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RDO Equipment Co. News - November, 2015

Learn about our stores, equipment, employees and service to the community.

Rochester Supports and Participates in Muddy Warrior Race

Rochester Supports and Participates in Muddy Warrior Race

A Rochester customer, Elcor Construction, served as the director for this year’s Muddy Warrior Race, which is put on to raise money for the Wounded Warrior Foundation and a weekend retreat they host to help our veterans. Elcor Construction reached out to the Rochester store team to consider being a corporate sponsor for the race.

Not only did the Rochester team financially support the event – they quickly put together a 15 person team to compete in the Muddy Warrior Race. The race was a 5K run filled with 18 special obstacles ranging from an icy water plunge, to crawling through a mud bog under barbed wire, to various climbing stations. Getting wet and covered in mud was all part of the competition.

“It was a great way to help a very worthy cause and our team had an absolute blast! We can hardly wait until next year!” commented Todd Koenigs, General Manager.

Webster Strengthens Partnership with Local FFA Chapter

Webster Strengthens Partnership with Local FFA Chapter

Webster Strengthens Partnership with Local FFA Chapter

The Webster store has been a longtime supporter of the Webster FFA program and recently, was able to show them just how much support RDO Equipment Co. can offer.

The Webster FFA is unique in a way that they actually have their own farm for the students to operate. This year the group had 40 acres of soybeans that they planted and took care of themselves. When it came time to harvest, RDO Equipment Co. stepped up with the donation of a John Deere S670 and 635F.

Service Technician Darin Rumpza made sure the equipment was performing at its best for the students. Account Manager Jerod Matthews demonstrated how to run the machine for the students and then they took over.

“It was a unique opportunity for our students to gain this kind of exposure to the equipment and technology,” said Fred Zenk, Webster FFA advisor.

“We are thrilled to be able to play a part in this. It is great to see the young people in our communities step up to the plate and take ownership. Fred Zenk is doing a great job with the FFA in Webster,” commented JD Kessler, Store Manager.

Now that harvest is complete, the students are learning how to market their crop. “It’s another opportunity for these students to learn about the business,” added Fred.

Flagstaff and Prescott Host Customer Open House Events

Flagstaff and Prescott Host Customer Open House Events

Flagstaff and Prescott Host Customer Open House Events

The Prescott and Flagstaff locations held customer engagement open house events on September 17th and 18th.  The events were very successful with 150 customers attending. Customers enjoyed lunch and one lucky Flagstaff customer, Clint Bleeker of The Landscape Connection, had the winning ticket for a Liberty Safe that was given away.

On September 17th, the Prescott location also had a Chamber of Commerce ribbon cutting ceremony.  On hand for the event included Dennis Howard, Vice President of Southwest Construction, and Chris Ritter, CWP Sales Manager.

“We were very pleased with the turnout,” Adam Spade said. “It was a great opportunity for our customers to spend some time in our stores and get to see some of the new models of John Deere equipment. Our teams in both Flagstaff and Prescott really came together to organize two very smooth events.”

November 23, 2015  |  Category: Events
Construction, Integrated Controls, and Vermeer Divisions Impress at Minnesota Fall Maintenance Expo

Construction, Integrated Controls, and Vermeer Divisions Impress at Minnesota Fall Maintenance Expo

Construction, Integrated Controls, and Vermeer Divisions Impress at Minnesota Fall Maintenance Expo

In early October, several Minnesota Construction store participated in the Minnesota Fall Maintenance Expo. This is an annual equipment show in which RDO Equipment Co. has been participating in since 1995 and it is one of Minnesota’s best equipment shows.

Maintenance crews from governmental agencies around the state of Minnesota gather each year in St. Cloud for this show. The show boasts 58 outdoor vendors and 90 indoor vendors and also puts on an outdoor Snowplow Rodeo and Skid Steer Competitions for attendees.

This year, RDO Equipment Co. brought in a motor grader, backhoe, skid steer, Mini Excavator and an ag tractor. In addition, the Burnsville Vermeer store brought in several pieces of equipment including a stump cutter, Mini Skid Steer, and a brush chipper. RDO Integrated Controls also brought in several pieces of machine control technology to have on display.

Inside the RDO Equipment Co. tent were John Deere excavator and motor grader simulators for attendees to try, along with JD Link Product Specialist, Chad Christen, who displayed the JD Link Technology. He was able to bring up customers’ equipment on his computer for a live demo.

Sales teams from Moorhead, Marshall, Rochester, North Mankato, Burnsville (both Construction and Vermeer), Bloomington and Sauk Rapids staffed the show. 

“Many thanks to the hard work that went into our space highlighting RDO Equipment Co. as a total solutions provider,” commented Pete Barrie, Sauk Rapids General Manager. “Special thanks to Krista Wiemer, Sauk Rapids; Mark Rieckhoff, Pat Arnold, and Randy Noska, Burnsville  Vermeer; and Jesse Miller, Burnsville Construction, for the time spent organizing set up and take down of the show.”

He added, “RDO Equipment Co. made a great impression this year and a great time was had by all of our customers.”

November 20, 2015  |  Category: Events

Rod Fisher First in OR to Earn Certified Vermeer Technician – Tree Care

Rod Fisher First in OR to Earn Certified Vermeer Technician – Tree Care

Rod Fisher, Portland Field Service Technician, is the first technician in Oregon to earn the Vermeer certification of “Certified Vermeer Technician – Tree Care” with a passing test score of 88%.

Ollie Windle, General Manager, stated, “We are excited for Rod to earn this Vermeer certification and proud that he continues to develop as a technician and valuable team member for the Oregon region.  The next step is to strive towards Vermeer certification in other product lines as well as pushing for the ultimate goal of Certified Vermeer Master Technician.”

Trey Kizer Named Hewitt Store Manager

Trey Kizer Named Waco Store Manager

Trey Kizer has been named Store Manager in Hewitt. In his new role, he’ll be responsible for all sales, parts, service, rental, and store operations at the Hewitt location

Trey has worked for RDO Equipment Co. for more than 13 years in a sales role and has a vast knowledge of the industry and customer base.

Cory Kosse, Austin and Hewitt General Manager commented, “I’m confident Trey will be a great leader and developer for our Hewitt store.”

Annual RDO Caters Taters for Charity Event Raises More than $66,000

Annual RDO Caters Taters for Charity Event Raises More than $66,000

Annual RDO Caters Taters for Charity Event Raises More than $66,000
2015 Proceeds Benefit Taylor Made Living of the Anne Carlsen Center

RDO Equipment Co. and R.D. Offutt Company held their annual event, RDO Caters Taters for Charity in Fargo on November 5, 2015 at the Baymont Inn & Suites. The potato luncheon and raffle served roughly 2,700 potatoes through both dine in and take out and raised $66,410 for Anne Carlsen Center’s Taylor Made Living.

The Taylor Made Living model will offer another choice for adults with disabilities and their families different from other community living arrangements – one that is driven by individual needs and choices recognizing that recreation, and leisure activities, community involvement, and social interaction are as important as vocational and daily living skills training.

Patrick Kirby, Chief Development Officer of Anne Carlsen Center, commented, “We were so excited to be selected as this year’s charity of choice. It allowed us to let so many more people know about what the Anne Carlsen Center is doing in the community, such as our Taylor Made Living residential facility.”

He added, “We are so grateful to RDO, the sponsors, the volunteers and staff who made this event so amazing, and everyone in the community who participated for their generosity and support!”

In its 16th year, RDO Caters Taters has raised more than $430,000 for charities in the Fargo Moorhead community. A different charity is selected each year. To learn more about the potato luncheon, visit

Ron Offutt Inducted into the Junior Achievement Upper Midwest Business Hall of Fame

Ron Offutt Inducted into the Junior Achievement Upper Midwest Business Hall of Fame

Ron Offutt Inducted into the Junior Achievement Upper Midwest Business Hall of Fame

On September 24, Ron Offutt, Founder and Chairman Emeritus, was among six leaders inducted into the 2015 Junior Achievement Upper Midwest Business Hall of Fame. Inductees were selected for their excellence in business and philanthropy, and for their significant contributions to their communities. Their stories aim to inspire local students to strive for success and encourage their entrepreneurial spirit.

Junior Achievement programs are taught in nearly 700 schools throughout the Midwest, exposing nearly 160,000 students in grades K-12 to its programming focused on relevant, fundamental learning opportunities.

As part of his induction, a video was produced by the JAUM team and highlights the business success and entrepreneurial spirit of Mr. Offutt. You can view the video here: 

Hayward Helps Clean California Shorelines

Hayward Helps Clean California Shorelines

Employees from the Hayward location participated in the 31st annual California Coastal Cleanup Day. This annual event has volunteers cleaning the shoreline from Mexico to the Oregon border, beaches, inland waterways, around the San Francisco bay to as far inland as Lake Tahoe. This year, the Hayward team decided to volunteer once again at the Hayward Shoreline Interpretive Center located at the South Eastern part of the San Francisco bay about a mile away from the store. This was just one of the over 850 sites in 55 of California’s 58 counties available for volunteers in this year’s event.

This year’s volunteers included CSA Frank Gouveia, Vermeer Account Manager Mark Meyer, RDOIC Account Manager Jason Lacey, as well as their family members and friends. The groups working at the center were split up with some people picking up trash along the salt marshes while other groups pulled out an invasive plant called stink wort. Some of the unusual items found this year included an electric guitar, a plastic Tiki statue, playground ball, and a tennis shoe.

With 75% of the cleanup sites reporting, the statewide count stands at 53,555 volunteers. Those volunteers picked up 548,450 pounds of trash and an additional 65,738 pounds of recyclable materials, for a total of 614,188 pounds or 307 tons. Past cleanups found that 60-80% of the debris picked up on the beaches and shoreline is made up of single use disposable plastic items that originate on land and travel through storm drains, creeks, or rivers and end up on the beach and in the ocean.

After the event everyone met back at the interpretive center for snacks and watermelon. “It’s great to hear everyone say how good they feel about what they did after the event. We look forward to this event every year,” said Frank.

November 11, 2015  |  Category:

Moorhead Store Partners with John Deere Electronic Solutions to Give Back to Food Bank

John Deere Electronic Solutions, based in Fargo, ND, is a branch of John Deere that provides innovative technologies and engineering design capabilities, in addition to extensive manufacturing. They are responsible for many of the electronic components found in all John Deere equipment.

Over the past several years, RDO Equipment Co. has partnered with JDES and provided equipment at their employee events.  Because of that involvement and relationship, the Moorhead store recently demonstrated their expertise and knowledge on a donation to the Great Plains Food Bank.

John Deere Electronic Solutions had a budget of $3,000 to utilize towards a donation of a riding mower to the Great Plains Food Bank, which serves the state of North Dakota and Western Minnesota. The food bank had plans to add a front mount snow blower to the lawn mower down the road.

“After learning more about the size of the yard and the relatively small area of sidewalks that would need snow removal, I suggested looking at a smaller riding mower and a walk behind snow blower,” commented Kipp Anderson, Transactional Account Manager.

The Moorhead store was able to discount the equipment to the point that they met the budget of John Deere Electronic System while fulfilling the ultimate needs of the food bank.

“This is a great example of our team members displaying a passion to meet the needs of our customer, in this, both JDES and the food bank,” said Steve Connelly, Vice President of Midwest Agriculture.

Matt Milosevich is new Webster Parts Manager

Matt Milosevich is the new Parts Manager in Webster. Matt joined RDO Equipment Co. in 2013 as a Parts Specialist in Aberdeen. Matt’s background in agriculture and ranching has made him a great asset to the company, and while in Aberdeen, had exposure to all aspects of the business, including trucks, construction, and agriculture.

“I’m excited to welcome Matt to the team in Webster. His work ethic, character, and strong leadership qualities will make him a great addition to our team!” said JD Kessler, Store Manager.

October 27, 2015  |  Category:

Webster Employee Picnic

The Webster store sent summer out in style at an all-employee pig roast on Sunday, September 13. The event featured a hog, purchased from a local 4H’er and roasted. They followed lunch with a bean bag tournament that father/son Terry and AJ Meland won and had activities for the kids including a bounce house.

“This was a fun, Sunday afternoon get together. What was really neat is that we had it on the ‘front lawn’ of our store – so as customers were driving by and honking, the whole community got a glimpse as to the kind of people that work at RDO Equipment Co.,” commented JD Kessler. “We’re the kind of people that have each other’s back, people that have fun together, and people that are committed to the community in which we work.”

Peter Johnson Name Ada Service Manager

Peter Johnson is the new Service Manager at RDO Equipment Co. in Ada. Johnson joined RDO Equipment Co. in 2013 in a regional role, working with service departments throughout North Dakota, Minnesota, and South Dakota.

Johnson is a graduate of North Dakota State University and has been in the service industry for the past five years. Johnson also served for 13 years in the Minnesota National Guard.

“Peter has gained valuable knowledge and experience working with many of our stores in the Red River Valley and beyond,” commented Evan Fonder, Store Manager. “I am very excited about the leadership he brings to our team, and looking forward to working with him to support growers in our community.”

Team Building Event for Breckenridge, Fergus Falls, and Hawley   Members of the Breckenridge, Fergus

Members of the Breckenridge, Fergus Falls, and Hawley teams got together on a Saturday afternoon for a team building event at a paintball course in Audubon, MN. They spent time on two different courses, one being a very wooded area and the other an open course with limited hiding places!

They ended the day at the Hawley store for some great food prepared by the team and additional fellowship.

“Everyone had a great time,” said Mike Makovsky, Breckenridge Store Manager. “Anytime we can spend time together doing an activity that many of us enjoy is a great day!”

October 22, 2015  |  Category:
RDO Integrated Controls Approved by FAA to Fly Drones

RDO Integrated Controls Approved by FAA to Fly Drones

FARGO, ND (October 19, 2015) – RDO Integrated Controls, a division of RDO Equipment Co., has received FAA approval to operate unmanned aircraft vehicles (UAVs) to conduct mapping, training, agricultural, and survey applications. The company is an authorized senseFly distributor and sells and supports various UAV units for customers across many industries.

The FAA approval comes in the form of an exemption to Section 333 of the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012 (FMRA), which covers the operation and registration of aircraft in the national airspace. The Section 333 Exemption grants authorization for certain unmanned aircraft to perform commercial operations. These flights must occur at or below 200 feet by a UAV operator with aircraft weighing less than 55 pounds during daytime and be conducted within visual line of sight of the pilots while maintaining a certain distance from airports or heliports. Fewer than 2,000 Section 333 exemptions have been granted nationwide to date.

Matt Hayes, RDO Integrated Controls Mapping/UAV Product Supervisor, commented, “We are extremely pleased with the news. Receiving our exemption is a positive step towards expanding the benefits of this technology within the commercial marketplace.”

