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Haden Sanders

“Haden is super reliable,” Kyle mentioned, “I can give him a challenging part, and he gets it done. I don’t have to hold his hand.  I can forget about it and trust that it will be handled quickly and correctly.”

Haden Sanders is more than just a skilled technician; he’s a testament to hard work, dedication, and doing what’s right, no matter the circumstances. 

Meet Haden Sanders, a dedicated member of the Ledwell team since 2012.

He’s half of the team behind the brake machine known as the Green Mile. This 20-foot beast was installed shortly after he joined and was the biggest machine in the shop at the time.

When he’s not bending metal, Haden enjoys the simple pleasures of hunting and watching college football, cheering on the Longhorns. But his true passion lies in his spare time, where he’s busy prepping his land for a future cattle herd.

Haden has always worked in the Brake and Shear shop, which has helped him understand that the little things matter just as much as the big ones.

Precision at the brake ensures the entire build stays on track. As he puts it, “If what I do at the brake is not accurate, then the mistake will cascade down the line.”

Working at Ledwell has taught Haden an invaluable life lesson: always do the right thing, even if it’s harder. It’s a principle he lives by, thanks to the inspiration he finds in Kyle Sanders, who has been a mentor to him his entire life. 

Mike Hensarling

After serving in the Navy and learning to be a machinist, Mike Hensarling made his way to Ledwell in 2006, where he began in the Machine Shop and now serves as Foreman.

Over the years, he has worked on numerous machines, but one of his favorites involved working with one of the HAAS Mills. “We use that machine for valve bodies, air cylinders, and other pneumatic parts,” Mike said. The machine’s versatility allowed him to teach others and ensure that every project had the right tool for the job.

For Mike, he takes pride in working at Ledwell. He stated, “It’s the sense of family, a characteristic that makes us different from the corporate world.”

In the fast-paced manufacturing world, the most important lesson he has learned is patience. Not everything moves at “Mike Speed,” and adapting to different timelines is critical.

Inspiration comes from various people in his life. Steve Ledwell consistently amazes him with the right answers at the right time. Beyond work, Mike finds inspiration in his wife of 14 years, Candace.

Beyond the shop floor, Mike collects knives and guns and is a devoted family man. With two kids, a daughter and son, who works in the Ledwell Robotics Department, nine grandkids, and four cats, family is at the heart of his life.

Mike brings a wealth of experience and dedication to the Ledwell team. His commitment to excellence defines the Ledwell spirit.

Chris Osborne

Employee Spotlight - Chris

In Ledwell’s Feedbody shop, Chris Osborne is a seasoned craftsman. Since 2014, he’s been hands-on, welding parts and assembling bulk feed trailers from start to finish. Chris takes pride in building a beautiful and functional product.

Chris’s dedication isn’t just about getting the job done – it’s about tackling challenges, especially the unusual ones. He enjoys an opportunity to solve a problem.

Employee Spotlight - Chris Osborne

“We value his leadership in the shop,” Ryan Whitehead, Feedbody Supervisor, said, “Chris is a hard worker and takes pride in his work.”

Beyond welding, Chris has mastered a skill not listed in any manual – patience. He says, “I’ve learned the value of staying calm under pressure.”

Chris embodies determination and resolve, setting an example in the Feedbody shop and with his family. Married to Chelsey, they have two lively girls, ages eight and six. Chris is an avid hunter and fisherman and takes on every outdoor challenge except for ducks – as he explains: “I’m just not a fan.”

Each weld on Chris Osborne’s projects tells a story, and his story is one of purpose, craftsmanship, and family.

Luis Rojas

Employee Spotlight - Luis Rojas

At Ledwell, we’re all about celebrating the grit and grind of our team. Today, we’re spotlighting Luis Rojas, who has been a part of Ledwell since 2011. 

Luis works in the Paint department, where he’s been making our equipment look flawless for over a decade. Since the beginning of his Ledwell career, he’s been working his magic with precision. He enjoys painting all types of equipment that come through the department.

His favorite piece of equipment to paint? Trailers. He takes pride in making these enormous beasts of the road shine. His attention to detail and passion for his work are evident in every trailer he works on.

When asked about the most challenging part of his job, Luis emphasized the importance of taping. It’s a task that demands time and precision to ensure the paint stays intact where it shouldn’t. Luis knows the significance of meticulous work, and he doesn’t compromise on quality.

Outside of work, Luis enjoys spending quality time with his family. He’s a father of three sons, and together with his wife, Betty, they love to go on family bike rides. It’s a fantastic way for the Rojas family to bond and enjoy the outdoors.

Before joining Ledwell, Luis worked as a valet driver, a job he found interesting. “I enjoyed driving all the different types of cars,” he recalls. This experience undoubtedly shaped his work ethic and attention to detail, which he now brings to his position at Ledwell.

