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ARA of Montana welcomes Rick Harne to its board of directors

by Brock Huffstutler

Rick Harne

Rick Harne

Rick Harne, NW regional rental manager with La Mirada, Calif.-based Makita USA, has joined the ARA of Montana board of directors as associate member director. In this role, Harne will provide input and deliver viewpoints to the board from the equipment supplier perspective while assisting with overall member engagement.

Founded in 1915 as an electric motor sales and repair company, the Makita organization is a global supplier of power tools, outdoor power equipment and accessories.

Harne’s background is in construction and sales of consumer products — applications he has put into practice through his role at Makita, which he joined 10 years ago. “My passion is to provide contractors and general tool users solutions to their project needs. That is why I jumped at the chance to become the NW regional rental manager for Makita when they created the position two years ago,” he says.

The ARA of Montana’s annual meeting in 2021 was the catalyst for Harne’s new involvement on the state chapter’s leadership team.

“I met the ARA of Montana board last year at their annual meeting and saw how passionate they all are on helping other rental owners to be successful,” he says. “Heather Gray [HR manager, Rental Equipment Investment Corp., Kalispell, Mont.], president of the ARA Montana, reached out to me when they had an opening to see if I would be interested.”

Harne says he answered the call to serve because “I grew up in Montana and still have a lot of friends and family there. I wanted to get involved with this group to give them a different perspective from a vendor’s view, hopefully to make the American Rental Association more attractive to prospective businesses.”

During his time on the board, Harne hopes to help the ARA of Montana explore two specific areas of concern for the betterment of members: “How can the organization help to train members in general tool safety and how can we address the upcoming ordinances in major cities around noise and emissions pollution?” he says.