For more information about how RDO Integrated Controls UAV solutions can work for your business, visit


About RDO Integrated Controls
RDO Integrated Controls, founded in 2009, is a division of RDO Equipment Co. The division provides positioning solutions for customers in the construction, mining, engineering, survey, and landfill industries. For more information, visit

About RDO Equipment Co.
Founded in 1968, RDO Equipment Co. sells and support agriculture, construction, environmental, positioning, surveying, and irrigation equipment from manufacturers including John Deere, Vermeer, and Topcon. With more than 75 locations across the United States, including partnerships in Russia, Ukraine, and Australia, RDO Equipment Co. is a total solutions provider. Learn more at

Phoenix Donates to Local School in Need

The Children’s First Academy, located near the Phoenix store, is a school that teaches children ages kindergarten through high school. They have roughly 350 students who live below the poverty level, and the vast majority of the students are homeless. Their buses log roughly 900 miles a day picking up and dropping off students to shelters, motels, and apartments. The school’s goal is to provide a high quality of education and provide curriculum that brings each child’s performance to grade level.

Last year, the Phoenix store got involved with this school by donating school supplies and backpacks. This year, the store was notified that they were in desperate need of food and hygiene products, in addition to school supplies. The team members in Phoenix came together and donated school supplies, hygiene products, and gently used clothing. The store then made a donation of $250 in food.

“This was a very successful donation for our store for such a worthy cause,” commented Michael Carr, Parts Specialist.

Dennis Howard, Vice President of Southwest Construction, added, “Any time you can help a child in need, it is worth the effort. The Phoenix store does a great job of coming together and supporting this and many other causes.”

Mark Kuhn Named Irving General Manager

Mark Kuhn has been named General Manager of the Irving, Texas location.

Mark joined RDO Equipment Co. in 2006 as a Sales Professional in San Antonio, TX, and then moved to Irving, TX, as the Sales Manager. In 2011, he moved to Riverside, CA, as Sales Manager and became General Manager of Riverside in 2012. Before that, Mark worked at Alamo Industrial as a Texas Territory Manager.

“We are excited to have Mark lead the Irving location and know his experience, drive, and passion for RDO Equipment Co. will be well received. We look forward to leveraging the many experiences he gained while managing in the SWCE region,” said Daryl Shelton, Vice President of Texas.
Mark starts his new role on November 1, 2015

October 13, 2015  |  Category:

Irving Interns Compete in National Tractor Restoration Competition

Leo Davila and Edwin Castro-Alvarado are currently interning at the Irving shop part time while they go to school at Dubiski Career High School. It is an innovative technical school for high school students that equip them with the skills they need for the 21st century professions.

Through their involvement with their school’s FFA program, Leo and Edwin and their fellow FFA’ers made it to the national level of the Delo Tractor Restoration Competition. They restored a 1946 Farmall “B” tractor.

According to the information on the competition’s web page, the overall condition of the tractor was BAD. The tractor had been sitting behind a home and hadn’t run in many years. The engine and power train were intact as individual components and the electrical system was in very poor condition. The starter and generator were hard to diagnose since the tractor didn’t start. The students attempted to turn the engine over by hand but it was frozen. They weren’t able to diagnose the transmission or the final drive with just a visual inspection. Gauges were in poor condition and the brakes were inoperable. The paint was completely gone and the sheet metal was in poor shape – but there was a hint of the original paint. Not a single piece of this tractor was repaired or restored without the DIRECT participation of the Dubiski FFA members.

“While this isn’t a John Deere tractor, it is quite impressive that this was done entirely by high school students. We are lucky to have Leo and Edwin in our shop. They bring a passion for this industry and reminds us all why we love what we do,” said Rob Duckett, Service Advisor.

New RDO Equipment Co. General Manager Named in Riverside

Duane Bonini has been named general manager of RDO Equipment Co. in Riverside, Calif., effective October 12, 2015. Bonini will be responsible for all operations at both the Riverside and Fontana locations. In fall 2016, the two stores will combine into one location in Riverside and Bonini will continue to lead the John Deere and Vermeer operations.

Mark Kuhn, previous General Manager in Riverside, has relocated to Texas where he will serve as the General Manager at the organization’s Irving location.

Since 2009, Bonini has served as general manager of the southern California RDO Equipment Co. Vermeer operations, which include the Rancho Dominguez and Fontana locations. He will continue to be responsible for the Vermeer operations in Southern California, working directly with Vermeer Manufacturing and the RDO Equipment Co. management team.

Marshall Anderson, Executive Vice President and head of the RDO Equipment Co. Vermeer teams, commented, “Duane has done a superb job of leading our Southern California Vermeer business over the past six years. His passion for driving employee engagement, customer service and the industry overall is contagious and has driven great results. I look forward to continuing to work hand-in-hand with him and his team in order to drive the growth of Vermeer and RDO Equipment Co. in Southern California.”

Dennis Howard, Vice President of Southwest Construction, commented, “Duane is a proven leader in the Southwest. He is coming in at a point where he can leverage the strength of the current teams. He understands and embraces the single enterprise our customers desire from a partner.”


About RDO Equipment Co.
Founded in 1968, RDO Equipment Co. sells and support agriculture, construction, environmental, positioning, surveying, and irrigation equipment from manufacturers including John Deere, Vermeer, and Topcon. With more than 75 locations across the United States, including partnerships in Russia, Ukraine, and Australia, RDO Equipment Co. is a total solutions provider. Learn more at

October 9, 2015  |  Category:

San Antonio Makes a Little Boy’s Dreams Come True

Using the “Contact Us” form on our company website, Chad Jakel submitted a request to his nearest John Deere store:

“I have a son, Callen, with a neurological disorder. He is developmentally delayed and nonverbal, along with a host of other medical conditions. One of his favorite things in life is John Deere tractors and construction equipment. He owns three different “I Love John Deere” DVDs.

Callen uses sign language and has created his own sign for "tractors."  The sign looks like a person using a large steering wheel.  It is his most used and clearest sign used.

Callen’s birthday is next month and I wanted to do something special for him. I was wondering if we could bring Callen to your business so he could see the equipment up close. I think it would absolutely blow his mind! If there was any we could see some of the tractors in action, that would be amazing. At the very least, could we walk around the property to look at the equipment?”

The San Antonio store quickly invited Callen and his family to the store and arranged for a visit.

On August 14, Callen and his family toured the store, and got to spend some “stick time” in a loader, dozer, and excavator. After operating the equipment, Callen and his family were brought into the breakroom where the entire San Antonio store sang him Happy Birthday. They served cake and gave Callen a few John Deere toys as gifts.

In a follow up email, Callen’s dad wrote, “I can't even begin to thank you and your crew for what you did today.  There have been some rough times over the last couple of years with Callen's health, but today was one of his brightest ever.  We feel so thankful and blessed for everything.”

“We had a wonderful time getting to know Callen and his family, and I know that we have developed a lifelong friendship with them,” said Shane Brownlow, General Manager.

Callen was recently awarded a Walt Disney vacation from “Wish with Wings” and will be heading to Disney World in September. However, his family says they’re not sure it will top the excitement he had spending the day at RDO Equipment Co. next to his favorite line of tractors!

October 6, 2015  |  Category:

Knife River – Success in Belgrade, MT

Knife River is one of the largest construction materials and contracting companies in the United States, with more than 4,800 employees in 19 states and their footprint is very similar to that of RDO Equipment Co.’s.

In Montana, Knife River is one of RDO Integrated Control strongest supporters in the industry of machine control and John Deere and Topcon integration.

For the East Belgrade Interchange project, Knife River completed a very detailed interstate project that involved construction of new bridges along I90. Beginning in August 2013, the project consisted of four phases, with an expected completion of this summer.

Nick McGregor, Knife River GPS Project Manager expected the Interchange project to be a ‘no stakes in the ground’ project, and except for an initial layout for visual effects, that was a true statement.

“Typically when most roads are built, a separate surveyor will provide staking, such as catch stakes. There is vital information we need to know as far as slopes, shoulders of the roads, and measuring fill material. Also, with three roundabouts that were incorporated into this Interchange Project, there were various amounts of grade changes with tight radii. But we were able to utilize our GPS equipment for all of it,” commented Nick.

He added, “With the complexity of the Interchange Project, having machine control take over with no waiting period for survey stakes to be put in the ground, we were able to keep building as fast as we could import or export the material, giving us full advantage for early completion.”

RDO Equipment Co. and RDO Integrated Controls, a united team, filled the needs of Knife River throughout every phase of the project, whether it was heavy equipment needs, machine parts and repair, or machine control service and support. “When we had equipment break downs, RDO made sure to get us the necessary parts as quickly as they could so our down time was very minimal. They would also check in with us, whether it was to see how the equipment was working or the part they replaced was correct or to see if we needed anything from them,” Nick said.

A wide range of equipment was utilized, including Topcon GPS base and rover systems, to John Deere motor graders and dozers, and Topcon Paving sonic systems.

Kelly Snively, RDOIC Account Manager, commented, “This was the ultimate partnership between customer, manufacturers, and dealer. Our customer finished the job way ahead of schedule and commended this accomplishment on the level of technology, equipment, and support they had from our team.”

Nick added, “The partnership with the Montana team was great. When a problem occurred, any individual I spoke with would have an answer for me right away. I got to know quite a few of them very well. These team members made my life a lot easier when it came to resolving issues. There was no taking a back seat with them – solutions were given in a favorable manner.”

Vice President of RDO Integrated Controls, Kelly Gress, added, “Through a single enterprise approach, we truly demonstrated our ability to provide a total solution, which is a significant win for our entire organization.”

September 29, 2015  |  Category:
Grand Forks Team Members Volunteers at Local Habitat for Humanity Build

Grand Forks Team Members Volunteers at Local Habitat for Humanity Build

On Friday, July 10, seven members of the RDO Equipment Co. team in Grand Forks used their special skills and talents to help the Habitat for Humanity build a new home for a local family. Parts Specialists Mike Schuler and Adam Thompson, along with Service Technicians Jason Kouba, Zach LaMarca, Jeff Ness, James Sorum, and Travis Thompson,  worked side-by-side to frame the home.

It was hot outside, but the team never slowed down – they worked hard and accomplished considerably more than the site foreman had expected them to. As an added benefit, RDO Equipment Co. provided lunch at an area restaurant for all those that were involved with the build that day – a nice break from the heat and humidity. 

Mike Schuler commented, “This was the first time I have volunteered for a project like this. It felt good knowing we were helping out a family in need.”

“It was a fun day to be out there with people I work with, but to be working with them in a different environment – I learned a lot of things while helping build a house that I’ve never done before!,” said Adam Thompson.

He added, “I would encourage other team members to utilize their Community Time because it’s an awesome thing this company offers every employee – eight hours of paid time to volunteer to help others in need. Not many companies do something like this.”

Roni Lillehaugen, General Manager in Grand Forks, was very pleased with the teamwork exhibited for the build. “The team members were all feeling pretty good about their contributions to this worthy cause. They told me how much fun they had and appreciated the opportunity to give back to the community.”

September 28, 2015  |  Category:
“The Wall” Makes a Successful and Memorable Stop in Sioux Falls, SD

“The Wall” Makes a Successful and Memorable Stop in Sioux Falls, SD

A replica of the Vietnam Memorial Wall made an appearance in Sioux Falls, SD August 6-9, and RDO Equipment Co. supported this tribute with employee volunteer time and John Deere equipment. 

The Sioux Falls chapter of the Vietnam Veterans of America sponsored the largest traveling war memorial to visit the Sioux Falls community and reached out to active members of the local Association of General Contractors. The Sioux Falls team partnered with Soukup Construction, which provided an operator for a John Deere 772GP motor grader to construct a level walkway to serve as a base for the wall to sit upon.

RDO Equipment Co. team members gathered to assemble the 360’ long replica as well as assisted the construction of bleachers, flag poles, and fences. The volunteers were dedicated to help make the Wall a first class memorial to pay respect to Vietnam veterans.

The memorial’s daily activities had regular guest speakers and information tents where people could ask for assistance in locating names on the wall.  Several gathering tents where available for veterans and guests could rest or share stories of their experiences. The memorial was open 24 hours a day and thousands were able to visit the site. 

The entire Sioux Falls team was involved throughout this unique experience. “This was an excellent way to use our Community Time to work together to honor our veterans,” commented Jeffrey Mathis, Service Advisor.

September 26, 2015  |  Category:
Tucson Supports Backpack Brigade Program

Tucson Supports Backpack Brigade Program

For the third year in a row, the Tucson team donated nearly $500 worth of school supplies to Tucson Troop Support, which in turn provides free backpacks filled with school supplies to local military families.

In addition to the donation, several Tucson team members volunteered at the Annual Back to School Backpack Event to fill and distribute the backpacks to the family members of the National Guard, Reserve, and Active Duty personnel.

“We feel very honored to do this for our military heroes and their families,” commented Lisa Roberts, Office Manager.

September 24, 2015  |  Category:
Military Discount Now Available on GreenFleet

Military Discount Now Available on GreenFleet

A military discount program was created by John Deere under the GreenFleet program. The Agriculture groups were made aware of this program, and thought it would be beneficial to promote.

“Working solely with governmental customers, I have been asked many times if we or John Deere have any programs for our current and past veterans. And until now, I had to answer no. When we were informed about this GreenFleet promotion, it was exciting to see that we finally had a program we could offer an opportunity to our veterans to purchase John Deere equipment,” commented Jason Hintermeister, Governmental Sales Specialist.

Jason worked with Sara Rooney, Marketing Specialist, to design the floor displays and counter displays. In addition, stores are encouraged to hang, in the appropriate manner, an American flag about the poster displays on showroom floors.

“We are hoping to let every American Veteran – past and present – know how much we appreciate their service to our country. I would encourage every RDO Equipment Co. team member to take the time to say thank you to any veteran who stops into our locations inquiring about the program or any veteran they meet out in our communities. This program gives us the opportunity to offer that gratitude and reminds us that our freedom does not come without great sacrifice,” Jason added.

Learn more about John Deere's GreenFleet program: 

September 21, 2015  |  Category:

Sunnyside Donates 1200 Water Bottles to Firefighters in Northwest

According to news sources, the fire burning in Washington is now the largest in state history. In an effort to show support the Sunnyside team donated all of the store’s bottled water to help firefighters who are fighting the flames.

Roughly 1200 bottles of water were donated to the Sunnyside Fire Department, who has been assisting with the fires.

“It’s a small way that we’re able to give back and show our support of their efforts,” said Steve Taylor, General Manager.

September 18, 2015  |  Category:
Vermeer Southern California Customer First to Purchase Newly Released Stump Cutter

Vermeer Southern California Customer First to Purchase Newly Released Stump Cutter

The City of Redlands, CA, is the proud owner of Vemeer’s newly released SC40TX Stump Cutter. This machine, the first of its kind, allows the operator to drive to, and even cut the stump, from the stand-on platform. Among many other enhancements, it offers improved speed and maneuverability compared to other self-propelled models.

