Stuart Sleper

President & CEO

Stuart’s manufacturing career spans more than 25 years. He’s worked in leadership roles for companies such as General Motors, Honeywell, Goodyear Tire, and Parker Hannifin. As a senior leader, Stuart brings expertise in M&A, international business and finance, sales & marketing, operations, global sourcing & supply chain management. Stuart enjoys working alongside XL’s team members to improve our company and culture—and hitting the road with our sales team, visiting our customers and dealers, to ensure XL maintains its market-leading position in product innovation. Stuart earned his BA from Michigan State University and his MBA from Davenport University.

Eric Branson

Senior Director of Human Resources

Eric came to XL in 2011 from a diverse background. Eric has held various leadership HR roles at Omega Cabinets, First Citizens National Bank, Heartland Financial and ran his own consulting practice. He has notably helped a company grow from 220 to 680 employees in five years, established performance management plans, benefit programs, training programs and information systems. Eric’s contributes to XL’s craftsmanship manufacturing environment through recruitment, staffing, employee relations, compensation, benefits, and associate development. Eric has been recognized as a Senior Professional in Human Resources by the Human Resources Certification Institute and a Senior Certified Professional by the Society for Human Resource Management. He has a BA in Business Administration and Education from Wartburg College. Eric has supported community efforts in many ways including involvement in: the United Way of North Central Iowa, the Boy Scouts of America, YM/YWCA of Mason City, and Employer Support of the National Guard and Reserve.

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Keith W. Dennie

Director of Supply Chain

Keith has been with XL Specialized Trailers since 2011. Prior to beginning his time with the company, he earned a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from the University of Iowa. Keith’s positions during his tenure at XL have included Customer Service Representative, Customer Account Specialist, and Supply Chain/Purchasing Manager. Keith is enthralled by the details within the supply chain sector and enjoys working with business partners locally, and globally. He is passionate about achieving professional goals for himself, and the company as a whole. Keith values the relationships he holds with his team members, and the positive culture they support at XL Specialized Trailers.

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Tom Hiatt

Senior Director of Sales

Tom brings over 30 years of professional sales and management expertise to our team. Tom comes from a diverse background of heavy manufacturing, component sales, strategic distribution and representative networking, construction management, acquisition development and an outstanding reputation in relationship building. Tom works closely with our global sales and dealership network to provide innovative hauling solutions for the heavy-haul market.

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Christa kalb

Director of human resources

Christa embarked on her journey with XL Specialized Trailers in 2022, bringing with her a wealth of experience gained over 15 years in the field of Human Resources. Her career path traversed diverse terrains, having honed her expertise at notable establishments like Hy-Vee and 7G Distributing, where she was immersed in the realms of retail and distribution. With a BA in Psychology and Business from Loras College, Christa's academic foundation complemented her practical know-how. Christa's active participation in professional associations such as TRIHRA, EIHRA, and SHRM underscores her commitment to staying up to date with industry-leading trends and practices. At XL, she swiftly ascended to the role of Director of Human Resources, a testament to her comprehensive understanding and adeptness in all facets of HR management—from compensation and benefits to recruiting, safety compliance, and talent development.

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Bruce Kopf

Director of Quality & Continuous Improvement

Bruce has been with XL Specialized Trailers since 2022. He started his career with a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Iowa. His interest in design and problem solving resulted in 24 patents, and training in Whirlpool Corporations OPEX and Lean. His strong customer focus guided his career transition from design to quality.  Bruce is passionate about taking care of XL’s customers and providing them with the highest quality products possible.  Quality and Continuous Improvement are not just a title, they describe his approach to every activity.

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Tim McGreal

Director of Engineering

Tim McGreal has his BA in Mechanical Engineering and Mathematics from Loras College. He has his Fundamentals of Engineering certification and has been designing trailers since 2014.  Tim has worked on many of XL’s recent new product designs, including the Blademate and California style trailers, and he has earned one patent while working at XL. He enjoys designing new products to meet customer needs and supporting the projects from the research and design phase, through the building and testing phase. As Director of Innovation Engineering, Tim remains focused on XL’s new product development and product enhancement.

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Shane Michelson

Director of Sales

Shane Michelson has been in the heavy-haul industry since 2012, showcasing a remarkable combination of engineering expertise and sales acumen. He has held roles in engineering, service and sales. Michelson holds a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from South Dakota State University. His expertise lies in aligning engineering innovation with customer needs, a skill set that will undoubtedly complement XL's commitment to providing custom solutions. Shane is excited to assist customers with their dynamic needs, using his experience in product development and sales strategy.

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Erin Reiff

Director of Marketing

Erin has experience in many facets of marketing, from product launches, campaign development, design, advertising, public relations, website development, and event planning, to market analysis and forecasting. She joined XL Specialized Trailers in 2011 and headed the company’s rebranding and website relaunch in 2012. Erin earned her BA in Communication Arts: Public Relations and Communication Design from Wartburg College. Erin is passionate about continuing to build the XL brand in the market and implementing strategies to make our distributors successful.

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Karen skeldum

Director of Accounting & Finance

With 25 years of accounting experience, Karen is a strategic leader for accounting, budgeting, forecasting and finance. 17 years of her career were spent in the dairy manufacturing industry, most recently with Cass Clay Creamery/Kemps. Her experience includes being a controller and leading accounting teams. Karen is a CPA and earned her BS in Accounting from Minnesota State University. Karen is excited to help XL achieve their financial goals, growing and improving the business. 

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Cory Stafford

Director of operations

Cory Stafford has been a part of XL Specialized Trailers since 2013, in various leadership roles.  Cory brings with him many years of leadership experience; over 12 years in purchasing and 25 years in Environmental Health and Safety.  His most recent position with XL was Director of Business Systems. He has also served as Supply Chain, IT and EHS Manager.  Cory possesses a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration: Marketing, from Wartburg College and is a certified Six Sigma The DMAIC WAY® Black Belt. Cory takes pride in XL’s production of the highest quality and most durable trailers in the industry, and recognizes our partnership with dealers is a key component to making this possible.

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Rick Zoerner

Director of Information Technology

Rick brings to XL more than 25 years of leading corporate IT departments across multiple industries including manufacturing, distribution, retail, and service. He has also previously served as the Director of Manufacturing Production Control, Corporate Security, and Manufacturing QA in addition to his IT responsibilities. Rick holds over a dozen professional certifications including Project Management Professional (PMP), Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP), Certified Information Security Manager (CISM), Information Systems Professional of Canada (I.S.P.), and Six Sigma Master Black Belt, and is passionate about leveraging technology and information to improve outcomes and satisfaction across the enterprise.

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