Mr. Hrabe is a seasoned emerging technologies entrepreneur and has founded several engineering-focused start-ups. This follows 22 years of distinguished service in the United States Air Force Lt. Colonel (ret), as a B-1B Pilot and Technology Insertion Engineer. He has ingenuity, vision, and passion for deploying new technologies to solve real-world problems. He has leveraged his military relationships, developed networks, built teams, and formed companies to commercialize these technologies. Mr. Hrabe became an effective leader and expert in aircraft engineering and maintenance during his military service as an Acquisition Officer, Logistics Engineer, Computer-aided Engineering Program Manager, Assistant Director of Operations and Inspector General. Mr. Hrabe holds a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Kansas State University and a Master of Engineering from California State Polytechnic University.
Dr. Widener is a nationally recognized expert in cold spray and friction stir welding with more than 60 publications and multiple patents as a result of his R&D work in advanced materials processing technologies since 2003. He leads the company’s technology development which drives innovation with new products, market applications and business opportunities. Dr. Widener also serves as an important
resource for teaching, coaching, and training both internally and externally. As Research Lab Director and Associate Professor at the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology, Dr. Widener’s research led to the commercialization of the cold spray system and the develop- ment of a host of successful applications of the technology. Previously, he worked for Siemens Westinghouse in industrial installation and repair of gas turbine generators. Dr. Widener holds BS, MS, and PhD degrees in Mechanical Engineering from Wichita State University.
Dr. Bailey brings a wealth of experience in manufacturing and executive-level business leadership to his global strategy position. As a catalyst for growth, he has negotiated contracts, developed relationships, and built corporate infrastructure resulting in significant opportunities and revenues for the company. An influential collaborator and creative thinker, Dr. Bailey has led initiatives in sales, distribution and continuous pursuit of best practices. Prior to joining VRC, Dr. Bailey co-founded, and chaired Black Hills Manufacturing Services; served as President of Western Dakota Technical Institute; President and CEO of Landstrom’s Black Hills Gold Jewelry and multiple leadership positions with Graco, Inc. He holds a BA in Psychology from the University of Minnesota, an MBA in Management from the University of St. Thomas, and an Ed.D in Educational Administration from the University of South Dakota. Dr. Bailey also served one tour in the US Air Force.
Ms. Matson is an experienced leader of the rapidly expanding VRC manufacturing operations. She is leading the design and construction of the new VRC World Headquarters and manufacturing facility and the implementation of ISO 9001. Prior to joining VRC, Ms. Matson was Vice President of Operations at Lehman Trikes USA and was a Senior Quality Engineer at Polaris. She has a BS degree in Metallurgical Engineering and an MS in Technology Management from the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology.
Mr. Pederson has extensive background working with the financial aspects for multiple start up companies. In his current role, he is leading the design of profitability business operations while balancing the demands of organizational growth. Mr. Pederson maintains full accountability for overall company financial results, develops budgets, and creates strategies for long term membership and company development. Prior to VRC, Mr. Pederson was the Controller and Asset Manager at Renew Energy and the President & CFO at Hagan Benefits. He holds a BA in Accounting from the University of South Dakota .
Mr. Woods is spearheading the development of the Sales & Marketing team at VRC. His efforts in new business development have led the company to triple digit year over year sales growth. Before joining the VRC team, Mr. Woods served for 27 years as a Colonel in the US Air Force in multiple strategic and executive level leadership positions. Prior to his military service, Mr. Woods was Sales Representative for Proctor & Gamble. He holds a BS in Business Administration from the University of Kansas and an MBA from the University of South Dakota.
Mr. McCoy is leading the VRC team of engineers in the design and development of the manufactured products and components. With over 20 years of experience in engineering, design, and the implementation of Lean Manufacturing processes, he has expanded and refined the VRC commercial product line. Prior to joining VRC, he was a Design Engineer with Caterpillar, Lehman Trikes USA and a Quality Engineer with Sanmina. Mr. McCoy holds a BS in Metallurgical Engineering from the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology.