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Everyday Hero Profile: Ken Welch

Posted on Wed, Jul 20, 2022

Lynden is recognizing employees who make a difference every day on the job and demonstrate our core values, Lynden's very own everyday heroes! Employees are nominated by managers and supervisors from all roles within the Lynden family of companies.

Introducing Ken Welch, Purchasing Manager at Lynden Air Cargo in Anchorage, Alaska.

EDH post (4)

Name: Ken Welch

Company: Lynden Air Cargo

Title: Purchasing Manager

On the Job Since: 1997

Superpower: Remembering part numbers

Hometown: Anchorage

Favorite Movie: Back to the Future

Bucket List Destination: Australia

For Fun: Fixing up cars, hiking, biking

How and when did you start working for Lynden Air Cargo? Have you worked for or done projects with other Lynden companies?
I started working for LAC right before the Hercs arrived in Alaska in March 1997. I have not worked at any other Lynden companies, but I do work with many of them to ship our aircraft parts and equipment around the world in support of the Herc fleet.

What is a typical day like for you?
A typical morning is reviewing what part requests have come in overnight to see if anything needs to be ordered and what priority. Respond to other emails as needed, send out requests for quotes on various parts needed and check for any quotes that have come in. Might have a Teams meeting or two in the day. Field questions throughout the day about parts needed, how many, when they will arrive, etc. Coordinate with repair vendors on parts we might supply for larger items like engines. Reach out to vendors for delivery updates on items already ordered. Approve invoices for payment, review stock levels of inventory. We work in Trax, which is our inventory and ordering system, which also keeps track of all the parts installed on the different aircraft.

What has been most challenging in your career?
Expanding the aircraft fleet, adding additional aircraft is always a challenge. Especially the last few years, as we have quite a bit of specialized equipment on our aircraft that not many airlines use. It all seems to come together in the end, but in the middle it sometimes feels like we may never get there.

What are you most proud of in your career?
Longevity, staying with Lynden for over 25 years. I have been in the airline industry since 1985, kind of fell into it. LAC has treated me very well, and I am loyal to the company.

Can you tell us about your family and growing up years?
I was born and raised here in Anchorage with my brother. Typical Alaska childhood, camping, fishing, biking, sledding and skating in winter. I feel fortunate to have grown up here, I don’t know that I would have had the same opportunities anywhere else. I have lived a couple of other places, but this is home. Also, I should mention I will be a first-time grandpa at the end of the year when my son Tanner and his wife, Amanda, expect their first child. Tanner is in the Army based at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson in Anchorage. I also have a daughter, Kylie, who will be attending the University of Alaska in Anchorage this fall, and I am married to my wife of 25 years, Janine. She has worked for Lynden as well.

What was your first job?
My very first job was a paper route that I had for a couple of years in my pre-teens.

What would surprise most people about you?
I am starting to enjoy cooking at home more and broadening my skills, such that they are. Especially since the pandemic began. My mom would be most surprised about that. I like to barbecue, and I like to think I cook a mean breakfast on the weekends!

How do you spend your time outside of work?
Taking care of things around the house, biking or going for a jog sometimes. Trying to stay healthy as I get older. Tinkering on cars as time allows. Or when they are broke. I have a 1973 Pontiac Firebird and a 1976 Chevy Nova. Nothing real special, but I think they are fun.

What do you like best about your job?
The challenge of finding the right part, and then getting it where it is needed as quickly as possible.

Tags: Lynden, Lynden Air Cargo, Lynden Employees, Everyday Heroes

Everyday Hero Profile: David Greco

Posted on Tue, Jun 21, 2022

Lynden is recognizing employees who make a difference every day on the job and demonstrate our core values, Lynden's very own everyday heroes! Employees are nominated by managers and supervisors from all roles within the Lynden family of companies.

Introducing David Greco, Driver at Lynden Transport in Fife, Washington.

EDH post (3)

Name: David Greco

Company: Lynden Transport

Title: Driver

On the Job Since: 2011

Superpower: Making work fun

Hometown: Port Orchard, WA

Favorite Movie: Mel Gibson’s The Passion of Christ

Bucket List Destination: Alaska

For Fun: Fishing, backpacking and camping with family

How and when did you start working for Lynden Transport?
I started working for Lynden as a casual driver in April 2011.

