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Aloha Marine Lines moves boats for Pacific Whale Foundation

Posted on Mon, Mar 14, 2022

boats (1)Aloha Marine Lines recently transported two large tour boats for the Pacific Whale Foundation. Celebrations sailed from Seattle followed by Ocean Legacy. The boats were craned off the barge at Barber's Point Harbor on Oahu. The larger boat is 80 feet long, 18 feet high and weighs 118,000 pounds.

"The boats were so large we hired vendors to assist with the lift and launch into the water," explains Joan Nacino, Pricing Business Analyst for Aloha Marine Lines. "Intermodal Coordinator Lauren Minckler responded to the initial request to move the boats, and Service Center Manager Zack Anderson and Freight Operations Gerry Bustamante assisted in putting the project together."

Upon arrival in Hawaii, Celebrations was taken to a boat repair yard located near Barber's Point harbor and the Aloha Marine Lines office. Ocean Legacy was launched from Barber's Point using a crane company and divers. Both boats join the Pacific Whale Foundation's fleet on Maui. The Foundation plans to purchase more boats from the same boat builder, Mavrik Marine, located in La Conner, WA.

Tags: Lynden, Hawaii, United States, Multi-Modal, Ocean, AML

Lynden celebrates female leadership and contributions

Posted on Tue, Mar 08, 2022

My project (11)International Women's Day is March 8, and during the month of March women are being recognized for their social, economic, cultural and political achievements. "This is a great time to focus on some of Lynden's female leaders and their unique contributions," says Vice President of Employee Relations and Business Development Gail Knapp.

From behind the steering wheel to under the chassis, Lynden's female drivers, pilots, mechanics, executives, accountants and others make up a talented workforce that is growing each year. The transportation industry has traditionally attracted more men, but that is changing. Natalie Stephenson worked her way up from an accountant 32 years ago to her current position of Vice President and Controller. "It's important to provide opportunities so more women can become leaders and learn how to contribute their views and think strategically to make Lynden an even better company," she says.

Gail Knapp and Judy McKenzie were Lynden's first female operating company presidents, Gail for Alaska Marine Lines and Judy for Lynden Air Cargo. "When I started working for Lynden in the early 1980s the company was smaller," Gail says.

"There were many meetings where I was the only woman in the room. Today, women have a seat at the table, but there is always room to grow. I tell female colleagues to seek opportunities to move up and learn more. Don't be afraid to put your hand up and hold your head high."

"At the beginning of my career in the '90s, most of my colleagues were men. Now it's closer to 50/50," says Stephanie Littleton, Lynden's Vice President of Taxes, "and both vice presidents who preceded me at Lynden were women."

Michelle Fabry is the only woman in Alaska working as a Director of Safety for a part 121 air operator. She is also Lynden Air Cargo's first female Director of Safety. "In the past I have felt I had to work harder to prove that I was capable of accomplishing a job primarily done by men," she says. "This motivated me to study more, network and take training beyond the minimum standards. Now I focus on integrity. Sometimes this means being wrong and admitting that, but at the end of the day, your word should have meaning."

Lynden Logistics Manager Becky MacDonald has watched opportunities for women change drastically over the past 30 years. "When I first started out as a cook on tugboats at age 18, I was one of two women and we weren't allowed to go on certain voyages as they were 'too long.' Now, there are female captains," she says.

Cary Lukes has served on Lynden's Board of Directors since 2012. She also worked for LTI, Inc. and spent summers in Bush Alaska with Knik employees. "I'm proud that the brilliant, hard-working women of Lynden are being honored in March and every month," she says.

Leadership at Lynden Service Centers is trending female, including Dani Camden in Anchorage, Jennifer Parker in San Francisco, Sheri Harris in Houston and Kristina Jordan in Seattle. "When I think of how things are changing, I think of the women who have gone before us," Kristina says. "My guide was always Laura Sanders. Watching her career let me know that I was good enough to reach for the top positions in the company." Lynden Vice President and Controller Stacey Sunderland says transportation is still a male-dominated industry so women need to be confident and strong. "As more women move into higher roles at organizations, it encourages and motivates others to reach those levels."

