training Q&A
Meet Our New Global Director of Training
There is an art and a science to detailing an automobile.
The art comes at the hands of the individual and their swift yet gentle maneuvers across the body of the vehicle, and the science comes from what is behind the tools they use.
This is where Lake Country Manufacturing and the pads we create make their grand entrance.
Yet let us not forget, a paintbrush is merely an inanimate object without an artist, much like our pads are merely pads without a professional applying them. Enter Kelly Harris; the new Global Director of Training for Lake Country Manufacturing.
In order to be considered for the position, a certain skill set is needed. Kelly and his shop KDS Keltec far exceeds those parameters, employing five people plus Kelly, with well over one hundred years of experience between them in the automotive industry, placing him and his team in the upper echelon of car detailers. This unique experience and detailing resume made Kelly a perfect choice for Lake Country Manufacturing and its global training initiatives
“I lived my childhood out in the countryside,” Kelly starts, “as an extremely shy kid I sat in my bedroom most of the time building and making models, then progressed to home garage building cycles, motorbikes, and finally cars.”
“I’ve always had a passion for anything automotive, but from a very young age it became apparent that I enjoy designing cars more than actually using them! I would say this has led me to the interests and skills I have invested my time in throughout my whole life.”
Purchasing his first car — an Alfa Romeo Sprint Veloce — before he had a license to drive, Kelly started restoring it right away.
The art piece to this puzzle comes from Kelly’s step-father, who was trained as a painter.
“This is where my interest in paintwork began,” Kelly adds, “I tried to help out as much as I could in my step-father’s garage.”
Fast forward to present day, and Kelly Harris can be found hard at work at KDS Keltec, facing new, unique projects every day.
“We’ve worked on everything from Ferrari Enzo respray, complete with a wet sanding and detailing project to most recently a Mclaren Senna Detail with custom stripe work and paint projection film installation,” Kelly explains.
“I’d say any supercar is my personal favorite to detail, such as Ferrari, Lamborghini and McLaren,” Kelly states, “they have inconsistent paint finishes, poor factory rectification work, nightmare panel shapes, and much higher risk factors that keep me sharp in my skills.”
Kelly feels a large component to his success stems from his passion and love for the craft, not a paycheck.
“I never sat in bed thinking, ‘do I want to go to work?’ I treat work as a hobby, much like my love for mountain biking. It’s a way of learning and improving my skills in life. I’m not motivated by money; I’m motivated by learning.”
“Do what you enjoy, then it becomes enjoyable to work,” Kelly says.
So what is Kelly hoping to accomplish in this new role of his?
”To embrace a very new chapter in my adult professional life that I have been organically drawn to, which includes video presenting and training professionals and independents in the detail industry, helping with their pain points, which falls in-line with all the great feedback I have received when teaching and presenting over the years.”
“But most importantly,” Kelly finishes, “ I hope to find enjoyment in detailing all over again through the excitement the general public faces gets when they finally understand the machine polishing process.”
Stay tuned to our blog to continue following Kelly Harris. He will be featured in numerous videos over the next year discussing paint correction, products, training and problem solving in the detailing industry, with featured videos on the Lake Country Manufacturing YouTube Channel and other social media outlets.