What is a typical day like for you?
Working the Lynden Tacoma dock and flatbed yard and driving semi trucks throughout the day.

What has been most challenging in your career?
The most challenging is hauling oversized flatbed loads and staying safe day in and day out amongst all the Seattle traffic.

Can you tell us about your family?
I grew up with one older brother and four younger sisters in Gig Harbor, WA. I am married with three kids: a boy, 8, a girl, 6, and another son who is almost one year old.

What was your first job?
Christmas tree farm helper.

How do you spend your time outside of work?
I enjoy spending time with family, backpacking, fishing and playing acoustic guitar at church.

What do you like best about your job?
Working with all the different types of people. Lynden is a really great place to work.

 

Tags: Lynden, Lynden Employees, Lynden Transport, Everyday Heroes

Everyday Hero Profile: Gayle Adams

Posted on Fri, May 20, 2022

Lynden is recognizing employees who make a difference every day on the job and demonstrate our core values, Lynden's very own everyday heroes! Employees are nominated by managers and supervisors from all roles within the Lynden family of companies.

Introducing Gayle Adams, Senior Payroll Specialist at Lynden in Seattle, Washington.

EDH post (2)

Name: Gayle Adams

Company: Lynden Inc.

On the Job Since: 1986

Title: Senior Payroll Specialist

Superpower: Customer Service

Hometown: Vancouver, B.C.

Favorite Movie: Under the Tuscan Sun

Bucket List Destination: New Zealand

For Fun: Walking on nature trails and the beach, photography, wine tasting, gardening and going to sporting events.

How and when did you start working for Lynden? Have you worked for or done projects with other Lynden companies?
My neighbor Kitty Samuel (former VP/Controller) mentioned to me that Lynden Inc. had a position open for a part-time filing clerk, which was perfect while attending college in 1986. Almost 35 years later, I have had experience in all the accounting department processes so I have been able to support most of the Lynden companies with various projects and responsibilities. I have been processing payroll for Lynden Logistics, Lynden Puerto Rico and Lynden Air Cargo for 25 years and Lynden Transport now for 10 years so I feel like I actually work for those companies specifically.

What is a typical day like for you?
Processing payroll is pretty much a set schedule and consistent deadlines, so I always know what to expect when I start my workday. Today I mostly gather, audit and review payroll records for payment processing. In addition, I provide documentation for various projects and data reporting.

What has been most challenging in your career?
I’ve been through multiple payroll, timekeeping and accounting implementations and upgrades, so learning how to use new software is always a challenge. Lynden has been really good at keeping up with the latest technology so that it has made our jobs so much easier and efficient.

What are you most proud of in your career?
How I am easily able to adapt to changes and additional responsibilities in my job.

Can you tell us about your family and growing up years?
I was born in Vancouver B.C., and moved to Prince Rupert B.C., back to Vancouver, then finally settled in the Seattle area when I was 10. I have a younger sister, half brother and sister. From age 12 to 17 I was on a drill team, and we got to travel to a lot of the western states. After high school, I met my late husband and raised three wonderful children (two daughters and a son) which kept us quite busy.

What was your first job?
McDonalds. Hosting birthday parties was the highlight of my job there.

What would surprise most people about you?
Recently I have been going for rides/trips on a motorcycle. I can be very subdued and not much of a risk taker, so this would probably surprise people the most.

How do you spend your time outside of work?
Due to isolation and working from home, I have been tackling small DIY projects and a lot of re-organizing around the house. In the warmer months I try to spend as much time outdoors, going for walks, small road trips, gardening and going to my son’s baseball games.

What do you like best about your job?
Definitely all of the great people I work with.

 

Tags: Lynden, Lynden Employees, Everyday Heroes

Everyday Hero Profile: Don Werhonig

Posted on Wed, Apr 20, 2022

Lynden is recognizing employees who make a difference every day on the job and demonstrate our core values, Lynden's very own everyday heroes! Employees are nominated by managers and supervisors from all roles within the Lynden family of companies.

