Meet the Team
Introducing the people in charge of making Jade as great as it is
Larry Dyck is the president and a partner in Jade. A couple of his favourite Bible verses, which he's tried to pattern his life after, are found in Proverbs 3:5,6: "Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him and he will direct your paths." Larry started at Jade on a full-time basis right out of high school. This was in 1975. Before that he'd helped his dad grease and wash trucks since he was about 12 years old. He's always loved getting into the truck-the sound, the motion, even the smell-he loves it all. In some ways it's like a form of art: becoming part of the machine by making it run smoothly through the gears, transporting liquids in tankers without baffles, and arriving safely and efficiently at the destination. He also sees the trucks as a canvas in their own right and enjoys creating and implementing designs together with his two sons and some of the drivers.
His main jobs these days are coaching the various team leaders, procuring equipment, quoting rates, and supervising various projects. Over the past 32 years he's done quite a variety of trucking jobs, including hauling tanker, hopper, reefer, livestock, and flatdeck loads. He's trucked all across Canada and has traveled to or through all fifty states, including Alaska, which was one of the highlights of his career.
He also likes building custom trucks and competing at truck shows around the continent, especially when his wife, Kim, comes along to supervise and help polish. He really enjoys meeting people at the shows and has made many friends along the way. When he is not at Jade, Larry spends his time traveling with his family, relaxing at the cabin, hanging out with friends, and cruising in the 'Missing Linc', a 1940 Ford with a Lincoln engine. During the winter he likes snowmobiling a lot-the deeper the powder the happier he is. He also enjoys driving bus for his church, which he has done for over 30 years.
Greg Arndt is the Vice-President and a partner in Jade Transport. His career at Jade started 34 years ago when he hauled bunker fuel and asphalt for Jake Dyck, the company's founder. After two years at Jade he moved on to operate the heavy equipment for his in-laws' business, Birds Hill Gravel and Stone Ltd. In 1986 Greg and a partner started Birds Hill Transport by purchasing two new tractors and semi-dump trailers. Also in '86 Greg joined his high school friend, Larry, as a partner in Jade Transport. In total Greg has worked at Jade for more than 25 years. Now most of Greg's energy is focused on managing Jade's assets to achieve profitability while creating a work environment where integrity and fair play are valued.
Greg is committed to the trucking industry and loves the challenges that it presents. When asked about what education he received that is relevant to his career, he says that most of what he learned was by the seat of his pants. Although he did do many night school accounting classes he attributes much of his success to the perseverance, endurance, and self confidence that he gained after 5 years in Navy Cadets and the Canadian Navy Reserve.
Growing up Greg loved trucks and large machines and wanted to become a farmer. Meeting Larry in high school re-awakened his interest in trucks and all things mechanical. This interest turned into a job at Arnold Bros. Transport when Greg began working for his wife's uncle, Gerry Arnold. This experience, combined with marrying into a family with a quarry operation, had a significant influence on Greg's career and helped steer him into the business of trucking.
If Greg isn't in his office, he may be seen cruising with the top down in his Mustang Cobra convertible. When not driving, he spends much of his time keeping informed on current issues and following politics. Greg is also an avid outdoorsman who enjoys his time fishing and hunting and doing almost every activity imaginable outdoors, be it boating, snowmobiling, hiking, or landscaping-he likes it all.
Manager of Driver Services, Safety & Compliance
Henry Lemky came to Jade as a driver but it didn't take long before he found his way into the office. As the operations manager, Henry describes his job as "making the impossible happen-most of the time!" Hank's time is broken down to servicing customers and matching loads to drivers while keeping everyone in compliance with all the industry's regulations. Before coming to Jade, Henry hauled farm equipment and drove truck for Cordite Chemicals pulling hopper and livestock trailers. For almost 23 years, Henry has been satisfied with solving problems and keeping things smooth from the dispatch seat.
Growing up Henry was actually not overly interested in trucks. This is surprising for a guy who has worked his whole career in the industry. When he was younger he wanted to become a commercial pilot but unfortunately could not afford all the training involved, so once he graduated from high school Henry started driving trucks and he still loves getting behind the wheel of one.
Henry occupies himself away from Jade by watching sports and movies, going to concerts and just spending time with his family. Although he hasn't done as much lately, he still enjoys going hunting and fishing.
Len Kork came to drive long-haul at Jade 17 years ago. He has since come off the road and taken on the role of dispatcher. As a former driver, Len has the understanding of someone who has done the job which helps him in dispatching almost seventy trucks throughout North America. Most of Len's time is spent working with customers and communicating with drivers, however, he is also the initiator behind Jade's Hollywood Days! Hollywood Days is the annual trailer polishing day where everyone, who wants to comes in on their day off to polish tankers while the boss BBQ's lunch.
Len fell in love with trucks when he was knee high to a grasshopper. His dad drove truck and it has been in his blood ever since. In Len's words the Jade trucks are "lean green money-making machines, what's not to like?" On his days off, when he is not volunteering his time to polish tankers, Len is spending time with his daughter and son. He is a true Canadian who loves watching hockey and C.F.L. Football.