Upon delivery of the unit, the Southern California team conducted an RDO PromiseTM training session with the City of Redlands team. During the training session, two RDO Equipment Co. account managers highlighted all of the maintenance points, wearable parts and items, safety features, and operator controls. They also went through the operator’s manual and discussed helpful pages and answered any questions. Three City employees then operated the unit under the guidance of the account managers. This hands-on portion covered proper throttle speeds, cutter wheel sweep speeds, safety from ground traction and flying objects, to job efficiency. Wrapping up the training, the RDO Equipment Co. team members answered questions about fuel efficiency, ease of transport, and clean up.

“The biggest positive for the customer is that the unit is track mounted,” stated Eric Tusler, Sales Manager. “The City previously had a wheeled tow-behind unit that was very cumbersome. Their new stump cutter allows them into tough areas and gets the job done faster. They waited four months for this machine – even built their bid spec around it – but are very pleased with their purchase and the service they’ve received from our team.”

September 16, 2015  |  Category: Products

Employee Utilizes Community Time to Help Fight Wildfire

The Douglas Fire Protective Association (DFPA) requested to rent chippers to help secure the fire line for the Oregon Department of Forestry’s battle against the Stouts Creek fire. A wildfire in Southwest Oregon has spread quickly due to dry conditions and very hot temperatures.

Chris Stanley, Eugene Sales Professional, delivered two chippers for their use, but the DFPA didn’t have someone to operate one. They found a logging company to supply the guys, run the machine, and tow it around, but only a few of them had ever been around a chipper.

Since a walk around and equipment training isn’t much fun without material to run through it, Chris volunteered to go up on the fire line. He attended a couple safety classes and they issued him all the gear needed.

Chris started bright and early with the DFPA, which he said was a neat experience because he got to sit through their briefings and attend a breakfast with one of the teams. Along with the local association, there were fire departments and individual firefighters from all over the state, as well as a few out of state. The fire, at one point, was growing around 1,000 acres an hour. A large amount of homes in the area have been evacuated in the steep country.

“This was an experience I’ll never forget – they were grateful to be shown how to properly utilize the chippers and the equipment is helping them do their job. I don’t think I’ll quit my day job – but it was exciting to get in the middle of it and help out for a couple of days,” commented Chris.

September 11, 2015  |  Category:

RDO Equipment Co. Announces New Location in Southeast Phoenix

PHOENIX, Ariz. – RDO Equipment Co. announces the addition of a new John Deere construction dealership in Southeast Phoenix, Ariz. The store will be located on Interstate 10 just south of the 202. Construction will be starting soon, with the expected opening in fall 2016.

The additional Phoenix location will complement the current location located in Central Phoenix. This new store will allow an enhanced level of service to customers in the Phoenix and surrounding area.

Curtis Tuttle will lead the sales team for the new location as Sales Manager. Tuttle joins RDO Equipment Co. with more than 17 years in the equipment industry, having management experience at Bobcat, Kubota, and CNH dealerships. Most recently he served as the Operations Manager for Ohio Valley Ag in Kentucky.

“The additional Phoenix location furthers our commitment to our customers and allows us to expand our overall services and product support capabilities in an expanding market.  We look forward to growing our close-knit team into an additional location and continuing to serve the Phoenix community for many years to come,” commented Dennis Howard, Vice President of Southwest Construction.

Bismarck Gives Back During Day of Caring Event

Bismarck Gives Back During Day of Caring Event

The Bismarck team had 13 employees participate in their community’s United Way Day of Caring event. The Day of Caring event is an entire day in which volunteers from across the community join forces and help complete projects for local organizations. In total, Bismarck-Mandan had 1,000 volunteers give their time to support 50 different projects throughout the community.

The team members from Bismarck spent the day at Fort Abraham Lincoln State Park, painting the walk ways of the military post buildings. This park was once an important infantry and Calvary post where Lt. Col. George Custer and his Calvary stayed before riding out to fight the Sioux at the Little Big Horn. Each year, thousands visit Fort Abraham Lincoln State Park.

Stacy Risch, Sales Coordinator, was one of the volunteers from the store. She commented, “It was a great time spent with co-workers, even though it was near 100 degrees! One of the employees at the park was very happy with our work and said that we went above and beyond what he expected us to get done. Our efforts helped saved the park so much time and money and he said he wants us back again next year! It made us feel good that our work made a difference and was so appreciated.”

September 6, 2015  |  Category:

RDO Equipment Co. Named to Prairie Business Magazine’s 50 Best Places to Work

FARGO, N.D. (September 3, 2015) – RDO Equipment Co. has been named to Prairie Business magazine’s 50 Best Places to Work, specifically in the top 25 large for-profit companies (100+ employees). All 50 companies were honored in the September issue of the magazine.

Prairie Business is the only business-to-business magazine dedicated to the northern Plains region, focusing on the success and opportunities in North Dakota, South Dakota, and western Minnesota. For the annual Best Places to Work content, the magazine received nearly 2,500 surveys nominating more than 140 companies.

“These businesses are showing their commitment to being great and we’re happy to tell you about it,” said Korrie Wenzel, Prairie Business publisher.

Chris Cooper, RDO Equipment Co. Chief Operating Officer, commented, “We are honored to be selected as one of the Top 50 Best Places to Work. What makes this recognition so unique is that we were awarded based on the submissions from our team members in the upper Midwest.”

To view the magazine and see the complete list, visit:

Kindred Leads Community Blood Drive

Fern Elofson from United Blood Services was looking for a new site coordinator for Kindred since their long time coordinator retired and moved away to lakes country. Looking at the Kindred donor list they came across Brenda Olsgaard’s name. Fern wanted to contact her since she has donated over five gallons of blood over the years and thought someone that was so generous by giving that much must have a passion and would help promote the need for giving.

Once Fern found out Brenda worked for RDO Equipment Co., she was hoping for a win-win since she knew other area RDO Equipment Co. stores also help them by coordinating blood drives as well.

Brenda talked to Store Manager, Greg Moffet, and wondered if the store would be willing to help coordinate the July blood drive and they made it happen.

Brenda has donated a lot of blood without having personally knowing someone that was in need of blood to survive, but Greg Moffet and his wife became active donors after their youngest two sons needed blood before they both were born prematurely. Greg’s sons are now 14 and nine. “Without willing people like Brenda that donate, I know my two sons would not have survived. Brenda and I thought this would be a great opportunity for our fellow team members to help others with their time and blood,” commented Greg.

The two met with United Blood Services and found out what they needed to do:

  1. Promote the blood drive by hanging posters in town and local area businesses.
  2. Make calls off of donor lists that UBS provided to us.
  3. Schedule donors throughout the 1-6 p.m. time slots so “backed up” or “slow” periods are minimal.
  4. Help set up the site (We used City Hall which has “been the spot” for other drives).
  5. Work the check in table when donors came in.
  6. Provide drinks and snacks to donors during their waiting period.

“I personally want to thank Brenda for taking the lead on this and making it so successful. I also want to thank the other employees who took the time to help and/or donate as well.” The Kindred team had nine donators and three of the nine did a double red blood cell donation.

The United Blood Services was very happy with Brenda and RDO Equipment Co.’s passion to make a successful drive and looks forward to work with them again.

September 2, 2015  |  Category:
Hawley, Fergus Falls, and Breckenridge Hold Employee Event

Hawley, Fergus Falls, and Breckenridge Hold Employee Event

More than 80 employees and their family members from the Hawley, Breckenridge and Fergus Falls stores came out to watch the racing at the I-94 Speedway in Fergus Falls in late June. The “Night at the Races” tailgating party is the second year these stores have hosted the free event. 

Employees and their families brought out there blankets and chairs on “Fender Friday” to watch Wissota Northern late model racing. Store Managers, Steve Martin and Mike Makovsky, manned the grills serving burgers and brats. 

“It was really great to see everyone socializing and enjoying a beautiful summer evening,” said Kasey Lindstrom, Store Manager in Fergus Falls. The weather was a little questionable in the early afternoon, but the rain passed by late afternoon and the event was again a huge success.

August 31, 2015  |  Category:
“It’s Ours Now!”

“It’s Ours Now!”

A couple of years ago during a team engagement planning session, RDO Equipment Co. – Moorhead was looking for a project that could benefit the community along with building employee engagement throughout the company. They found the Clay County Adopt-a-Highway program.

After further review, the Moorhead store entered into an agreement to keep the north and south ditches along Highway 18 stretching from Highway 75 to the east for 2.5 miles cleaned of debris and trash. However, the road was going to be rebuilt beginning spring of 2014 and Clay County requested that they postpone the adoption until summer of 2015.

The time has finally come! The road is complete and grass has been planted. In communicating with Clay County, everyone felt that the new ground would be better served by letting the grass take root this year. The first cleanup project will take place during the spring of 2016.  All RDO Equipment Co. team members in the Valley are invited to help and details will be communicated as to the day and time of the event next spring.

“Thank you to everyone who helped make this adoption a reality. A special thank you goes out to our friend and colleague, Doug Loomis. Doug was instrumental in bringing this together.  Although Doug passed away before we were able to complete the task, we dedicate this project to him,” commented Todd Thompson, General Manager of Ag Remarketing.

August 29, 2015  |  Category:

RDO Equipment Co. Announces New Location in Southeast Phoenix, Curtis Tuttle Named Sales Manager

RDO Equipment Co. announces the addition of a new John Deere construction dealership in Southeast Phoenix, AZ. The store will be located on Interstate 10 just south of the 202. Construction will be starting soon, with the expected opening in fall 2016.

The additional Phoenix location will complement the current location located in Central Phoenix. This new store will allow an enhanced level of service to customers in the Phoenix and surrounding area.

“The additional Phoenix location furthers our commitment to our customers and allows us to expand our overall services and product support capabilities in an expanding market,” commented Dennis Howard, Vice President of Southwest Construction.

Curtis Tuttle will lead the sales team for the new location as Sales Manager. Tuttle joins RDO Equipment Co. with more than 17 years in the equipment industry, having management experience at Bobcat, Kubota, and CNH dealerships. Most recently he served as the Operations Manager for Ohio Valley Ag in Kentucky.

“If the first few weeks are any indication of the future, I can’t wait to be a bigger part of the culture and success of RDO Equipment Co. in the Southwest,” said Curtis.

August 24, 2015  |  Category:

Dan Rutten Celebrates 40 Years of Service

Dan Rutten, Technical Communicator Specialist, celebrates 40 years of service with RDO Equipment Co. and to celebrate, the Moorhead FSO held an event for him in early July.

Dan started at the Fargo store in 1975 working in set up before becoming a Service Technician and then a Field Service Technician. Dan focused on mostly Ag equipment in the Red River Valley. Combines, planters, and tractors became his strong suit.

In 2001, Dan transferred to Casselton and worked as a Field Service Technician, until 2005 when shoulder problems made it difficult to continue the demanding role of Field Service Technician. “Thanks to the Offutt family and management, I had a chance to become Service Advisor, and then Service Manager, which allowed me to still work with the customers,” commented Dan.  In 2015, Dan transitioned to the FSO – Moorhead as a Technical Communications Specialist.

In 40 years, Dan has seen a lot change. “When I started doing set up, I’d work on 14-24 foot cultivators and 6-8 row flex planters and even combines with 12 foot headers. If you had a 20 foot header, you had a big combine. 4020 and 4430 were common tractors back then.”
Dan has built his entire career at RDO Equipment Co., and loves what he does. In fact – he says he can’t believe it’s been 40 years and that it doesn’t seem nearly that long, which is what happens when you love what you do as much as Dan does. “I have worked with so many good people, and the customers have always been my favorite part. I enjoy helping them with whatever issues they are having and the trust and relationships that I have made with them. I consider many of them friends.”

What advice does Dan have for team members just starting their career? “Jump in and get your hands dirty. Do your best every day and treat everyone with respect. Be yourself and be positive – when you enjoy what you’re doing, it shows and rubs off on everyone you come in contact with.”

Jeff Lemna, Customer Support Director, commented, “Dan sets the benchmark for great customer service and has been doing that for our organization for 40 years.  Having people like Dan makes all of us better and it’s an honor to celebrate this milestone with him.”

August 22, 2015  |  Category:

North Dakota Construction Stores Donate Safe

Mike Daeley, Western ND Service Advisor for HI POWER, sits on the Foundation Board for the American Legion, and contacted the Minot store about donating an item for a silent auction the Legion was holding, which would benefit programs that help children and veterans throughout the state of North Dakota.

The Minot store decided to donate a John Deere security safe – and soon, all the North Dakota construction stores were involved.

The silent auction was held in late June and the recipient of the safe was located in Dickinson. Mike arrived at the Dickinson store, and asked for some help, and three team members, not even knowing what kind of help was needed – agreed to stay after five and help deliver a very large – and very heavy – safe.

“Sitting on this Foundation Board, I was amazed how RDO Equipment Co. quickly became involved in this effort. I heard several “no’s” while working on securing donations for our fundraiser, but I heard a very quick and resounding “yes” from RDO Equipment Co. This company has a high percentage of veterans – it speaks volumes with me and people in our community to see how we support these kinds of programs.”

Mike also adds how impressed and grateful he was for the help of the Dickinson team members: Seth Michael O’Donnel, Service Technician; Kade Anderson, Equipment Detailer, and Brad Kolling, Service Manager. “Without the help from these three gentlemen, I could have never gotten this project taken care of.”

August 20, 2015  |  Category:

Imperial Hosts Ag Technology Clinic

The Imperial team hosted a one-of-a-kind event for customers: a Technology Clinic that featured a first look at JDLink Connect and the opportunity to learn more about receiver calibration, implement adjustments, and value added services.

The event had 40 customers attend. Feedback after the event was very positive – customers said they found value and were pleased with the content and information provided.

“Customers were very engaged and asked several questions throughout. The question already asked is, ‘When is the next clinic?’” commented Ramon Beltron, Regional Aftermarket Manager.

He added, “On team was very pleased with how well the information was received and we’re already planning another clinic for the end of the year. These types of events give us a good idea of where our customers stand, as far as technology and implementation, and let us know what we need to work on in the future to get our customers up to speed on the latest advancements.”

August 17, 2015  |  Category:
Bozeman Joins Kiwanis in Community Event

Bozeman Joins Kiwanis in Community Event

The Bozeman store teamed up with their local Kiwanis group to help a community event of distributing sand boxes.

The Bozeman store donated a 60G excavator to load sand in trucks for the event. Shop Foreman Kenny Kroschel donated his time on a Saturday to load trucks with the excavator.