Introducing Don Werhonig, Instructor/HSSE Manager at Alaska West Express/Lynden Training Center in Fairbanks, Alaska.

EDH post (1)-2
Name: Don Werhonig

Company: Alaska West Express/Lynden Training Center

Title: Instructor/HSSE Manager

On the Job Since: 2013

Superpower: Ability to make complex information understandable to all

Hometown: Harlowton, MT

Favorite Movie: Megamind

Bucket List Destination: Thailand

For Fun: Lots of outdoor stuff and Taekwondo with my kids

How and when did you start working for Alaska West Express/Lynden Training Center? Have you worked for or done projects with other Lynden companies?
I went to work for Alaska West Express in 2013. Before that, I did some emergency response work and training instruction for the company as a contractor. As for how, I had worked with employees of Alaska West starting in 2001, which turned into lifelong friendships. I had an understanding of Lynden and the way they treat their employees and their operating philosophy, so I jumped at the chance to come to work for AWE.

What is a typical day like for you?
My days vary. If I am teaching a class, it is pretty much in the classroom or out on the training ground for the day. If I am not training, I am answering questions for AWE, developing training, or working on AWE programs. Basically, at my workstation unless I can escape and get outside.

What has been most challenging in your career?
Maintaining the status of an expert of subject matter in everything we do. I have to know Department of Transportation (DOT) compliance, Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), plus all the emergency response stuff like firefighting, rescue, medical, and hazmat response. It is hard sometimes to keep up with changing regulations and standards.

What are you most proud of in your career?
This is an easy question to answer. I am proud of all the people I have offered professional development to. I understand that professionally developing our work force and clients is a great responsibility and one I don’t take lightly. But knowing I can develop people to make better decisions or respond to bad situations is incredibly satisfying. The goal would be to develop someone’s skills and knowledge until they are better than I am.

Can you tell us about your family and growing up years?
I grew up on a ranch in Montana. With a saddle horse and a dirt bike, I didn’t spend much time at home. I eventually joined the Army to get out of Montana and start my own life. This also probably kept me from going to jail as I was a “work hard, play even harder” ranch kid and made some not so great decisions in my youth.

What was your first job?
My first real job was changing irrigation pipe twice a day for a neighboring rancher. I worked about four hours each pipe change and made a whopping $0.08 per pipe I moved, for a grand total of about $33 a day.

 What would surprise most people about you?
That I am very compassionate and a very nice person with a giant bleeding heart. I am very outgoing but with a very serious look on my face all the time, so people are probably surprised to find out who I really am.

How do you spend your time outside of work?
Outdoor activities when the Alaska winter life is not working me to death. My kids and I love shooting, hunting, and camping. In the winter our primary activity is a martial arts class that we have been doing for the last few months.

What do you like best about your job?
I like working with our customers to see how they operate in different industries and the challenges they face.

Tags: Lynden, Alaska West Express, Lynden Employees, Safety, Lynden Training Center, Everyday Heroes

Everyday Hero Profile: Saul Najo

Posted on Tue, Mar 22, 2022

Lynden is recognizing employees who make a difference every day on the job and demonstrate our core values, Lynden's very own everyday heroes! Employees are nominated by managers and supervisors from all roles within the Lynden family of companies.

Introducing Saul Najo, Driver at Alaska West Express in Tacoma, Washington.Everyday Hero Saul Najo
Name: Saul Najo

Company: Alaska West Express

Title: Driver

On the Job Since: 2018

Superpower: Flexibility

Hometown: Tacoma

Favorite Movie: The Fast and the Furious

Bucket List Destination: Rio de Janeiro

For Fun: Leisurely rides on my motorcycle

How and when did you start working for Alaska West Express? Have you worked for or done projects with other Lynden companies?
I started working for Alaska West Express shortly after working for LTI, Inc. for four months hauling containers to and from various customers in and around the Seattle-Tacoma area. Once a week I would go to Grandview in Eastern Washington to a Walmart Distribution Center. I enjoyed driving for LTI, Inc., however what I really enjoy is hauling heavy construction equipment as I did that while I was in the military.

