Brenda Jennissen, 2023 Pam O’Toole Trusdale Woman in Manufacturing Awardee
Brenda Jennissen, co-owner, President, and CEO of Felling Trailers, GPS Trailers, and Larson Cable Trailers was born and raised in the construction equipment industry and family business with her sister Bonnie Radjenovich. Manufacturing and repairing trailers for construction equipment and any other equipment that needs to get from point A to point B led Brenda to notice every trailer she passes by since a young age and puts a smile on her face when she sees Felling Trailers parked on a job site or in use.
Under Brenda’s leadership, Felling Trailers received two family business awards from the University of St. Thomas, Sauk Centre Area Chamber of Commerce’s 2018 Business of the Year and Top 3 Honoree in 2017, 2019, and 2020, 2019 Citizen of the Year, and was named an “Under 40 Construction Equipment finalist” in 2019.
Brenda also received the 2023 Pam O’Toole Trusdale Woman in Manufacturing Award alongside her sister Bonnie. This award, given at the Annual NATM Convention & Trade Show, seeks to celebrate the accomplishments and contributions of women in the industry, an often-untapped talent pool. NATM members also have the opportunity to nominate individuals as eligible candidates for next year's Convention.
“It’s incredibly humbling and we’re honored. More than anything though I think it’s just a reminder of the importance of mentoring our youth — boys and girls — and really helping to identify their passions and then that way they can really come into their own and hit their full potential,” Brenda said.
“We have two brothers as well and a lot of people are surprised that the daughters got involved in the business and took it over. I guess if anything it’s just the importance of leaving those preconceived perceptions behind and realizing that it’s the person and what the passion is, their potential, and being able to nurture that. Bonnie and I, as sisters and with our passions, we see that in other people too and that’s what we strive to do. Regardless of who you are or where you came from, just to treat everyone with respect and have them just really develop into who they are and hit their potential.”
Personally, Brenda’s passion is making the communities she lives and works in vibrant places to live, work and play. She was the inaugural Sauk Centre Area Community Foundation (SCACF) Board Chair and current Treasurer, co-founder and past advisory board member of the local Junior Achievement financial literacy youth program, coordinates and volunteers on her daughter’s school’s RaiseRight fundraising committee, co-chairs the local swim team’s Breast Cancer Awareness meet, serves as a West Stearns CEO mentor, lectors at church, and served as co-chair in fundraising and acquiring an obstacle fitness challenge park with 40-yard dash for a city park.
Brenda is NATM'S October #WomanCrushWednesday!