Ed Kirby has spent more than 50 years in the construction equipment industry. His experience includes sales, operations, customer relations and business management. His career began with the International Harvester Company working as an equipment sales trainee. In 1969, he joined Leland Equipment Company, and during the next 15 years experienced tremendous success selling heavy equipment to highway, pipeline, service, and oilfield contractors in Oklahoma. In fact, Kirby maintained the top salesman position for 12 out of his 15 years with the equipment company. He then left the company in 1983 to found his own company, Kirby-Smith Machinery, Inc.
During the past nearly four decades, Kirby drove the company’s growth to approximately 550 employees and more than $550 million in revenue. In 2021, Kirby stepped back from his role of President and CEO and assumed the position of Chairman of the Board. Kirby acts in an advisory role and continues to foster relationships with partners and customers.
Kirby has been active in numerous construction equipment industry associations. He joined the Oklahoma Municipal Contractors Association in 1983 and served on the board for 10 years. Additionally, Kirby has been a member and past board member of the Oklahoma and Heavy Highway Association of General Contractors since 1988. He was the first associate member to serve on the Board of Directors. He has also been a member of the Texas Heavy Highway Association of General Contractors, American Pipeline Contractors Association, Oklahoma and Texas Aggregate Association, Oklahoma and Texas Asphalt Pavement Association and Association of General Contractors, as well as a member of the Association of Builders and Contractors. Kirby has been an active member of the Association of Equipment Dealers since 1987 and was awarded the inaugural Lester J. Heath, III Award for his distinguished service and commitment to education in the equipment industry in 2017.
As President and CEO of Kirby-Smith Machinery, Inc., Arapidis drives the company’s vision, strategy, and development as the heavy equipment company continues to rapidly expand into six states including Oklahoma, Texas, Missouri, Kansas and Illinois. The privately held company represents more than 30 manufacturers including Komatsu, Manitowoc, Grove, National Crane, Wirtgen, Hamm, Kleemann, Vogele, Takeuchi, Terramac, Trail King, NPK, LeeBoy, Rosco and Skytrak/JLG.
Arapidis has over 34 years of industry experience, having most recently served as Kirby-Smith’s Vice President of Major Accounts. Prior to joining the company, Arapidis spent nearly 30 years in a variety of roles at Komatsu, most recently as National Accounts Manager. Arapidis began his career with the Dresser Finance division, later leaving the finance group and moving to the role of Manager, Distribution and Planning for Komatsu Mining Systems. He served in many roles for Komatsu, including Director of Region Sales/Marketing for the West, Vice President - Rental & ReMarketing and many others. John is the KSM representative of the Texas Aggregates and Concrete Association, and the Oklahoma Aggregates Association.
Arapidis is proud to say he has worked with customers across all regions of the United States and Canada. He believes the key to success in any market is to create an outstanding customer experience. “I want to create great and memorable experiences for our customers-the type of experiences that will ensure they continue to return.”
As Chief Operating Officer and Executive Vice President, Weller has overall strategic and operational responsibility and will provide leadership and direction for all of Kirby-Smith’s business segments. He had previously served as the Vice President and General Manager for Kirby-Smith’s Northern Division, joining Kirby-Smith in August 2014. Prior to that, he had spent 28 years at Link-Belt Mid Atlantic in Mechanicsville, VA.
Weller’s father and grandfather ran a Ford Dealership in Southwest Iowa, and their example taught him the true value of honesty, integrity, and fairness in dealing with customers. Those same values have served him well in his own career, guiding his philosophy on customer service. “Customers deserve honest and direct answers, to have their problems taken seriously, and to receive our best effort in solving them. Commitment to our customers is what has made Kirby-Smith successful, and is what will continue to drive our growth as an organization.”
As Vice President of Sales, Del Keffer is responsible for the direction of Kirby-Smith Machinery’s corporate sales and rental strategy. Prior to joining Kirby-Smith, Keffer was the President of North American Trailer in Salt Lake City. He has also served in executive roles for Scott VanKeppel and Volvo Construction Equipment.
