Iowa Proud Waterloo: John Deere - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Iowa Proud Waterloo: John Deere

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by John Wilmer

WATERLOO (KWWL)-- It's a company that's been part of the community of Waterloo for almost a century.

In that time, other manufacturers have come and gone, but one has remained strong... Continuing to set record profits.

It's a symbol that is synonymous with Waterloo, and it's been that way since 1918 when John Deere purchased the Waterloo Gasoline Engine Company.

Currently employing several thousand workers, John Deere is the largest manufacturer in Waterloo.

"Through innovation energy and and hard work from the people of Waterloo, the Cedar Valley, and the state of Iowa," said Dave Rodger.

Harold Getty worked at John Deere for more than 30 years.

During that entire time he worked in the downtown plant, now many of the buildings he spent hours working in is nothing more than a pile of ruble, with John Deere making way for the new tech works project.

"They've been an asset to this community, a great asset to this community," said Getty, a former John Deere employee.

Getty says John Deere is one of the few companies in Waterloo to survive over the years.

But they have done more then just survived they have thrived, earning record profits for four consecutive years.

"All of these big corporations, well John Deere is a survivor."

While the main manufacturing facility is located north east of Waterloo, On the city's south side, that's where the tractors are sold at Waterloo Implement.

 "I think that's something Waterloo can be proud of," said Joe Engelkes of Waterloo Implement. "They put out a great product and we're lucky enough that we're a dealer that gets to sell it."

The John Deere Tractor Works has been a staple of Waterloo for 90 years, and the company has no plans of changing that special relationship .

"The head and heart of our John Deere tractor business is still here in Waterloo."

"Doesn't matter where you travel in the world there is always a John Deere Emblem or you see that bright green tractor out in the field."

And while nothing runs like a Deere, no company could make Iowa prouder.

John Deere also supports Waterloo through it's charity "The John Deere Foundation."

Most recently, the foundation gave a million dollar grant to assist the Red Cross in it's flood relief efforts.

Online Reporter: John Wilmer

Online Producer: Michelle Caldwell

 

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