RP Wakefield Receives Governor's Award
Article by KPC Media | KPC News | March 22, 2019
INDIANAPOLIS — Gov. Eric J. Holcomb honored 65 Indiana companies and organizations Thursday at the Indiana Statehouse. He presented each with a Governor’s Century or Half Century Business Award in recognition of each company’s longevity and service to its employees, community and the state.
"Today we honor businesses that have helped lay a foundation for economic success in Indiana, maintaining operations for more than 50 to 100 years and creating long-term career opportunities for Hoosiers," Holcomb said. "Through a strong dedication to their employees, their businesses and their communities, these companies exemplify the pioneering spirit and perseverance that will push our state forward for years to come."
The awards honor Hoosier businesses that have remained in operation for a minimum of 100 or 50 consecutive years and have demonstrated a commitment to community service. More than 1,500 Indiana companies have been recognized during the award's 28-year history.
This year’s winners include:
• YMCA of DeKalb County (107 years)
Founded by Charles Eckart, who also served as the first president of the board, the YMCA offers spiritual, physical and mental wellness programs for Hoosiers and recreational facilities in Auburn, which include pools, indoor and outdoor tracks, soccer and football fields, trail networks, a splash pad and one of the only field houses in the Midwest. Over the past five years, the YMCA of DeKalb County’s membership has quadrupled to serve more than 11,000 people in northeast Indiana.
• More Farm Stores (106 years; Whitley County)
This fourth-generation, family-owned business has served rural areas in northeast Indiana since 1913, offering new and used equipment for agricultural, construction, landscape and outdoor purposes. More Farm Stores has 30 employees across its three locations and is one of the largest compact tractor dealers in the Midwest.
• R.P. Wakefield (65 years; DeKalb County)
Founded by Russell P. Wakefield in 1954 and acquired by Donald Ruegsegger in 1963, this Waterloo-based hardwood moulding company designs, develops and delivers quality wood products for its clients. The company is now owned by Donald Ruegsegger's son, Brian Ruegsegger.
• Lewger Machine & Tool (68 years; Noble County)
This Kendallville-based manufacturer, founded in 1951, specializes in machining, grinding and surface grinding, stamping and pump rebuilding. At its 26,600-square-foot facility, the company makes parts for customers across the U.S. and Canada, including large corporations such as Kraft Foods and Parker Hannifin.
• Lonsbury Garage (68 years; Steuben County)
Founded by Al Lonsbury in 1951, this eight-bay, full automotive and diesel trucking repair shop serves Steuben County and surrounding areas with a focus of providing excellent customer service and quality of work at an affordable price.
A number of the award winners have used services provided by the Indiana Small Business Development Center and Indiana Procurement Technical Assistance Center to fuel their growth in Indiana. Myers Spring and R.P. Wakefield received business planning and strategy development services from the Indiana SBDC. Mercer Machine Co. received contracting assistance from the Indiana PTAC, which helps Indiana businesses compete for and win federal, state and local contracts.