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You Are Only As Good As The People On Your Team!

You Are Only As Good As The People On Your Team!

Brad Grafe, Owner & President

x101, bgrafe@valleytransinc.com

Brad graduated from Grand Meadow in 1983. After graduation, he worked in the fertilizer and chemical business for 2 years, which started in Grand Meadow then took him to Florida for a short time and Wisconsin after that. He then moved back to Grand Meadow in 1985 and managed CTI (Clement Trucking Inc) for the Clement family for 4 years prior to venturing out and starting Valley Transportation in 1989. Valley Transportation was started by Brad, his father Dick Grafe, Pat Stienkamp and Jeff Hegge. Pat and Jeff were both co-workers and long time friends of Brad's prior to that.

The challenges over the next several years were not small, business was up and down and cash was tight due to rapid growth. Business decisions became much larger than any of them had imagined and Brad's father had health related issues that made him unable to tackle the day-to-day challenges. The coming years brought decisions that made Brad the sole owner of Valley Transportation. The decisions have not gotten easier since that time, but Brad says the staff we have now makes his job a lot easier than it was back then, when the four of them tried to do everything by themselves.

When not at work Brad enjoys boating, snowmobiling and spending time at the lake with family and friends.

Brad Grafe, Owner & President
Nick Baldus, Vice President & Operations Manager

Nick Baldus, Vice President & Operations Manager

x145, nick@valleytransinc.com

Nick grew up in Grand Meadow where he graduated high school. He began working in the shop for Valley Transportation in February of 2001, then in 2005 he moved into the office as a dispatcher for the heavy haul division. He has now moved into the Operations Manager position where he monitors all Dispatch, Brokerage, and CSM operations. He works closely with dispatch and customers as he coordinates freight. When Nick is not at work he enjoys camping, hunting, fishing, farming and snowmobiling.

Kristi Jack, HR Director

Kristi Jack, HR Director

x112, kjack@valleytransinc.com

Kristi Jack is our HR Director. She grew up in Spring Valley, MN, where she graduated high school and then attended Winona State University where she received her Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration. Kristi has been with Valley Transportation since June of 2006. Outside of work she enjoys spending time with her family and friends.

Stephanie Start, Billing & GPS Admin

Stephanie Start, Billing & GPS Admin

x108, stephanie@valleytransinc.com

Stephanie is from LeRoy, MN, and has been with Valley Transportation since October of 2005. She is our billing clerk and GPS Administrator. Outside of work she enjoys attending her three daughters' activities and watching NASCAR.

Rod Greenameyer, Accountant

Rod Greenameyer, Accountant

x104, rgreenameyer@valleytransinc.com

Rod is the accountant for Valley Transportation and has been with the company since March of 2000. He was born and raised in Austin, MN, where he graduated high school and then attended Winona State University, earning his Bachelor's Degree in Accounting and Business Administration. Prior to coming to Valley Transportation, Rod was the accountant/office manager at Greenway CO-OP for 17 years. He has been married for 33 years and has three daughters. In his free time Rod enjoys golfing, fishing, archery, hunting and playing cards.

Julie Back, Accountant

Julie Back, Accountant

x105, jback@valleytransinc.com

Julie is the accountant for Valley Forwarding and also does our driver payroll. Julie is from Spring Valley, MN, and has earned a degree in Finance and Accounting. Julie began working for Valley Transportation in May of 1995, prior to that she worked at a bank. Outside of work she keeps busy attending all of her children's activities.

Justin Buchardt, Accountant & Administrative Asst.

Justin Buchardt, Accountant & Administrative Asst.

x113, jbuchardt@valleytransinc.com

Justin grew up in Wanamingo and graduated from Kenyon-Wanamingo High School in 2004. He spent the better half of 9 years' operating a commercial motor vehicle. He has pulled all types of equipment with a variety of cargo. After that he spent a year and a half working as a mechanic on trucks and trailers. He is currently attending Rochester Community and Technical College in pursuit of his AS Degree in Accounting. When not at work Justin enjoys spending time with his wife and family. If there is time in the Summer he tries to grab a round of golf or a game of softball.

