Our Story

Grande West is a Canadian manufacturer which designs, engineers and builds Vicinity buses. With little competition in the “mid-size” bus range, Grande West has set itself apart from others with the Vicinity bus – a heavy duty mid-size, true community transit bus now in operation in many municipalities across Canada.

The Vicinity was born from a need expressed by transit systems looking for a durable, reliable, customer oriented mid-size vehicle at a reasonable price point.  Grande West responded by designing a vehicle with affordability, accessibility and global responsibility in mind.  The Vicinity costs significantly less than a 40' bus and is considerably more durable than cut-away buses which are based on a truck chassis.

In a large and unsaturated market segment, Grande West is poised to capture sales growth from both the replacement of cut-away buses and the need for transit fleet to find the appropriate balance of vehicle sizes across Canada and the United States.


Our Leadership Team

CEO, President & Director

Mr. William Trainer is a key founder of Grande West Transportation and has served as President and Director since its inception in 2008.  Mr. Trainer has over 25 years experience importing and exporting heavy machinery, and has successfully pioneered and brought several new products to the Canadian market.  William has also owned and managed heavy construction equipment dealerships throughout Western Canada.

Director & Chairman

Joe Miller has been a director of the Corporation since December 4, 2012. Mr. Miller has over 30 years experience in the construction field and manages a BC-based, construction company with projects across North America and the South Pacific. Joe specializes in ground improvement, bringing new technologies to use around the world. Mr. Miller brings a vast knowledge in negotiation skills and customer relationship building to the Corporation. Joe is also a Director on several other boards and brings a broad base of experience in management and innovation skills.

Chief Financial Officer

Dan is a Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA, CA) with more than 15 years of diversified experience and leadership in finance.  Most recently he was the Finance Director and Corporate Secretary for Fortress Paper.  Previous to this he was a manager at PricewaterhouseCoopers. 


Andrew Imanse joined Grande West as a director in October, 2015. Andrew Imanse is a retired President of the Thor Bus Group and was instrumental in developing the bus market for Thor Industries. Mr. Imanse has been a prominent figure in the bus industry for over 20 years. Prior to his role in the bus industry, Mr. Imanse worked in the recreational vehicle sector as a senior executive for several companies, including Vice President of Canadian Recreational Vehicles and Housing Division of the Bendix Corporation.


Mr. Strong is a senior executive with over thirty years of experience with startups, acquisitions, IPOs, turnarounds and sales. In addition to previous roles as CEO, he has also served as audit committee chair, CFO and numerous other finance-related positions earlier in his career. Mr. Strong is a former U.S. Navy Officer and received his MBA in finance from the Wharton School of Business.


Mr. White has extensive experience as a corporate director for public companies and is currently serving as Managing Partner with Baynes & White, a Toronto, Ontario based benefits and pension actuarial consulting firm.

VP, Corporate Development, Director

John LaGourgue joined Grande West in June, 2016 and brings with him over 20 years of management, sales, financial and investment experience in public and private companies. John has served in senior management and directors’ roles for public companies since 2009. Mr. Lagourgue manages the Company's capital markets strategies and corporate communications.

VP, Engineering Manager

Mr. John Wang has over 25 years of experience in project engineering and design consulting throughout Canada and Asia, and has been an Officer of Grande West Transportation since 2008.  Mr. Wang has played a vital role in the designing, testing and manufacturing of the Vicinity Bus.  John has extensive knowledge of the import/export business and Chinese, as well as north american  business practices.