“It was a really great community event that we were glad to be a part of,” said Kenny. “I was proud to represent RDO Equipment Co. and be able to give back.”

August 14, 2015  |  Category:
Phoenix Gives Back This Summer

Phoenix Gives Back This Summer

It’s been a busy couple of months for the Phoenix store. In the past two months, team members have volunteered at the local food bank and organized their annual water drive.

In the beginning of May, several Phoenix team members volunteered to pack emergency food boxes for those in need in the Phoenix area. The team helped pack 540 boxes of produce, which equaled about 6,480lbs of food. The store has volunteered numerous times of the past couple of years at this food bank, and over the span of this partnership, Phoenix team members have helped pack close to 10,000 boxes of food.

While they were donating, the food bank announced they were already short of bottled water. The store held their annual water drive during June and collected 114 cases of water that were delivered in early July. The water donated equaled over 3,600lbs of water that was immediately delivered to those in need in the Phoenix area.

August 13, 2015  |  Category:

North Mankato Parts Manager Celebrates 30 Years of Service

Jim Juliar, North Mankato Parts Manager, celebrated 30 years of service this month. The store held a celebration in honor of his years of service and Jim’s wife and family were able to attend.

Jim started his career checking in and shipping out parts orders as well as assisting with parts pickup and delivery. He spent a few years as a parts specialist before becoming Parts Manager, a role he’s held since 1997. In the early days, there were no computers – parts invoicing and inventory was all done on paper. “Times have certainly changed,” said Jim. “But the one thing that hasn’t changed is that this organization has a lot of really great people that make is such a fun place to work.”

“We want to thank Jim for his commitment and dedication over these past 30 years.  He’s been an important part of the success the North Mankato store has experienced and we appreciate all that he does for our stakeholders,” commented General Manager Todd Koenigs.

August 12, 2015  |  Category:

San Antonio Team Works Hard and Has Fun in Their Community

The San Antonio team has been busy over these last few months working hard and participating in various community events. Only halfway through the year and they have had so much fun in several different events – see below what has made their store so unique and a great place to work!

April 2015 – Relay for Life – Comal County Team “RdiOs to Cancer” 
The team relayed in the rain and honored loved ones during the relay’s Luminaria ceremony. Names were listed in the store’s “We Honor/Remember” board by employees to remember those close who have fought this battle. The team raised a total of $1,525.00 through fundraisers and a raffle.

May 2015 – South Texas Blood Drive
A highly successful blood drive was held in May with almost 30 employees who volunteered.

June 2015 – Summer Bowling Party
With General Manager Shane Brownlow in charge of the selfie stick, the excitement of the bowling event and the competitive Men vs Women game was captured in these priceless photos!

July 2015 – Care Packages for the Troops
The team came together to send appreciation to the troops overseas. They collected hygiene essentials, snacks, movies, and other items and packed them into 20 boxes!
“The entire San Antonio team has worked very hard to give back to our community in many different ways. If you work hard you can play hard! By the way…the men crushed the women bowling game!” said Shane Brownlow, General Manager.

August 11, 2015  |  Category:
Texas Customer Helps Guide Development of JDLink and More

Texas Customer Helps Guide Development of JDLink and More

Elliott Stanton is the Shop Foreman at Strike, LLC, one of the nation’s fastest growing privately held energy service companies in the United States. Elliott is based out of Dilley, TX, overseeing fleet operations within Strike’s South Texas region of operations. Additionally, he is responsible for equipment uptime and repair across the continental United States. Strike has been a customer of RDO Equipment Co. since 2002 and has been utilizing JDLink since 2012.

Elliott, along with Jacob Koon, RDO Equipment Co. Product Specialist in Austin, attended the Customer Connect event for the ISG (Intelligent solutions group) Department of John Deere in Des Moines, IA. This event was a way for John Deere developers to meet and hear firsthand from customers and dealers how the technology pieces that John Deere is developing, is being utilized in the field on actual jobsites.

“I wanted to have Elliott involved in this panel because he uses JDLink every hour of the workday. He’s such a heavy user, and Strike is such an important customer to us, that I wanted them to be able to have the opportunity to share their likes and dislikes of the system directly with John Deere,” commented Jacob.

The event featured approximately 60 John Deere employees in attendance, and another 100 tuning in via WebEx. Paul Garcia, John Deere WorkSight division, asked Elliott to explain pipe laying and how it’s accomplished. Once Elliott explained how Strike does business, Paul explained how John Deere sees it and how they differ. They then opened the floor to questions from the developers of JDLink.

Some questions directed toward Elliott included: How do you use JDLink to manage your machines? Do you use JDLink to monitor your PMs? How does JDLink compare to your Vision/Product Link (Cat’s version of JDLink)?
Elliott explained that Strike now uses JDLink to watch where its machines are and where they are moving to, how many hours they are being used, and if any codes appear on the machine. He also told them that Vision Link had quicker access to some key features, such as Fuel tank level, DEF Level, Pump pressures, and exhaust filter status.

The developers will take this knowledge and use it when they design the new My John Deere portal, PM calculator and other John Deere web features. After the event, they showed Elliott and Jacob around the ISG buildings, allowing them to see how the developers work and what they do every day.

Jacob commented, “It’s great that a company like John Deere organizes events like these, because it shows how receptive they are to feedback from customers. It also demonstrates to our customers that we really listen and use the information they give us to help John Deere design the best product available.”

August 5, 2015  |  Category:
RDO Water Partners with Local Businesses to Provide “Farm-to-table” Garden at Local Junior High

RDO Water Partners with Local Businesses to Provide “Farm-to-table” Garden at Local Junior High

The Santa Maria Valley Leadership Class of 2015 (a community leadership program that features business professionals) had to complete a Legacy project. After asking the Santa Maria community what they needed, it was decided to partner with local businesses and provide a garden to Kermit McKenzie Junior High in Guadalupe, CA.

The garden features six 4 x 10 foot raised planters and a 15 x 20 foot bed of planting rows. The garden was built as close as possible to the school's cafeteria and it will provide fresh celery, lettuce (both red and green leaf) kale, cabbage, jalapenos and peppers. It also will feature a salsa garden with a variety of tomatoes, peppers, cilantro and fresh herbs.

The project received help from many local businesses, including Engel and Gray, Home Depot, United Rentals, and RDO Water.

The Santa Maria RDO Water team designed and donated an irrigation system for the school’s garden.

“The Leadership class asked for help with the irrigation system, and we knew it’d be a great opportunity to get involved with our community,” commented Danilu Ramirez. Frank Toves, Account Manager, designed the system, Marcus Dunning, Account Manager, and Danilu Ramirez, Water Management Consultant, installed the system onsite.

“We worked on the project, onsite, for about four hours, before it was ready for use and we could turn it on. It’s always great to see the fruits of your labor! When school is back in session, the kids will be able to harvest and eat what has been grown. It’s a great project for our community and the importance of teaching the students about agriculture and healthy eating at the same time is invaluable,” added Ramirez.

Not only will the students appreciate the garden, but the Leadership group was appreciative of the support they received from RDO Water and other businesses. After viewing the irrigation system provided by the RDO Water team, the Project Lead for the program commented, “Wow! This is amazing! We are so fortunate to have your team onboard.”

August 1, 2015  |  Category:

Flagstaff Team Members Volunteer

Several Flagstaff team members volunteered and cleaned up a one-mile stretch of trail along Route 66 in late May.

Seven employees and their family members teamed up to help clean up a part of their community.

“This is a great project that our employees care about, and it was a rewarding experience that also built camaraderie among us,” commented Adam Spade.

July 31, 2015  |  Category:

Redfield Parts Specialist Celebrates 40 Years of Service

Joe Hurst, Parts Specialist, celebrated 40 years of service at the Redfield store. The team held an Open House serving lunch and more than 125 friends, family, and customers attended.

Clae Hoots, Store Manager, commented, “It was great to see so many people attend the event for Joe. He has spent his career building relationships in our store and community. Congrats, Joe, on this huge achievement!”

RDO Water Moves to New Facility and Expands Offerings

SANTA MARIA, Calif. (July 21, 2015) RDO Water, a division of RDO Equipment Co., is expanding and moving to a new facility in Santa Maria on July 27. The new store, located at 2221 Evora Way, will offer roughly 15,000 square feet of space for equipment, products, parts and service. In addition, the store will now support Pellenc and Vermeer equipment, with specialized parts and service availability.

Cassandra Durler, RDO Water Santa Maria store manager, says, “We are excited for the expansion into our new facility as well as the addition of Pellenc and Vermeer brands. This relocation will allow for us to carry a larger volume of inventory and expand our product offering to better support our customers. We cannot wait to show our customers the new facility and provide them with a true full service experience.”

The new store, which is just five miles from the existing RDO Water – Santa Maria location, is scheduled to officially open July 27, with a grand opening celebration to follow at a later date.

Store Details

About RDO Water
RDO Water is a full-service provider of irrigation solutions, including products, parts, service, equipment rentals and sales, and design and consulting services. The company is a division of RDO Equipment Co. and has eight stores in Arizona, California, and Mexico. Learn more about RDO Water at

About RDO Equipment Co.
Founded in 1968, RDO Equipment Co. sells and support agriculture, construction, environmental, positioning, surveying, and irrigation equipment from manufacturers including John Deere, Vermeer, and Topcon. With more than 75 locations across the United States, including partnerships in Russia, Ukraine, and Australia, RDO Equipment Co. is a total solutions provider. Learn more at

Moorhead Store Continues Partnership with Fargo South High School

The Moorhead store has formed a strong relationship with the Fargo South High School’s Auto Tech program over the course of several years. Each year, the Auto Tech program sponsors an Auto Show and at this year’s event, RDO Equipment Co. had equipment on display.

The store had a 644K loader on display, as well as a John Deere Gator wrapped in gator skin. The store also arranged an 8245R to give rides and demonstrate auto trac and the technology available.
“This partnership started 5 years ago, and we are beginning to see students partner with us and the AYF program at NDSCS. It’s been a great relationship, one that we plan to continue to grow and develop,” said Dustin Tuhy, Moorhead Service Manager.

RDO Equipment Co. Named 2014 Sakai Dealer of the Year

RDO Equipment Co. Named 2014 Sakai Dealer of the Year

RDO Equipment Co. (Texas and Southwest Construction regions) was recently named the recipient of Sakai’s 2014 Dealer of the Year award. This award is based on metrics including both volume and total sales. Sakai’s Dealer of the Year award represents the manufacturers greatest level of appreciaiton for a strong dedication to both the sale and support of the Sakai product line.

“Sincere thanks for an outstanding year and a strong commitment to our relationship. We look forward to our future success together,” said Denver Weinstiger, Vice President of Sales & Product Support.

July 22, 2015  |  Category: Awards
Day of Play Events Held in Moorhead and Hawley

Day of Play Events Held in Moorhead and Hawley

Both the Moorhead and Hawley stores held Day of Play events and each was a great success.

The drizzly morning conditions didn’t discourage attendees who arrived before 9 a.m. to line up for the events at this year’s Day of Play. The weather cleared and children of all ages participated in games, rides, and coloring contests. Everyone was treated to a lunch (or breakfast) of hot dogs, chips, cookies, and refreshments. An inflatable Bounce-N-Slide and a barrel train – powered by a John Deere X738 – kept the kids very entertained.
Kids also had fun playing with John Deere toys in corn-boxes and enjoyed driving battery powered gators and pedal tractors. Another highlight for attendees was taking a ride in the John Deere 8R tractor that demonstrated the comfort and convenience of the latest Ag machinery and AutoTrac system.

In addition to Day of Play, the Hawley store combined their event with a Drive Green event, showcasing the latest from John Deere. They were fortunate to have a beautiful, sunny day and several nearby daycares stopped by to participate in the festivities. The store served hotdogs, chips, and cookies throughout the day.

Todd Thompson, General Manager of Ag Remarketing, commented, “Our teams showed up in full force to ensure everyone enjoyed their Day of Play. Thank you to everyone for attending and supporting this annual event.”

July 18, 2015  |  Category: Events
Pat Burnham Named Tucson Store Manager

Pat Burnham Named Tucson Store Manager

Pat Burnham has been named the new Tucson Store Manager. He will be responsible for all operational aspects of the location. He joins RDO Equipment Co. with an extensive career in the equipment industry. Pat served as the Vice President of Sales for Sakai Manufacturing, where he worked closely with RDO Equipment Co. and was a key part of that manufacturing partnership.

Most recently, Pat worked in store management at Doggett Machinery, a John Deere dealer for south Texas and Louisiana.

Dennis Howard, Vice President of Southwest Construction, said, “I am confident that Pat’s positive leadership will help grow the Tucson market.”

July 16, 2015  |  Category:
Great Day for a Great Cause

Great Day for a Great Cause

On June 20, many team members geared up for a Charity Cruise that visited the Minnesota Ag locations. The day started out rainy and cold, but luckily warmed up quickly.

Nearly 25 riders met in the morning at the Moorhead store and visited Ada, Hawley, and Fergus Falls, before arriving in Breckenridge early that evening.

Every Minnesota Ag store was represented, as well as team members from the Field Support Office and R.D. Offutt Company.

In addition to building camaraderie and experiencing some beautiful Minnesota scenery, team members raised nearly $900 for Make A Wish Minnesota.

“It was neat to see everyone participate from all entities of RDO. It demonstrates that RDO is a great company to work for and truly a single enterprise company,” commented Mike Makovsky, Breckenridge Store Manager and an organizer of the event.

Plans are already underway for next year’s charity cruise.

July 14, 2015  |  Category:
RDO Integrated Controls Sponsors First Ever DroneFocus Conference

RDO Integrated Controls Sponsors First Ever DroneFocus Conference

On June 3, 2015, more than 130 attendees gathered at the Fargo Jet Center for Fargo’s first annual Drone Focus Conference, organized by Botlink and Emerging Prairie, and powered by RDO Integrated Controls.
“All drones, all day,” was the theme of the event. The intent was to gather professionals and enthusiasts to talk about drones.

RDO Integrated Controls jumped onboard as the premier sponsor. The one-day event featured a tour of the award-winning Fargo Jet Center (and site for the event), as well as a wide array of speakers from the UAS industry, varying from students, pilots, engineers, farmers, legislators, and more.

Matt Hayes, RDO Integrated Controls Mapping/UAV Product Supervisor, took the stage and showcased some of the latest drone technology that utilizes 2D and 3D mapping. He presented “eBee,” a fully autonomous fixed wing drone that specializes in mapping terrain. Through live simulations, he walked the crowd through the capabilities of these drones in mapping anything from stockpiles to corn fields, while also highlighting near-infrared and thermal applications.

“It was a great opportunity to educate the public on the amazing benefits the technology can bring to numerous industries,” said Hayes. “It’s really an exciting time to be involved with this industry.”

