By Kristopher Porter
The Young Executives Network (YEN) has recently confirmed the Discovery Channel’s Aaron Kaufman of ArcLight Fabrication in Dallas will host the 2019 SEMA Launch Pad competition.
Kaufman’s fabrication experience began as many others have—by needing a part for his Jeep Cherokee. Mechanically minded but with very little fabrication experience under his belt, Kaufman ordered the part for his Jeep, only to ﬁnd that he could have easily made the part himself. From that experience he swore that he would do everything in his power to make his own parts whenever able. With this new mentality, his experience level working on cars, trucks and motorcycles quickly grew, and he began to attract attention at local shops in his hometown of Fort Worth.
He worked at a few shops in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, including Drop Zone, his own shop on Main Street in Dallas called “No Name Shop” and Gas Monkey Garage, before ﬁnally opening his own shop with the aim of producing parts for Ford F-100s. Those plans were temporarily put on hold when Discovery Channel asked him to do his own show, so for the ﬁrst nine months, ArcLight Fabrication became a race shop of sorts, building cars to compete in a variety of races to be documented for the show “Shifting Gears.” With season one in the bag, ArcLight returned to its original goal of producing parts.
This will be an exciting year for Launch Pad, as the top five finalists will compete for the chance to win $10,000, along with an assortment of other prizes. Stay up-to-date with the competition.