Tags: Lynden, LTI Inc., Lynden Air Cargo, Lynden Employees, Lynden Logistics, Knik Construction, AML

Lynden makes important deliveries in hard-to-reach places

Posted on Mon, Feb 28, 2022

My project (8)Lynden Air Cargo participated in two lifesaving projects this winter on opposite ends of the globe. Two flights were chartered to La Paz, Bolivia to supply Bolivian residents with Covid vaccines donated by the U.S. Government. Lynden's Hercules aircraft was one of the only planes capable of landing at the high-altitude airport; elevation 13,325 feet.

Each charter carried 1 million doses of Pfizer vaccines packed in dry ice with real-time temperature loggers to protect the temperature-sensitive drugs. "This project involved multiple Lynden crews and coordination with several departments as well as the customer," says Dan Marshall, Lynden Air Cargo Commercial Operations Manager. Additional charters are scheduled this month.

More than 7,500 miles away in the remote whaling communities of Point Hope and Kaktovik, a Lynden Herc delivered four 40-foot "hi-cube" containers to store frozen whale meat from the annual hunts in the villages. "Their size makes them extremely difficult to load and offload, so it required some novel solutions to accomplish the delivery," explains Dave Beach, Lynden Air Cargo Commercial Operations Manager. Lynden's Joe Bates and Cory Myren worked with the Alaska Marine Lines team to modify tractor dollies into mobile platforms for transfer. "Our partners at AML did an exceptional job," Dave says. "We found a way to help these communities when the only other delivery option was to wait for the next barge season.

"Lynden was key to making this important delivery happen for us. The flight crew watched for breaks in the weather and flew during small windows of opportunity," says Jenny Evans, Grants and Operations Manager for the Alaska Eskimo Whaling Commission. "It is so meaningful to our communities and to ensuring food security for our villages."

Tags: Lynden, Lynden Air Cargo, Alaska, Charters, Temperature-Controlled, Air, International, AML

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

Lynden supports 50th anniversary Iditarod race

Posted on Fri, Feb 18, 2022

IditarodThe Iditarod sled dog race celebrates its 50th anniversary this year, and Lynden will be out in front as a major sponsor of the 2022 race. The world-famous Iditarod begins March 5 in Nome, AK, and commemorates the mushers and dog teams that delivered life-saving diphtheria serum to save critically ill children in 1925.

"Lynden has a long history of supporting the Iditarod and the mushers and dog teams who compete each year," says Susie Stevens, Lynden Transport Account Manager and coordinator of Lynden’s involvement in the event. "We are proud to support this iconic Alaskan race on its 50th anniversary and to celebrate the culture and heritage it represents."

Peter Kaiser with Lynden team"Given that the Iditarod is one of the most challenging events in all of sports, it’s great to welcome Lynden as a partner with its long history of logistical expertise and a strong commitment to bettering the lives of Alaskans," said Rob Urbach, CEO of the Iditarod. The Iditarod is an incomparable sled dog journey traversing approximately 1,049 miles of off-the-grid wilderness while contending with weather extremes of snowstorms, slush, ice, and high winds. These weather extremes are very familiar to Lynden as it has a reputation for delivering solutions and high-quality service through all logistical challenges over land, on water and in the air.

Lynden will sponsor the following mushers this year: 2019 Iditarod Champion Pete Kaiser (pictured right with Lynden volunteers) and repeat competitors Dakota Schlosser and Mike Williams, Jr.

Lynden’s history of supporting the Iditarod and its mushers goes back to the 1980s when it sponsored the late Susan Butcher. Butcher was the second woman to win the Iditarod in 1986, the second four-time winner in 1990, and the first to win four out of five sequential years. She is commemorated in Alaska by Susan Butcher Day.

Lynden Air Cargo continues its support of the race by delivering dog food and supplies to race check points, and employees volunteer to help in a variety of capacities. Lynden was also a sponsor of the Junior Iditarod for many years.

