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Sunday, March 3, 2019  |  wcfcourier.com  |  SECTION H


LeRoy Gray puts together the pump on top of a transmission at the John Deere Drivetrain Operations facility Jan. 25.

Deere ‘drives’ company, community growth PAT KINNEY | For the Courier‌


o see the future of John Deere and Waterloo, walk inside the big L-shaped building at 300 Westfield Ave. That’s the home of John Deere’s Drivetrain operations … just a long baseball line drive from where Deere began doing business in Waterloo when it bought the Waterloo Gasoline Engine Co. 101 years ago. It’s where employees work who are the future of John Deere — employees like Katie Harn. The 1997 East High School graduate spent six years in the U.S. Army as a military police officer. It’s a job that took her all over the United States, and overseas, to Korea. She found her future right back here in Waterloo. She’s been at Deere about seven years — first, as a contract employee and then on the Deere payroll, about five years ago. She at-


Assembler, Travis Stoner builds the power takeoff for the 6000 series at the John Deere Drivetrain Operations facility.

tended school while working and obtained bachelor’s and master’s degrees through night classes at Upper Iowa University’s Waterloo campus. She’s a production supervisor, overseeing two departments of 15 employees in the Drivetrain plant. “Every day is different,” she said. She has a good crew. She plans to make Deere a career — for the congenial work environment as much as the compensation and benefits. “I really like it … . It’s a very ‘small’ big company, “ she said. “It really is. Especially in Waterloo.” It’s where Deere builds transmissions for its Waterloo-built large row-crop tractors. It’s just one plant within Deere’s Waterloo operations, the company’s largest manufacturing complex in all of North America. Assembler Travis Stoner of Independence, an employee in Katie Harms’ department, said he can see the wide-ranging Please see DEERE, Page H2

Worker looks back on 52-year career at Deere PAT KINNEY

For the Courier‌

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‌WATERLOO — After 52 years working for John Deere, Gaylord Converse was ready to turn over the keys to his boss. “Gaylord stopped me last week and said. ‘It’s all yours after next week, Dave!’” said Dave DeVault, general manager of John Deere’s Waterloo operations. Converse, of Frederika, retired at the end of January. He was one of just three employees in the company’s entire 5,400-worker Waterloo operations with 50 years or more with the company. He’s spent that entire time at the company’s complex on Westfield Avenue and Commercial Street

near downtown. The 1965 graduate of Sumner High School began working at Deere Jan. 23, 1967. Then, the company’s entire manufacturing operations — then the John Deere Waterloo Tractor Works — were all on Westfield. Since then the company has expanded to various large plants throughout the Cedar Valley — together, the company’s largest manufacturing complex in North America. “He bleeds green,” said Kelly Henderson, communications and visitor services manager in Waterloo. He and his wife Vicky farm near Frederika. “His wife’s comment was he builds for John Deere all day long and he goes home and

drives a John Deere all night.” Downtown, Converse was as much an institution as some of the buildings and a mentor to many, DeVault indicated “He’s trained so many people in the component shop,” DeVault said. “It’s interesting. When many people meet Gaylord, they think he’s a salaried person,” a supervisor. “He’s a production employee that just knows the machine shop like the back of his hand, been through all the changes we’ve done. Just crazy.” Ninety days after he was hired at Deere, he was called into the military and enlisted in the Air Please see CONVERSE, Page H2


Gaylord Converse


H2 | Sunday, March 3, 2019



LeRoy Gray speaks with supervisor Katie Harn at the John Deere Drivetrain Operations facility.

Deere From H1

impact of his work. “Not just locally but worldwide,” he said. “You get on the John Deere (web)page and you see places in Africa that are seeing tractors for the first time. Crazy stuff. The leadership, they’re open to us giving our opinions” and he receives good support from United Auto Workers Local 838. LeRoy Gray of New Hampton has been at Deere for 38 years, 15 years at Drivetrain downtown. He’s hung with the company through a couple of layoffs. “It’s a good place to work and they treat you pretty good.” He worked at the now-defunct Sara Lee plant in New Hampton before hiring on at Deere. “I get along with everybody pretty good. They keep growing, too.” Walk within the Drivetrain plant and you’ve unlocked the door to where the company and Waterloo are headed — up. What’s just gone “up” is a 60,000 square foot expansion — small in size compared to the more than 1.1 million square feet under roof there. But it’s similar in size to a large grocery store. It’s the biggest expansion there in 10 years and figures to meet the company anticipated expansion in transmission production over the next decade. The building construction was just recently completed and will soon be occupied, as will be a re-

Converse From H1

Force, serving in California. Because he had 90 days in with the company, he retained his position in seniority at Deere through his military service. He was to have been headed to Thailand, but his parents divorced and he was allowed to return home to help his mother on the family farm. “And I came back to Deere’s. That’s what pulled us through — that paycheck from Deere’s,” Gaylord said. His mother also returned to school and found a management job starting Country Kitchen restaurants. He’s continued working and farming up to the present day. He and Vicky, who was teaching school in Sumner, met in a church choir and were married in 1972. “He was a singer; he loved to sing,” she said. And the school principal encouraged her to join the choir as well. Both their families had farmed, and in fact, knew each other back when they were small children. “When we were first married, I was teaching and he was working third (overnight) shift” at Deere, Vicky said. “We’d pass


John Deere high rise demolition lated office area still being finished, said Wayne Southall, manager of Drivertrain operations. The building changes are part of the Moline, Ill.- headquartered company’s “next generation” of agricultural equipment, including its Waterloo-made large row-crop tractors. “We’ve got the widest and broadest portfolio of any ag company in the world, and we spend a considerable amount of money

refreshing it all,” Deere Waterloo Operations general manager Dave DeVault said. “We look on two-, four- and eight-year cycles and look at refreshing our product portfolio. “That’s what we’re in the middle of doing — the same stuff we’ve been doing 18 years,” DeVault said, beginning with a massive redevelopment of the Waterloo operations in 2001 under one of DeVault’s predecessors, Mike Triplett. “We’ve

kind of doubled down on it and been going ever since,” DeVault said. “We right-sized it (after 2001) and now we’re taking on the future. And all products are getting bigger.” That expansion is indicative of an expansion in employment — comparatively modest for Deere, but large enough to draw a brass band and a key to the city had it been a new single employer. There, and across the entire Wa-

each other. When I was going to school, and he’d come home, he’d go straight to the farm from work. And then try to get in to get a little sleep. He’d get maybe only three, four hours.” They lived in an apartment in Sumner and Gaylord’s family’s farm was outside of Sumner. Their mothers were basketball teammates at Frederika High School, which later closed. Vicky graduated from Tripoli. Gaylord successfully balanced farming and work at Deere. “One thing I did, I didn’t get too big in farming. I didn’t get any more than what we could handle. That was a good thing because a lot of guys got in too deep and down the tube they went when the farm (commodity) prices dipped.” Gaylord and Vicky bought a farm of their own in 1974. His Deere paycheck provided steady income as they got that operation going. He was interviewed by Forbes magazine as part of a story on Deere in the early ’80s. At that time Deere arranged for bus transportation for its workers from outlying areas. Gaylord was one of the individuals on the bus who was interviewed. At that time, Gaylord had 15 years in with

