Meet the team

Landon Rhodes

Landon Rhodes

Founder & CEO

Landon started Grindstone on the floor of his apartment in 2018. He wanted to find a way to help companies promote their products and services beyond the traditional door-to-door sales model. He also wanted to take the work ethic he developed on his family farm near Exeter, Nebraska and grow his own successful business.

To keep himself sharp, Landon listens to podcasts and reads books focused on entrepreneurship and personal development. He even hosts his own podcast called Spark to Fire where he interviews other successful business leaders. He’s a firm believer in the mantra: “If you’re not growing, you’re dying,” and applies that mentality to everything he does.

Fun fact: Landon’s impressions are impeccable. Ask him to do anyone and he won’t disappoint.

Jenna Rhodes

Jenna Rhodes

Business Development Manager

Jenna graduated from Nebraska Wesleyan University in 2011 with degrees in History and Spanish. She spent the last ten years working for Stanley Black and Decker in various sales and marketing roles. As the Business Development Manager, Jenna works with prospective clients to determine how Grindstone can best serve their needs. Passionate about the details, Jenna is committed that Grindstone delivers the best quality work for each client, no matter the project scope.

Fun fact: Jenna lived in Costa Rica for six months to study Spanish.

Meredith Killion

Meredith Q. Killion

Account Executive

Meredith received her BFA from the University of Nebraska – Lincoln.  She has over a decade of experience as a graphic designer, creative director, project manager, and organizer of all things that need to be organized.

As Account Executive, Meredith will be the point of contact for clients and help them solidify their brand on videos, podcasts, and social media platforms.   She loves problem solving and puzzles.  These passions give her the upper hand when faced with challenges.  You may see her on her lunch break doing Sudoku in the break room.

Fun fact: Meredith has a mean poker face.  She plays texas holdem as often as she can with friends and acquaintances. 

Tanner Smejdir

Tanner smejdir

Account Executive

Tanner grew up in a small town known as Friend, Nebraska. He eventually graduated from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, earning his Bachelor of Journalism degree. UNL is where Tanner found his passion for the media industry. After working several different jobs, he found a home at Grindstone. As an Account Executive, Tanner will be the direct point of contact between Grindstone and its clients. He values the relationships he has created and looks forward to the ones that are yet to happen.

Fun fact: Tanner had a short-lived child-acting career. At the ripe age of 4 months, he starred as “Baby Jesus” for the town’s Christmas program. He decided to retire after that as the fame was too much. 

Alexis Koetters

Alexis Koetters

Account Executive + Sales Asst.

Alexis is from a little town named Hinton, IA. Hinton High School is where she fell in love with marketing concepts. She competed with DECA placing first place at the state level three years in a row. Alexis graduated from Buena Vista University in 2018 with a BA in Business Marketing. While at BVU, she played volleyball and ran Track and Cross Country. Combining her experience in sales with her drive to build lasting relationships, she’s finding her groove as an Account Executive and Sales Assistant at Grindstone. When she’s not working, you can find her playing volleyball with friends or at a local brewery with her pup, Willy. 

Fun fact: Alexis is allergic to hamsters, preventing the office from ever having one as a classroom pet. 

Patrick McCarthy

Patrick McCarthy

Executive Producer

Patrick’s career in visual mediums started over a decade ago with a cable access sketch show called “Nerds with Birds” in Lincoln, Nebraska. What started as a high school passion-project has turned into a full-time career. Patrick is a full-time video editor at Grindstone Media. Patrick finds inspiration in nature and the work of film directors like Andrei Tarkovsky and Stanley Kubrick. When he’s not working on perfecting his video editing or finding creative ways to shoot, he loves to spend time writing music.

Fun fact: Patrick once owned a hot air balloon and was learning to fly.

Collin McCarthy

Collin Mccarthy

Audio Engineer

Collin started his deep dive into the audio production world back in high school when he began building a home studio in his parent’s basement. After high school, Collin moved out to Seattle to pursue music with his band. Since then, he has recorded 2 EP’s & 1 full-length album with the group, & is currently working on a solo project under the name CP/M, where he has released 2 songs thus far. After moving back to Lincoln, Collin became increasingly interested in the growing popularity of podcasts. His first production for a podcast was the title theme song for the show “Tech Refactored” at UNL’s College of Law, Nebraska Governance & Technology Center.

Fun fact: Collin’s been on tour from California to New York… & everything in between!

John Valeriani

John Valeriani

Editor

John has enjoyed a variety of roles, from animator, illustrator, assistant photographer to now, a full-time video editor at Grindstone. John aspires to do work that is collaborative and meaningful, opens up new worlds, and tells different stories. When he’s not shooting or editing, he can usually be found biking on the trails.

Fun fact: John and his mother were almost on ‘Judge Judy’.

Sam Trocki

Sam Trocki

Digital Marketing Manager

Sam has a passion for contributing to the growth of a business and building connections by developing savvy strategies and compelling content for social media campaigns. Her creative mind and constant curiosity help her think outside the box and bring any vision to life. Sam found her calling through extensive experience in Account Management and earning her Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing. She finds joy in the little things, and can usually be found outside tending to her garden or exploring a new hiking trail.

Fun fact: Sam attended Tony Robbins first-ever Virtual Unleash the Power Within event and is excited to be a future fire walker at the next in-person event!

Kayla Mostowich

Kayla Mostowich

Digital Marketing Intern

Kayla is a graduate of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln with a degree in Marketing and Management. At UNL, Kayla was a student-athlete playing with the Husker Soccer team for 5 seasons. Kayla has an ambitious personality and understands the importance of building and maintaining relationships. She has a passion for learning new social media trends to use for creative content.

Fun fact: Kayla has traveled and played soccer in 5 different countries which include England, Scotland, Italy, Canada, and the USA.

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