In 2005, Lynden Logistics and Lynden Air Cargo transported Fritz, a fragile, taxidermied member of the legendary relay of dog sled teams that brought the serum to Nome in 1925, from Lake Placid, NY to Anchorage. From Anchorage, the dog was flown to Nome where he is part of an Iditarod display at the Carrie M. McLain Memoriam Museum. Fritz and his half-brother, Togo, traveled more miles than any other mushing team to deliver the serum to Nome where it saved scores of lives.

Tags: Lynden, Lynden Air Cargo, Lynden Employees, Lynden Transport, Alaska, Lynden Logistics, Community

Lynden helps Starbucks provide warm welcome to refugees

Posted on Fri, Feb 11, 2022

Lynden Logistics' Debbi CrainLynden’s long-time customer Starbucks joined other U.S. companies in a relief effort for Afghan refugees. Lynden Logistics recently handled a ‘hot shot’ shipment of 15,000 black tea bags from York, PA, to Starbucks’ Northern Virginia retail partners in less than nine hours via a cargo van and a dedicated driver. “The arriving Afghan refugees are being served the tea by our Mid-Atlantic partners, and it is a great source of comfort and familiarity in an incredibly stressful time,” the Starbucks Team wrote in a thank you letter to Debbi Crain, Lynden Logistics’ Senior Customer Service Representative in Seattle (pictured). “We were happy to help with this rush project,” Debbi says. “It was pretty normal as part of our everyday work with this customer. Most of our Starbucks shipments are routed throughout the Lower 48 and Canada, often in support of store openings, so we’re used to tight delivery deadlines.”

Tags: Lynden, Lynden Logistics, United States, Ground

A look back at the Kivalina Evacuation road and bridge project in Western Alaska

Posted on Tue, Feb 01, 2022

Kivalina BridgeAlthough all Lynden shipments are important, it's not every day that Alaska Marine Lines transports cargo used to build an evacuation bridge for an endangered Alaskan community. The long-awaited Kivalina Bridge, connecting the Western Alaska village of Kivalina to the mainland, was completed last spring by Lynden customer ASRC Civil Construction with support from Alaska Marine Lines.

For decades, the small coastal community of Kivalina has been working with a variety of agencies to address threats of coastal erosion and flooding. The bridge and an 8-mile gravel road are part of the Kivalina Evacuation and School Site Access Road project which provides residents an evacuation route in the event of a catastrophic storm or ocean surge.

"We first started talking about building a road and bridge for the community several years ago," says Mike Morris, Alaska Marine Lines Account Manager. "Now the road and bridge are done, and a replacement school project followed. We have moved building materials, equipment and other supporting freight for all three projects."

Getting freight to a remote village on a small spit of land is no small task. The projects required a combination of mainline barge sailings from Seattle and Anchorage to Nome, and from Nome, numerous landing craft voyages for additional inter-port moves. Each landing craft can transport up to 400 tons of cargo, which came in handy for the rock trucks, excavators and huge steel girders needed to build roads and the bridge.
Kivalina project, landing craft Nunaniq"We have worked with ASRC for many years, so we knew what was expected and got right to work building loads and coordinating sailings," Mike says. The first load of girders left Seattle aboard the landing craft Nunaniq. "It was a challenge to figure out how to load steel girders that were 104-feet long onto a landing craft with a 100-foot deck," says Brian Ward, Western Alaska Marine Operations Manager. "For me, that was the toughest piece of this move."

In Seattle, Brian, Tom Crescenzi, Zed Runyan and Oliver Zidek came up with a dolly system that bolted two girders together for the support needed for the 100-ton weight.

A long, cold winter presented another challenge for the crews. "That year we were fighting ice, and spring had been slow to come," Mike says. "Our summer season for serving Western Alaska and the surrounding villages starts in early April to mid-May, and even later in places like Kivalina above the Arctic Circle, but it's always contingent on Mother Nature."

Beginning with Bristol Bay, nine scheduled sailings, with multiple shuttle voyages, provided delivery to approximately 80 different coastal and river villages.

"We are happy to be a part of improving the quality of life and accessibility in remote locations. We pride ourselves on being able to help communities by bringing in needed equipment and supplies to complete civic projects, like the school improvements in Kivalina," Mike says.