One day I met Craig Conner, a driver from Alaska West Express, while waiting in line at Alaska Marine Lines, and we shared stories about what I did before trucking. He kept smiling and asked me where I lived. I told him I live in Lakewood, WA (near Tacoma). “And you work in Seattle?” he said. He proceeded to tell me that he knew of an opportunity I would really love. He called his boss and then told me “my boss wants you to give him a call.” I made the call, and two weeks later I started working with Alaska West Express doing what is in my blood! Hauling everything from a mini excavator to equipment as big as a crane.

What is a typical day like for you?
A typical day for me at Alaska West Express is normally an eight-hour day in support of various customers. Whether it’s a flatbed full of drilling equipment, or a machine that needs to be transported to a job site or the barge.

What has been most challenging in your career?
The most challenging aspect is dealing with folks out on the road that don’t respect driving distances for tractors and trailers. However, being patient and diligent and paying attention to everything that is going on in front and all around me, is what helps me get through my day while out on the road.

What are you most proud of in your career?
I am proud of my work. Sometimes I stand back and observe something that I have transported or built, and I say to myself “I did that.”

Can you tell us about your family and growing up years?
My family is from Salvadoran descent. My childhood years were spent with my grandparents. They did their best to provide for me while my parents attempted to migrate to the United States in the early 1980s. My mother succeeded and became a U.S. resident. My father did not make it and was killed in El Salvador when I was four years old. I eventually made it to the U.S. with my mother’s help. I attended junior high and high school in Los Angeles. Shortly thereafter, I joined the Army and made it a 22 ½-year-long career earning my first retirement at the age of 42. While in the Army I met my wife, Herbina, who was also an active duty soldier. We got married and raised three beautiful children.

What was your first job?
My first job was detailing cars. It was a short-term job while waiting to ship out to basic training for the Army in 1995.

What would surprise most people about you?
Most people are very surprised when I tell them how old I am. It makes me feel good and assures me that I have taken pretty good care of myself throughout the years. I am 45 years old.

How do you spend your time outside of work?
Outside of work, I spend my time with my wife. On sunny days we are exploring Mount Rainier trails, or enjoying the wind on our faces riding my motorcycle.

What do you like best about your job?
What I like best about my job is the diversity of what we do. For instance, we don’t come to work and do the same repetitive workday in and day out, such as dropping a trailer or sitting at a dock waiting to have someone else load you. I love that we have to think and be creative when building loads, securing equipment, loading and unloading equipment. Best of all, I get to go out of town often. It helps to break out of the monotony of being in town every day.

Tags: Lynden, Alaska West Express, Lynden Employees, Everyday Heroes

Everyday Hero Profile: Billy West

Posted on Mon, Feb 21, 2022

Lynden is recognizing employees who make a difference every day on the job and demonstrate our core values, Lynden's very own everyday heroes! Employees are nominated by managers and supervisors from all roles within the Lynden family of companies.

Introducing Billy West, Mechanic at Lynden Oilfield Services in Prudhoe Bay, Alaska.EDH post Billy West
Name: Billy West

Company: Lynden Oilfield Services

Title: Mechanic

On the Job Since: 2003

Superpower: Ability to motivate

Hometown: Payson, UT

Favorite Movie: Tombstone

Bucket List Destination: New Zealand Red Stag Hunt

For Fun: Travel with my family

How and when did you start working for Alaska West Express? Have you worked for or done projects with other Lynden companies?
I started with Alaska West in Anchorage in 2003. They gave me a job as a yard helper and I soon moved into the shop as a mechanic. I got sent up to Prudhoe Bay in 2017 to take on a challenge that would change my career with Alaska West Express. It was the challenge of driving Lynden's low ground pressure tractor, the Tundra Bear, from Prudhoe Bay to Barrow.

What is a typical day like for you?
A typical day usually involves accomplishing my own tasks and helping others get their to-dos accomplished.

What has been most challenging in your career?
I would say people. Working in the shop and managing people over my career with Lynden. They can be so alike, but yet so different and you have the challenge of figuring them out.

What are you most proud of in your career?
I’m proud of the strong working crew and the support the company offers to its employees to keep them motivated and always moving forward.

Can you tell us about your family and growing up years?
I grew up on a small farm in Utah. I had the most amazing father that taught me everything I would grow up to become. I met my wonderful high school sweetheart at 16 and moved to Alaska. We now have 5 fantastic kids together.

