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Interstates, Inc.  

Sioux Center,  IA 
United States
  • Booth: 1720

Interstates provides design-build electrical services

Interstates offers electrical & instrumentation construction, electrical engineering, and control systems services. For over sixty years, the company has tackled complex challenges and developed innovative solutions for industrial manufacturing and processing facilities around the world.  Through our unique integrated project delivery approach, we are able to provide customers with one or all of our services.  Our regional office structure allows our customers to utilize Interstates not only on large scale capital projects, but also for the day to day electrical needs at their facilities at the end of your project.  Partnering with customers in the Pet Food Industry not only includes the traditional engineering, construction and automation, but extends to helping customers address the traceability needs of the industry, security of the plant network and the analysis of critical manufacturing data.  Our knowledgeable teams will work alongside you to truly understand your needs and deliver exceptional results.

 Press Releases

  • When Perham, MN-based Tuffy’s Pet Foods, Inc., wanted to expand its business with a new pet treat facility, it looked towards Interstates with its national pet care experience for their design-build electrical engineering and electrical construction. Having worked with Tuffy’s previously on its Perham processing plant, Interstates leveraged their vendor contacts and staff located in Brainerd, MN for the seamless execution in building the new process facility located in Delano, MN.

    Though Interstates worked under Kansas City-based CRB, the project’s general contractor, its history with Tuffy’s was useful. “Having an established relationship with Tuffy’s and the crews from Perham helped make installs go smoothly. When our workers in the field know everyone well, it’s easy to ask questions and get the straightforward answers you need,” says Jordan Thomas, Project Manager at Interstates. Understanding the client’s processes and having established trust only benefited the project. “Tuffy’s knows we have seen these systems before. They know we are knowledgeable and can create the same results as before,” adds Drew Anderson, Project Coordinator at Interstates.

    The schedule was already tight when the COVID-19 pandemic became increasingly severe. “We spent a lot of time developing and implementing our COVID-19 plan, which took away from time that could be spent working,” says Anderson. The health and safety of its workers have always been paramount for Interstates, and this was a time to prove it.

    Gary Funke, CRB’s Senior Project Director, says, “Interstates has a similar safety culture to CRB’s, which resulted in zero incidences – even though they had the most personnel on site and had the most effort hours expended. When COVID-19 peaked the first time, Interstates implemented a 100% mask policy while on site, which remains today.”

    At the start of the project, wet weather delayed work on the foundations; this, coupled with the site being shut down for a few weeks for COVID-19 precautions, compressed the schedule further. To get all the work done in a reduced timeframe, Interstates used its resources to pull together “quite the mix of subcontractors,” according to Anderson. Getting everyone on the same page concerning safety and production was challenging at times.

    Interstates solved this problem with extra planning and communication, utilizing extensive whiteboarding techniques to ensure each site leader’s effective time management. “We made it habit to have site leaders go over what they did each day and what their plan was for the next day, week or three weeks. This instills a firm sense of the plan and makes them more confident about how that plan will come to life,” says Anderson. He adds that whiteboarding also makes obvious any issues or dilemmas that need to be addressed, especially when changes are made.

    Tom Rychlewski, Design Project Manager at CRB, says, “The Interstates team adapted well to the changes that were occurring on the project, and they were able to accommodate most changes without change orders. The project overall benefited from their design and construction input on costs and helped drive us to a more efficient, cost-effective design.”

    Prefabricating cable tray, rollout lighting and various brackets saved time in the field, and Interstates’ procurement team was essential for battling long lead times for equipment. Interstates adapted work out of sequence and even provided temporary measures to ensure the plant could be operational on time.

    Lance Thayer was Interstates’ Superintendent on this project, and his skills directly impacted its success. “He put together end-of-shift meetings that turned out to be crucial in getting everyone on the same page,” says Anderson. A combination of subcontractors, temp labor employees, and Interstates regional and national travelers – at one point over 70 workers – needed to understand the way forward. “Lance had a plan in place that helped us cross the finish line and get production rolling,” says Thomas, “and he kept all levels organized and marching to the same beat.”

    The flexibility and creativity in scheduling and communication demonstrated by Thayer and the Interstates crew as a whole led to a satisfied client and an operational facility. Mark Sailer, Director of Engineering at Tuffy’s, says, “Overall, the project was very successful, especially taking into account the complexity of custom process equipment controls on top of a state-of-the-art building infrastructure. The many things that went well were due to the people involved. A special thanks to the Interstates team for its continued communication and customer support.”

  • On March 10, we joined several other merit shop contractors in Grapevine, TX, for the Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) Excellence in Construction Awards. We’re proud to receive two of the highest level awards from ABC, the National Safety Excellence Pinnacle award and the National Excellence in Construction Pyramid award.


    The National Safety Excellence awards recognize construction companies that showcase an exemplary safety program and commitment to safety. The Pinnacle award is the highest level of honor for safety, awarded to a select group of ABC member companies. We are proud of our leaders and teams that helped us achieve this honor for the second year in a row.

    “Interstates is creating the conditions for its people to do their job well in a safe, healthy and mentally fit environment,” said 2021 ABC National Chair of the Board of Directors Steve Klessig, vice president of architecture and engineering, Keller Inc., Kaukauna, Wisconsin. “A culture of both safety and total human health cannot exist without leadership choosing daily to not to compromise on safety, and ABC commends this safety leader in our industry for modeling this belief in every action.”

    The winners were selected from ABC member firms that achieved Diamond, Platinum and Gold status in ABC’s STEP safety management system in 2020. During the selection process, contractors were judged on self-evaluation scores, lost workday case rates, total recordable incident rates, leading indicator use, process and program innovations, and video interviews conducted by members of ABC’s National Safety and Health Committee.

    Ian Seuser, Director of Safety, shares how he sees safety on our job sites, “We’re thrilled to receive this award. We can see the passion our team leaders and crew members have for safety, and they go the extra mile to achieve a zero-injury culture.” From day one at Interstates, our team members hear and learn about our safety culture, and we empower leaders to coach their teams that every accident is preventable, no matter how small.


    The National Excellence in Construction (EIC) awards celebrate the best in merit shop construction, honoring the most outstanding construction projects for 2020. Our project in Fremont, NE with Costco Feed Mill, received the Pyramid award in the Specialty Contractor Electrical: Industrial $2-10 Million category.

    The EIC awards honor all construction team members, including the contractor, owner, architect and engineer. A panel of industry experts judges each project on complexity, attractiveness, unique challenges overcome, completion time, workmanship, innovation, safety and cost. Klessig shares, “For more than 30 years, ABC has honored award-winning construction projects like Costco Feed Mill because of the work by the team at Interstates exemplifies excellence in our industry. This world-class construction project is a vital part of our economic engine, built safely, on time and under budget, and it is an honor to congratulate Interstates for their commitment to setting the standard for excellence in construction.”

    We performed the electrical construction installation on the greenfield Costco Feed Mill, which was completed in the summer of 2019. Though a year of severe weather and historic flooding threatened to derail progress, a hard-working crew and a focus on planning led to a successful project outcome. Joel Cook, Superintendent at Interstates, attributes the project’s success to the teamwork among the crew, “This project had exceptional leadership and team members that kept the work on schedule.” Britton Hulme, Project Manager at Interstates, adds, “I knew the crew had the skill and knowledge to complete the project. Through the many challenges, they continued to deliver an excellent project, and it’s great to see it recognized.” This project was also awarded the Eagle Award and the Project of the Year award at the state level from the ABC Cornhusker Chapter in 2020.


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