Tags: Lynden, Alaska, Project Logistics, Multi-Modal, Ocean, Construction, AML

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

Employees retire with 200 years of combined service

Posted on Mon, Dec 20, 2021

Scott Polinder Retirement

Scott Polinder
Scott is one of Lynden's longest-tenured drivers. He started driving for Milky Way in 1974. "Scott continuously showed his reliability and commitment to safety throughout his driving career and achieved an amazing 43 years of safe driver awards," says LTI, Inc. President Jason Jansen. "He made a positive impact to our company over the years, and Lynden is honored to have had him on our driver team."

Brian Wood
Brian started with Lynden as a contractor in 1993. Two years later, he was hired as the Imaging Manager managing the ViewStar Software System in IT at Lynden, Inc. Brian has performed various tasks for Lynden over the past 20 years, filling in where needed. He says he looks forward to retirement and "reinventing himself into something completely different" as well as spending time with family.

John KaloperJohn Kaloper
"I was traveling through Anchorage on business one day in 1983, and I bumped into Bill Ferrari (then Vice President of Sales) in the hotel where we were both staying. We began a conversation, and I went to work for Lynden shortly after that in January 1984," John says. His first position was Account Executive in Seattle, then District Sales Manager and ongoing promotions culminating in his final role as President.

Looking back, John says his most memorable project was Lynden Logistics' involvement in the rebuilding of the U.S. Embassy in Moscow in 1994. "We were awarded the contract to move 225 40-foot oversized modules via ocean freight from Houston to Moscow to serve as housing for the U.S. construction workers," he says.

There were multiple challenges with this project including the offload of a crane in St. Petersburg that crashed through the pier when the rigging broke. The crane was a total loss, and there wasn't time to ship a new one. A crane was rented locally at a significant increase in costs plus the expense of legal challenges resulting from the damage.

The second challenge was the result of a barge sinking in the waterway connecting St. Petersburg and Moscow which caused a two-week delay on delivery of the modules to the building site. "I had a number of sleepless nights dealing with the many calls needed to get these issues resolved," John remembers.

John says he is proud of the great relationships and long friendships forged with so many people in the organization. His plans for retirement include traveling to see his granddaughters in Michigan with his wife, Julie, and spending time on their boat. Fishing, golfing, skiing and house projects are on the agenda, too.

Dorene KolbDorene Kolb
Dorene leaves Lynden after 29 years with the satisfaction of helping to launch one of Lynden's most important programs: EZ Commerce. From meeting with customers to creating forms to adding features to create EZ Tracing and EZ Reporting, it took almost two years. "There were so many times I went to former Vice President Skip Hanson and said EZ Commerce was going to kill me, but I remained diligent and kept things moving," she says. Skip created the Bull Dog award and presented it to Dorene in recognition of her tireless work on the new program.

Dorene's Lynden career began in 1992 at Lynden Air Freight in Los Angeles as an Air Export Customer Service and Ocean Manager. She then moved to Seattle where she served in a variety of marketing positions, ending with Senior Marketing Project Manager for Lynden. In all those years, Dorene says she is most proud of the Driver Recruiting program she coordinated and the opportunity to mentor fellow employees.

"When I first came to Lynden's marketing team one of my areas of responsibilities included creating a Driver Recruiting program. I learned that it wasn't much different than working with sales. Although each Lynden operating company is responsible for their own hiring processes, they helped me learn the ropes and create a program that is valued and utilized," she says. "We now have a dedicated webpage, recruiting materials and analytics to monitor success."

Dorene has shaped many careers over her decades with Lynden. "My last few years have focused on mentoring people and providing support and feedback when requested. I've had some great people like Rich Wilroy, David Rosenzweig, Charlie Weaver, Skip Hanson, Alex McKallor and Ryan Dixon who mentored me. The best thing I could do was pay it forward."

After living in Edmonds, WA for 26 years, Dorene and her husband Carl have relocated to Lake Havasu, AZ and will be building a home there. "We planned a 21-day cruise for April sailing through the Panama Canal," she says. "We also plan to see the country in our motorhome, stopping whenever we like, staying as long as we like and moving on towards the next sunrise/sunset."