Caden Fruth, Accounting and Dispatch Asst.

Caden Fruth, Accounting and Dispatch Asst.

x122, cfruth@valleytransinc.com

Caden was born and raised right here in Grand Meadow, MN where he graduated from Grand Meadow High School in 2019. He is currently learning a variety of roles here at Valley Transportation while pursuing his Associate's Degree in Accounting through Northeast Iowa Community College. In Caden's free time he enjoys farming, taking trips to the casino, and watching any and all sorts of racing.

Karsen Ulwelling, Safety Director

Karsen Ulwelling, Safety Director

x148, karsen@valleytransinc.com

Karsen grew up in Rose Creek, MN. He graduated from Southland High School in 2010 and continued his education at Rochester Community and Technical College. Karsen worked in our Dispatch & Heavy Haul Permit department before entering his career as Safety Director. Karsen's Midwest work ethic and eagerness to learn make him a great attribute to the company. Karsen lives in Rose Creek with his wife and son. In his spare time he enjoys spending time with family and friends, snowmobiling, working on the farm, and volunteering on the Rose Creek Fire Department.

Kerin Rath, Recruiter & Safety Asst.

Kerin Rath, Recruiter & Safety Asst.

x116, krath@valleytransinc.com

Kerin was born and raised in Spring Valley, MN. She graduated from Kingsland High School in 2011. After graduating, she came to Valley in 2014 as a Receptionist. As time progressed, she had relocated and moved to Duluth, MN. In January 2018 she moved back to the area and began working at Valley in our Recruiting department. She is looking forward to working with our team and discussing opportunities with prospective drivers! In her spare time, she enjoys fishing, going to sporting events, and just spending time with family and friends in general. Welcome back Kerin!

Bruce Sween, NATMI Certified Driver Trainer

Bruce Sween, NATMI Certified Driver Trainer

x119, bsween@valleytransinc.com

Bruce was born and raised in Grand Meadow, MN. He graduated from Grand Meadow High School in 2004. He obtained his CDL at the age of 18 and showed interest in the trucking industry immediately. He has worked with many different types of tractor-trailers and is an experienced driver trainer. When not at work, he loves spending time with his wife, Sara, and three children, Brianna, Bentley, and Skylar. He also enjoys working on the farm every chance he gets and being outdoors! Bruce obtained his NATMI - Driver Trainer certification in March of 2019!

Daryl Jensen, Recruiter

Daryl Jensen, Recruiter

x146, djensen@valleytransinc.com

Daryl grew up in Clarks Grove, MN where he graduated from Albert Lea High School. He graduated from Alexandria Technical College with a degree in Law Enforcement. He started his career in Law Enforcement in 1979, which continued until 2015. Daryl was a County Sheriff from 2005 until his retirement in 2015. Daryl spent time working at Rochester Toyota before coming to Valley Transportation Service Inc. in January of 2017. He is assisting in Recruiting and Safety efforts and is a great attribute to the team. His eagerness to learn, background in Law Enforcement, and Midwest work ethic is a great attribute. When not working, Daryl likes spending time with his wife, Deanna, of 34 years as well as his kids and grandchildren. He also enjoys spending time with friends, camping, and boating.

Jennifer Welch, Driver Host

Jennifer Welch, Driver Host

Jennifer is a native of Bakersfield California. She was a professional heavy haul pilot car driver from 2007 to 2016, on February 15th 2016 she made the move to valley transportation here in Grand Meadow MN. Jennifer was a Valley Transportation Pilot from 2016 until Oct. 2020. She is now the Driver Host to all new and existing drivers, along with other duties pertaining to the office & staffs' needs. She occupies her spare time with baking , crafting and spending time with her 4 grand babies.

Hanna Losey, Receptionist & Billing Asst.

Hanna Losey, Receptionist & Billing Asst.

x131, hanna@valleytransinc.com

Hanna was born and raised in Spring Valley, MN. She graduated from Kingsland High School in 2011. After high school, she worked at Mills Fleet Farm in Rochester, MN, for four years. She starting working at Valley Transportation in May 2015 as a receptionist. She also helps in the billing department. In her spare time she enjoys being outdoors, bow hunting, playing with her puppy, and spending time with friends and family.

