Snowmobiler, wake surfer, basketball player, youth group leader and vice president of Treeline, Inc., thirty-year-old Whitney Souers is a force to be reckoned with.
TREELINE INC. THE NEXT GENERATION
Based in Lincoln, Maine and owned by Brian Souers, Treeline, Inc. is a diversified company with its core business rooted in Maine’s forestry industry. The company is involved in harvesting, forest management, timber buying, real estate, truck servicing and parts supply, as well as hauling and transportation services. Treeline also manages one wood yard for Verso and operates one of its own as well. Brian’s daughter Whitney started out with the business at a young age. In eighth grade she was regularly cleaning the shop. After high school she worked in the parts store, stocking shelves and helping with paperwork. Whitney also operated a skidder for several months and really enjoyed being out in the woods.
Before completing a four-year business degree at Indiana Wesleyan University, Whitney took a year off to travel and have fun with friends. At the end of her fourth year, Whitney told her Dad she was going to come back home and help him with the business. Brian was thrilled and started on a job description for her.
Whitney started full time at Treeline in 2013. Her father’s job description started off with sales, “Anything and everything,” he said. It also included job costing, managing and promoting Treeline’s Making A Difference Fund, and sourcing and installing a new surveillance system for the entire property.
By 2015, Whitney knew she would be sticking around for the long haul. “That is when Dad and I decided to make a plan for Treeline in case anything ever happened to him.” They put succession planning in place and Brian promoted Whitney to vice president so she could have control over company decisions.
Whitney earned the respect of the other employees early on, and her promotion to vice president hasn’t changed that. “Even now, I don’t mind doing the crap jobs,” she says. Whitney still loads the fuel trucks and cleans off the fuel station. “It’s super messy at times, and no one wants to or has time to do it, but it’s got to be done.”
Two years into the job, Whitney was offered a company vehicle. However, she turned it down. She felt it was an unnecessary expense and she didn’t want the other employees to think she was getting special treatment. “Plus, we are still in a period where I have to say we’re only going to buy the necessities. We’re only going to repair what we have to. There are a lot of expensive repairs that we have to do,” she explains. “There are higher priorities and that is the example I am trying to set.”
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Article from Tigercat Publication – Between The Branches: https://www.tigercat.com/between-the-branches/wsouers/