Jeanine St. JohnJeanine St. John
Jeanine retires as Vice President of Lynden Logistics, 27 years after she started her career managing Lynden's work with BP. "There have been so many exciting projects over the years, but the thing they all have in common is Lynden companies working as a team to achieve great results," Jeanine says. "Whether it was oil, mining, communications, defense or construction – each had challenges that the Lynden team was able to meet."

In 40 years working in Lynden's home state, Jeanine says she is most proud of the way the One Lynden team has coalesced in Alaska. "I love Alaska, both personally and professionally, and I've been very fortunate to work for a company full of people who have that same determination to make Alaska a great place to live and work."

Another part of Jeanine's career was working with industry, business groups, and community leaders to support Alaska's resource industries.* "Working on advocacy and campaign issues is always full of challenges, but when you win, it's a great feeling of accomplishment. I truly believe that the Lynden team will have great success continuing to move Alaska forward in developing its resources and infrastructure."

Jeanine will now enjoy unlimited time with her husband, Al, who also retired this fall. "We look forward to fun times with friends and family, including our five grandchildren," she says. "Fishing, hunting and quilting will move right up the priority ladder, as will working with a variety of nonprofits we support."

*This fall, Jeanine received the Chuck Becker Lifetime Achievement Award from the Alaska Support Industry Alliance, a nonprofit trade association that promotes responsible exploration, development and production of oil, gas and mineral resources to benefit all Alaskans. Jeanine is only the second recipient of the award which recognizes an individual who commits time and passion to the Alliance. She served as president and as a board member of the organization for more than 20 years.

Bob GehrkeBob Gehrke
After more than 32 years with Lynden, Bob Gehrke retires as Software Asset Manager at Lynden, Inc. in Seattle. Bob started his career with Lynden Air Freight in 1989 as a Property Control Specialist, later added Telecom and Facilities to his tasks, and was then hired as Purchasing Manager in 2006.

Bob says his most memorable project was the remodeling of floors 6, 7 and 8 at the SeaTac headquarters building. "It was a project that lasted almost two years from the planning stages to final construction. I was able to work with and meet many employees from different companies. The greatest challenges were the first Microsoft and the first Oracle audits. I lost some sleep and years of my life. I will not miss them!"

"During his tenure Bob was instrumental in many things and always kept us on track with purchasing and asset management," says Ken Kinloch, Director of IT Infrastructure and Security. "His knowledge and ability in this area will be missed." Bob plans to spend his days tending his coffee farm and relaxing on the beach at his home on the Big Island of Hawaii.

Tags: Lynden, LTI Inc., Lynden Employees, Lynden Logistics

Goodbye and good luck to twelve Lynden retirees

Posted on Tue, Jan 19, 2021

Twelve veteran Lynden employees wrapped up their careers at the end of 2020. We wish them well in retirement.

My Post - 2021-11-24T104012.541Mark Sheehan, Alaska Marine Lines and Northland Services, 40 years
Mark came to his job at Alaska Marine Lines through his brother Tom Sheehan. Tom and Mark both worked for Northland initially and later moved to Alaska Marine Lines. Mark went back to Northland and continued his career there until the 2014 acquisition by Lynden. He retired last month as Marine Operations Manager. It's been a long and storied career, but by far the most significant event was meeting and marrying co-worker Cindy Sheehan in 1999. Cindy also retired in December. "I have been so happy to be a part of the Lynden team," Mark says. In his marine career, Mark has saved many castaway and stowaway critters from certain death in Seattle ports, including stray cats, otters, pelicans and a hawk. A few years ago an albatross hitched a ride on a voyage from Honolulu to Seattle. Mark first saw the bird when the night crew pointed it out to him. The bird was severely dehydrated and emaciated. Mark called the Seattle Aquarium's veterinarian who brought the female bird to a Wildlife Care Center where it was treated for pneumonia and survived. It's no surprise that in retirement, Mark plans to volunteer at wild and domestic animal rescue organizations.