the company. He told the reporter he’d probably retire from the company soon to farm full time. He didn’t. It was a good decision. Gaylord and Vicky said the Deere paycheck helped them and their young family through lean times during the 1980s farm crisis and also with the medical bills for a seriously ill daughter, Kalyn, who was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor at age 2, became mentally disabled after radiation treatments and passed away following a series of strokes at age 26. “We went back and forth to Rochester (Minn.),” at the Mayo Clinic, Vicky said. “We had to go to the National Institutes of Health at Bethesda, Md.” for lengthy treatment. Gaylord “stayed on at Deere then because of the situation with health insurance” Vicky said. “We cannot say enough about John Deere insurance. We would have lost the farm if he had not been working at Deere’s.” And Gaylord joined the family every weekend they were at Rochester. “It seemed like along the way, things came along” that kept Gaylord working at Deere, Vicky said. “Plus his John Deere paycheck was helping us keep

our farm going.” Vicky also alternately worked and stayed at home, depending on the children’s needs. In addition to Kaylin, they have a son, Kevin, daughter Kiana of Lake City, and three grandchildren. Kevin helps farm and his son Lane is active in 4-H. “I thought about Kalyn, how proud she would be of her dad,” Vicky said. “She was like about a third-grader all of her life. She was loving, just so compassionate. She loved her brother and sister.” Improved working conditions also were a factor in Gaylord’s longevity at John Deere. “When he started at Deere, working conditions were not good,” Vicky said. “They were so dirty and it was heavy lifting. Now they have robots and everything. Now the facilities are so wonderful and so clean.” “In the summertime about the first of April it’d start being hot and it’d stay hot until October. I mean it was hot. All the time,” Gaylord said.” Now, it might be hot a couple weeks out of the year but I still don’t see anybody wearing sweat bands. We have fans. We didn’t even have fans back then.”

terloo operations, the company has been hiring — as a quarter-page display advertisement in recent editions of The Courier also indicates. Total employment at Deere’s Waterloo operations now stands at about 5,400, according to DeVault. That’s a net increase of about 400 positions from about a year ago. It’s divided roughly equally between union-wage factory jobs, like assemblers represented by United Auto Workers Local 838, and nonunion salaried positions such as engineers. “Our workforce is getting a little older. That’s what we’re really hiring for, is the attrition within our workforce, and skilled trades,” DeVault said, both in the engineering and production. “We’ve been blessed so far, and continue to get the talent we need and bring it in,” both hiring locally and bringing in new talent from elsewhere when needed — like Southall, a native of Tennessee. Production worker Stoner, also an Army veteran, encouraged those interested in working for Deere to continue their education. “A lot of kids in high school, I tell them if you’re going to come to work here, you should go to school first, something after high school.” He said his military experience, for example, helped him develop a work ethic. The company has been hiring not only to fill openings created Please see DEERE, Page H3

And more efficient. “It would take up to eight to 12 hours to set a (machining) line up in the old spiral double gearing machines,” in the old days, Gaylord said. “Now they do it in about two hours.” Instead of cutting parts with multiple machines, “now they cut a whole part in one machine. Wow. That’s because of the redevelopment. It’s basically the same stuff. It’s just a different way of doing things,” he said. “I used the things I learned at Deere to help me out on the farm,” Gaylord added, in terms of getting the most out of his equipment. “If Deere’s can do it, I can do it on the farm.” They have older Deere tractors. “I have a 4430, it’s a 1973, still going strong. It started yesterday,” he said. “It’s a great company to work for,” Gaylord said. “Benefits are great. Management, they’re great people. Bend over backwards to help you out. I’ve never had any problem with any of the supervisors. It’s a different environment now than back then. Supervisors were kind of hard-nosed.“ Gaylord’s “retirement” plan is simple. “We’re going to be full-time 00 1 farmers,” he said.



Sunday, March 3, 2019 | H3

Deere From H2

by retirements and other attrition, DeVault said. It’s also to meet production demand, with farmers on the cusp of a replacement cycle — needing to replace equipment that has run its useful life. To meet that demand, production changes also are in store. At the tractor cab assembly operations at the East Donald Street plant, one production line currently assembles both the Deere 7000 and 8000 model tractors. That single line now will become two — one line dedicated specifically for the 7000 model and one for the 8000. Another tractor, the 7030 model, in production since 2006-07, “went out of production this past December,” DeVault said. “ We’ve been running the 7000 and the 8000 on a mixed-model assembly line. And because of the changes coming at us with our (product) portfolio, we want to get those two models separated. That gave us the room out at Donald Street to do that separation. So I’m taking the 7000 right now and moving it over to where we used to make the 7030. “We’ll actually stop producing the 7000 tractor for a couple of months to give us the chance to change over the line and then come back up this summer in production with it,” DeVault said. “We’re only halting production a couple of months. 7000 will have a dedicated line and the 8000 will have its own dedicated line. It’s going to make it much easier to manage having them on two different assembly lines.” Assembly of the smaller 6000-series model is being moved to the company plant in Mannheim, Germany. However, “that’s assembly only,” DeVault emphasized. Parts for those tractors will still be produced here in Waterloo. “Wayne and the team down here (at Drivetrain) are still doing a lot of the components and assembly for that tractor.” Deere’s 9000 series tractors and their “tracks” models also are still being made and assembled here. The overall trend in agriculture is toward larger tractor models, DeVault said, and the production


The newest 50,00 square feet bump out at the John Deere Drivetrain Operations facility in Cedar Falls. changes here reflect that. The company also has brought in or “insourced” some work at Drivetrain and the foundry that was being performed by suppliers outside the plant to meet internal production volume demands, and as some of those suppliers diversified their own customer base. “We’re positioning this (Waterloo) business to become John Deere’s large tractor business,” DeVault said. “When you look at the journey into the next generation, the 6000 is going to become the versatile tractor. And we need the space to be able to make all the large tractors coming at us.” There’ll be plenty of work. “It’s different work,” DeVault said. “It’ll be adding models in and changing things up. That’s some of the reason for the extra square footage, for new products coming through. We’ve seen the trend in the ag business, as far as implements getting bigger. Implements don’t motorize themselves across the field. Therefore, the tractors have to get bigger.” Tarriff and trade war talk has had some impact. “Our customer sentiment is very unsure right now,” DeVault said, but farmers do need to replace equipment and “the net (farm ) is above where it was in 2010. It’s pretty stable.” He also noted Deere took market share leadership in South America in the tractor industry the past year. The company does business in 140 different countries, includ-

ing the Russian Federation. Also, the company’s service parts operation at what’s known as the company’s 400,000 square foot “1020” building at Westfield and Fletcher avenues, adjacent to the John Deere Foundry has been rearranged and expanded within that building. Consequently, production materials and supplies — the stockroom storage — has moved to the renovated adjacent 1010 building off River Drive along Black Hawk Creek. That building had been underutilized for many years. It was used to house temporarily production machines over the past 15plus years as they were moved and reconfigured during the massive redevelopment of Deere’s Waterloo operations after 2001. An adjacent 16,000 square foot, 60-foot-tall “high rise” storage building, state of the art when it was opened in 1981 but now outdated, was demolished to allow more room in the central materials handling operation. In fact, DeVault said, some of the machines he installed during that redevelopment in the early 2000s are now being replaced. DeVault estimated Deere has invested $1.5 billion in Waterloo since 2000, in new and renovated facilities as well as new product research and development. That investment will continue. That includes the company’s investment in the community, local company communications

