December 4, 2020

MaxYield All-Star Team: Steve Leman

20150504_maxyield_032 (681x1024)As we continue to celebrate our 100 year anniversary, we look back at some of the folks that make our company great…including our All-Star team award winners: 

It has been said that the big rewards come to those who travel the second, undemanded mile. That’s certainly true for Steve Leman and everyone he serves.

This is the second time Steve has been named to MaxYield’s All Star Team. “I was surprised to win again, because there are a lot of people at MaxYield who would qualify,” Steve said. “I’m fortunate to work with people who are willing to go the extra mile.”

Making sure that MaxYield Cooperative’s clients have the diesel fuel and gasoline they need, when they need it, is job one for Steve, who is based out of West Bend. While the majority of the fuel gets hauled from Milford or Clear Lake, Steve could be headed anywhere from Rock Rapids to Des Moines.

“I like to get started around 4:30 or 5 in the morning, although some times of the year that gets switched around so I start around 5 p.m.,” said Steve, a 1997 graduate of West Bend-Mallard High School who joined MaxYield in 2010. “It just depends on what MaxYield and our clients need at the time.”

Steve can haul more than 7,000 gallons of diesel and more than 8,000 gallons of gasoline per load. “Sometimes I need to haul four to five loads a day just to keep up with my clients in the Central and West areas,” he noted.

Steve heads to the terminal in Milford or Clear Lake to pick up fuel that he delivers to the bulk plant in Emmetsburg. He also makes some direct ships with farmer clients who can hold a transport load of fuel. While there’s typically a three-hour turnaround on a trip to the Milford terminal, the process can take much longer during the hectic harvest season.

“The 2014 harvest season got pretty hectic, since there was nothing to slow the farmers down,” Steve said. “It seems like the suppliers can never ship enough fuel up here through the pipeline, so we work hard to provide clients with the fuel they need.”

Steve also keeps an eye on inventories at the Cenex® facilities where he delivers fuel, including West Bend, Fostoria, and Whittemore. No matter what jobs he has lined up for the day, he always makes MaxYield clients a priority. “MaxYield gives me flexibility to get the job done in the most efficient way I can.”

Living the dream
For Steve, truck driving is a family affair. Steve’s father, Dale, who worked at the co-op’s tire station for a number of years, was also an over-the-road truck driver. “I always wanted to be a trucker, too,” said Steve, who worked in the swine industry for several years after college before changing his career path.

After completing the truck-driving course at Iowa Central in Fort Dodge, Steve worked as an over-the-road trucker for six years with Decker Truck Line. “While I loved waking up in new places and seeing a lot of the country, you miss out on a lot of family stuff when you’re on the road,” said Steve, who has five children.

He couldn’t pass up the chance to join MaxYield, where he can be home every night, have access to modern equipment, and benefit from a strong team. “This is the perfect job,” said Steve, who drives a 2015 Freightliner Coronado. “Everyone here is willing to help me out when I need it, and it’s a fun environment to work in.”

Editor’s note: Steve and his wife, Angela, who recently moved to Milford with their five children: Joshua, 10; Sawyer, 8; Grace, 6; Adalee, 4; and Cash, who will soon be 2.

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