Lu JacksonLu Jackson, LTI, Inc., 37 years
As a Human Resources Manager for almost four decades, Lu has worked for four Lynden presidents, including the late Lynden patriarch Hank Jansen. "I have such great memories of working with him," she says. "It's nice to see that the integrity, philosophy and character of the company has withstood all these years." Although she is excited about retirement, Lu says she will miss the people. "Everyone says that, but it's really true." Lu handled everything from payroll to dispatching in her career and is very proud that she was never late to work – ever – in 37 years. Retirement will find her on her farm caring for animals, enjoying outdoor activities and getting to know her two new golden retriever puppies that joined the household just a week after she retired. Lu was featured as the December 2020 Everyday Hero. To read more about her, go to www.lynden.com/heroes.

Mike MaloneMike Malone, Alaska Marine Lines, 35 years
Back in 1985, Mike started working in the Container Freight Station (CFS) warehouse. He then worked in rates and billing, pricing and finished up his career as Pricing Analyst. "Back then, we had just one sailing to Southeast Alaska, then it was twice a week. The ARM barge was added to service Central Alaska and Prince William Sound and then the purchase of Northland added Western Alaska and Hawaii. "We've seen quite the growth," Mike says.

"I have so many memories of all the people I've worked with, it would be hard to list just one, but working with the Freitrater program, coming up with auto rating and smart prompting cut the number of corrections we were seeing significantly."

After years of sitting in either traffic or at his desk, Mike says he is looking forward to getting some regular exercise, and he has a lot of projects to do around the house. "I would like to travel once my wife retires and maybe take some actual guitar lessons. I've really enjoyed working with all the people at Alaska Marine Lines and Lynden over the years. It's a really top-notch organization from the top down.

Sue HeatherSue Heather, Alaska Marine Lines, 34 years
Sue has worked both full time and part time for Alaska Marine Lines' accounting department over her long career. "I retired from full time work in 2002, but came back part time later that year," she says. "I guess I just couldn't stay away!" Sue started her job with Alaska Marine Lines in 1986 when the employees numbered about 70. "I started out doing accounts payable then added accounts receivable. Eventually I became the accounting manager for Alaska Marine Lines and Alaska Marine Trucking," she says. "I have worked with such a great group of people over the years. My bosses have always led by example and always had time to listen to me or help when I needed it." In retirement, she is planning to spend more time with her grandson, work at her church food bank and sew.

Cindy SheehanCindy Sheehan, Alaska Marine Lines, 31 years
Cindy began her career with Alaska Marine Lines in 1989 at the suggestion of friend and now Lynden Logistics Services Manager Becky MacDonald. She was the first female barge checker in the history of the company although "I didn't know the difference between a chassis and a container at the time," she says. Her first office was a container under the First Avenue South Street Bridge, now Alaska Marine Lines' Y-2 yard. She also worked with two brothers, Mark and Tom Sheehan. Tom worked for Alaska Marine Lines, Mark for Northland Services. She continued to work with Tom over her long career, and she married Mark. Over the years, Cindy worked on a variety of Alaska Marine Lines projects, including the first Alaska Railbelt Marine sailings to Whittier, AK. She was soon promoted to Customer Service Manager, followed by Director of Customer Service in 2013 and Vice President of Customer Service in 2016. "I've always loved working with customers and took a great deal of pride and pleasure helping them," she says. "At Alaska Marine Lines, we're committed to keeping real, live people to talk to rather than recorded options to answer callers' questions." Cindy and Mark both retired last month and now plan to do some camping and fishing. Cindy will also start some quilting projects to donate to the American Heroes wounded veterans and Children's Hospital in Seattle.

JeffJeff McKenney, Alaska Marine Lines, 31 years
"After 13 years of owning my business, I took a position with Alaska Marine Lines to dispatch and manage the trucks and operators," Jeff says. "When a sales position opened in Seattle, I thought it was the right time to advance my career and use the knowledge I had learned over the years to sell the services Alaska Marine Lines offered." More than 30 years later, Jeff retires as an Account Manager with experience in both operations and sales. "I feel lucky to have had a position where I worked with people who were my friends and colleagues. Alaska Marine Lines and all the Lynden companies have made my job fun. Our abilities to be innovative through equipment design, schedules, and online tools offers so much to the customer compared to our competition. The fact that we can pull multiple Lynden operating companies together to offer the customer a One Lynden solution has a lot of merit."