and visitor services manager Kelly Henderson said. Deere workers contribute 60,000 hours of volunteer time, she said, and donated more than $1.1 million to the Cedar Valley United Way, in a cooperative effort with UAW Local 838. She also said Deere and its foundation have donated more than $500,000 to nonprofit organizations and initiatives, some significant ones being the Leader in Me and Leader Valley initiatives with young people, in cooperation with the Greater Cedar Valley Alliance economic development organization and local schools. The Cedar Valley has made significant improvements in education and quality of life to cultivate, attract and retain a skilled work force — meeting, DeVault said, a commitment Deere required at the outset of the redevelopment which began in 2001. Hawkeye Community College’s recently completed metro campus, named for local entrepreneur and major donor Van G. Miller, and the University of Northern Iowa Metals Casting Center at The Cedar Valley TechWorks, are examples of that, as well as the general overall redevelopment of downtown Waterloo. Henderson noted, for example, that some local Deere administrators live at developers Brent Dahlstrom’s and Jim Sulentic’s Grand Crossing condominium complex at West Mullan Avenue and Jefferson Street, across Mullan for HCC’s new metro camps and adjacent

to TechWorks and the Drivetrain plant. The new Courtyard by Mariott hotel in one of the TechWorks buildings – a converted Deere factory building — also is an asset. Deere plans to use a floor of that building for a conference and training center as a restaurant and other additional amenities at the hotel get up and running. “The new hotel and conference center is a great addition to the community, and is in a great location for our partners coming to the Cedar Valley to do business with Deere,” Deere senior communications specialist Megan Zuniga said. “At the (Cedar Valley) TechWorks, there has been very good progress with projects like the UNI Additive Manufacturing Center, and the number of tenants in the facility continues to increase.” “It’s all that we were hoping for when we started this journey: How do you make the Cedar Valley a more attractive and inviting place?” DeVault said, a challenge laid down by Triplett back in 2000 and 2001. “See what the Waterloo Development Corp. and the Greater Cedar Valley Alliance have been doing, and working with the two mayors. That division between Cedar Falls and Waterloo is pretty much gone now, as far as the politics, working more synergistically within the community. We couldn’t ask for better than that. They’re going after what the cities need in order to give that growth and opportunity. “Just that streetscape with Jefferson and Commercial that’s coming on,” with the renovation of U.S. Highway 63 and adjacent developments, “is going to be huge,” DeVault said. “Just to invite, to have a place that physically invites people into the downtown community – the shopping, the restaurants, the entertainment.” Deere has held up its end of the bargain in its investment in Waterloo. Even through a downturn a few years ago, “our focus has been delivering the best solution we can, and doubling down on better quality products,” DeVault said. “And we’ve done that. We haven’t been just sitting back and hoping for good times again. We actually really worked at our (product) portfolio and made sure we worked at what’s going to help our customer base the most.”

With facilities throughout the world, we understand the important economic impact John Deere makes in our many home communities. Operating a successful business not only supports our employees and others, but creates rich and diverse opportunities for creating economically strong, vibrant, and resilient home communities.

www.JohnDeere.com 00 1


H4 | Sunday, March 3, 2019


University Avenue in CF all but complete TERRY HUDSON

For the Courier‌

‌CEDAR FALLS — Now that the reconstruction of University Avenue is virtually complete in Cedar Falls, many are taking a look back at the $38.8 million project. And it looks pretty good. “It is so much better than I even thought it would be,” said Jon Davis, who moved his Slumberland Furniture operation into the old Hy-Vee building near the roundabout at University Avenue and Boulder Drive in Cedar Falls. “We’re just thrilled with the store traffic that we’ve seen. When I think about the old store in 2014 and 2015, the traffic in this building is double — sometimes three times that traffic. It’s convenient for customers, and I hear nothing but great feedback from them.” Davis had moved his operation from its Waterloo location at 4020 University Ave. “We were experiencing declining traffic, and the road continued to deteriorate,” he said. Once Cedar Falls approved the University Avenue project, he put the wheels in motion. “We actually made the purchase about a year and a half after that first call,” he said. “It was a long process, and it all just worked out perfectly.” While some minor work will be finished up in the spring, the University Avenue project was substantially completed late last year. The City Council voted 6-1 in February 2015 to narrow the road from six lanes to four and replace six of its eight signalized intersections with roundabouts. It was a sometimes-contentious process, with most of the conflict coming over the use of roundabouts. Access to businesses, while never completely cut off, suffered when traffic sometimes had to be taken down to one lane. But today’s smooth drive has apparently smoothed over a lot of concerns residents voiced before and through the process. Cedar Falls Mayor Jim Brown said comments from citizens lately have been overwhelmingly positive. “I’ve been saying publicly, probably nine out of 10,” Brown said. “Of course there was a very large group that had been supportive since the beginning.” In other instances, he says, there have been “converts.” “A lot of people who weren’t sure about the project, once they made some trips through the finished corridor a couple of times, they came on board,” Brown said. “They’ve been able to see how it flows, the access in and out of business areas. They appreciate what the city has done there.” Of course, Brown realizes there were some painful points during the process. He mentioned a short duration where access to the HyVee grocery store was difficult for motorists.


Roundabouts near Highway 58 on University Avenue in Cedar Falls. Completed over three years and three phases, the project was the most significant overhaul of University, once part of U.S. Highway 218, since the road was created and opened in the early 1970s as a sixlane road with a series of signalized intersections. The state turned over jurisdiction of the road, along with $20 million, to bring the road back to an acceptable condition. “The first phase was probably the hardest, because of the sensitivity to the types of changes,” said Stephanie Houk Sheetz, the city’s director of community development. “There are trails, sidewalks, bus pullouts and a lot of elements people weren’t used to seeing on University Avenue.” Another business owner, Brad Jacobson, operates his insurance agency from his office at 4919 University Ave. He came away impressed with the ability to keep access open to businesses over the entire construction process, even if it was messy at times. “The challenges we incurred were expected,” Jacobson said. “We knew the road needed to be replaced. We anticipated the challenges we had to face. “I’m thrilled with how the road turned out; I think it’s beautiful,” he added. “The road was in extremely poor condition. It was like driving down a washboard. The road was way overdue to be replaced; it was almost an embarrassment.” He’s already seeing bicycle and footprints on the trail in front of his office, indicating he’s apt to see a lot of that traffic during warmer weather. Prior to the construction,


