History

Our Focus: Family, Safety and Education
Kellie Dean was awarded Michigan's Outstanding Teacher of the Year Award in 1983 by the prestigious Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) for his commitment to Special Education.

Dean Transportation, formerly Special Transportation, was established in the early 1950's by Mr. Eric Christensen. Mr. Christensen transported individuals affected by polio to Lansing area schools throughout the 1950's and the early 1960's. In 1969 Special Transportation was incorporated by Mr. Lyle L. Stephens, a former Michigan State Police Motor Carrier Lieutenant and a leader in passenger safety.

In 1986, Mr. Kellie P. Dean joined Mr. Stephens, leaving a position in the Lansing School District after fourteen years. While working for the district, Mr. Dean was a teacher's aid, special education teacher and special education administrator in charge of the programs for the Physically or Otherwise Health and Hearing Impaired. Mr. Dean is a graduate of Michigan State University’s College of Education and holds an undergraduate degree in Special Education and a Masters Degree in School Administration. 

In 1991, Special Transportation changed its name to Dean Transportation, Inc. In 1995, Mr. Stephens retired after 26 years in the school transportation industry.

Advocacy for the Disabled

Dean Transportation has made a significant impact on the Specialized Transportation industry through Stephens' and Dean’s advocacy for the disabled.  Legal action, with the help of Attorney Lynwood Beekman, was taken against the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the U.S. Department of Transportation for their ongoing failure to develop Federal Guidelines to safely transport Special Needs individuals.  After a five-year battle in Washington D.C., Dean Transportation's efforts helped force NHTSA to develop new equipment specifications for wheelchairs and wheelchair tie-down equipment, which is now available for the safety of our nation’s disabled passengers.

Today, Dean Transportation serves school districts, intermediate school districts, and public transit agencies throughout the State of Michigan and has become one of largest privately-owned transportation companies in the country.