Karyssa Waletzki, Receptionist

Karyssa Waletzki, Receptionist

x100, kschultz@valleytransinc.com

Karyssa was born and raised in Winona, MN. She graduated from Winona Senior High School in 2012. After graduating, she moved to Spring Valley and started employment at Comfort Inn & Suites as a front desk agent for 2 years. She began her career at Valley Transportation in April of 2016 as a Receptionist. When Karyssa isn't answering phones, she enjoys spending time with her friends and family, as well as her 2 dogs.

Pat Steinkamp, CSM

Pat Steinkamp, CSM

x143, psteinkamp@valleytransinc.com

Pat is from LeRoy, MN, and he been with Valley Transportation since the beginning. He was one of the original four partners of the company when it started back in 1989. Eventually, the current and sole owner, Brad, bought out the other partners, but Pat remained with the company and is currently a CSM. He assists in all customers transport needs. Outside of work Pat enjoys watching football and spending time with his children.

Tom Gardner, CSM

Tom Gardner, CSM

x150, tgardner@valleytransinc.com

Tom has lived in southeastern MN his entire life. After graduating from Grand Meadow High School in 1978 he started working for various farmers and driving truck. When he was old enough to go over the road, he worked for Minnesota Implement hauling machinery and farming equipment for five years. He then went to work for Wayne Transports for 11 years hauling petroleum products and eventually moved into their office as a dispatcher. When the opportunity came along to work closer to home, Tom started at Valley Transportation in 1998 as our freight coordinator. Tom handles freight moving out of states west of the Mississippi. When Tom is not at work, he and his wife, Deb, enjoy yard work, fishing and boating, NASCAR, tractor rides on their old John Deere A and spending time with their children and grandchildren.

Jimmie Arnold, CSM

Jimmie Arnold, CSM

x147, jim@valleytransinc.com

Jimmie grew up in southern MN. He worked on farms and at a truck stop throughout high school, and graduated in 1988. After high school Jimmie went to Vo-tech school for diesel mechanics and graduated in 1990. After Vo-tech he began working on combines and tractors for an Implement dealer, then moved into their fertilizer division and was a custom applicator for three years. Prior to signing on as a dispatcher with Valley Transportation Jimmie also worked for an agriculture dealer and a truck and auto repair shop. Jimmie is currently a CSM for Valley. Outside of work Jimmie enjoys hunting, fishing, horseback riding and restoring old cars and tractors. He also raced stock cars from 1991 to 2008.

Mike Munroe, CSM & Auction Specialist

Mike Munroe, CSM & Auction Specialist

x118, mmunroe@valleytransinc.com

Mike is from Harmony, MN. He has been with Valley since June of 2000 and has over 25 years of sales and customer service experience. Mike specializes in auction freight as he travels around the country to various auctions and quotes freight for customers. Give Mike a call with all your transportation needs; specializing in auction freight.

Pete Kappers,  CSM

Pete Kappers, CSM

x121, pete@valleytransinc.com

Pete is from Spring Valley, MN where he graduated high school and then went on to attend Austin Technical Institute where he got his degree in Auto/Industrial Machining. Pete has been involved in farming, truck driving, and worked at Crenlo, Inc. as a class A welder before coming to Valley as a dispatcher in our brokerage department. Pete has now moved into our CSM division. Outside of work Pete enjoys flying, fishing and hunting.

Dean Swanson, CSM

Dean Swanson, CSM

x151, dswanson@valleytransinc.com

Dean was born and raised in Grand Meadow and a graduate of Grand Meadow High School. He has been in the transportation business for the past 15 years as a business owner and broker. Previous to working here he has been a bar owner, as well as a Minnesota Real Estate Licensed realtor. Dean is a great attribute to our CSM division. In his spare time, Dean enjoys golfing, fishing and biking.