A crew with Nagle Signs installs the Slumberland Furniture sign on the new building in June 2017 in Cedar Falls. there was no pedestrian access on University. “We would see people walking and riding bikes in the lanes of traffic,” Jacobson said. “I was always afraid someone was going to get hurt. That access is one of the huge pluses of the new design.” Brown listed a number of new businesses in the corridor and noted the city has plans to give specific credit to the appearance and traffic flow on University as the city works to attract more new business. “It’s amazing what has happened over the past three years,” he said. “We should have some pretty good news on new projects this year.” Brown said one of the biggest challenges was getting information to businesses, property owners and other citizens around University

before and during the project. City officials held open-housetype informative meetings throughout the process, complete with maps. Information was disseminated on the city’s broadcast channel and website. Officials even went door to door a couple of times. “We heard the good, the bad and the ugly,” he said. City officials and City Council members invested a lot of time in investigating the safety aspects of using roundabouts. “We are finding the report about increased safety to be proving true,” Sheetz said. “Some people may have misinterpreted that no accidents would happen. We can’t guarantee that anywhere. But the severity of the accidents, injuries and the costs for damage is less because there are less ‘T-bones,’

which happen when people are running lights or not paying attention. The severity has gone down.” And whether the city used roundabouts or not, it had long been clear that the road needed to be replaced. “The pavement was over 60 years old and had been overlaid once or twice,” said Sheetz. “There’s only so much maintenance you can put into that.” Brown’s first meeting as mayor was the meeting in which final approval was given to the project. So while he missed out on some of the initial discussions and arguments, he has been there throughout the entire construction process. And he’s pleased with what he sees. “For me, personally, if I’m out early in the morning when it’s empty, it’s just a gorgeous corridor,” Brown said. “And the market is reacting accordingly. Sheetz also is happy with the corridor’s aesthetics. “As the landscaping matures, it’s only going to get better,” she said. Since opening the Slumberland Furniture in the old Hy-Vee building, Davis has seen two more tenants come on board. One is Just Dough, run by Natalie Brown, a local entrepreneur who also runs Scratch Cupcakes. The other new tenant is Trinkets & Togs Thrift Store, a nonprofit store that focuses on housing items, clothing, etc. “It’s fun to be here,” Davis said. “In the spring and summer there are lots of walkers and bicyclists. The building just jumps out at you from the University and Boulder roundabout.”

North Crossing development project is taking off JEFF REINITZ


‌WATERLOO — Development is transitioning into its next phase at North Crossing. The $9.1 million project, spearheaded by developer Ben Stroh at the intersection of Donald Street and Highway 63/Logan Avenue — the former Logan Plaza site — saw two medical facilities and a convenience store go up since its inception in 2016. UnityPoint Health-Allen Hospital built an Urgent Care clinic in 2017 and family medicine, neurology and internal medicine also moved to the site. “We wanted to re-ignite that area of the neighborhood. We all remember what it looked like a couple of years ago, and to see it now, it’s great to drive past that,” said Sarah Brown, vice president of operations for UnityPoint Clinic. She said transitioning those services from the main UnityPoint campus to North Crossing — a kitty corner move — makes it more convenient for patients to get care. “We have had a goal to get our outpatient services out of the hospital. The hospital can be challenging to navigate with the five floors, and it’s wide spread, and the parking,” Brown said. “We


The UnityPoint Health clinic at North Crossing in Waterloo. wanted that ‘walk right up, drive right in’ mentality. Easy check-in, easy process.” The Urgent Care clinic takes the quick turnaround approach, too. “We know they are really busy and have a lot of other things to do other than manage their sore throat,” Brown said. In coming weeks, UnityPoint will be moving its therapy center to one of the North Crossing buildings. “Instead of therapy patients who might be on crutches or something, they don’t have to

navigate the parking lot and the entrance and go up to the fifth floor of the hospital. They can drive right up and park in the front row and walk in the door for their therapy appointment,” said UnityPoint Spokesman Carson Tigges. City officials said the next step in the project is to bring more commercial businesses to the strip malls on the site and establish a restaurant. “The whole idea has always been the medical would continue to bring a constant flow of traffic

through there, for people to serve their medical needs and hopefully get some retail to take advantage of the traffic,” said Noel Anderson, the city’s community planning and development director. The plan included a convenience store, which was fulfilled when Kwik Star erected a shop on the corner last year. “We are kind of right on schedule right now in terms of phase four, I think (Stroh) is working on another medical building this spring … He’s talking to potential retail- and restaurant-type busi-

nesses,” Anderson said. Farther north, property that had been set aside for a Menards home improvement store that didn’t materialize is also available for development. Anderson said the city has contracted with Buxton, a data analysis firm, to explore possibilities for the land through information on credit card purchases. “They use that information to help companies locate to where these are the types of people who will eat at an Applebee’s or a TGI Fridays or whatever,” Anderson said. He said the city has been reaching out to potential retailers. “Retailers usually want to look at a site and analyze it. They are going to want to look at it for their patterns as well as what we provide them,” Anderson said. The city is undertaking drainage improvements to Virden Creek in the area and is calculating how that will coincide with development. “It’s kind of a chicken and egg. We’d hate to put some of the drainage way improvements in the way of some of the lots. We are trying to figure out the best location for drainage improvements as well as for lot layout out 00 1 there,” Anderson said.



Sunday, March 3, 2019 | H5

Sports travel successful venture for Short’s MELODY PARKER

melody.parker@wcfcourier.com ‌

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‌WATERLOO — Brackets are being set up and 68 college teams are prepping for the “March Madness” that is the spring NCAA Division 1 men’s basketball tournament. At Short’s Travel Management, the NCAA championship division of travel agents are running their own drills and girding themselves for the onslaught of complex travel arrangements that must be made to get teams from point A to point B for games. “It really is what the term says — madness. All of the pairings are released on Selection Sunday, and we don’t get the information really before anyone else does. Some of the travel has to happen the next day, so there are a lot of moving parts. Everything has to happen quickly and efficiently, and we stay on top of it. Our agents are making all of that happen,” said Ryan Dohmen, president of STM Charters, a division of Short’s. “There’s a lot of intensity because you throw weather on top of it. Every year, it seems there’s a winter storm somewhere that we have to contend with,” he noted. “The first week to 10 days of the tournament are pretty crazy. We have our dedicated staff year-round for the NCAA, but in March, we’ll pull people in from our other offices and hit the ground running. “All the phone lines and computers are set up, and on Saturday before we’ll have briefings, some training sessions. When things start happening on Sunday, it’s game on,” Dohmen explained. On the heels of the men’s NCAA tournament announcements, another 64 women’s NCAA Division I basketball teams are selected, followed by 36 teams for the NIT. Short’s arranges travel for all of these teams. “It’s stressful, high-profile and a tight turn-around,” says Kris Fratzke, account executive. As teams are winnowed out of the tournament, remaining teams have a higher profile — “and bigger needs. They’re more particular about the time they depart, when they arrive, amenities on the aircraft, the size of the aircraft,” she said. Players, coaches, staff, administrators, bands and cheerleaders travel on the same plane. “We have to charter aircraft, and we become our own little airline for about two weeks. On one day, we’ll have 54 single charter flights with around 120 people on each flight,” Fratzke explained. Short’s Travel Management was awarded the contract in 2003 to manage NCAA championship travel. Within two years, Short’s began taking on member colleges as individual clients and handling regular-season travel arrangements. The list includes men’s and women’s Division 1, 2 and 3 teams, hockey, swimming, indoor track, women’s bowling, men’s and women’s gymnastics, wrestling, baseball and sports like skiing, rifle and fencing. The company also arranges travel for officials. Regular-season sports are handled by a different group within the Short’s organization, Fratzke said. When a team reaches championship level, travel arrangements are passed over to Short’s NCAA Championship Division. The company moves more than 100 sports teams yearround in the regular season, said Dohmen. Regular-season sports teams are already being booked for fall travel, including football, soccer and volleyball. In October 2018, Short’s Travel became the official travel partner of the National Junior College Athletic As-


Danni Bildt works on getting flights for North Michigan University’s skiers while working at Short’s Travel. sociation. NJCAA President and Executive Director Dr Christopher Parker said in a press release, “With Short’s Travel Management on our side, we have taken that burden away from them with the top-of-the-line service Short’s provides. We are excited to team up with such a prominent company in the travel industry.” Short’s Travel Management Inc. is a family-owned,

woman-owned private corporation established in 1946 in Iowa. Headquartered in Waterloo, the company has an Overland Park, Kan., office and numerous onsite locations. It is ranked as one of the top 20 travel management companies in the industry, specializing in corporate, government, university and sports travel, groups and meetings and air charters.

