Bios of Management

BIO Of Laurie Houle

Laurie Houle is the Chief Executive Officer of Metropolitan Gravel, Inc. and is a company shareholder.  Laurie stepped into Metro over 22 years ago handling Accounting, Billing, Human Resources and Dispatch.  During this period, she developed the foundation that Metro has today for attracting and retaining high performing and satisfied employees.  In addition, through the years, Laurie implemented many systems, such as customized software, that facilitated Metro’s progressive growth.  Through the years, Laurie helped Metro build relationships with many of today’s customers.  Her expertise in negotiating contracts for long-term partnerships is an underpinning of Metro’s growth and positioning in today’s market place.

In her current role at Metro, Laurie leads the strategic direction of the company and empowers divisional and functional leaders to deliver Metro’s outstanding service and customized solutions to customers.  Laurie has both an external and internal focus to her work.  She is very involved in working with the Metro team to build partnerships with companies whose values about excellent customer service and satisfaction align with Metro’s.  Internally, Laurie’s focus is on building a cohesive solution-driven employee team that consistently demonstrates flexibility and resilience, and who always demonstrates, “we can do it!”  Laurie is a master at lifting others up to their full potential and getting results!

Outside of Metropolitan Gravel, Laurie enjoys her family, friends and history.  Laurie is a founding member of the St. Croix River Valley Chapter of the National Society of Daughters of the American Revolution (NSDAR) and is also its Chapter Registrar. She is very involved in researching and tracing her family’s genealogy.  In addition Laurie is involved in many volunteer activities for the community including:  Turningpoint – a women’s shelter in Hudson, the Washington County Historical Society, and Valley Outreach Food Shelf.  Laurie and her family have donated their time, wisdom and resources to organizing fundraisers, and tirelessly working for the benefit of others.

BIO Of Jennifer Hohneke

Jennifer Hohneke is President of Metro Truck and Equipment and Metro Transport, both of which are divisions of Metropolitan Gravel Co., Inc., and is also a company shareholder.  In addition to leading operational divisions of the company, Jennifer is the Manager of Human Resources, Benefits and Payroll for all Metro operating units.  Within this role, Jennifer designs, implements and administers a wide variety of compensation, benefits and employee programs, and organizes company functions.  Jennifer is committed to keeping employees and their families informed of the compensation and benefits that the company offers employees.  She prides herself in knowing that Metro employees are happy working for the company.

Jennifer is part of a great team at Metropolitan Gravel.  She has contributed to the growth of Metro in many different ways and is continually working to enhance current business services and create new business solutions for valued customers. Jennifer is a life-long learner.  She currently holds an Associate of Arts in Business Administration and will continue to pursue her Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration.

Outside of Metropolitan Gravel, Jennifer is a wife and mother of 3 children. Her entire family is active in their community, and provides service and assistance at their children’s school, their local church, The Red Kettle Drive, Salvation Army and Feed my Starving Children.  Jennifer is also a founding member of the St. Croix River Valley Chapter of the National Association of Daughters of the American Revolution.  (DAR) and was nominated as the Junior Member of the Year in 2006.

BIO Of West Houle, Jr.

West Houle, Jr. is the Manager of Operations for Metropolitan Gravel, Co., Inc. and is also a company shareholder.  From the time West Jr. was 14 years old he started working at Metro, first washing trucks and cutting grass.  He learned how to drive tractor/trailers and progressed into learning preventive maintenance as well as complex repairs on heavy equipment, trucks, and trailers.  After eight years in the shop, West learned Dispatch and Operations.  Working across different areas of the business, over many years, he learned the business from the ground floor up.

In his current role at Metro, West manages Operations. This diverse role includes managing the scheduling and dispatching of Drivers, coordinating maintenance of vehicles, purchasing fuel, purchasing new vehicles, and sourcing and developing new business opportunities and partnerships that support Metro’s business strategies.  West works with other Metro managers to explore and analyze new business ideas and to grow Metro’s business over time. When asked what he likes best about his job, West replies, "Being thrown a box of puzzle pieces and putting it all together to maximize Metro’s ability to meet our customers’ needs."

Outside of Metro, West is very involved with his family and community.  He coaches little league baseball and football, is an active sportsman hunting and fishing, and is involved in community activities such as New Port Pioneer Days, and Heritage Days in St. Paul Park.  West is a member of the Newport Business Association, The American Trucking Association  (ATA), and represents Metro on the Minnesota Safety Council.