Matt Jensen, CSM

Matt Jensen, CSM

x130, mjensen@valleytransinc.com

Matt grew up in Spring Valley, MN and is now living in Stewartville, MN with his wife Michelle, two daughters Shealyn and Kenley, and their dog Ivan. Matt's background in heavy haul allows him to work closely with crane and heavy equipment companies around the country, while also servicing other Ag and construction customers. He studied Business Administration at Ridgewater College and Winona State University. In Matt's spare time he enjoys spending time with his family, fishing, and cheering on the Minnesota Vikings.

Parker Johnson, CSM/Broker

Parker Johnson, CSM/Broker

x120, pjohnson@valleytransinc.com

Parker graduated from Mabel-Canton High School in 2008. Parker is a CSM with Valley Transportation and started his career with Valley Transportation in September of 2011. Parker started in the brokerage department and transferred into the role of a CSM. He currently resides in rural Canton, MN with his wife and son. In his free time he enjoys spending time with family and friends, being on the farm, and going on Ranger rides.

Brent Hellickson, Freight Coordinator

Brent Hellickson, Freight Coordinator

x152, brent@valleytransinc.com

Brent has been involved in the transportation industry in about every fashion for 35 years, and has been with Valley since May of 2007. He helps oversee all of our dispatchers and covers for them and our sales staff when they are out of the office. Brent is from Spring Valley, MN, and has been married for 32 years; he has three children and one grandson and one granddaughter. Brent enjoys boating, fishing and just being by the lake.

Tyler Schiltz, Dispatch Manager

Tyler Schiltz, Dispatch Manager

x136, tschiltz@valleytransinc.com

Tyler was born and raised in Algona, IA, where he graduated high school. He continued his education at Briar Cliff University in Sioux City, IA. He was on the golf team and graduated with a Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration and Human Resource Management. He has eight years of experience in the transportation industry. In his spare time he enjoys playing golf and cheering on the Iowa Hawkeyes!

Jeremy Swanson, OTR Heavy Haul Driver Manager

Jeremy Swanson, OTR Heavy Haul Driver Manager

x133, jswanson@valleytransinc.com

Jeremy graduated from Stewartville high school and currently resides in Grand Meadow, MN. He has drove truck for ten years and started driving truck for Valley Transportation in 2006. In April of 2011 Jeremy moved away from the truck and came into our office as a dispatcher. When Jeremy is not at work he enjoys riding his motorcycle, traveling, camping and various sports. P.S. He is a Green Bay Packer Fan!

Kevin Queensland, OTR Driver Manager

Kevin Queensland, OTR Driver Manager

x135, kevin@valleytransinc.com

Kevin currently resides in Grand Meadow, MN, and has been with Valley Transportation since May of 1997. Kevin coordinates freight for anything moving out of states east of the Mississippi River and he also dispatches 25-30 trucks. In his free time Kevin enjoys camping and watching NASCAR and football.

Nick Moyer, OTR Driver Manager

Nick Moyer, OTR Driver Manager

x109, nmoyer@valleytransinc.com

Nick was born and raised in Rochester, MN where he graduated in 2001 from Mayo High School.
He has been working in the customer service and transportation industry for the last 5 years.
Nick lives in Stewartville MN with his fiancé and two sons. He spends much of his time attending
his boys sports games. He also enjoys spending time with his family camping, fishing and attending
sporting events.

BJ Jones, OTR Driver Manager

BJ Jones, OTR Driver Manager

x142, bjjones@valleytransinc.com

BJ was born and raised in Spring Valley, MN. He was a graduate of Kingsland High School in 2004. He then continued his education onto Rochester Community and Technical College where he received an Associates Degree in Liberal Arts. He also played Junior College football during his term there. BJ had been driving commercially for the past 8 years so he is not new to the transportation industry! When BJ is not at work, he enjoys spending time with his family and friends. He also enjoys playing a little Ice Hockey, and cheering on the Minnesota Vikings and Minnesota Wild.