The company’s stated mission is “To enhance the experience of getting there, being there and coming home.” Dohmen said the company is proud of its service, teamwork and dedication to clients, as well as its ability to innovate. The company has a 99 percent client retention rate and a 96.2 percent client satisfaction rating, according to the website.

Short’s agents are “nimble” and its information technology department is “robust,” Dohmen said. “We have 150-ish employees around the country and about 10 to 15 percent of them are in IT. A lot of what we do is technology-based. We’re building new products, and we’ve developed our own online travel portal, online booking tools and processes that make our

agents more efficient. It’s all developed and maintained in-house, which also sets us apart from other travel companies.” Short’s CEO David LeCompte listens to its clients and encourages feedback, Dohmen said. “A client makes a suggestion or comes up with a cool idea, and we’ll see if it’s something we can build into our processes. That mentality is part of our success.” On the NCAA Championship Division sports desk, each team is assigned a specific agent. “They work with the same teams and universities and get to know their teams. It’s very personal for us. Our clients talk to a real person each time. Booking sports travel is what our agents do every day, all day,” he explained. The business has grown by leaps and bounds in the past few years, thanks to client referrals. “Our clients say ‘this is who we work with, this is what they do for us, our consultants are fabulous.’ Short’s is successful because of the personal touch we offer. In some instances, we have a Short’s employee on-site at a team’s university, and the coaches can go directly to the agent and tap them on the shoulder.”

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H6 | Sunday, March 3, 2019


Spinutech, UNI partnership ready for business KARRIS GOLDEN

For the Courier‌

‌CEDAR FALLS — High expectations, shoestring budgets and massive to-do lists seem to be the nature of marketing in higher education. In addition to the creativity required of such work, marketing directors also must be innovative when it comes to resource management, said Sara Kies of the University of Northern Iowa. “The university as a whole has had a need for assistance with its social media management strategy and development,” said Kies, marketing and communications manager for UNI College of Business Administration (UNIBusiness). At UNI, each college is responsible for expressing its own brand, she explained. She appreciates the freedom even as she understands its challenges: What’s the best way to set the right tone? How can the college balance its messaging to appeal to its multiple audiences? “Higher education in general has struggled with modern marketing tactics and techniques for a lot of reasons — lack of funding, personnel, resources in general,” Kies said. “As we explored ways to boost our digital effort, we began to realize we needed a partner with the expertise and infrastructure to enhance our resources.” She sought suggestions and guidance from the college’s Marketing Advisory Board. Her goal was to obtain feedback from the alumni professionals willing to lend expertise and guidance to UNIBusiness. Through consultation with the board, Kies developed a request for proposals for digital marketing services. “We knew we were asking a lot, and we took a risk in committing the resources,” said Kies. “It’s also something we had to find some way to do. To attract students and engage alumni, social media management is essentially required.” The college’s RFP caught the interest of Marc Reifenrath, a member of its Marketing Advisory Board. Reifenrath is a 2001 UNI graduate who majored in marketing and is now CEO of Spinutech, a local digital media company. In 2000, Reifenrath and co-founders Adam Lewis and Cory Schmidt started the company from their apartments while they were attending UNI. Today, Spinutech has employees in Cedar Falls, Des Moines and Chicago. The business has clients in all 50 states and nine additional countries. In addition to his service on the board, Reifenrath is a regular guest speaker for UNIBusiness Professional Readiness Program classes. “Of our 65 team members at Spinutech, close to half come from UNI,” he explained. “The digital landscape changes rapidly; that has a huge impact on these students who want to get into digital marketing. We want them to know we’re out here — for future hires and future clients to know who we are.”

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Marc Reifenrath These interactions expose students to vital necessary “soft skills” like collaboration and business networking, said Julie Van Ee, a UNI senior majoring in marketing and sales management. As a peer mentor in the UNIBusiness Professional Readiness Program, Van Ee has helped students prepare for their post-college careers. “The people I work with are great,” she said. “We have different speakers who talk about their experiences and businesses. PRP also exposes students to professional recruiters, which really separates us from (other programs).” Participation in the PRP is a win-win for businesses, said Reifenrath. “We’re constantly striving to keep our company on the digital edge, and that’s a level of performance we want to provide UNI, too,” he explained. “We want to help the university; more exposure and awareness for our name is secondary.” However, the business leaders do stand out, said Van Ee. She learned about Spinutech through PRP and started an internship there earlier this year. She will join the company as a full-time employee after she

“We’re constantly striving to keep our company on the digital edge, and that’s a level of performance we want to provide UNI, too.” Marc Reifenrath, Spinutech CEO graduates in May. “We’re excited to work with students like Julie,” said Reifenrath. “The talent pool is so competitive right now, so filled with young and bright students.” These experiences reinforce the business-college relationship, he added. As a result, he was excited when Spinutech’s digital marketing proposal was selected. The strategic partnership aligns UNIBusiness with one of the nation’s premier web design and digital marketing companies. In 2018, Inc. magazine named Spinutech among its 5,000 list of the nation’s fastest-growing private companies. From the outset, the plan emphasized organic growth of the UNIBusiness marketing strategy, said Kies. “We focused on sharing someone’s status, highlighting specific alumni accomplishments, and so on,” she explained. “It set the strategy for targeted posts and the types of things we’re sharing to really emphasize our brand of ‘Getting Ready for Business.’

Anything we share or say needs to have that focus, from an organic standpoint.” Efforts contributed to increased attendance at Fall Business Day, Kies added. “At the 2018 event, we had to cap attendance because it was too high, which was the first time that had ever happened,” she said. Kies attributes the growth to the Spinutech partnership. She used peer engagement to measure success of the project. “We’ve had a 21 percent increase in Instagram followers since we partnered with Spinutech,” she explained. “Admission account creations are up. We’re up in Facebook followers and Twitter followers, too.” In a bold move at the outset of the project, Spinutech expanded the scope and reach of the arrangement by donating its set-up fees, said Kies. “We have been able to do this in a much more impactful way because of Spinutech and do a lot more than we would have been

able to do,” said Kies. It wasn’t simply a gesture, said Reifenrath. Spinutech employees took genuine interest in the UNIBusiness partnership. “Because we have a lot of UNI alumni at Spinutech, there is a lot of engagement around this project,” he said. “We take our work very seriously, and with this one, it’s deeper. There’s a pride factor; people specifically ask to work on this.” The commitment showed in the work, said Kies. Spinutech put in extra effort, providing additional, pro bono services outside the scope of the contract. For example, the company augmented Kies’ small staff by providing a staffer to take photos and tweet during Fall Business Day. “We have had a very long partnership with Spinutech,” said Leslie Wilson, dean of the College of Business Administration. “As a member of our Marketing Advisory Board, Marc has helped us grow the digital media focus in our curriculum. This initiative takes that partnership to the next level, helping us reach our digital marketing goals while introducing our advertising and digital media students to local internship and career opportunities. Success is mutual beneficial with this partnership.”