Earning his start as a parts expediter in Tucson, AZ, Keffer has amassed a wealth of experience through four decades related to parts, sales, operations management, and executive management on both the manufacturing (10 years) and equipment dealer / equipment rental side of the industry (27 years). His experience has taken him across the United States, providing a perceptive understanding of equipment utilization across various jobsites, as well as a great passion for the meaningful interactions an effective dealer can employ to add value between the manufacturer and end user.
“My ultimate goal is to provide all Kirby-Smith clients with a family relationship which they can depend upon in good times as well as lean times, focusing on customer need tomorrow by looking forward together today.”
JD Young has served Kirby-Smith as Chief Financial Officer and Vice President since June, 2015. Prior to this position, Young served as CFO for three other separate companies, including over 13 years’ of experience managing high level financials in the equipment industry. In that time, he has consistently proven to increase both the usefulness and availability of financial reporting for his firms, and has a passion for making financial information come alive to the various stakeholders involved. Prior to his time serving in the equipment industry, he spent 6 years in public accounting with PWC serving clients primarily in retail and the oilfield services industry.
As Vice President of the Crane Division, Rickey Bailey is responsible for the strategy and oversight of Kirby-Smith’s crane operations. Bailey has over 20 years of crane industry experience with management roles at the manufacturer, distributor, and end-user level. Prior to Kirby-Smith, Bailey served as Manager – Major Accounts for Link-Belt Construction Equipment Company. In addition to Link-Belt Construction Equipment, he has also worked for Link-Belt Mid-Atlantic and Bulldog Erectors, Inc. He believes in providing unmatched product support and service, and working hard each day to earn opportunities from customers.
Joe is Vice President & General Maanager of Energy Services which serves the various energy construction markets such as pipeline construction, large scale transmission projects, and renewable energy, including wind and solar farm projects. Joe has over 20 years’ experience in the construction equipment industry, bringing a wealth of sales and marketing expertise to his new position at Kirby-Smith. He recently retired from Caterpillar, Inc., where he spent the last 10 years developing their Global Pipeline Division. During his time at CAT, including roles as both Sr. Product/Marketing Manager and Sr. Corporate Account Manager, Trapani displayed a remarkable penchant for understanding customer needs in the market, and then creating effective solutions for them. Prior to this role, Trapani worked for Mustang CAT, Waukesha Pearce, Summit Equipment, and Ingersoll-Rand, serving in various roles. Joe has passion, experience, and a thorough understanding of the energy construction industry, including what it takes to build valuable relationships.
As Vice President of Product Support, Brad Campbell leads more than 300 Kirby-Smith Machinery parts and service employees. He believes that improving upon customer satisfaction and the working environment for employees is crucial in achieving the ultimate goal of offering top-level product support. Campbell strives to fulfill the Kirby-Smith mission to “create lifetime customers and team members who support one another” with a strong focus on customer service and by providing continual support, training and education for parts and service personnel.
As Vice President of Road Construction & Minerals, Vern Gunderson is responsible for Kirby-Smith's road construction & minerals division. Vern leads our efforts related to the Wirtgen Group (Wirtgen, Vogele, Hamm & Kleemann,) LeeBoy, Falcon, and Masaba product lines. His Knowledge and experience includes a wide variety of construction equipment dealers, contractors and crane manufacturers. Vern’s reputation precedes himself with 28+ years in the construction equipment industry. He most recently served as Vice President of Construction Sales for Nixon-Egli Equipment Company, and has over a decade’s worth of experience with Leeboy and the Wirtgen Group’s family of products.
Seth McColley serves as Vice President of Human Resources for Kirby-Smith Machinery and is responsible for our people strategy, rewards, talent management, and recruiting & leadership development, as well as creating an integrated team that strengthens our culture.
McColley brings more than 22 years of human resources leadership experience from McCarthy Building Companies, Jiffy Lube, Pizza Hut and AT&T. He is part of the senior leadership team and works to ensure that Kirby-Smith Machinery continues to differentiate itself as an employer of choice within the heavy equipment distributor community. McColley is driven to unleash the potential of Kirby-Smith’s employees through strategies that facilitate training, leadership development and mentorship, as well as recruiting top talent and retaining top-performing employees.