Through the years, Luis learned a lesson you can’t pick up from any manual: “To get something good, you’ve got to put in 100%.” This isn’t just about his job; it’s the life philosophy he lives by. His kids are his driving force, inspiring him to be a better person and set the bar high – a spirit that runs through everything he does at Ledwell.

Luis Rojas is not just an employee at Ledwell; he’s an essential part of our family. His unwavering commitment to quality and his passion for painting make Ledwell equipment stand out. We’re proud to have him on our team, and we can’t wait to see the bright future he continues to paint for us. Thank you, Luis, for your hard work and dedication!

Luis Rojas - Ledwell Employee Spotlight
Employee Spotlight - Luis Rojas

John Williams

Employee Spotlight - John Williams

Meet John Williams, an integral part of the Ledwell family since 2005. From day one, he took on the challenging role of handling electrical maintenance, demonstrating his commitment to the company’s success. 

John’s favorite projects at Ledwell involve installing cranes, a task he has accomplished approximately 40 times over the years.

He meticulously wires all the components together and programs them to operate seamlessly, making work more efficient for our employees. His passion for this work shines through in every crane he sets up.

At Ledwell, John’s role is not without its challenges. He faces intermittent opportunities that require his expertise to resolve swiftly and efficiently. His ability to tackle these issues head-on showcases his problem-solving skills and dedication to ensuring the smooth operation of our equipment.

John Williams - Ledwell Employee Spotlight

Before joining Ledwell, John spent a significant part of his life serving our nation.

He proudly served for ten years in the Navy, showcasing his determination and commitment to a higher purpose. His military background instilled discipline, precision, and a strong work ethic, qualities that have translated seamlessly into his role at Ledwell.

Outside of work, John’s passion for marine life takes center stage. He has several aquariums, including one housing elegant angel fish and another featuring vibrant tiger barbs. The most unique part of his aquariums is his collection of coral from the Indian Sea, collected while deployed in the area.

John draws inspiration from a higher power, relying on his faith to guide him through life’s challenges.

“ Knowing someone is there to carry the weight of the world for you is so inspiring,” he said.

John Williams is not just an employee but a dedicated team member who embodies Ledwell’s values. His journey from the Navy to our family at Ledwell showcases his dedication to a higher purpose and his determination to make a difference in everything he does. We are proud to have John as a part of our team, and we look forward to many more years of his exceptional contributions.

Don Fox

Ledwell Employee Spotlight August 2023

Ledwell is proud to spotlight Don Fox, a member of our Quality Control Team. His dedication and expertise make him invaluable to our company.

Don’s career at Ledwell started in 2006 in the Machine Shop, where he quickly became a natural. Despite having no prior knowledge of programming CNC machines, Don took on the challenge. It wasn’t long before he mastered the art of writing code to instruct the machines, transforming raw materials into perfectly crafted parts for our equipment.

Don has always strived for excellence, taking great pride in his work. His commitment earned him a crucial role in Quality Control, performing DOT inspections with efficiency.

When asked about his work in Quality Control, Don beamed enthusiastically, “I enjoy the fast-paced nature of the job; it keeps me on my toes and offers the chance to solve different challenges.”

Ledwell Employee Spotlight August 2023 - Don Fox

Don treasures his family above all else. He has been married to his wife Sheri for 16 years. He enjoys the time spent with his family, which includes three sons and four grandchildren – with one more on the way! Taking every opportunity to create lasting memories with the family often results in camping adventures during his free time.

When asked about his inspirations, Don fondly recalls Mr. Buddy, a mentor who impacted him.

“Mr. Buddy embodied the same work ethic as my father: getting the job done right and done once,” he said. This guiding principle has become a foundation of Don’s work, stressing the importance of being safe, accurate, and responsible.

At Ledwell, Don Fox is more than a great employee; he embodies our values. Through his dedication to excellence, passion for his craft, and devotion to his family, Don exemplifies the qualities that make our company thrive. We are truly honored to have Don as part of our team.

Ledwell Employee Spotlight August 2023

Jeff Harlow

Ledwell Employee Spotlight - Jeff Harlow
Ledwell Employee Spotlight

Meet Jeff Harlow, a dedicated member of the Ledwell team since 2016. Jeff plays a crucial role in ensuring smooth operations for Ledwell’s logistics department.

When you reach out to Ledwell, chances are Jeff will be the friendly voice on the other end of the line or the smiling face greeting you when you visit in person.

Jeff’s strong work ethic can be traced back to his upbringing. From a young age, his father instilled in him the value of doing his best in everything he undertakes. “No matter what you do, do it right,” his father would say. This principle has guided Jeff throughout his career, and he consistently strives for excellence in his work.

For Jeff, success is synonymous with happiness. He believes true success is achieved when you find joy in what you do. This belief has driven him to pursue a career that aligns with his passions and interests, making his contributions to Ledwell all the more meaningful.

When he’s not at work, Jeff indulges in his hobbies and finds solace in the great outdoors. Golfing at local courses and kayaking near Broken Bow are two activities he thoroughly enjoys, allowing him to unwind and recharge. 