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Sunday, March 3, 2019  |  wcfcourier.com  |  SECTION I

Mark Nook is president of the University of Northern Iowa. BRANDON POLLOCK, COURIER STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER‌




‌CEDAR FALLS n Feb. 1, 2017, Mark Nook began serving as the University of Northern Iowa’s 11th president. Among his many goals and initiatives is reversing the decline in student enrollment at UNI. UNI’s peak enrollment was 14,070 in the fall of 2001. Last fall, there were 11,212 students enrolled. Nook has said his target is to reach 13,500 students by the fall of 2023.That includes increasing the university’s share of recent high school graduates from across the state. “We’re going to take and enroll as many Iowa kids as we can,” said Nook in a Courier story last fall. What drives you? I love the university environment. It is a unique place where people learn from each other and explore and test new ideas across a wide spectrum of topics. At UNI the faculty and staff are extremely committed to helping our students become knowledge-

able and thoughtful people, who become valued employees and engaged members of their community, state and country. What was your biggest accomplishment in 2018? The biggest accomplishment was probably our work with the Regents and legislature to attain our full funding request during the 2018 legislative session. That helped us better serve UNI students and their families, our employees and the businesses and industries in Iowa. What are your goals for 2019? My primary goal is to make sure that UNI has the resources (human, financial and physical facilities) to be able to educate our students, support our faculty and staff and enrich the economic, social and cultural life of our region and state. Specifically this year that means: „„ Attaining sufficient state funding to be able to keep our tuition reasonable for Iowa students and families. „„ Putting programs, processes and systems in place to assure a healthy long-term enrollment for the university.

„„ Improving diversity on campus and working to make sure all students and employees have an equitable opportunity to be successful in reaching their educational, professional and personal-life goals. „„ Growing the Purple Circle, i.e. increasing the reputation of UNI in Iowa and beyond. „„ Improving the economic, social and cultural vibrancy of the Cedar Valley and Iowa. „„ Spending quality time with my family, especially our grandchildren. What makes the Cedar Valley a great place for business/education? The people. The people of the Cedar Valley have a kindness that goes beyond being nice. It is deeper, more genuine and more caring. The people here also value hard work and determination, and they truly value education because they know it is the only way to secure the future of our region and country. They built an economy that is diverse and not dependent on a single economic sector. They created a high quality of life that is apparent in the miles

of trails and recreational opportunities, strong and diverse arts and culture scene, and an extremely robust and diverse educational structure that includes strong public and private pre-K – 12 schools, a great community college, a strong private liberal arts college, and of course the best public university in the nation. What’s a lesson you’ve learned in your career journey? I am extremely thankful for the mentors I’ve had throughout my career. I know I wouldn’t be where I am without them and the wisdom they shared. They paid it forward by sharing their professional knowledge. Through them I learned a great deal about how to be a professional in higher education, but more significantly, I learned the importance of paying it forward, helping the next generation be ready to take on the challenges they will face. We have a responsibility to not only leave the world in a better place than we found it, but to also make sure that the next generation has the ability to make it better for the generation that follows them.


meta.hemenway-forbes@ wcfcourier.com

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WATERLOO — Former state ‌ Rep. Deborah Berry was named president and executive director of radio station KBBG in June 2017. Berry, who holds a master’s degree in communications and served 14 years in the Legislature and two years on the Waterloo City Council prior to that, was the unanimous choice of KBBG’s board of directors to lead the African-American radio station following the death of her predecessor, University of Northern Iowa professor Scharron Clayton. In 2014, Berry, a Democrat and one of the longest serving African-Americans in the Legislature, was inducted into the Iowa African-American Hall of Fame. She received the 2017 History Maker Award from the African-American Museum of Iowa in Cedar Rapids. What drives you? Knowing that I have to create

my own opportunities in this perfect time and perfect space. Rediscovering the “new” thing that keeps me relevant, phenomenal and in the game. What was your biggest accomplishment in 2018? Leading the charge in rebuilding and rebranding KBBG-FM radio station. With the help of a dedicated new board of directors, staff and community support (Guernsey Foundation, Community Foundation and Black Hawk County Gaming Association), we were able to purchase major equipment critical to broadcasting, standardize and maintain staff levels, and prepare KBBG for the next millennium as we reach heights using a social media platform. What are your goals for 2019? Personally: Stay healthy, begin writing my memoir in leadership, continue to make time to rediscover my artistic talent through painting and, most important, continue to be an inspiration


Deborah Berry is executive director of KBBG radio. speaking life into those who feel lost, moment by moment wherever I am. Professionally: To continue to build KBBG into the powerful media center that will teach youth the importance of having a voice (community learning center) and empower all listeners in communities to be active and participate in making the community “one.”

To be an all-inclusive radio station through quality programming that speaks to the needs of all sectors of our community in an effort to grow and become more enlightened; lastly, to expand into new markets through social media and other marketing opportunities. What makes the Cedar Valley a great place for business/ education?

Waterloo’s diverse community is a huge plus. In our community are members from various African nations, Pakistan and other Hindu nations; Hispanic, Asian, Bosnian, Burmese and other countries. Acknowledging, understanding and embracing the various groups opens new opportunities that support the idea of unique cultural experiences (in food, music, etc.) that make a positive contribution to the larger society. Focusing on those positives, rather than the superficial differences that divide, is an authentic strength and not a weakness. What’s a lesson you’ve learned in your career journey? The most prevalent lesson learned in my career journey is the importance of speaking truth to power. While in the Iowa Legislature, I was unaware that I was being groomed and cultivated for a new career in public broadcasting as president of KBBG radio station. Speaking truth to power means trusting deeply in what I believe and being persistent every day to have that heard. It may not be popular. It means taking a risk. It means standing for something. I learned it takes courage to stand upon one’s own convictions, and I must.


I2 | Sunday, March 3, 2019


JIM COLOFF Making magic for kids in need META HEMENWAY-FORBES

meta.hemenway-forbes@ wcfcourier.com

‌CEDAR FALLS — Jim Coloff, owner and general manager of KCVM 93.5 The Mix Radio, is co-founder of Magical Mix Kids, a nonprofit organization created to provide a worry-free vacation for chronically and terminally ill children of the Cedar Valley area. The trips are 100 percent funded by donations. Last year marked Magical Mix Kids’ 20th annual trip to Walt Disney World. What drives you? I take great inspiration from my parents, who are wonderful people and taught themselves how to be successful business owners. Their success has helped inspire me to be the best person that I can be. I also believe that in all the things that you set out to do, do them as if you are doing them for something bigger than yourself or someone else. That helps keep the fire alive when you need to hurdle those inevitable roadblocks that come your way. What was your biggest accomplishment in 2018? In terms of our radio business in the Cedar Valley, we started two new radio stations in 2018. First was the new 102.3 FM signal for our Sports Talk station, 1650 The Fan. The second was our new Country station for Waterloo/ Cedar Falls at FM 106.5 and 93.5 HD2. We are the only commercial station broadcasting in HD radio in the market, and it has allowed us to do some innovative things with these new radio stations. Personally, going into my 20th year leading Magical Mix Kids is a highlight I would have never imagined when we started. The continued support the Cedar Valley gives to help us provide this once-in-a lifetime trip to Disney World for these sick children is amazing. The accomplishments made over these 20 years by our many volunteers and board members is a career highlight most will never realize. I am grateful I


Gary and Becky Bertch own Bertch Cabinet Manufacturing and Lost Island Waterpark, and are the Cedar Valley United Way 2018 campaign chairs.


