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Senior Special Program Administrator Retires After 25-plus Years with the Field Support Office

20 Oct 2022

Don Brusven, Senior Special Program Administrator at the Fargo Field Support Office is retiring after 28 years with RDO Equipment Co.

Don began his career at RDO as a temporary employee in the accounting department at a time when both the department and the company were on the cusp of major changes.

“RDO was about to go public, so I spent a couple of months helping with that. Back then, it was a very small department with only two people, one who would handle ag and the other handling construction,” Don recalls of his early days at RDO.

​​​​​​​Don went on to take a full-time offer, and within a few years, worked his way into an Accounting Manager role. Stemming from RDO’s rapid growth, he found himself at the center of an effort to find a more efficient way to run an accounting department.

“At one time, each store had its specific accounting person. We began to bring everyone into one central location,” he said of the change. “Which was a challenge because it was an ongoing process and we had to bring new people on, too.”

The result is today’s centralized accounting department, based out of the Fargo Field Support Office and supporting the entirety of RDO. From his time on the leading edge of that change, Don became seasoned expert and teacher of the RDO business. This made him a prime candidate for his role today, where he helps to train and educate the new generation of Accounting Managers. It also allows him to lean fully into his favorite part of his job: being able to answer questions and solve problems with his teammates.

​​​​​​​“I truly enjoy teaching people. If I can help someone understand something they did not previously understand, that makes me happy,” Brusven said.

His opportunities during his career to meet and work with fellow RDO team members, whether traveling to stores across the region or over the phone, is an element of the job he says has kept him onboard for nearly three decades.

Lon Kindseth, Director of CE Inventory Valuation, has worked with Don throughout Don’s entire career and testified to his eagerness to help others understand problems and find solutions.

“For 28 years, Don has been my go-to guy,” he said. “If I had a question, an accounting entry, or just needed someone to bounce a thought off of, Don was that person. He’s hard-working, company-minded, and caring; and it has been my pleasure to be a teammate of his.”

In their many years of working together, Bob Goettle, Senior Accounting Manager - Operations, has also found Don to be a partner to those around him.

“I have known Don my entire career with RDO. His patience and willingness to help others be successful is what I’ve always appreciated and admired most about him,” Bob said.

Don’s attitude to help and share his knowledge fuels his appreciation for the RDO Core Value Building Customers for Life, and his career in a Field Support function has granted him a unique perspective on it. For instance, while he does not work directly with RDO customers, he sees this Core Value in relation to his teammates.

“Developing relationships and trust is very important. I think we’ve done a pretty good job of that in my time, and it’s vital because then we can be someone who can be relied upon and helpful along the way,” Brusven said.

General Manager of Aftermarket Ron Saar noted Don’s supportive approach to teaching others.

“He’s set the bar high for others. He is smart, full of common sense, and he’s been a great mentor to many people. He’s always been kind and respectful towards others and a good listener. He’s just a class act.”

The partnership Don has both built and received with teammates like Lon, Ron, and so many others is one of the things Don finds most impactful as he reflects on his career.

“The one thing I like a lot is that everyone is willing to help the person next to them. Someone is always there to help you out and answer questions,” he said. “Not all places are like that, and people truly care about you here.”

As for his plans for retirement, Don intentionally has minimal intentions at this point.

“I just want to relax and take it easy,” he said.

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