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ARA of Iowa’s president shares workforce development ideas

By Dave Hehr

May 16, 2023

Dave Hehr

Dave Hehr

Hello, American Rental Association (ARA) Region Six members. I hope it’s been a great spring rental season for you so far. I’m Dave Hehr, president of Contractor Solutions Trench Shoring in Des Moines, Iowa, and president of the ARA of Iowa, and I’m pleased to be able to share a few thoughts with you.

Most, if not all, of us in our industry struggle with finding and retaining good workers. There are no easy, one-size-fits-all remedies to the issue, but there are some resources out there that can help.

One tool that can help you find employees is the newly upgraded This is ARA’s website that aims to connect job seekers with rental career opportunities. It includes several tools you can use to help attract the likes of students, parents, educators and veterans who are seeking information on careers in an industry full of opportunity.

And a resource on the onboarding and retention side that I encourage you to look into is the Employee Training Assistance Program through the ARA Foundation. This program can pay for 50 percent — up to $2,500 — of the types of training that will build your employees’ skills and keep your operation competitive. Trainings do not need to be ARA-branded programs but must support a career in the equipment or event rental industry. To learn more about this program, click here.

Finally, I would like to take a moment here to recognize a few all-stars who generously volunteer their time to help run our ARA of Iowa chapter. We recently concluded our annual board of directors election, so please join me in congratulating those serving alongside me:

Treasurer: Sarah Vajgrt, Home Rental Center & Sales Co., Marshalltown

Secretary: Kyle Van De Berg, Rent-All, Sioux Center

Brad Croat, Vermeer Iowa & N. Missouri, Des Moines

Annie Helland, Pella Rental & Sales, Pella

Remington Lawyer, Star Equipment, Ames

Marko Ivusic, Capital City Equipment Co., Ames

Paul Burkholder, McClelland Marketing, High Ridge, Mo.

As we welcome Remington and Marko to the board as the newest members of the team, I want to thank Scott Thompson from Star Equipment for his years of service to the ARA of Iowa. Scott just concluded nine consecutive years of service to our ARA state chapter’s board of directors, and his input over that time has been so valuable. Thanks, Scott!

Have a safe and profitable spring and summer.

Dave Hehr, ARA of Iowa president
Contractor Solutions Trench Shoring
Des Moines, Iowa