Jim Coloff is owner and general manager of KCVM 93.5 The Mix Radio, is co-founder of the nonprofit organization Magical Mix Kids. have been a part of it. What are your goals for 2019? My goal is to involve more individuals in my organization in the leadership of where we are going and the direction that we are heading. I am fortunate to have some very talented and committed people that I work with, and I hope they are eager to step-up and take advantage of the opportunities we have in this growing company. We have seen strong growth in both our radio business and in our new digital marketing division. Together, they are tremendous in producing results for our marketing clients and our community service efforts. 2019 is going to be a banner year for us. What makes the Cedar Valley a great place for business? The Cedar Valley is now a very progressive and successful place to do business. When I moved here in 1993, I don’t know if I would have said this. Some visionary business and community leaders in the late ’90s worked very hard to bring our two communities together and instill a self-belief into how great we could be as a community. Before then, I believe there was a lack of belief. However, it is

still strong today, and you can see it in the individuals who are investing, building and supporting the Cedar Valley. Success breeds success, and it’s contagious. We have many young entrepreneurs who continue to promote this belief that we are in a great place to do business What’s a lesson you’ve learned in your career journey? I have a quote written on a large piece of faded paper on the wall in our office that reads, “You’ll never make it.” I put it on the wall after I was told that by someone in my industry when I got started in the Cedar Valley. Early on, I learned there are some individuals who don’t want you to be successful and, I believe, don’t want to be successful themselves. You will come in contact with them throughout your career, maybe even working with them. What I learned is that you can’t help what other people think about you or your dreams, or what they think of themselves. All I can do is always be working to be the person I want to be, never losing sight of my values and goals, and not getting frustrated at others lack of ambition or devotion to their dreams.

Building a strong community META HEMENWAY-FORBES

meta.hemenway-forbes@ wcfcourier.com

WATERLOO — Gary and ‌ Becky Bertch are the owners of Bertch Cabinet Manufacturing, which has production facilities in Waterloo, Oelwein and Jesup. Their support of organizations and nonprofits in the community is helping to strengthen the Cedar Valley and their business to ensure long-term success for both. In 2001, the Bertches took the plunge and built Lost Island Waterpark, which has since become one of the top-ranked water parks in the country. The Bertches also chair the 2018 Cedar Valley United Way campaign. What drives you? Striving to be the best you can be in whatever project or business opportunity you take on. Secondly, it is the people we work with every day who drives us. What was your biggest accomplishment in 2018? On a personal level, probably being the 2018 Cedar Valley United Way Campaign chairs and getting through that process and learning what all was involved, as well as all the new relationships that we formed.

On a business perspective, we continue to develop and improve the manufacturing and family entertainment businesses. What are your goals for 2019? Our goals are the same as they have been for the last 40-plus years: To be the best we can be, service our customers to the best of our ability, provide a quality product on time, every time. What makes the Cedar Valley a great place for business? Certainly the people here and their sense of community and their work ethic. It’s a central location with a reasonable cost of living. What’s a lesson you’ve learned in your career journey? It’s hard to single out one. My dad always told us it was important to enjoy what you do. Also, “Remember there is always someone smarter than you.” There’s also a great quote hanging on our office wall from The Economist: “Every morning in Africa a gazelle wakes up. It must outrun the fastest lion or it will be killed. Every morning in Africa a lion wakes up. It must outrun the slowest gazelle or it will starve. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a lion or a gazelle. When the sun comes up you’d better be running.” Lastly, whether in business or personal endeavors, it’s all about personal relationships.

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Sunday, March 3, 2019 | I3

CARY DARRAH Making connections through the Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber META HEMENWAY-FORBES

meta.hemenway-forbes@ wcfcourier.com

WATERLOO — Cary Darrah ‌ was named CEO of the Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber in September 2018 after seven months as interim CEO of the economic development group. She is the first woman to head the Alliance or any of its predecessor organizations since Kristi Ray headed the Cedar Falls Chamber of Commerce from 1997 to 2002. A native of Cedar Falls and Iowa State University graduate, Darrah was named general manager of Techworks, an Alliance subsidiary, in 2007. She was then promoted to GCVAC executive vice president of community development in 2012 and TechWorks president in 2016. Prior to joining the Alliance & Chamber, Darrah was director of Cedar Falls Community Main Street from 1997 to 2007. What drives you? I’ve always said “I have a healthy fear of failure”, and while that is somewhat true, I can also say that I’m driven by listening, assessing needs and connecting resources for successful outcomes — not mine but others. It could be helping an employer connect with a new employee or

a friend find a new recipe for their event. I love solving problems or removing barriers. What was your biggest accomplishment in 2018? Accepting the honor of CEO of the Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber, which allows me to collaborate with others and celebrate this amazing community. There is always work to be done, and I am proud to lead a team committed to making the Cedar Valley a great place to live and grow both professionally and personally. What are your goals for 2019? Our team is in the process of re-branding and refreshing the organization. With the help of our stakeholders, we listened to input through many methods of research about the business and community needs of the Cedar Valley. There were several themes that are leading us to carve our path for the future — with workforce and talent development at the top of our priority list. My goal is to work with community partners to move the needle in addressing those concerns both for our businesses and to affect the quality of life for our residents. What makes the Cedar Valley a great place for business/ education? With a community priority of


Cary Darrah is CEO of the Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber. education and access to quality education at all levels, we have a solid base to attract, retain and grow businesses while also contributing a rich environment for the current and future workforce. There is no doubt that pride and investment is critical for the business and educational climate of any community, and the Cedar

Valley is made up of several individual communities, representing rich and diverse contributions — all who are swelling with pride about their heritage and future. What’s a lesson you’ve learned in your career journey? With gratitude, the career lesson that I’ve learned is that every

person, every perspective has value and a story. Once again, listening is key. I don’t know that I was always a good listener, but I’ve learned that in order to satisfy what drives me – making connections that help others meet their needs — it starts with a deliberate effort to listen and understand those needs.