Jeff says Lynden has been a great company to be a part of and he appreciates everything the company has done to support his family. "I have really enjoyed providing the customer with a positive experience, showing customers what Lynden can do and being part of Lynden's success." Jeff's retirement plans include boating, fishing and traveling the U.S. via RV. A trip to the Grand Canyon is one of the first stops on the itinerary. Jeff was featured as the November 2020 Everyday Hero. To read more about him, go to www.lynden.com/heroes.

Greg NiermanGreg Nierman, Lynden Incorporated, 27 years
Greg, pictured right, started working for Lynden Incorporated as a software developer in 1989 and transitioned to supervisor, manager and back to developer by the end of his 27-year career. "There were about 15 people total in IT when I started, and now there are nearly 70," he says. Greg's most memorable work project over the years was working on the Cross Dock initiative. "I will always remember the wonderful people I've had the honor of working with," he adds. Greg's plans for retirement include spending time with his grandkids, coaching archery and building and playing guitars.

John WalkerJohn Walker, Lynden Incorporated, 20 years
Over his 20 years with Lynden Incorporated's IT Department, John says he will remember Side-By-Side Billing, numerous ILS (Integrated Lynden Systems) integrations and Route Trip Maintenance as his favorite projects. As a Senior Programmer Developer and Applications Development Supervisor he saw IT grow by "leaps and bounds" as well as the applications that IT produced for Lynden's operating companies. "Working at Lynden has been more like an adventure than a job," John says. "There is always something new to learn and problems to be solved. But it's the people that I will miss the most (certainly not my commute!). I've met a lot of great people over the years and hope to continue the friendships we've established." Retirement plans include visiting family more often, traveling, fly fishing (see picture), golf, photography and chainsaw carving.

Pam SanchezPam Sanchez, Alaska Marine Lines, 18 years
Pam was a fixture in the customer service department for many years, making sure that receiving, billing and customer service tasks ran smoothly. In a single day, she might handle 50 questions about pricing, scheduling, logistics, cargo claims, purchased transportation both via phone and email. "Over the years I was always impressed with how Alaska Marine Lines worked to improve their service to customers," she says. "We always let them know we are here for them and that we care." Although Pam says she will miss working with and talking to her co-workers, she is looking forward to doing all the things she didn't have time for when she was working. Her plans include planting a garden, tackling home improvement projects and having time to exercise. Pam's son, Matt Miller, works at Northland and will carry on the family tradition at the Y-5 warehouse.

Bob McGrathBob McGrath, Lynden Incorporated, 8 years
Bob began work for Lynden in 2011 as a contractor, auditioning with Rick Nuckolls on the Master Customer Master (MCM) application. "I was hired on May Day, 2012. This job has been the pot-o-gold at the end of my career rainbow, which has spanned four decades," he says. "I began years ago as a PICK programmer and finished at Lynden as a programmer. In between, I worked in a variety of related job roles involving both hardware and software. There have been immense changes over the course of my career, but I think the change in speed and scale, in all realms of computing, has had the greatest impact."

Bob lists the following as highlights of his Lynden career: the HAZMAT implementation, developing the UV/TariffTrak interface used in the pre-ship and billing systems, the UV2XML document interface, and working with great teams on the first and subsequent ILS migrations.

Retirement will bring changes. "We will be moving to Chicago to be with family for a while," Bob says, "but will eventually come back home to Whidbey Island. Between Chicago and home, we plan to travel and live abroad. Once back home, I'd like to pick up ceramics again, bake up a storm and teach at-risk kids programming as a model for success."

"Lynden is a great company and this has been one of the best jobs of my career," he adds. "The values guiding Lynden come from the top down, but seem to be deeply embedded in the company: ethical, generous, disciplined, and caring for employees and community. In the end though, it is the Lynden people I admire most. I was lucky to be part of this, even for a short time."

Stanley Sniadosky and Jim Warren also retired last year, from Alaska Marine Lines and Lynden Incorporated respectively.

Tags: Lynden, LTI Inc., Lynden Employees, AML