Jeff’s commitment to making a positive impact extends beyond his professional and personal life. He dedicates his time to volunteer work, supporting organizations such as the Alzheimer’s Alliance Tri-State and the Texarkana Children Charities Open. Through his involvement, Jeff strives to make a difference in the lives of others and give back to the community.

Ledwell is privileged to have Jeff Harlow as a valuable team member. His dedication, positive attitude, and customer-centric approach make him an invaluable asset to the company. Whether he’s assisting customers, pursuing his passions, or giving back, Jeff exemplifies the spirit of Ledwell and embodies the values that drive its success.

Ledwell Employee Spotlight - Jeff Harlow

Hugo Olvera

Hugo Olvera - Ledwell Employee Spotlight
Hugo Olvera - Ledwell Employee Spotlight

Meet Hugo Olvera, a valuable member of the Ledwell team who has been working as a welder in the Trailer Shop for the past 16 years.

He has spent his entire career in the Trailer Shop and has gained significant experience and expertise in manufacturing and repairing trailers.

Hugo takes great pride in his work and always looks for the most efficient way to fix a repair trailer. He knows that time is of the essence and that every minute counts. He is also known for his positive attitude and willingness to help whenever needed.

The most challenging part of Hugo’s job is his unwavering belief that everything has a solution. This mindset requires him to think creatively and outside the box to come up with unique solutions to complex problems.

One thing that helps Hugo stay focused and motivated at work is listening to music. He believes that it helps him remain calm and relaxed, which in turn allows him to perform at his best.

Hugo enjoys spending time with his children when he is not at work. He is a family man, and his children are his biggest motivation. They encourage him to keep going and never to give up, no matter how difficult the task may seem.

Growing up, Hugo wanted to be a professional soccer player, but he found his true calling in welding. His passion for his work is evident in everything he does, and he takes great pride in being part of the Ledwell team. His dedication, hard work, and positive attitude inspire us all, and we are proud to have him on our team.

Tyler Cowling

Ledwell Employee Spotlight 2023 - Tyler Cowling

When he was a teen, Tyler Cowling thought deer hunting would provide a way to make ends meet. Then he grew up. He started his career at Ledwell in early 2012 as the Production Coordinator – entering manufacturing work orders and ensuring they went through the production shop promptly.

Over time, he transitioned from Production Coordinator to Inside Sales and eventually to his current position as Regional Sales Manager in the Midwest. Tyler travels throughout Arkansas, Missouri, Iowa, and the surrounding states.

A job is never without challenges. “There have been a few more than usual in the last few years due to supply chain disruptions. I believe Ledwell has managed better than most companies,” Tyler explained, “largely due to the number of products we manufacture in-house.”

Tyler has not let that stop him from taking care of his customers. His goal is to create the feed trailer or truck body that each client dreams of. That moment of satisfaction when the dream becomes a reality is priceless for him.

“I really enjoy working with a customer on a problem that needs a solution. Mainly when it includes all of our experts from production to engineering to delivering something that allows them to do their job better, faster, and safer,” he said about working at Ledwell.

Born and raised in Southwest Arkansas, Tyler enjoys hunting, fishing, and anything outside. He has been married to his wife, Brittany, for ten years, and they have a six-year-old daughter and a two-year-old son.

Tyler said, “My family inspires me the most. They are my reason and focus for everything I do.”

Gary Gathright

His dream of becoming an engineer had been a dream since childhood. Gary Gathright started his career at Ledwell in 1998, a couple of years after graduating from Louisiana Tech.

He began alongside Bob Nolte, Ledwell’s lead engineer at the time, who provided him with a wealth of knowledge over the years. He was an inspiration to Gary, “Bob always wanted to make things better. He probably forgot more about engineering than I knew.”

Gary works on a variety of projects each day, ranging from Vaccum Tanks to HydraTail Trailers. His challenge is also what makes his job so unique.

“We don’t manufacture ten million of one thing. We manufacture lots of different things. We have a niche in the industry that others don’t,” Gary explained.

Ledwell has met customers’ needs since day one, which sometimes makes for an exciting day.

When asked what his favorite project has been over the years, he could not just pick one – he had a top five. The projects ranged from the HydraTilt Truck to Feed Trailers for New Zealand customers, where the boom and controls were on the opposite side of the trailer, to plant facilities.

The one project he was most passionate about was the Gull Wing. Gary was involved in the project from design through improvements and obtaining a patent.

A lot of our improvements are customer-driven.” Gary said, “We incorporate those not just into a unit for that particular customer, but into the unit as a whole, so we ultimately improve our entire product line.”

Gary loves to cook, tinker around his 1970 Volkswagen Karmann Ghia, and spend time with family and friends when not working. He also volunteers for many organizations, including Alzheimer’s Alliance Tri-State and Texarkana Regional Arts & Humanities Council (TRAHC). “My dad was an amazing example of leadership and service to others in the community. I try to emulate that by helping those organizations near and dear to my heart.”

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