Chris

Chris "CW" Hewitt, OTR Driver Manager

x157, chewitt@valleytransinc.com

CW grew up in Madlen, MO where he graduated from Malden High School. CW has been operating a Commercial Motor Vehicle professionally for over 20 years, 10 of them in Valley's heavy haul department. He has operated various types of configurations and brings an abundance of knowledge to the table. In June of 2019, he came off the road and into the office as an OTR Driver Manager. In his spare time, he enjoys hunting, fishing, and spending time with his grandkids.

Blayne Stejskal, Regional Driver Manager

Blayne Stejskal, Regional Driver Manager

x111, bstejskal@valleytransinc.com

Blayne was born and raised in Grand Meadow, MN, and is a graduate of Grand Meadow High School. Over the years, Blayne has worked at CHS in Grand Meadow and for local farmers. Prior to joining Valley Transportation, Blayne was employed at the ethanol plant in Preston, MN. Blayne is married and has two children. He enjoys camping with his family and friends, NASCAR racing and living in a farming community.

Erick Anderson, Permit Manager

Erick Anderson, Permit Manager

x137, erick@valleytransinc.com

Erick grew up in the small town of Ostrander, MN about 10 minutes east of Grand Meadow. He is now living in Grand Meadow, MN. He attended school at LeRoy-Ostrander where he graduated in 2002. After high school he attended RCTC's criminal justice program. Erick began working for Valley in January of 2006 as our permit coordinator. In his free time Erick enjoys spending as much time as he can in his boat chasing walleyes and participating in fishing tournaments, mainly on the Mississippi River. When he is not in the boat he can be found spending time on the golf course, making fishing tackle and deer hunting.

Scott Wilson, OTR Heavy Haul Permit Coordinator

Scott Wilson, OTR Heavy Haul Permit Coordinator

x139 scott@valleytransinc.com

Scott is from Grand Meadow, MN where he graduated from Grand Meadow High School in 2011. Scott continued his education onto Riverland Community College in Austin, MN where he received his Industrial Maintenance Degree. When Scott isn't ordering permits, he enjoys snowmobiling, getting his demolition derby car ready, hunting, and fishing.

Jared Stejskal, OTR & Regional Permit Coordinator

Jared Stejskal, OTR & Regional Permit Coordinator

x138 jstejskal@valleytransinc.com

Jared is from Spring Valley, MN. He is now living in Grand Meadow, MN, with his wife and son. He started at Valley Transportation Service Inc. in November 2013 as a permit coordinator. His day to day tasks include ordering permits for five axle trucks, reviewing permit books, and answering drivers questions. He graduated from Kingsland High School in Spring Valley, MN. In his spare time he enjoys watching Nascar, football and hanging out with family and friends.

Joey Strike, Brokerage Manager

Joey Strike, Brokerage Manager

x134. jstrike@valleytransinc.com

Joey is from Spring Valley, MN where he graduated from Kingsland High School in 2011. Joey continued his education onto Rochester Community and Technical College where he played football. Joey is in our brokerage department and has been here since June 2015. When he is not at work he enjoys playing golf and watching sports.

Michael Carr, Broker

Michael Carr, Broker

x110, mcarr@valleytransinc.com

Michael is from Albert Lea, MN. He graduated from Albert Lea High School and continued his education at Winona State University where he achieved a Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration. Michael has worked in retail, management, and marketing prior to coming to Valley Transportation Service, Inc. as a Broker. He lives in Spring Valley, MN and when not at work he enjoys listening to music, traveling, spending time with family, and watching sports! Thanks for joining the team Michael!

Tyler Hoffmann, Broker

Tyler Hoffmann, Broker

x125, thoffman@valleytransinc.com

Tyler currently resides in Rochester, MN. Tyler grew up on a dairy farm in Watertown, WI and graduated from Watertown High School in 2016. He then moved to Decorah, IA and received a Bachelor's degree in both Business Management and Political Science from Luther College in 2020. Tyler has worked on the family farm, Jefferson County Parks Department, political campaigns, and in an accounting office prior to working at Valley Transportation. In his free time, Tyler, enjoys target shooting, jogging, and watching movies.