What was your first job?
My first job was at Mountain Country Foods. They made dog treats, and I got the liberty of emptying the trash cans and sweeping the floors every night after school.

What would surprise most people about you?
My helping and willing attitude! Lots of people comment that I’m the happiest mechanic they have ever met!

How do you spend your time outside of work?
All of my time is spent with my family. We enjoy anything and everything that is and can be done outside. Alaska offers a lot of outside opportunity.

What do you like best about your job?
I like the fact that I get to walk away every workday feeling accomplished. We get to see our accomplishments and others’ ideas put into play to better a working environment or to better a project.

Tags: Lynden, Lynden Employees, Everyday Heroes, Lynden Oilfield Services

Everyday Hero Profile: Ned Arthur

Posted on Thu, Jan 20, 2022

Lynden is recognizing employees who make a difference every day on the job and demonstrate our core values, Lynden's very own everyday heroes! Employees are nominated by managers and supervisors from all roles within the Lynden family of companies.

Introducing Ned Arthur, Equipment Operator at Knik Construction in Alaska.

EDH Ned Arthur

Name:
Neil (Ned) Arthur

Company: Knik Construction

Title: Equipment Operator

On the Job Since: 1989

Superpower: Paving Pro

Hometown: Searsboro, Iowa

Favorite Movie: Roadhouse

Bucket List Destination: Italy

For Fun: Halibut fishing on his boat, smoking meat, and spending time with his 12 grandchildren

How and when did you start working for Lynden?
I worked at Harley's Trucking and Polar Paving, which later became Roadbuilders, a big outfit in Anchorage, and Quality Asphalt before I was hired by Jim Kirsch at Knik. Jim was a great guy and we had a lot of fun. In 1989 when I was first hired, we were working in Skagway right on the ocean. We had a big dock down there and an ore terminal. Yukon Alaska Transport was a new company to truck lead and zinc ore from Whitehorse, Yukon Territory, to Skagway for loading on ships at the port. Knik bought its first asphalt plant and we paved around the terminal so it was easier to get the trucks in for ship loading. Jim, Lyle and Dale Kirsch were all people I worked with.

What is a typical day like for you?
If it's spring or summer I'm at work somewhere where Knik has projects going on. If it's winter I'm home. We work until it's so cold you can't work anymore or until snow makes paving too difficult. There have been times that I've had so many layers on that I can barely stand up!

Lately I've been working at the gravel pit. We have an asphalt plant set up there, and I run a loader when we're making asphalt. We usually make between 800 to 5,000 tons in a day and it comes out at 350 degrees. One day we had 35 belly dump trucks coming through from Anchorage and they went 80 miles to Homer.

I live in Sterling, AK in a log home we bought in 1986. A friend of mine sold it to me and what is now our living room was the original cabin. We put on a foundation, a loft and basement.

What has been most challenging in your career?
Working around heavy equipment you have to be alert. When loading and unloading barges you need to stay clear of booms and keep your eyes open. You can get hit if you don't know where you need to be. Also, in all the places we've traveled for projects, you never know what's coming. You have to adjust to different places, people and climates. Also, the climate can be tough. You're either cooking or freezing!

What are you most proud of in your career?
The Wake Island and Guantanamo projects. My wife Connie spent six seasons in Guantanamo Bay with me while we were working on that project. We were awarded the bid to do the runway, which was built on a big rock pile with cliffs all around it. It worked out well.

Can you tell us about your family and growing up years?
I grew up in Iowa, one of six kids in my family. I have an older brother and sister and two younger brothers and one younger sister. My dad was killed in a train accident when I was in sixth grade, so my mom had to raise us. We did everything we could to help my mom, and her parents helped too. My older brother moved to Alaska, so in 1977 I came up to check it out and never left.

I knew Connie from Iowa. She had two boys and worked at a restaurant that my mom managed in Grinnell. You could say my mom played matchmaker. We got married in Iowa then drove up the Alcan when her boys were about 9 and 10. We drove her Pontiac TransAm. We flew the boys up and they stayed with us in summers and went back down to Iowa for the school year. We had two daughters in Alaska, and now we have 12 grandchildren between all the kids.

