Jeff Ricke was named Driver of the Month for March. He works for Arrowhead Transit in Isanti County.

For some people, there’s no better feeling than knowing you’ve made a positive impact on someone else’s life.

“It’s rewarding to help people who otherwise might not have been able to get around,” said Jeff Ricke, a full-time bus driver for Arrowhead Transit in Isanti County. 

His positive attitude and willingness to go the extra mile to make Arrowhead Transit’s expansion into Isanti and Chisago counties as smooth as possible is why Transit Manager Julia Dupla chose him to be the Driver of the Month for March.

“Jeff has been great,” she said. “He’s willing to work extra hours, and has stepped up a lot to help dispatch and myself with this change. He has been a huge asset to the team and making the transition smoother.”

Ricke was a part-time driver for Heartland Express for 14 months, but that bus company closed at the end of February. Before that, he worked for a transportation company in the Twin Cities that specializes in Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliance for 10 years.

Ricke attributed his willingness to help others to his dad who instilled it in him as a teenager by getting him involved with the Lions Club.

“That’s kinda stuck with me,” he said. “I’ve always found it enjoyable to be able to make someone else’s day a little bit better.”

Ricke said being named Driver of the Month was “unnecessary,” adding that the entire staff does their best.

“I’m not big on awards. I just like to do my job the best that I can,” he said. “I’ve been more verbal when it comes to helping others figure things out, but everyone is doing their part to help out here as well.”

Ricke said that those who were employed by Heartland Express — and now Arrowhead Transit — are invested in doing what’s best for their riders.

“We all care about our clients, and do our absolute best to help them out,” he said. “Some people are all about punching the clock and collecting a check, but not here … we are all dedicated to our clients.”

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