Trucker of the Month

James Jaillet | October 01, 2010

“He’s a big believer in setting a good example on the road,” Fisk says. “He’s a very hard worker and his truck is immaculate. He plans ahead, and he’s always trying to figure out the proper way to do things.”

Davis also says Conn’s persistence has helped his career flourish. “It’s just his stick-to-it-iveness,” Davis says. “He’s seen the good and the bad of the trucking industry, but he’s managed to keep a cool head and work through it.”

His positive attitude helped Conn net roughly $60,000 in recent years on his trucking business.

Six years ago, Conn and Emily decided it was time for a new challenge. After the owner retired from the gift shop where Emily worked, The Bitter Sweet Branch, the couple bought the shop. The stress of owning and running two businesses can be a strain, Conn says, especially on home and family time. But “it usually seems to all work out,” he says.

“Life’s pretty hectic, but it’s self-inflicted, because we’re both self-employed,” he says. “It’s a job, but in a way, it’s not. When I get up every day, it’s another day and it might be a long day, but you have to get after it. If I ever reach a point where I don’t enjoy it anymore, I might move onto something else, but that hasn’t quite happened yet.” n

Brad Conn, pictured here shortly after becoming an owner-operator for North American Van Lines in 1987, owned this 1985 Freightliner.

1965 Born Oct. 18

1984 Graduated from high school in Greene, Iowa

1987 Completed driving school with North American Van Lines

1987 Bought his first truck, a 1985 Freightliner cabover

1995 Leased to Warren Transport

1998 Married Emily Siefken

2003 Purchased Bitter Sweet Branch gift shop

2003 Purchased new Peterbilt 379 extended hood

2009 Son, Cooper, born Feb. 27

Trucker trivia

GAMES OF COWBOYS and Indians attract Conn to Single Action Shooting Society events on weekends. Participants must dress in 19th century-style clothing. The contests have different stages, based on specific historic events. Competitors shoot single-action revolvers, rifles and shotguns and are scored on time and accuracy.

ANTIQUE SHOPPING on the weekend is a “good little family outing” and takes on new meaning for the Conns, who own a gift shop. Most of their finds go on display in his wife’s gift shop – not for sale, Conn says, but just for “looks and atmosphere.” strives to maintain an open forum for reader opinions. Click here to read our comment policy.