“This first-time conference was a real success for showcasing the opportunities for drones in the marketplace and how we can support our customers using this technology,” added Kelly Gress, Vice President of RDO Integrated Controls.

July 10, 2015  |  Category: Events

Portland and Eugene Support Local Dozer Day Event

Over the past several years, the Portland store has participated in the children’s event, Dozer Day. Dozer Day is like going to a fair, only the “rides” are heavy construction equipment. Kids hop in the driver’s seat and actually drive dozers, dump trucks, and other pieces of heavy equipment, with a professional operator at their side. The event is put on by the children’s organization, the Nutter Foundation, which raises money for several children’s charities in the community.

The Oregon team volunteered and once again hosted the “Shooting for Prizes” station utilizing a Vermeer 500 gallon vac to launch tennis balls at a target on both Saturday and Sunday at the Clark County fairgrounds. The Oregon team raised $1,771 in cash for the Dozer Day foundation. “The Dozer Day event is always a great time for all of us that volunteer and for sure, the kids that get to shoot the tennis balls with our equipment. It is definitely a huge hit every year!” said Ollie Windle, General Manager.

July 8, 2015  |  Category:
Grand Forks Volunteers at Relay for Life Event

Grand Forks Volunteers at Relay for Life Event

A group of Grand Forks team members helped set up for the Relay for Life event in Grand Forks in late May. In addition to setting up tables, chairs, and signage, the guys showed their creative side by spelling CURE and HOPE on the hillside with dozens of candle-lit luminaries.  They also spent much of their time walking the route and taking care of luminaries that had tipped over in the strong wind gusts.

Although it was cold and windy, the team had a great time and said it was rewarding to help with such a worthy cause.  They enjoyed their time working together as a team, and also the time they spent with the Relay participants.

Team members who participated included Kevin Grove, Service Manager; Jared Harshman, Sales Professional; Mark Salberg, Field Service Technician; Jeff Sheard, Parts Specialist; Paul Seidel, Field Service Technician; and Tim Sattler, Sales Professional.

July 6, 2015  |  Category:
Minot Hosts Exclusive Event Showcasing Launch of 1050K Dozer

Minot Hosts Exclusive Event Showcasing Launch of 1050K Dozer

In late April, the Minot store hosted a unique opportunity to give owners and operators a look at John Deere’s 1050K dozer. The store targeted current 1050 users, as well as Cat D8 and Komatsu D155 users.  They were pleased to see 80% or better attendance from those who were invited, which was about 50 customers.

Two John Deere factory representatives were in attendance and did walk arounds on the machine and answered individual questions.

“Because of the event, we generated a lot of excitement about the launch of this all new, Deere built product,” said Jon Markle, General Manager. The store has several demos lined up in the near future.

Burnsville Construction’s New Store Wows

Burnsville Construction’s New Store Wows

In 2013, the Burnsville Construction store began plans for a new and larger 16-bay service shop, machine and hydraulic shop, and track shop. In addition, the remodel plans included a new customer showroom and parts desks, offices, and the creation of a large training center and conference room.

In spring 2015, the remodeled store was complete and the team held a VIP Customer dinner and Open House event in late April to show off the new space.

On Thursday, April 23, roughly 100 customers, employees, and manufacturing partners enjoyed a cocktail reception in the new training room of the Burnsville store. The group enjoyed a catered meal in the shop and listened to stories from Leadership, including Chair and

CEO of RDO Equipment Co. Christi Offutt, and Founder Ron Offutt. Mr. Offutt shared the story of how the four Minnesota construction stores joined the RDO Equipment Co. family.

On Friday, April 24, more than 500 customers and community members attended the Open House event. They received tours of the new facility, enjoyed lunch, and saw the latest and greatest from John Deere.

“We heard a lot of great comments from our customers. They are impressed with the facility and the commitment that RDO Equipment Co. is making to the market for many years to come. The Burnsville team is excited to utilize the new facility to build customers for life!”

Burnsville Vermeer Delivers Exceptional Service after the Sale

Burnsville Vermeer Delivers Exceptional Service after the Sale

Tjader & Highstrom Utility Service, LLC, operates out of Wisconsin and is an RDO Equipment Co. and Vermeer Corporation Global Account. They are a high profile, long time Vermeer customer. They own several directional boring rigs, quad track utility plows, and recently purchased four drop plows. They also have multiple Vermeer mixing systems, vacuum excavators, locators and pneumatic piercing tools, and a brush chipper, to round out their Vermeer fleet.

The Burnsville-Vermeer team recently delivered three directional boring machines including a D36x50II, D24x40II, and a D20x22S3. Along with the drills, they also delivered two MX240 sixing systems and one MX125 mixing system as well as three DCI F2 locators.

Then, on May 8, the Burnsville team worked together to perform an onsite HDD Fundamental and Machine Operation training at Tjader & Highstrom’s headquarters.

The training included two presentations – one on HDD Fundamentals and the other on Operation Training. After the two presentations, the group of 14 trainees was educated on downhole tooling and other products by Parts Manager, Bruce Getman. There was great interaction during this session and it brought all the Tjader & Highstrom crews up to speed on some of the latest tooling and familiarized them with Vermeer’s Borestore and the Borestore app when ordering HDD tooling.

For the final part of the training, attendees were invited to join Service Manager, Jeff Kockelman and HDD Product Specialist, Tim Williams, on an operational and maintenance walk-around of a newly-delivered Vermeer D36x50II directional boring rig. Jeff and Tim focused their time on machine maintenance and daily operating checks along with new operator station changes. Trainees were also shown Insight, Vermeer’s latest operating system that each new drill includes. was also introduced to the group and will be set up for all the Vermeer equipment in their fleet. This was another great session as many questions were asked by Tjader personnel.

The training concluded with a pizza party and refreshments. Pat Arnold, Sales Professional, commented, “Training sessions like this show our customers that we are dedicated to serving them beyond the sale. It also provides an opportunity for us to make an impact getting to know our customers better and understand what our customers are up against daily in the field. Gaining this insight is valuable for our teams as this allows us a higher, wider, deeper relationship with the customer.”

June 28, 2015  |  Category:
Irving Provides Unique Solution to Customer

Irving Provides Unique Solution to Customer

What do you do when you need to pulverize a bridge? You contact RDO Equipment Co. in Irving, who then partners with Okada America, a leader in construction attachments, to provide you a perfect solution.

The customer, Pegasus Link Constructors, is the contractor on a large job in Dallas called the Horseshoe Project – a $798 million design-build roadway construction project by the Texas Department of Transportation to improve traffic flow through the heart of Downtown Dallas.

Pegasus Link demo’d the John Deere 350G and when paired with the Okada Pulverizer attachment, proved a great combination that took their job and made it much easier to tear down bridges.

“This was another example of how RDO Equipment Co. supports the needs of customers and provide them a successful solution,” commented Brandon Aldridge, Sales Professional.

Aberdeen Represents RDO Equipment Co. at the South Dakota State FFA Convention

South Dakota State University was home to this year’s SD State FFA Convention. Aberdeen team members Brian Bjordal, Store Manager, and Taylor Gosch, Parts Manager, attended the opening awards ceremony and helped present Proficiency awards on behalf of John Deere for categories of Forest Management and Products; Landscape Management; and Turf Grass Management. RDO Equipment Co. was also recognized as a Star Partner of the SD State FFA program.

Brian and Taylor, joined by JD Kessler, Webster Store Manager, were also a part of the Career Fair that all the high school students attending SD State FFA visited. They brought a John Deere dozer simulator, which drew much attention and was a huge hit amongst the students, as well as other vendors and dealers who attended.

“It was a great opportunity to tell the RDO Equipment Co. story and have many conversations regarding our AYF program,” commented Taylor. “It was exciting to meet some of the future leaders and future growers/producers in agriculture from all over the state of South Dakota.”

RDO Equipment Co. Acquires Montana John Deere Stores

RDO Equipment Co. Acquires Montana John Deere Stores

FARGO, N.D. (June 25, 2015) RDO Equipment Co. announces the acquisition of three stores from Montana dealership Triple W Equipment. The stores are located in Missoula and Kalispell and sell and service the full line of John Deere equipment, with an additional service center in Ronan.

These are the first new John Deere stores RDO Equipment Co. has added since 2010 and they expand the company’s reach to new customers across the western part of Montana.

Triple W Equipment supports forestry customers and the addition of these stores will double the business of that product line for RDO Equipment Co.

RDO Equipment Co. has served Montana customers for more than 20 years from three John Deere construction stores located in Billings, Bozeman, and Great Falls. The company provides positioning systems through the RDO Integrated Controls division located in Billings, MT, and irrigation systems through Minnesota Valley Irrigation, located in Billings and Great Falls.

Ian Carey, RDO Equipment Co. Vice President, commented, “Along with Triple W Equipment, we share a strong belief in treating customers as stakeholders in our business. We look forward to working with the team, along with the communities of Kalispell and Missoula, in continuing our track record of growth and a superior focus on customer service.”

Triple W Equipment, a family owned-company, was founded in 1986 in Missoula as a John Deere lawn and garden dealership. The company added the agriculture line within months of opening and became a full line John Deere dealership with the addition of construction and forestry products two years later. With an emphasis on good customer service, Triple W Equipment has grown to its current staff of 55 people and in 2009 opened a new 55,000 square foot John Deere store in Missoula.

JDLink Lunch and Learns Prove Successful in Texas

JDLink Lunch and Learns Prove Successful in Texas

Irving, Austin, and San Antonio each held JDLink Lunch and Learn events for customers. The goal was to educate customers and demonstrate how JDLink works and what it does – from machine tracking, to alerts, to machine data, and more.

RDO Equipment Co. team members went in depth and showed how to operate the system step-by-step, setting up group alerts, Geofences, users, and groups. In addition, the presentation featured information on FleetShield Services.

Customers also learned how JDLink will transition to the MyJohnDeere website next year, and they were given a sneak peak at what the new site will look like, along with features geared at making the site more user-friendly.

“Our CSA’s and Sales Professionals did a great job of spreading the word about the event and getting our customers engaged,” said Jacob Koon, Worksite Pro Product Specialist. “It’s great when we can demonstrate the many ways RDO Equipment Co. can add value to our customers’ business.”

Jeff Chenault, Product Specialist in Irving, added, “These events are a great way to help not only educate our customers, but to let them see our team as a whole, and to understand that we are here to help their business in every way possible.”

June 24, 2015  |  Category: Events
Dickinson Customer Uptime Clinic

Dickinson Customer Uptime Clinic

The Dickinson store held a unique event in its store in early May. Roughly 40 customers and 30 team members attended a Customer Uptime Clinic. Five John Deere experts presented on various topics including ground engaging tools, undercarriage, Ultimate Uptime, filters, oils/grease, and Reman.

Attendees had the opportunity to see new John Deere products and offerings and enjoy lunch with RDO Equipment Co. team members and John Deere product specialists.

“The feedback we received was that the event was informative and beneficial. This event was the first of its kind that our store has hosted, but it was received very well, and is something we’ll look at holding again,” said Patrick Frohlich, Parts Manager.

June 23, 2015  |  Category:


Fargo, ND — June 10, 2015 — RDO Equipment Co. and FarmLink today announced a new agreement that will further enable improvements in productivity and profitability by bringing together insights from yield benchmarking and the benefit of precision equipment capabilities.

“Through our long standing relationship with RDO Equipment Co., we share a strong commitment to improving the overall profitability of farm operations,” said Jeff Dema, President of Grower Services for FarmLink. “With access to actionable data, farmers can see how to treat fields differently and then more easily take advantage of precision technology. We are excited to expand our partnership to offer TrueHarvest benchmarking to RDO Equipment Co. customers and help pinpoint opportunities for yield improvements on every acre.”

Using the 2014 TrueHarvest benchmark* released earlier this year, FarmLink identified an additional $1.7 billion revenue improvement opportunity available to farmers in five of the 10 states where RDO Equipment Co. currently operates, including: California, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota and Washington. Benchmarks for Arizona and Oregon are forthcoming.

“Benchmarking is a critical new tool for growers and will expand our ability to help our customers leverage precision equipment services,” said Mark Kreps, RDO Equipment Co. Vice President of Agriculture Sales. “TrueHarvest by FarmLink offers independent, objective and actionable data that allows our product specialists, in partnership with farmers, to measure their land’s performance and make decisions for the next growing season. We look forward to utilizing this new tool with our farmers.”

With TrueHarvest benchmarking, agronomists and farmers can pinpoint where there is opportunity for yield improvement to help make investment decisions and evaluate input effectiveness. RDO Equipment Co. customers interested in using TrueHarvest to measure their land’s performance and make decisions for future growing seasons should contact their product specialist. Learn more about FarmLink and TrueHarvest at

ABOUT RDO Equipment Co.
Founded in 1968, RDO Equipment Co. is a family owned and operated company that provides and supports innovative solutions for John Deere agriculture, construction, lawn and garden; Vermeer; Topcon; and RDO Water customers.

The organization, with headquarters in Fargo, N.D., employs more than 2,300 team members. The company has 78 sales and service locations in 10 U.S. states and partnerships in Russia, Ukraine, and Australia. Learn more about RDO Equipment Co. at

As a data science and technology company, FarmLink is propelling the transformation of agriculture by using actionable data and new economy business models to make modern agriculture more successful.
Fifteen years ago, we created MachineryLink™ to offer quality equipment at a fraction of the cost of ownership. More than five years ago, we recognized data was the future and began building what is now our TrueHarvest™ benchmark, the industry’s most sophisticated, independent yield benchmarking tool that helps farmers and their advisors pinpoint opportunity of farm operations. Today, FarmLink© Analytical Solutions helps public and private sector partners solve complex problems related to agriculture, natural resources, and risk management. FarmLink continues to drive transformation through its innovation pipeline, aimed at improving productivity, profitability and sustainability across multiple crops and international markets. To learn more, go to



Burnsville Vermeer Hosts Drill School

Burnsville Vermeer Hosts Drill School

In mid-April, the Burnsville Vermeer store conducted two separate, two-day sessions of Drill school for employees and customers.

In each session, the first day of school was held indoors at the Holiday Inn in St. Cloud, followed by a day at the Sauk Rapids dealership. Session 1 had roughly 30 customers and 12 employees; Session 2 had 30 customers. In total, 14 companies were represented.

The training covered in-depth discussions on drilling, utility locating, tooling, service tips and tricks, mud mixing, and drilling safety.

“A special thanks to the support members at the Sauk Rapids store for their help in putting this together as well as all of the team members in the Burnsville Vermeer store. This event was a huge success and would not have been possible without all of us pulling together as one!” said Mark Rieckhoff, Burnsville Vermeer Sales Manager.

June 21, 2015  |  Category: Events
RDO Water Participates in University of California Cooperative Extension Strawberry Field Day

RDO Water Participates in University of California Cooperative Extension Strawberry Field Day

Each year, the University of California’s Ag and Natural Resources Cooperative Extension department host a Strawberry Field Day event in Santa Maria for local growers, educators, and researchers.

Sessions ranged from topics such as water management and drought impact, pesticide use trends and safety, nutrient management and drone usage in strawberry production.

Danilu Ramirez serves as the Water Quality Consultant for RDO Water. She discussed research on water conservation and spider mite control in strawberry production using micro-sprinklers.

Danilu was aware of the event in the past, and decided to get involved for this year’s event. She proposed doing research on micro-sprinklers in strawberry production for both organic and conventional strawberry production and then presented the findings.

This year’s attendance was the highest to date with more than 120. “This was by far the biggest turnout the event has ever had. I feel a lot of attendees were our customers or prospect customers, due to the promotion we did of this event,” commented Danilu.

June 18, 2015  |  Category: Events
Newest Location Invites Customers, Community to Open House

Newest Location Invites Customers, Community to Open House

RDO Equipment Co.’s newest location in McKinney, TX, opened its doors for an Open House event on May 21. The event featured Leadership, employees from many Texas locations, customers, city officials, manufacturing partner representatives, and community members.

The event included tours of the 38,000 sq. ft. facility, product displays, lunch, and prizes and giveaways (including John Deere safes and Yeti coolers). Members of the McKinney Chamber of Commerce were also on hand for a ribbon cutting ceremony. 

The McKinney store, with roughly 25 team members, is the seventh location in Texas and complements the Fort Worth and Irving locations.

“We had a great event and appreciate all of the hard work and effort that ensured its success,” said Jim Carell, General Manager. “Customers and community members continue to be impressed with the reinvestment that RDO Equipment Co. has shown in the Dallas community. We were proud to show everyone our new store.”

June 15, 2015  |  Category:

Burnsville Vermeer Supports MMUA Training

Each year the Minnesota Municipalities Utilities Association (MMUA) holds a safety and training exercise in Marshall, MN for its linemen. The MMUA consists of Municipal Electric Divisions from mainly Minnesota, but other municipalities from bordering states with cities near the Minnesota borders are also members, including Wisconsin, Iowa, South Dakota and North Dakota.

Vendors are asked to bring in equipment for the lineman's use to complete jobs at the training center. The MMUA then sets it up and runs it like an actual jobsite in one of the municipalities’ city limits.

RDO Equipment Co. team members were there to showcase products and help train and show the linemen how to use the Vermeer equipment. The Burnsville Vermeer store had an S800TX mini skid steer, RTX750, BC1500 and a VacTron LP533SDT vac onsite, while the Marshall store brought a John Deere 310SK Tractor Loader Backhoe and a 130GLC Excavator.

The event consisted of four days of alternating classroom training with outdoor hands on training with underground equipment.

"For RDO Vermeer to be involved in this event is a great way to show the capabilities, features, and benefits of Vermeer equipment to the customer. This gives the customer confidence that not only are they buying a quality product in Vermeer, but with that purchase they are getting RDO Equipment Co. and the resources a solid dealer can provide,” said Pat Arnold, Sales Professional. 

June 12, 2015  |  Category:

Fontana Hosts College Students

Students and instructors from Mt. San Antonio College (located in Walnut, CA), recently visited the Fontana store. The store has developed a strong relationship with the college throughout the years.
The store had several demonstrations of equipment available. Fontana team members Rick Shepherd, Rigo Leon, Tareck Karam and Colby Gergovich discussed how diagnosing equipment has progressed over the years, as well as what tools and training are required for Service Technicians to be successful.
“The students are always a great crowd and they had a great time this year. Giving students experiences like this is a great way to gain positive momentum and exposure for RDO Equipment Co.,” said Colby Gergovich, Aftermarket Manager.

Hawley Hosts First Grade Visitors

Hawley Hosts First Grade Visitors

For several years, the Hawley store has sponsored Mrs. Carlson’s first grade class. On May 15, the class came and toured the store. They had many questions about how tractors and combines work, and of course, each student wanted to ride in the sprayers and combines.
After the tour and some treats, the kids got their wish to ride in some equipment. Six employees gave rides to all the kids in tractors, sprayers, combines and gators. When the tour was over, all the kids received a surprise gift bag from RDO Equipment Co.
Steve Martin, Store Manager, commented, “It is always fun to have these first graders visit the store. They have amazing questions about everything. The usual questions are, ‘How much does that cost?’  However, this year, one of the questions stumped me: ‘How many parts are on that tractor?’ I answered, ‘Lots!’”

Williston Kicks Off Parade Season

Williston Kicks Off Parade Season

The Williston store participated in the 85th Williston Band Day Parade on May 9. This event was very well attended by the community and the streets were lined with people.

The team handed out candy and small footballs and keychains with the RDO Equipment Co. logo on them.

“Our store’s float turned out great and I am proud that we had so many employees participate from all departments of our store,” commented Scott Anderson, General Manager.

RDO Equipment Co. Names Chris Cooper Chief Operating Officer

FARGO, N.D. (June 3, 2015) Chris Cooper has been named Chief Operating Officer of RDO Equipment Co. In this role, he will be responsible for the daily business operations across all regions and teams and will work directly with Christi Offutt, RDO Equipment Co. CEO and Chair of Offutt Family Enterprises, and the leadership team in driving business goals and results.

Cooper has served as an RDO Equipment Co. executive vice president since 2012. He joined the organization in 2004 as general manager of the Irving, Fort Worth, and Waco, TX locations. In 2007 he was promoted to vice president of Texas region and in 2010, assumed leadership of the southwest construction region, serving as vice president of southern construction.

Prior to his employment at RDO Equipment Co., Cooper spent nearly 10 years working for Michigan Cat in various roles including service management, corporate product support management, sales, corporate rental and inventory management, and product support management. Before that, he managed his own maintenance and repair company with 16 field technicians.

Cooper commented, “RDO Equipment Co. is a proven leader in our industry because of the incredible insight and skills of the Offutt family and the leadership team. My pledge to everyone at the company is to continue operating with these ideals in mind and to drive our business while strengthening the relationships with our customers and business partners.”

Christi Offutt commented, “During his career at RDO Equipment Co., Chris has proven himself as a true leader who is skilled at building relationships with all of RDO’s stakeholders as well as creating strong teams. RDO has a talented leadership team which has led to a workplace culture we are all proud to be a part of. I trust Chris to continue to promote this great culture while delivering successful strategies for our company.”

Cooper will be based at the company’s Field Support Office in Fargo, N.D.

Tree Climbing Seminar in Fontana Huge Success

Tree Climbing Seminar in Fontana Huge Success

The Fontana store held an Advanced Climbing Techniques seminar on April 23. More than 90 attendees represented 34 companies in six cities which was a large turnout for an event held offsite such as this.

An instructor from NATS on behalf of SherrillTree provided the demonstration and instruction portion of the seminar. The course offered 6.5 continuing education units (CEU) for ISA Certified Arborists and Tree Workers.

“The feedback we received from the event was terrific,” stated Colby Gergovich, Regional Aftermarket Manager. “Sherrill is a great complimentary product to our environmental line and training events like these provide a great touch point for our customers.”

RDO Water Partners with Secretary of Agriculture in Mexico

Much of the talk of drought has been focused on California, but Mexico is also feeling the effects of a severe drought. In April, the RDO Water team was asked to provide a tour of alfalfa fields where irrigation technology has been implemented to Mexico Agriculture authorities. The Mexicali Valley is a large alfalfa growing area and they are looking for expertise from U.S. companies.

RDO Water customer ACX – Al Dahra Farm Operations is a leader in Alfalfa grown with drip irrigation in the Imperial Valley and Arizonaand was a perfect showcase for the Mexico team to learn firsthand what can be done with irrigation.

Three years ago ACX – Al Dahra Farm Operations began implementing drip irrigation on alfalfa. John Summers of ACX – Al Dahra and their engineering department designed the system and put out a bid for parts and components. RDO Water was selected and since then has continued to build a relationship with the company.

During the visit to the fields, RDO Water team members explained to Guillermo Aldrete, Representative of the Secretary of Agriculture of Mexico, how the system works and the benefits of implementing such a system on alfalfa. Along with Guillermo, a group of alfalfa farmers from the Mexicali Valley joined the tour. These farmers are interested in implementing this technology successfully in their businesses in Mexico.

According to John Summers, by not only switching to drip a farmer can expect an increase in yield, but with the addition of good management, a 40% increase on yield can be achieved.

Ernesto Beltran, RDO Water Regional Sales Manager, commented, “Contrary to what many people think, the savings in water use due to the use of drip irrigation is not significant. The benefit comes with the optimal use of water applied – when a plant needs it, exactly where a plant needs it.” Ernesto and his team explained to the visitors that simply implementing a drip system will not necessarily warrant success but that it takes an integral management of the crop and proper system maintenance.

After displaying a drip system, the RDO Water team took the visitors to a field where they had implemented a PVC (instead of aluminum) sprinkler system. This alternative features no leaks due to the characteristics of the assembly of the pipe and the way water is supplied to it. This field also has a Remote Automation System which allows a farmer using any smart phone, computer, or tablet to start up and shut down the system remotely; open and close vales; inject fertilizer; and get a full report of activities performed at the end of irrigation. “This is another way to use water more efficiently and effectively,” said Ernesto.

In a meeting to wrap up the tours and discussions, Guillermo Aldrete was very impressed with the technology showcased by the RDO Water team. He commented that in the next three years, his goal is to have nearly 25,000 acres of alfalfa under drip irrigation in the Mexicali Valley and that RDO Water will be a very reliable partner in achieving this goal.

Portland Donates to Fruit Tree Project

Portland Donates to Fruit Tree Project

The Portland team recently got involved with a unique organization called the Portland Fruit Tree Project. The project is a group of local arborists that prune/maintain fruit bearing trees in the Portland community that people are not able to take care of themselves, either due to financial constraints or physical abilities (elderly, disabled, etc.). In trade, they take the fruit and donate to local homeless shelters to avoid wasting the fruit falling on the ground and rotting.

The store donated four pruning saws and scabbards to assist the volunteers’ efforts. In a thank you letter, Program Manager Bob Hatton, shared:

The tools that you have donated will make it possible for our Fruit Tree Stewardship programs to be successful. In 2015, Portland Fruit Tree Project plans to organize 100+ community harvesting events, which will bring together hundreds of volunteers to harvest approximately 50,000 pounds of fruit that might otherwise go to waste! This fruit will be distributed to at least 7,000 families in need. Thank you for contributing to the unique and valuable work of Portland Fruit Tree Project. Your support helps us make lasting change in the health and sustainability of communities in Portland.

Ollie Windle, General Manager, commented, “This is a great organization that we are glad to get involved with. We look for ways to continue to get involved with them.” 

Sioux Falls Service Technician Wins First Place at National Tractor Pull Classic

Kent Huwe, Sioux Falls Service Technician, stands with his first place trophy from the National Antique Tractor Pull Association Corn Husker Classic, held in Lincoln, Nebraska. He received first place in the “Jackpot Pull” with a 1937 A John Deere pulling 4750 lb weight.

Kent has been “pulling” and competing for more than 25 years.  “I enjoy the people involved in the events and I enjoy the completion of the pull, to see if my tractor can compete with others in my class.”

Kent has been with RDO Equipment Co. for more than 20 years. Congrats, Kent!

RDO Equipment Co. Names Jim Carell General Manager of New McKinney Location

MCKINNEY, Tex. (May 18, 2015) Jim Carell has been named General Manager of RDO Equipment Co.’s newest location in McKinney, TX. This location sells, rents, and services John Deere construction equipment and opened in March 2015.

Carell joined the company in 2002 as a sales professional at the Irving location. In 2014 he was named sales manager of McKinney, then under construction. Prior to RDO Equipment Co., he worked in sales at Kirkpatrick & O’Donnell as well as Continental Equipment. Carell has 25 years of experience in the heavy equipment industry.

He’ll oversee a McKinney team of more than 25 employees. With the addition of McKinney, RDO Equipment Co. has seven locations along I-35 from Dallas to Laredo. This location will provide additional support to north Texas customers and complement RDO Equipment Co.’s Fort Worth and Irving locations. The new store boasts 38,000 sq ft. and was designed to achieve LEED Certification by the United Sates Green Building Council (USGBC).

Daryl Shelton, RDO Equipment Co. vice president of Texas region, commented, “Jim’s vast industry and RDO Equipment Co. knowledge and experience provide a solid foundation for the launch of our newest Texas location.”

Carell added, “I am excited and honored to be chosen to lead a great team forward and meet the high standards set by the other stores in Texas and across our organization. It is a wonderful opportunity to be part of building the business utilizing our company’s core values.”

Burnsville Vermeer Team Members Jump in Frigid Water for a Good Cause

Burnsville Vermeer Team Members Jump in Frigid Water for a Good Cause

The Polar Plunge is an annual event that supports Special Olympics Minnesota. It involves teams raising funds and jumping into frigid Minnesota waters in the middle of winter! Polar Plunge events happen all over Minnesota (and similar events may even happen in your state!).

Dawn Albright, Parts Warehouse Specialist, has been jumping in the Polar Plunge since 2012. It started as a “bucket list” item but she loves the organization so much, she has continued to jump each year. After joining RDO Equipment Co., and talking about the event with her teammates, Katie Davis, Parts Specialist, and Amanda Freiermuth, Office Administrator, even though it sounded a little crazy, they were convinced to join in the fun for a wonderful cause.

The team raised a little more than $1,700, which included a donation from the Burnsville Vermeer store. They even had matching shirts with the RDO Equipment Co. logo.

Amanda commented, “Katie and I, being first time jumpers, were a little apprehensive, but the water was not nearly as cold as we anticipated! We had a great experience, and want to thank our store, RDO Equipment Co., and all those who donated to our cause and cheered us on. We had a lot of great support and we will be jumping into freezing water again next year!”

May 19, 2015  |  Category:
Grand Forks Hosts Week-Long Job Shadow

Grand Forks Hosts Week-Long Job Shadow

Three students from Sacred Heart High School, East Grand Forks, MN, job shadowed employees at RDO Equipment Co. in Grand Forks for five consecutive mornings.  The students were exposed to our Core Values, stakeholders, culture, and Access Your Future (AYF) program in addition to spending time in the shop and the parts department.  These students were very engaged and genuinely interested in what our business and our industry were all about. 

A highlight for the students was operating a loader under the watchful eye and guidance of Mike Harshman, Shop Foreman.  They were particularly impressed with the advances between the 644H loader and the 544K loader.  Mike enjoyed his interactions with the students and commented that they were excited about operating the equipment and asked great questions about the features and functions of the machines.

