Announcing Our 2023 Top Technician Competition Winners!

Aug 10, 2023

On Thursday, August 3, Ruan completed our sixth annual Top Technician Competition. Out of the 10 competitors, Dakoda Brown of Muscatine, IA, took home first place. Dakoda earned $3,500 and a trip to represent Ruan at the National SuperTech Competition, hosted by the Technology and Maintenance Council (TMC) this September in Cleveland, OH.

Keith Nejedlo of Madison, WI, placed second, and Jacob Pack of Smyrna, TN, finished third. Both won a cash prize and a place at the SuperTech Competition as well.

(L to R): Jacob Pack, Dakoda Brown, and Keith Nejedlo.

The event began with Ruan technicians completing a 100-question online assessment to test a range of maintenance knowledge. The 10 technicians who earned the highest scores from the assessment moved on to the hands-on portion of the competition held in Ankeny, IA, at the Des Moines Area Community College (DMACC). The hands-on portion consisted of the following 11 skills stations:

  • Wheel Ends
  • Steering/Suspension
  • Brakes
  • DOT Inspections
  • OEM Software
  • System Diagnostics
  • Fifth Wheels
  • Service Information
  • Tires and Wheels
  • Heavy Duty Vehicle Fluids
  • Starting and Charging Systems

“This year’s competition was fierce with many technicians from around the country competing for the first time,” said Maintenance Operations Manager Ben Steines. “The opportunity to network with Ruan leaders and other technicians while competing to be recognized as best of the best is what makes Top Tech an event to look forward to every year. The competition highlights the level of dedication, continuous learning, and attention to detail that it takes to be at the highest levels of the technician profession. It takes all of these qualities and more to maintain Ruan’s fleet of equipment and keep it operating safely and efficiently for our driving team members now and into the future.”

Congratulations to the seven other competitors for earning a spot in the final competition:

  • Gilbert Chavez, Clovis, NM
  • Cody Conn, Ankeny, IA
  • Brandon Crews, Cedartown, GA
  • Jesus Rodriguez Jr, San Antonio, TX
  • Clifford Smith, Rexford, KS
  • Lance Stewart, Canby, OR
  • Justen Sutton, Jefferson, GA

(L to R): Dakoda Brown, Lance Stewart, Clifford Smith, Jesus Rodriguez Jr, Brandon Crews, Cody Conn, Jacob Pack, Justen Sutton, Gilbert Chavez, Keith Nejedlo.

Great job to all our competitors! Thank you for all your hard work and dedication to keeping our equipment running safely. We look forward to next year’s competition!