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RDO Equipment Co. Announces Management Promotions and Leadership Realignment

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RDO Equipment Co. announces a number of promotions and a realignment of responsibility on the leadership team. 

The following promotions are announced: Chris Cooper, Keith Kreps, Ryan Offutt, and Jean Zimmerman have been promoted to Executive Vice President; Steve Connelly has been promoted to Vice President of Midwest Agriculture; Davin Peterson has been promoted to Vice President of Western Agriculture; Daryl Shelton has been promoted to Vice President of Texas; Dennis Howard has been promoted to Vice President of Southwest Construction; and Kelly Gress has been promoted to Vice President of RDO Integrated Controls.

As Executive Vice President, Chris Cooper will be responsible for all John Deere Construction, Vermeer, and RDO Integrated Controls locations. Cooper joined RDO Equipment Co. in 2004 as General Manager of Irving, Fort Worth, and Waco stores. In 2007, he was promoted to Vice President of Texas and in 2010, assumed leadership of the Southwest Construction region with his most recent role of Vice President of Southern Construction. Prior to his employment with RDO Equipment Co., Chris spent 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 founded and managed his own maintenance and repair company with 16 field technicians.

As Executive Vice President, Keith Kreps will be responsible for all Agricultural regions and support the Australian partnership by serving on the Vanderfield board of directors (Vanderfield is a recent partnership between RDO Equipment Co. and the Australian John Deere dealer network). Kreps joined RDO Equipment Co. in 1998 as the Midwest Agricultural Division Marketing Manager. Soon after, he transitioned into the General Manager position in the Breckenridge, Minn. location. In 2003, he was promoted to Vice President of Midwest and Northwest Agriculture regions. In 2010, he assumed leadership of the Southwest Agriculture region with his most recent role of Vice President of Agriculture. Prior to joining RDO Equipment Co., Kreps spent 10 years in the automotive industry in management roles and five years owning his own business. He currently serves as an officer on the North Dakota Implement Dealers Board of Directors.

As Executive Vice President with responsibility for the company’s international partnerships, Ryan Offutt will be responsible for the company’s Russian and Ukraine operations and will chair the Vanderfield board of directors.
He joined the organization in 2003 as Director of Human Resources and Communications, eventually assumed additional responsibilities related to the company’s expansion in Russia, and in 2006 was named Vice President International Business. Prior to RDO Equipment Co., Offutt worked at the Woodrow Wilson center for International Scholars. Offutt received his degree from Reed College.

As Executive Vice President of Organizational Development, Jean Zimmerman is responsible for training and development, payroll and benefits, hiring and performance management, and marketing and communications activities for the company. Zimmerman joined the organization in 2005 and in her time with the organization, she has concentrated on team member and customer initiatives and culture development in her role as Vice President of Organizational Development. She has more than 30 years of experience in people development, sales, sales management, and organizational development. Zimmerman graduated from Concordia College, Moorhead MN.

As Vice President of Midwest Agriculture, Steve Connelly will be responsible for agriculture stores in Minnesota, North Dakota, and South Dakota. He has worked for RDO Equipment Co. for nearly 10 years, most recently serving as General Manager for seven stores in the Red River Valley. Prior to RDO Equipment Co. he was an instructor at Moorhead High School as well as the head football coach. Connelly received his undergraduate degree from Concordia College and a master’s degree from South Dakota State University. He currently serves on the Minnesota Agriculture in the Classroom (MAITC) Foundation Board of Directors.

As Vice President of Western Agriculture, Davin Peterson will oversee agriculture stores in Arizona, California, Oregon, and Washington. Peterson has nearly 20 years with RDO Equipment Co. and has served in many capacities, including Parts Manager, Store Manager, Regional Sales Manager, and most recently, General Manager of Northwest, overseeing operations in Washington and Oregon agriculture locations.

As Vice President of Southwest Construction, Dennis Howard will oversee John Deere construction locations in California and Arizona. Dennis has more than five years of experience with RDO Equipment Co., and more than 25 years of experience in the heavy equipment industry. He served in roles at a John Deere agriculture dealership; Case IH dealership; and Komatsu dealership. He also owned his own sales and rental business.

As Vice President of Texas, Daryl Shelton will oversee John Deere construction operations in Austin, Fort Worth, Irving, Laredo, San Antonio, and Waco locations. Daryl joined RDO Equipment Co. in 2010 and most recently served as General Manager of Fort Worth and Irving. He has 17 years of experience in the equipment industry, including 10 years with John Deere Company where he served in roles such as Product Marketing Manager, Territory Manager, Dealer Development Manager, and Wholesale Finance Manager.  Prior to joining RDO Equipment Co., Daryl served as General Manager of a 10-store, John Deere agriculture dealer network in North and Northeast Texas.

As Vice President of RDO Integrated Controls, Kelly Gress will be responsible for RDO Equipment Co.’s positioning division which provides solutions through survey, GPS, laser, GIS, and machine control products for the construction, mining, and landfill industries.  Gress began his career with RDO Equipment Co. in 2002 as an internal auditor and since has held roles as a General Manager, Regional Controller, Director of Financial Planning and Analysis, and most recently, Director of Sales Operations and RDO Integrated Controls. Prior to joining RDO Equipment Co., Gress worked at Eide Bailly LLP and honorably served in the United States Marine Corps.