What was your first job?
I worked at a filling station, pumping gas and changing oil when I was in high school. Once I graduated, I worked at a farm equipment manufacturing place for a couple of years. I was on an assembly line building pug mills that grind corn into animal feed.

What would surprise most people about you?
I took home a souvenir from a job site. I found a dead walrus on the beach near Platinum, AK. I decided to take it home to display the tusks in my house. I had to soak the skull to remove all the debris to get to the walrus teeth and tusks. My wife thought it was pretty strange, but I had the tusks mounted on a piece of walnut and it looks really good. One of the grandkids worshipped the walrus tusks.

How do you spend your time outside of work?
I'm always on the go. I don't like to sit around. When I'm in Knik's off-season during the winter months, I watch some of the grandkids. They range from age 2 to 15. I also like to watch football – the Minnesota Vikings are my favorite team. I've always liked them from the time I lived in Iowa. I also like to cook BBQ meat on my Traeger smoker and take my 22-foot boat out fishing with buddies from work.

I also have a 38' by 28'-foot shop where I like to work on car restoration projects. I have a Ford Ranger XLT pickup that I bought new in 1976 and drove in Iowa. It only has 100,000 miles, and I don't take it out here unless it's dry weather. It's kind of a hobby. I've had Camaros, Chevelles and Novas. My first car was a 1955 Chevy Bel-Air, red with a white top, that I bought from my brother. I had it for about 10 years then bought a 68 Chevelle. I've had a lot of cars over the years.

What do you like best about your job?
It's nice to look at something you helped to build and know it will be there for a long time.

Tags: Lynden, Lynden Employees, Knik Construction, Everyday Heroes

Everyday Hero Profile: Rudy Dacumos

Posted on Tue, Dec 21, 2021

Lynden is recognizing employees who make a difference every day on the job and demonstrate our core values, Lynden's very own everyday heroes! Employees are nominated by managers and supervisors from all roles within the Lynden family of companies. Learn more about the people behind your shipment.

Introducing Rudy Dacumos, Warehouse Lead at Lynden Logistics in Anchorage, Alaska.

Everyday Hero Rudy Dacumos

Name: Rudy Dacumos

Company: Lynden Logistics

Title: Warehouse Lead

On the Job Since: 1995

Superpower: Solving problems

Hometown: Tarlac, Philippines

Favorite Movie: Die Hard

Bucket List Destination: Tahiti

For Fun: Travel and spending time with family

How and when did you start working for Lynden?
An old boss at my previous employer transferred to Lynden, and he suggested I apply. He said it was a great company to work for. I've been at Lynden since September 1995.

What is a typical day like for you?
I assist with receiving shipments and loading and unloading the airplanes. As a lead, I am always motivating my team and keeping our spirits high. It is very important for me to make sure my team succeeds and enjoys being at work.

What has been most challenging in your career?
Sometimes it is challenging dealing with upset customers because it makes our job difficult. However, when we have happy customers and develop a strong relationship with them, it is probably the most rewarding part of the job.

What are you most proud of in your career?
When I started at Lynden, I was a Warehouse Representative and I worked my way up to becoming a Lead which took a lot of dedication and hard work.

Can you tell us about your family and growing up years?
I was born and raised in Tarlac, Philippines. I am the second youngest of five siblings. I have one brother and three sisters. My family came from the Philippines to Kodiak, AK in March 1980. I am very family oriented and I worked hard to make sure my sisters were able to attend college to become registered nurses. While I was in Kodiak, I met my late wife Jean and we have three wonderful children (one son and two daughters) and four amazing grandchildren.

What was your first job?
My first job was in Kodiak, AK at the cannery processing seafood.

What would surprise most people about you?
I love to bake and cook. My wife and I owned a bakery/restaurant in downtown Anchorage.

How do you spend your time outside of work?
Outside of work I enjoy playing with my daughter's puppy, Yoshi, fishing, cooking and traveling. I try to visit my son and his family in Salt Lake City and my daughter in Las Vegas as much as I can.