Blake Benson, Broker

Blake Benson, Broker

x159, bbenson@valleytransinc.com

Blake was born and raised in Grand Meadow, MN where he graduated from Grand Meadow High School in 2017. Blake continued his education at Northeast Iowa Community College. Blake works in our brokerage firm and started his career at Valley Transportation Service, Inc. in June 2020. When not at work, Blake enjoys hunting, fishing, and being with friends and family.

Quinn Larson, Broker

Quinn Larson, Broker

x166, qlarson@valleytransinc.com

Quinn was born and raised in Spring Valley, MN where he graduated from Kingsland High School in 2016. Quinn continued his education at SMSU then transferred to Riverland Community College to get his Business Concentrated Degree. Quinn started with Valley in September of 2020 as a Broker. When he isn't at work he likes to be on the lake in the summer, hunting in the fall, snowmobiling in the winter and spending as much time with family and friends in between.

Mitchel Baldus, Shop Foreman

Mitchel Baldus, Shop Foreman

x206, mbaldus@valleytransinc.com

Mitchel was born and raised in Grand Meadow, MN. He graduated from Grand Meadow High School in 2008. After high school he worked in construction and farming. He has worked on and off for Valley Transportation since 2005 as a mechanic. He started full time as a parts manager in 2012 and was offered the Shop Foreman position in 2015. In his spare time he enjoys hunting, fishing, snowmobiling out West, and farming with his family. Mitchel is also a volunteer firefighter on Grand Meadow Fire & Rescue.

Andy Grafe, Equipment & Maintenance Support Manager

Andy Grafe, Equipment & Maintenance Support Manager

x107, andy@valleytransinc.com

Andy graduated from Grand Meadow High School. Andy was Valley Transportation's first ever truck driver in 1991 when his career started. He has been involved in the trucking industry for the last 20 years. He started as a mechanic, then onto a driver and now has worked his way into the customer service industry. Andy has a great basis of knowledge to offer Valley and his customers. His daily duties consist of quoting freight for his customers and assisting drivers in orientation such as teaching them load securement, PeopleNet operation, TriPac Operation and truck & trailer operation safety. Andy is a great attribute to this company!

Dennis Groesbeck, Parts Manager

Dennis Groesbeck, Parts Manager

x201, dgroesbeck@valleytransinc.com

Dennis started at Valley in 2012 as a maintenance technician where he specialized in APU repair. He moved into the Parts Manager position in March 2020. Prior to working at Valley Transportation, Dennis worked at Thermo-King Industries. Dennis keeps an accurate inventory count and is in charge of all of Valley's parts needs. When Dennis is not working, he enjoys working on his small acreage and camping with family, grandkids in specific!

Richie Unverzagt, Diesel Technician

Richie Unverzagt, Diesel Technician

Kyle Smith, Diesel Technician

Kyle Smith, Diesel Technician

Jon Krause, Diesel Technician

Jon Krause, Diesel Technician

Shad Bungum, Diesel Technician

Shad Bungum, Diesel Technician

Jacob Hershberger, Diesel Technician

Jacob Hershberger, Diesel Technician

Jesse Crowson, Diesel Technician

Jesse Crowson, Diesel Technician

Tico Barquero, Wash Bay Manager

Tico Barquero, Wash Bay Manager

Sean Coon, Wash Bay Attendant

Sean Coon, Wash Bay Attendant

Red Alden, Yard Manager

Red Alden, Yard Manager

Larry Stejskal, Waterloo Yard Manager

Larry Stejskal, Waterloo Yard Manager

lstejskal@valleytransinc.com

Larry is responsible for daily operations at our Waterloo drop yard in Waterloo, IA. His day-to-day tasks include loading and unloading miscellaneous equipment from tractor-trailers and keeping an accurate inventory.

Gilbert (Mickey) Vargas, Grounds & Property Manager

Gilbert (Mickey) Vargas, Grounds & Property Manager

Mickey is the all-around maintenance manager. He is responsible for day-to-day maintenance tasks. He has been employed at Valley since August of 1997 and just celebrated his 20 year anniversary here! When Mickey is not at work, he enjoys spending time with his family and helping out his church.