About the team

Vince Barnett
+ Travis Mercer

Driver Vince Barnett was born in Los Angeles and raised in California. He began trucking in 1996. • right • On the other hand, owner/operator Travis Mercer was born and raised on a farm in Hamilton, Missouri (population 1,700). While on active duty in the U.S. Marine Corps, Travis was stationed in Quantico, Virginia; Milton, Florida; and Jacksonville, North Carolina.


Stephanie Mercer owns and operates IRF Transport along with her husband, Travis. While Travis makes shipment runs, Stephanie focuses on office responsibilities. Together, they have two sons.

Q&A with Stephanie

As you work alongside your husband to operate IRF Transport, how do you set boundaries so that work doesn’t overtake family time?

Stephanie: Owning and operating our own business can overtake every aspect of our lives. Although we love operating this business together, Travis and I have to be intentional in making sure there are times set aside to focus on our relationship and the relationship with our boys.

One of the things Travis and I do to focus on our relationship is do something fun like going on a motorcycle ride or going on hikes together. We do the same with our boys. They love to ride dirt bikes (we all do), go for motorcycle rides with their dad, fish and hunt. We like to play cards or board games and watch family-friendly movies together.

How did being a military wife build your grit and how does that help you when facing challenges now?

Stephanie: My time as a USMC spouse has helped me approach every challenge with the idea that it can be overcome, or at least endured, and that it will not last forever. In this business, there can be long hours and times when my husband is away. As a military spouse, you learn how to live life in whatever circumstance that the military places you.

What is something behind the scenes of the shipping industry you have found interesting since Travis founded IRF Transport?

Stephanie: It has been interesting to see how many loads there are out there, how different each load is, and the requirements of each load.

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