What do you like best about your job?
There are many things I like best about my job, it is hard to choose just one. I enjoy coming to work because of the team. Everyone is friendly and we work well together. I also enjoy meeting the customers and building a professional relationship with them. It is very important for me to gain customers' trust. Last but not least, Lynden is a great company to work for. Lynden offers great benefits and opportunities to grow with the company.

Tags: Lynden Employees, Lynden Logistics, Everyday Heroes

Everyday Hero Profile: Brian Zweegman

Posted on Wed, Oct 20, 2021

Lynden is recognizing employees who make a difference every day on the job and demonstrate our core values, Lynden's very own everyday heroes! Employees are nominated by managers and supervisors from all roles within the Lynden family of companies. Learn more about the people behind your shipment.

Introducing Brian Zweegman, Welder/Fitter at Lynden Tank Company in Lynden, Washington.
EDH post (1)
Name: Brian Zweegman

Company: Lynden Tank

Title: Welder/Fitter

On the Job Since: 1995

Superpower: Exceptional memory

Hometown: Lynden, WA

Favorite Movie: The Bourne Ultimatum

Bucket List Destination: Alaska and Holland

For Fun: Attending my kids’ sporting events and activities, RV camping, traveling and trap shooting

How and when did you start working for Lynden?
I started working at Lynden Tank in March of 1995 when I was 17 years old. The Mt. Baker Rotary Club had a job shadow program and Guy Jansen, who is a member of the Rotary, brought me to the tank shop as part of that program. I was given a job that same day. At one point, I drove for Milky Way for about a year, and I also drove for LTI, Inc. for about a year and did maintenance. I have done many projects through the tank shop for various other Lynden companies.

What is a typical day like for you?Brian Zweegman, EDH
On a typical day, I start work at 6 a.m. and work until 4:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday. No two days are exactly the same. Some days I am running a press brake, bending up components used for manufacturing milk tanks. Other days I could be inspecting a coded/chemical trailer or welding up components or doing a final inspection before a new set of milk tanks hits the road. There are some days that I do a bit of it all. My daily tasks depend on what is needed and what is a priority for the company.

What has been most challenging in your career?
Currently, our biggest challenge is navigating through material shortages and delays in getting the supplies that we need to build a quality product that meets our high standards. Personally, one of my challenges on the job is that I am color blind so I cannot do any wiring.

What are you most proud of in your career?
Every time we turn out a new set of trailers, I think we (all the tank shop employees) are proud of the work we put into them. When I am traveling in Washington or Idaho or beyond and I see a set of trailers I am proud that I had a small part in building them.

Can you tell us about your family and growing up years?
I grew up north of Lynden on a dairy farm that my parents still run today. My two brothers, my sister and myself all went to school locally, and we all still reside within 30 minutes of the family farm. Growing up, I was very active in the Lynden High School Future Farmers of America (FFA) and spent a lot of time working on Ag (Agriculture) mechanic projects in our school shop. I won various awards for these projects and also my tractor driving skills at both the state and national levels.
Today I still live in Lynden with my two kids. My son Case is a senior at Lynden High School and plays football and baseball. My daughter Maddie is a sophomore at Lynden Christian High School where she plays fastpitch and is involved in FFA.

What was your first job?
As a child of a dairy farmer, my very first job was on the family farm. When I was 11 years old I fed bull calves for a neighbor which was my first job off the family farm.

What would surprise most people about you?
I think a lot of people would be surprised to know that underneath my somewhat rough exterior I am a bit of a softie who wears my heart on my sleeve.

How do you spend your time outside of work?
When I’m not at Lynden Tank or watching my kids’ sports and activities I still work on my parents’ farm doing maintenance and crop harvest. When time allows, I like to take my travel trailer to new locations and explore new areas.

What do you like best about your job?
The first and most important thing that I like about working at Lynden Tank is my boss Len Kilmer. He is fair and honest, and he creates a great environment for us to work in. A very close second is the entire tank shop crew. They make coming to work fun, and I enjoy working with them all. I also like that no two days are ever the same which keeps things fresh. Very early on in my career with Lynden I had the opportunity to spend a lot of time with Mr. Hank Jansen. Those times produced great memories which I will never forget.

Tags: Lynden Tank Company, Lynden Employees, Everyday Heroes