Roni Lillehaugen, General Manager, commented, “All three students were interested in the AYF program and how it works.  One of the students has committed to the program and will begin working with us in June.  We hope that the other students will join the program when they graduate in 2016.”

Sunnyside Helps Teach Kids about Ag Equipment

In late March, the Sunnyside team participated in Dozer Days. This is the same event that the Portland store participates in every year, except this is the first year a Dozer Day event has taken place in Yakima, Washington. The event featured 2,500 attendees.

The event gives kids an opportunity to drive construction and AG equipment with proceeds benefitting children-related charities. The Sunnyside store brought two 7R series tractors, a gator, and a 3032E tractor for the event.

“It was a great time. We had a long line at our booth and the kids were very excited to drive the biggest tractor at the event,” said Ike Malson, Store Manager.

Those who helped and donated time: Central Trucking (donated trucking time), Ryan Johnson, Gill Perez, Joe Castillo, Eric Garza, Travis Hanger, Jake Hazzard, and Ike Malson.

Salinas Gets Involved in Local FFA Field Day

Salinas Gets Involved in Local FFA Field Day

RDO Equipment Co. in Salinas, CA donated six 60 series machines for use at the 2nd annual Hartnell College FFA Field Day. This competition is hosted at the local community college for all of California’s Central Coast FFA chapters to participate. The competition consists of different events including welding, to produce judging, to farm power.

RDO Equipment Co.’s machines were used in the farm power event to assess the students’ tractor knowledge and operating ability. Students had to complete two separate tasks:

1. Students had to back an empty irrigation pipe trailer at a 90 degree angle through a set of cones, and then pull forward back through the cones without making contact (a task difficult to even seasoned operators!)

2. Next, students had to make three passes down a mock field using live implements:

  • One pass with a disc – students were required to lower the three point mounted disc o the proper depth, run the pass, and pick up the disc set at the designated field border.
  • One pass with a rototiller – students were required to engage the PTO, lower the three point mounted rototiller to the proper depth, run the psas, and lift the attachment at the designated field border.
  • One pass with a box float – students were required to scrape the ‘field’ flat using the drawbar mounted float, preparing the ‘field’ for the next competitor.

Students were judged on time, proper ground speed, starting/stopping at correct time, PTO engagement/engine RPM, use of machine’s seatbelt, and overall quality of the pass.

“This event was a great success, promoting our commitment to our community, as well as demonstrating the quality of the John Deere brand,” commented Peter Stuhlmiller, Service Advisor, who also helped design and judge the farm power event. 

The Salinas team received the following thank you from the college:
Thank you so much for your contribution of time and energy toward making our field day at Hartnell College a success. It’s only with committed volunteers like you that we can organize and run fun and educational events such as these. Without your judging skills and knowledge in Farm Power, students would not have been able to expand and strengthen their knowledge and abilities.

May 6, 2015  |  Category:
International Delegation Visits Red River Valley

International Delegation Visits Red River Valley

A delegation of 20 international visitors stopped by the Moorhead store.

The group was represented by the Managers of agricultural companies in Ukraine, Russia, Moldova and Kazakhstan. The goal of their trip was to learn about seed business and agricultural equipment market in the USA, visit USA farms to learn about modern farming techniques, crop rotations and agronomy.

The trip was organized by the U.S. Department of Commerce / International Trade administration.

Brian Verkuehlen, General Manager of Sales, and Olga Hall, Division Manager of Ag Exports served as RDO Equipment Co. hosts.

“This group was very impressed with the Moorhead facility, expressed a strong interest in RDO Equipment Co. operations worldwide, and had insightful questions,” said Olga. “We were pleased to share our experience and knowledge of agricultural equipment business with them.”

May 4, 2015  |  Category:

Annual Safety Days Success in Washburn and Hazen

For the past several years, both Washburn and Hazen have conducted a Safety Day event for local elementary students.

February 19 marked the annual Safety Day for area First graders in Washburn.  Looking for help to keep things running smoothly, Mike Kamurth, head of the Washburn Future Farmers of America (FFA), was approached and was more than happy to lend a helping hand. It was a win-win situation as it allowed RDO Equipment Co. to keep Service Technicians working, and the local FFA students who need to complete community service projects, the opportunity to contribute to a fun event.

At Safety Day, First graders were lead through the stations with FFA students explaining the dangers of fire, PTO, blind spots, animal safety, helmet safety, bike and ATV safety, and how to use 911.

“The event went very smoothly, and it was a great opportunity for us to partner with the local FFA. These students were a great resource, and helped add feedback to ways we can improve the event in the future,” commented Chad Richter, Store Manager. 

This year’s event also featured four RDO Equipment Co. employees that had First graders who attended. Neal Neukomm with son Dierks; Wyat Klabunde with daughter Hannah; Dave Green with son Cory, and Loren Henke with son Treyden. The dads all assisted with the event, which made their First graders very proud!

Nearly 85 First graders from the Beulah/Hazen community attended Hazen’s 4th annual Safety Day. Terry Newman, Account Manager, led the day’s event, along with help from other RDO Equipment Co. employees from Hazen and Washburn.

“It’s a great opportunity for the children to learn and have fun. It also gives us the opportunity to do something great for the community,” said Dave Ripplinger, Store Manager.

May 1, 2015  |  Category:
RDO Equipment Co. and RDO Water Partner for SWAg Summit

RDO Equipment Co. and RDO Water Partner for SWAg Summit

The two-day SW Ag Summit is a cooperative event by Arizona Western College Foundation, University of Arizona Cooperative Extension, the Yuma Fresh Vegetable Association and Yuma County Farm Bureau. In its 9th year, this event is focused on educational breakout sessions for local growers, ag professionals, college students, and businesses. RDO Equipment Co. and RDO Water in Yuma were involved in a big way at this year’s event.

The first day was primarily focused on demos. RDO Equipment Co. demoed the eBee drone and JDLink technology, while RDO Water demoed an automated pump/sprinkler irrigation system. In addition, both RDO Equipment Co. and RDO Water were sponsors of the event and had exhibitor booths.

During the General session, five experts discussed the Colorado River system, which was a very educational and eye-opening seminar. Other topics included food safety liability, efficient irrigation in the Low Desert, and drones and UAVs.

In fact, members of the Yuma RDO Integrated Controls team were featured in an online interview about the use of drones and UAVs in the agriculture industry (

“The Summit is the only ag-industry event of its kind in our area,” commented Chris Harmon, RDO Equipment Co. – Yuma General Manager. “It’s important for our team to not only demonstrate the value we can bring to the agriculture community, but a chance for us to learn about the topics and challenges growers are facing.”

April 28, 2015  |  Category:
Ada Helps Youth with Eagle Scout Project

Ada Helps Youth with Eagle Scout Project

In 2014, two young men from the Ada community approached the team and asked if they could assist with their Eagle Scout Projects.

There were two separate projects that were completed. The first was a Veterans Memorial made of granite. The store assisted with time and machinery to help set the foundation for the very heavy stone to sit on. They also made a monetary donation and Tim Spilde, Lead Parts Specialist, operated the skid steer used for the project. The memorial is a main landmark of the community cemetery and is visible from the main throughway in town.

The second project was for a new sign for the Heart of the Valley (HOV) Golf Course in Ada. It was a “Course Rules” sign along with a memorial bench. Tim and Kirk Spilde, Central Parts Ordering Specialist, utilized Community Time and helped operate a skid steer and manual labor.

The two young men received their Eagle Scout Awards in February and were both very appreciative of the help they received from RDO Equipment Co.

“We were happy to help give back to these young individuals. Their projects help better our community,” commented E. Marquis, Store Manager.

April 25, 2015  |  Category:
More than 100 Attend Northwest Precision Ag Training

More than 100 Attend Northwest Precision Ag Training

Over the course of three days, the RDO Equipment Co. team provided a training event to help customers learn strategies for better fleet and asset management.

Held at the Kennewick fairgrounds, customers attended classes that included, Apex Farm Management software, and in-field ride and drives with sprayers and tractors.

This was the first year trying a new format for the precision products training. The focus was to hold interactive and informative sessions that customers could gain value from and take back to their operation.

Saul Amezquita, Product Specialist Supervisor, conducted sessions in Spanish, which nearly half the attendees participated in.

Dan Eslinger, Product Specialist, and Joel Kaczynski, Product Specialist Manager, trained on JDLink and MyJohnDeere Operation Center and sprayers.

Kyle Sannes, Product Specialist and Alex Umpleby, Product Specialist trained on general set-up/operation, in field adjustments, and GreenStar Rate Controller set-up and operation.

Reps from SurFire AG also held a session to inform customers on solutions that can be used in conjunction with our John Deere Precision Products that will help them increase their chemical application accuracy. 

“We were pleased with the turnout and the response to the materials,” said Joel. “This is the type of event that showcases the value and expertise our team brings to our growers business.

Vermeer Dealer Year End and Individual Award

Vermeer Dealer Year End and Individual Award

The RDO Vermeer team recently attended the Dealer Year End Meeting in December along with the Sales – Parts – Service event in February, both held at Vermeer Corporation in Pella, IA. It was very exciting this past year as the team had many accomplishments along with a few individual accomplishments.

The following were awarded to RDO Vermeer teams and individuals:

  • MN & ND – #1 in the world for Trenchless products
  • CA & OR – #1 in the world for Recycling Products
  • MN & ND – Borestore Platinum Level Sales Growth Champion & Borestore Ignition Sales Growth Innovation Champion
  • CA & OR – Top 3 in the world for Tree Care Products
  • MN & ND – Top 3 in the world for Utility Products
  • Randy Logan (Fontana Sales Professional) – Recycling Products Champion
  • Mark Rieckhoff (Burnsville-Vermeer Sales Manager) – Sales Manager of the Year
  • Brian Schafer - #5 in the world for Sales
  • Eric Punt – 1st Vermeer Certified Master Technician

Marshall Anderson, Executive Vice President, stated, “The Vermeer Division had a great year in Fiscal Year 2015 and it was wonderful to see us recognized by Vermeer across all the segments as well as all regions. On an individual basis, we are very proud of the personal recognition that Mark, Brian, Randy and Eric received for their contributions to both RDO Equipment Co. and Vermeer. We are also proud of all the team members whose dedication and hard work allowed us to perform in the Top 3 of all dealers in five major categories.”

April 20, 2015  |  Category:
RDO Equipment Co. Announces Partnership with HIPOWER SYSTEMS

RDO Equipment Co. Announces Partnership with HIPOWER SYSTEMS

FARGO, N.D. (April 10, 2015) – RDO Equipment Co. announces a partnership with HIPOWER SYSTEMS, a manufacturer of power generation and power distribution equipment. All 17 Midwest Construction locations in North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, and Montana will represent all of HIPOWER SYSTEMS’ product lines, from rental generators to power distribution products.

“The new partnership with HIPOWER SYSTEMS is a great fit for our organization, as we have similar values and goals. In their approach to customer service and with their equipment, HIPOWER SYSTEMS is equally committed to building and maintaining satisfaction and strong relationships with their customer base,” commented Justin Schulz, RDO Equipment Co. Product Manager.

RDO Equipment Co. will be sending six Service Technicians to the HIPOWER SYSTEMS facility to complete a comprehensive, three-week training curriculum. The program imparts knowledge on everything from basic generator engine and controller operation to troubleshooting and system maintenance of HIPOWER SYSTEMS equipment, specifically.

“We are impressed with RDO Equipment Co.’s commitment to uptime and superior service, which is important not only for the Oil & Gas industry but for all of our markets,” said HIPOWER SYSTEMS President Rafael Acosta. He continued, “Our joint dedication to quality, integrity, and customer support will be the key to success in this new partnership.”

Lon Kindseth, RDO Equipment Co. Vice President of Midwest Construction, concluded, “This is a quality solution we are able to offer and take care of our customers’ business needs.”

Ron Offutt Named to ND Agriculture Hall of Fame

Ronald Offutt, founder and Chairman Emeritus of R.D. Offutt Company was inducted into the North Dakota Agriculture Hall of Fame on March 7, 2015 during the 78th annual North Dakota Winter Show in Valley City.

Offutt is the founder of R.D. Offutt Co., the nation's largest producer of potatoes, and RDO Equipment Co., the largest network of John Deere construction and agricultural equipment dealerships in the U.S.

A native of Orrick, Mo., Offutt grew up on his family’s farm in Moorhead, Minn. He attended Moorhead High School and graduated in 1964 from Concordia College, Moorhead, with a degree in Economics.

Offutt is the former chairman of the Board of Regents of Concordia College in Moorhead, where he has served his alma mater for over 20 years on its board. He is a member of the Global Leadership Board of the Offutt School of Business at Concordia College and a member of the Board of Regents.

He is one of 41 recipients of the Theodore Roosevelt Rough Rider Award, North Dakota’s top honor, recognizing North Dakotans who have achieved national excellence in their fields of endeavor. He has also received numerous other regional and national awards for his contributions to agriculture.

The North Dakota Winter Show is home to the North Dakota Agricultural Hall of Fame. A selection committee, made up of different segments of the state’s agricultural committee, selects the yearly inductees from those nominated individuals. The selection is based on an individual’s contribution to agriculture in the state. Offutt was nominated by the Northern Plains Potato Growers Association.

RDO Equipment Co. Opens New Location in McKinney

RDO Equipment Co. Opens New Location in McKinney

MCKINNEY, Tex. (March 16, 2015) – RDO Equipment Co. has opened a new store in McKinney Texas. With seven current locations in the state, the McKinney store will provide additional support to north Texas customers and complement RDO Equipment Co.’s Fort Worth and Irving locations.

The new 38,000 sq. ft. location will offer sales, parts, service, and rental of John Deere heavy construction equipment. The store was designed to achieve LEED Certification by the United States Green Building Council (USGBC).

Daryl Shelton, RDO Equipment Co. Vice President of Texas, stated, “The additional north Texas location furthers our commitment to our customers and allows us to expand our overall services and product support capabilities in an expanding market.  We look forward to growing our close-knit team into an additional location and serving the McKinney community for many years to come.”

The store will host a Grand Opening later this spring.

Moorhead and Hawley Host Spring Clinic

Moorhead and Hawley Host Spring Clinic

The Moorhead and Hawley locations each held a clinic called, “Enabling Solutions.” This clinic was aimed to help customers get prepared for spring and touched on their equipment, AMS solutions, manufacturer news, and more.

The clinic kicked off with an AMS refresher – things growers need to do before they hit the field, such as how to setup planters and air seeders on their displays and value added services.

After the AMS piece, RDO Equipment Co. team members discussed equipment readiness (tractors, planters and air seeders), winter inspections, and Technical Support.