Shawn Shearer started at Jade 12 years ago as a company driver. After a few years of driving the company trucks, he decided it was time to own his own and purchased an '89 Kenworth Cab-over K100 e. In that same year Shawn was given the opportunity to become a dispatcher and once he settled into the new position he sold his Kenworth to another Jade driver. In 2005, after taking several dispatching courses through the Canadian Trucking Human Resource Council, Shawn became Jade's asphalt division operations manager. Having hauled both gravel and asphalt, Shawn has the firsthand experience of what is necessary when operating under such seasonal conditions.
Once Shawn has dispatched all the drivers, he heads for his cabin where, regardless of the season, he enjoys spending time relaxing with his wife and kids. He occupies his free time curling or playing baseball and, weather permitting, snowmobiling.
Truck Shop Manager
Mark Letkeman is the shop lead hand. He started at Jade when he was 19 and has been here for over 20 years now. Over the course of this time Mark has done pretty much everything there is to do in the shop. He is a real people person and takes a big brother approach to supervising and organizing the shop crew.
Being raised on a farm, Mark says that he has always enjoyed working with trucks and equipment. Fortunately for us, he still hasn't grown out of that. He started out after high school selling Interstate Batteries but then moved on to become a Journeyman Truck/Transport mechanic while working in the Jade shop.
Mark is a busy guy who is involved with his church, on hockey and baseball teams, and when he takes the occasional holiday, he takes his family quading at the lake.
Trailer Shop Manager
Geoff has been with Jade over 15 years working away in the shop. As a shop mechanic, he’s come to be known as our trailer specialist. While his job can get complicated, he is humble and describes his work simply as “fixing stuff”. Before coming to Jade Geoff worked in the construction industry and previously earned his Journeyman’s Certificate from Red River College. What Geoff likes most about working at Jade are his coworkers.
He’s had a thing for trucks ever since he was a little boy, when he was two years old sitting in his dad’s big ‘ole truck. Outside of work, he enjoys the outdoors by fishing and skiing. Every summer he faithfully cheers on the Canadian Football League’s Winnipeg team, the Blue Bombers.
John Wettstein is more affectionately known as Johnny Parts and the name says it all. John was recruited by Jade for his innate ability to remember part numbers and quantities. He has been with Jade for 13 years now and manages the parts department and shop invoicing. Prior to Jade, John worked in parts, sales, and management for Sutherland supply, a plumbing and heating company, for 22 years.
John uses his free time to work on his house and on a 1956 Ford half-ton truck which he has completely rebuilt. When he started the project John promised he would take everyone for ice cream when the pickup was finished, however, he failed to mention that with custom trucks the project is never quite done.
Terry Sadowski began his working career at Dominion Bridge as an invoicing clerk. He moved on from there to receive his certificate in Business Accounting from Red River Community College, a certificate in Advance Accounting from the University of Manitoba Continuing Education, and then completed the 5 year prerequisite of the CMA program. He has held various positions within the accounting field such as accountant and chief accountant, and has now been with Jade for over 9 years as the controller. In addition to overseeing the day-to-day operations of the accounting information systems, Terry also assists in leading the ISO program at Jade.
Accountant stereotypes do not apply to Terry, who used to be a rugby player. Although he no longer plays rugby, he occupies himself playing hockey, badminton, and golf and squash. Apart from sports he also occupies himself with his church's Holy Eucharist Ministry.
Dave started out at Jade doing good hard manual labour when he was just a teen. He started out mowing the lawn and moved up to the wash bay. For a while he drove parts and worked his way into the office working seasonally on his breaks from school. Dave completed a Business Administration Diploma at Red River Community College and if that wasn’t enough he went on to earn his Bachelor of Commerce Honours with a major in Small Business and Entrepreneurship at the University of Manitoba. He put his Entrepreneurship to great use by starting his own business at Shift Products, who is a truck part manufacturer that specializes in producing premium quality fenders and light accessories.
With his schooling done, Dave is now Jade’s Director of Business Development. This means that in the day-to-day operations of Jade he rates and quotes jobs for customers, plans special projects like custom trucks and maintains business plans to help Jade grow and move forward. His education has helped him in this because it helped him develop analytical and project management skills. He enjoys his job because he likes numbers and finding ways of improving efficiency; he wants to help employees do their job better so that everyone can benefit. Dave also enjoys the planning and designing of the custom trucks, he loves how cool they are.
He likes trucks, and by trucks he means Peterbilts, because growing up he didn’t really have a choice, he was surrounded by them. He has fond family memories of sitting five across in the front of a truck looking out on the open road. Aside from work Dave likes to spend time with his wife Cate, three boys, and daughter out at the lake.
Jon was probably born with a toy truck in his hands. He has been with Jade for over 15 years and has experience in several areas of the business. He started out in the wash bay cleaning the trucks and moved on to become a driver. He took a break from the road to dispatch but ended up back on the road. Now he is currently based in Saskatoon, SK handling our secondary office. He spends his days organizing work for his crew and creating lasting relationships with customers.
He likes working at Jade because he says with a laugh “It’s like working with family. Oh wait, it is family.” Before Jade he worked a little in construction but thanks to his dad, he’s been into trucks since birth. He loves trucks because to him, each has its own personality and character. Fittingly, his dad calls him the Director of Aesthetics because Jon sees each truck as a blank canvas, waiting for some expression to come out.
On his own time Jon spends time with his wife Alison and their four children. He enjoys gardening but more so cars and snowmobiling because he loves speed.