Parts was next, including discussion about retrofittable parts from the MaxEmerge 5 row units to previous model row units, as well as John Deere incentives, and the filter sale. Customers were given a sneak peak of some of the newest products from John Deere, including the 9RX, 2730 ripper, SectionCommand (for air seeders), and SeedStar Mobile. Wrapping things up was a discussion on the importance of good data and how that applies to agronomic practices.

“These types of clinics are great opportunities to partner with our customers in preparing their businesses for planting season.  Their uptime and productivity are crucial for the success of all RDO stakeholders,” commented Todd Thompson.

Jerry “Doc” Holliday Celebrates 25 Years

Jerry “Doc” Holliday Celebrates 25 Years

Doc Holliday celebrated 25 years of service this month with a store event. Doc grew up in rural Texas and graduated college with an engineering degree. Doc worked several years in the engineering industry, including time as the Lead Engineer on two large construction projects in Texas: one for the Corps of Engineers and another for the Texas Department of Transportation. After those projects wrapped, Doc entered the heavy equipment industry, where he’s been ever since.

Doc spent several years as a Sales Professional and is currently the Sales Manager in New Braunfels and Laredo. In his 25 years, he’s seen a lot of changes by way of technology and processes. “When I started, all of our quotes and POs were hand written, and we carried our inventory list on a computer-generated print out that was 8” x 14” x 3”. We made most our calls from pay phones. You made sure you always had your rolls of quarters, and I knew where every pay phone was located in the San Antonio area,” he said. The change of equipment technology – and price - has also been quite drastic. “Backhoes used to be in the $30k range, and now they are in the $70k range. They both still dig the same hole!”

What hasn’t changed, however, is how much he’s enjoyed working for RDO Equipment Co. “I am so thankful and fortunate to have built these relationships and long lasting friendships with my fellow team members and customers. Not only have I gotten to know them, but their wives, their children, and grandchild. I even know some of their in-laws!” he adds.

“I have also been graced to have worked for a family-owned and operated organization, and fortunately for me and my family (wife, Traci, and sons Justin, Sims, and Clay, who works in San Antonio as a Sales Professional), it has always been a feeling of one big family. My family and I are blessed to be a part of the RDO family.”

Aberdeen Employee Retires after 36 Years

Aberdeen Employee Retires after 36 Years

Linda Hansen, Parts Administrator, etired from RDO Equipment Co. after more than 36 years. An Open House was held in her honor on February 20. The community was invited to come into the store to wish Linda well and enjoy refreshments.

Linda started her career in 1978 in the service department, back when the John Deere dealership in town was Brown County Implement. She transitioned to a parts role right before RDO Equipment Co. purchased the store.

What’s changed the most in her 36+ years in a dealership setting? It’s no surprise – technology. “I suppose the biggest change I’ve seen is the use of computers, when everything at one time was done manually or with just a typewriter!” she comments. She also notes that the machinery is so much larger and much more expense.

“I’m very fortunate to have made many wonderful friends of both employees and our customers in the past 36 years,” Linda adds.

Brian Bjordal, Store Manager, said,” Linda has done a great job for RDO Equipment Co. and will be missed by our customers and employees. We wish Linda the very best in her retirement.”

JD Kessler Named Webster Store Manager

JD Kessler is the new Webster store manager. He’s been with RDO Equipment Co. for nearly 7 years, and in his time with the organization has gained experience in several roles in sales and management, including Sales Manager in Livermore (focused on Vermeer product), Account Manager for Core Accounts in South Dakota, and most recently, Regional Sales Manager for Webster and Aberdeen.

“I look forward to taking the relationships with our internal and external customers to the next level and helping them be a part of the RDO story every single day,” said JD. “I have always been amazed no matter what store I have worked in, how great the people are – and it again rings true for the Webster team.”

“Professor” Grove

Kevin Grove, Service Manager in Grand Forks, spent two days in mid-January teaching first- and second-year Auto Mechanics at Red River High School in Grand Forks. When the instructor for the class was called out for a few days, RDO Equipment Co. and another local industrial dealership were asked to fill the void. 

Kevin’s assignment was to speak about cooling systems to the second year students and about preventative maintenance to the first year students. To supplement the classroom education, Kevin brought a new John Deere 524k loader into the class shop – a big hit with the students. He was able to show the students the similarities between gas and diesel machines through the combination of classroom and hands-on presentations. 

Roni Lillehaugen, General Manager, was glad that Kevin and RDO Equipment Co. were able to help the school and the students. “We are fortunate to have someone as knowledgeable as Kevin who was able to step in and help out. The students appreciated having a guest speaker – and a loader to climb around on!”

RDO Equipment Co. Donates Equipment, Time to Local Event

RDO Equipment Co. Donates Equipment, Time to Local Event

Each year, RDO Equipment Co. supplies machines and man power to the Fort Worth Stock Show & Rodeo. And every year at this event, many FFA chapters from around the state participate in the AG Mechanics show that is part of the event.

These students build saddle racks, smokers, fire pits, bumper pull trailers, goose neck trailers, deer feeders, hog traps, cattle pins, and even bottom dump trailers for 18-wheelers. The RDO Equipment Co. team donates time and equipment to help load and unload these projects made by students.

This year’s event boasted 243 projects – loaded and unloaded by the RDO Equipment Co. team – from 98 FFA Chapters, represented by 600 students.

“The Fort Worth Stock Show & Rodeo is a long standing tradition in our community, and I am happy that we can support the event and the work of these talented young men and women who participate,” said Matt Daniell, RDO Equipment Co. General Manager.

FAA Proposes New Rules for Unmanned Aircraft Systems

GPS World
February 17, 2015  - By GPS World staff

The Federal Aviation Administration has proposed a framework of regulations that would allow routine use of certain small unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) in today’s aviation system for commercial purposes.

“We have tried to be flexible in writing these rules,” said FAA Administrator Michael Huerta in a statement. “We want to maintain today’s outstanding level of aviation safety without placing an undue regulatory burden on an emerging industry.”

The FAA proposal offers safety rules for UAS under 55 pounds conducting “non-recreational” operations. The rule would limit flights to daylight and visual line-of-sight operations. It also addresses height restrictions, operator certification, optional use of a visual observer, aircraft registration and marking, and operational limits.

The proposed rules also includes extensive discussion of the possibility of an additional, more flexible framework for “micro” UAS under 4.4 pounds. The FAA is asking the public to comment on this possible classification to determine whether it should include this option as part of a final rule. The FAA is also asking for comment about how the agency can further leverage the UAS test site program and an upcoming UAS Center of Excellence to further spur innovation at “innovation zones.”

The public will be able to comment on the proposed regulation for 60 days from the date of publication in the Federal Register. The FAA also intends to hold public meetings to discuss innovation and opportunities at the test sites and Center of Excellence.  These meetings will be announced in a future Federal Register notice.

“Technology is advancing at an unprecedented pace, and this milestone allows federal regulations and the use of our national airspace to evolve to safely accommodate innovation,” said Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx.

The proposed rule would require an operator to maintain visual line of sight of a small UAS. The rule would allow, but not require, an operator to work with a visual observer who would maintain constant visual contact with the aircraft. The operator would still need to be able to see the UAS with unaided vision (except for glasses). The FAA is asking for comments on whether the rules should permit operations beyond line of sight, and if so, what the appropriate limits should be.

Under the proposed rule, the person actually flying a small UAS would be an “operator.” An operator would have to be at least 17 years old, pass an aeronautical knowledge test and obtain an FAA UAS operator certificate. To maintain certification, the operator would have to pass the FAA knowledge tests every 24 months. A small UAS operator would not need any further private pilot certifications (such as a private pilot license or medical rating).

The new rule also proposes operating limitations designed to minimize risks to other aircraft and people and property on the ground:

  • A small UAS operator must always see and avoid manned aircraft. If there is a risk of collision, the UAS operator must be the first to maneuver away.
  • The operator must discontinue the flight when continuing would pose a hazard to other aircraft, people or property.
  • A small UAS operator must assess weather conditions, airspace restrictions and the location of people to lessen risks if he or she loses control of the UAS.
  • A small UAS may not fly over people, except those directly involved with the flight.
  • Flights should be limited to 500 feet altitude and no faster than 100 mph.
  • Operators must stay out of airport flight paths and restricted airspace areas, and obey any FAA Temporary Flight Restrictions (TFRs).
  • The proposed rule maintains the existing prohibition against operating in a careless or reckless manner. It also would bar an operator from allowing any object to be dropped from the UAS.

Operators would be responsible for ensuring an aircraft is safe before flying, but the FAA is not proposing that small UAS comply with current agency airworthiness standards or aircraft certification. For example, an operator would have to perform a preflight inspection that includes checking the communications link between the control station and the UAS. Small UAS with FAA-certificated components also could be subject to agency airworthiness directives.

The new rules would not apply to model aircraft.  However, model aircraft operators must continue to satisfy all of the criteria specified in Sec. 336 of Public Law 112-95, including the stipulation that they be operated only for hobby or recreational purposes. Generally speaking, the new rules would not apply to government aircraft operations, because we expect that these government operations will typically continue to actively operate under the Certificate of Waiver or Authorization (COA) process unless the operator opts to comply with and fly under the new small UAS regulations.

In addition to this proposal, earlier today, the White House issued a Presidential Memorandum concerning transparency, accountability, and privacy, civil rights, and civil liberties protections for the Federal Government’s use of UAS in the national airspace system, which directs the initiation of a multi-stakeholder engagement process to develop a framework for privacy, accountability, and transparency issues concerning commercial and private UAS use.

The current unmanned aircraft rules remain in place until the FAA implements a final new rule. The FAA encourages new operators to visit 

February 18, 2015  |  Category:

CADsoft Consulting Announces partnership with RDO Integrated Controls

CADsoft Consulting Announces partnership with RDO Integrated Controls
Representing innovative positioning technology solutions in the construction industry dedicated to Building Information Modeling (BIM)

FARGO, ND – CADsoft Consulting Inc., a proven leader in the implementations of Design and Construction technologies for the last 24 years, announced that they have signed a joint venture with the leading positioning distributor of Topcon’s field scanners and robotic technologies, RDO Integrated Controls, a division of RDO Equipment Co. This synergy is made possible primarily due to high level collaboration at the root level between Autodesk Inc. and Topcon. CADsoft and RDO Integrated Controls’ joint venture makes it possible for small and major construction trade partners to easily adopt and implement the most streamlined technology in the construction industry.

Topcon is a global leader in precision positioning technology and solutions and has designed their solutions to allow building and civil infrastructure construction customers to form a tighter, more seamless workflow that will increase on-site worker productivity, enhance jobsite safety, and improve quality control.  

Additionally, Topcon and Autodesk, a leader in cloud-based design and engineering software for the construction industry, have collaborated to allow products, such as Autodesk Point Layout and the new BIM 360 Layout iPad app, for BIM to more efficiently interact with Topcon’s LN-100 3D Layout Navigator.  This provides greater interoperability between Autodesk’s design solutions and Topcon field positioning hardware to connect workflows between the office and the field utilizing robotic total stations for construction positioning.  As an Autodesk Authorized Gold Partner and an Autodesk BIM 360 Advisor, CADsoft Consulting has the expertise to provide a complete solution and create jobsite efficiencies by helping contractors more easily connect BIM output to field based implementation.   These efficiencies reduce contractor error and re-work while speeding-up the overall installation process.

“By selecting to partner with RDO Integrated Controls, CADsoft Consulting continues to expand our innovative and advanced technology offerings to meet our customer needs,” said Lisa Duncan, Principal of CADsoft Consulting.  “Our customers are embracing BIM and have an immediate need for layout workflows to increase jobsite and project accuracy and substantially increase productivity as well. The LN-100 total station robot and Autodesk Point Layout software sits as the focus for the delivering these needs to our clients. With RDO Integrated Controls' expertise and guidance with positioning technology this can be quickly translated into real opportunities with our clients moving forward.”

”As part of our business philosophy to be a total solutions provider in the positioning industry, we are excited about the strategic advantage that this partnership will allow customers. This is an opportunity to extend our services and continue to deliver superior results that will truly benefit the work our customers do,” said Kelly Gress, RDO Equipment Co. Vice President.

About RDO Integrated Controls
RDO Integrated Controls, founded in 2009, is a division of RDO Equipment Co. The division provides positioning solutions for customers in the construction, mining, engineering, survey, and landfill industries. For more information, visit

About RDO Equipment Co.
Founded in 1968, RDO Equipment Co. is a family owned and operated company that provides and supports innovative solutions for John Deere agriculture, construction, lawn and garden; Vermeer; Topcon; and RDO Water customers. The organization, with headquarters in Fargo, N.D., employs more than 2,200 team members. The company has 70 sales and service locations in nine U.S. states and partnerships in Mexico, Russia, Ukraine, and Australia. Learn more about RDO Equipment Co. at

About CADsoft Consulting
CADsoft Consulting is a proven leader in the implementation of architectural, engineering, and construction design technologies and workflow.  With over 24 years of industry, business, and technical experience, CADsoft Consulting’s unique services are sought after by leading architectural firms, engineering companies, manufacturing and mining, government agencies, and academic institutions.  CADsoft Consulting is an Autodesk Gold Partner with specializations in Building, Civil Infrastructure, Advanced MEP, Advanced Structure, Process & Power, and Government. In addition, CADsoft holds Autodesk Consulting and Product Support Specializations and is an Authorized Training Center (ATC).  For more information visit

Autodesk, the Autodesk logo and ATC are registered trademarks or trademarks of Autodesk, Inc., and/or its subsidiaries and/or affiliates in the USA and/or other countries.

Grand Forks Service Manager Celebrates 30 Years of Service

Grand Forks Service Manager Celebrates 30 Years of Service

Several team members joined the Grand Forks store in recognizing Kevin Grove, Service Manager, for his 30 Years of Service. Kevin’s wife, Carol, and son, Ryan, helped celebrate this special milestone along with many guests including Christi Offutt, CEO; Lon Kindseth, Vice President; and Ron Saar, Regional Aftermarket Manager.

Kevin stated that he has enjoyed his years at RDO Equipment Co. and has built many strong relationships and friendships with both customers and employees. Roni Lillehaugen, General Manger, Grand Forks, is pleased to be able to work with Kevin. “Kevin is a wonderful employee who truly exemplifies our Core Values and Stakeholder philosophy of doing business. He is well respected by our stakeholders and is a great ambassador for RDO Equipment Co. – I am honored to work with him and have him on our team.”

Brian Bjordal Named Aberdeen Store Manager

Brian Bjordal has been named Store Manager in Aberdeen. Brian joined RDO Equipment Co. one year ago as the Webster Store Manager. He previously worked at Walmart for 23 years, with the last 11 as the Walmart Store Manager in Aberdeen.

“Brian brings a wealth of customer service experience,” commented Brook Stephens, Regional General Manager. “Brian has made an immediate impact to our stores in South Dakota, and I look forward to his leadership in Aberdeen.”