DAN TRELKA Waterloo Police Chief, Black Hawk County Supervisor META HEMENWAY-FORBES

meta.hemenway-forbes@ wcfcourier.com

‌WATERLOO — Dan Trelka became Waterloo chief of police in May 2010. A U.S. Marine Corps veteran, he started his career as a deputy sheriff in Weld County, Colo., in 1990. From 1992-2010, he was a member of the Sturgeon Bay, Wis., Police Department, where he served as chief of police for seven years. In November 2018, Trelka became the first Republican in a decade to win a seat on the Black Hawk County Board of Supervisors. He’s currently serving as police chief and on the board of supervisors. In 2016, Trelka and his wife adopted two girls they’d been fostering for two years. The girls joined the couple and their five biological children as part of the Trelka family. In early 2018, Trelka made news again when he donated a kidney to a stranger in Milwaukee. What drives you? Success, but success comes in many forms for different people. For me, seeing the crime rate in Waterloo continue to trend down is the type of success I thrive on. I live in Waterloo. If I am a part

of an organization that is having a positive impact upon the crime rate, that benefits the ones I love: my family. What was your biggest accomplishment in 2018? Donating a kidney for a person in need. It was kind of comical, too. As I was lying on the operating table before they put me under, I literally said to myself, “This seems kind of barbaric.” Then I chuckled to myself and I was out. What are your goals for 2019? 1. Diversion of citizens suffering a mental health crisis from the county jail to feasible, prudent alternatives (detox, crisis center or the hospital). We are nearly to the point of making this a reality. 2. Every year Waterloo police officers run a physical fitness test (sit-ups, push-ups, sit and reach, and the 1 ½ mile run). For each decade of age, the threshold for passing increases. My goal is to pass the physical fitness test in the 20-29 year old range. (Editor’s note: Trelka is 55.) 3. As a county board supervisor, discovering and pursuing collaborations with other local governmental entities for the mutual benefit of all residents in Black


Waterloo Police Chief and county Supervisor Dan Trelka sits outside his office at the Black Hawk County Courthouse. Hawk County. What makes the Cedar Valley a great place for business/ education? We are fertile ground for progress, growth and opportunities. Just look at what each individual city in the Cedar Valley has to offer. The offerings are as diverse as

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our citizens. There is something for everybody. Yet everybody knows everybody else. And let’s look at how we are geographically located. Des Moines, Madison, Chicago, Minneapolis, St. Louis, Kansas City and Omaha are all within fairly easy driving distance. Want to go

further? You have your choice of no less than half a dozen airports within 250 miles to utilize. What’s a lesson you’ve learned in your career journey? If you enjoy your job, you never have to work another day in your life.

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I4 | Sunday, March 3, 2019


meta.hemenway-forbes@ wcfcourier.com

‌WATERLOO — In July 2018, Eric Johnson, law partner at Beecher, Field, Walker, Morris, Hoffman & Johnson, P.C., was elected to lead the Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber board of directors. Johnson will chair the regional economic and community development organization through its 2019 fiscal year. What drives you? First, I’ve always found satisfaction in accomplishing tasks. I don’t know the origin of that, but I wake up every morning and feel like my cup is empty and feel a need to fill it. Whether you call that a strong work ethic or a need for therapy, might depend on the person or situation. Second, I have a desire to help others. I would credit that to both my upbringing from my parents as well as my Christian faith. Third, I am competitive. By nature, I like to succeed. I’ve noticed as I have aged, that competition is not as much with others, but has evolved into simply trying to be the best version of myself. With those factors, I find my focus gravitates toward: (A) work in trying to help clients solve their


meta.hemenway-forbes@ wcfcourier.com

‌WATERLOO — Rodney Lewis, owner of Rodney’s Kitchen in downtown Waterloo, aims to be a positive influence in the lives of young people. He has organized a teen work skills program, offers free sack lunches for kids in need and more. In August, Lewis received the Paul Mann Memorial Human Relations Award presented by the Iowa State Education Association. While Lewis’ restaurant serves up

Attorney, leader, community helper

problems or prevent future problems; and (B), helping my community. I am grateful for what I have and what I feel my community has given me over the years. What was your biggest accomplishment in 2018? Professionally my role as an attorney is to be an adviser and hopefully to be a key member of my client’s team. I had the opportunity in 2018 to work with many clients in accomplishing their goals, some bigger projects, some projects not as big from a dollar or notoriety standpoint but all important to the clients involved. While I don’t take credit for those successes, I hope to take credit for being an integral part of my clients’ team. Community-wise, I think my role with the Greater Cedar Valley Alliance currently and this past year as chair has been rewarding. We have taken this time of change to do some introspection, try to refocus and then execute on that new plan. We are trying to take what is a good idea, and organization and make it better. I am fortunate to have a good board and great staff to work with on those. What are your goals for 2019? My goals for 2019 are really the



same as for 2018. Continuing to assist clients in successfully completing their projects and also helping to better my community. From a personal standpoint, my goal is to continue to find that illusive balance in my life between business and home, work and play, etc. What makes the Cedar Valley a great place for business/ education? I think we have a great framework in the Cedar Valley on which to build. Of course, in my mind, the bedrock for that is John Deere and UNI. We are fortunate to have both of them as anchors in our community. There are many others that also serve to make our community great. In education, Hawkeye Community College, Wartburg College, Allen College and all of our K-12 school systems throughout the Cedar Valley. In business, we have great businesses like Bertch Cabinets, Viking Pump, and the list could go on forever. However ultimately, I think that you need to look at the people of the Cedar Valley as its greatest resource. I moved to the community in 1991 with my wife Lori, and we didn’t know anybody. We have found the people here to be welcoming, diverse and resilient.


Eric Johnson is a law partner at Beecher, Field, Walker, Morris, Hoffman & Johnson, P.C., and leads the Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber board of directors. They truly are the lifeblood of the Cedar Valley. What lessons you’ve learned in your career journey? I have learned a fair number of lessons because I have made a fair number of mistakes along the way. Two that stick out to me are the following: 1. Surround yourself with good people. Certainly, that applies in the professional and work situation. I have been blessed to have great co-workers. However, I have seen in more than one situation the results when people don’t surround themselves with strong co-workers. It’s also applicable in your personal life. Just like your

mom told you, “Be careful who you choose for your friends.” That advice is timeless. 2. Deal with your problems head on. My professional life centers around problems, helping clients avoid them or helping them resolve them once they have occurred. Problems are universal, we all have them. However, ignoring them never, or very rarely at least, works. It’s best to simply deal with them immediately the best you can, and then keep moving forward — something which I have to remind myself of on a daily basis also. Like all advice, easy to give, hard to live.

Owner of Rodney’s Kitchen, champion of kids

great food, his work in the community, specifically for hungry kids, is what earned him ISEA’s honor. What drives you? My kids and my community drive me because you have to be an example to both. What was your biggest accomplishment in 2018? My biggest accomplishment was operating a small business with little help, but we survived with the business provided by the community and surrounding areas. What’s you goal in 2019?

To gain more support from my community and surrounding areas so we can continue to run a successful business. What makes the Cedar Valley a great place for business/ education? You can focus on many things, such as family, community development and leaving a positive impact on the community and what you love the most. What’s a lesson you’ve learned in your career journey? BRANDON POLLOCK, COURIER STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER‌ No matter how tough times fall Rodney Lewis is owner of Rodney’s Kitchen in downtown Waterloo. on you, never give up.

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Sunday, March 3, 2019 | I5


Celebrating diversity, teaching tech to kids


meta.hemenway-forbes@ wcfcourier.com

‌WATERLOO — Poet, artist and youth advocate Cherie “Chillin’” Kabba splits her time between the Cedar Valley and the San Francisco Bay area, teaching technology to young people in both regions. In 2017, she founded The SoulTown, “a community-based magazine that tells positive, realistic and in-depth stories impacting primarily the black and brown communities.” What drives you? I do what I love. I am driven by Maya Angelou’s quote, “You can only become truly accomplished at something you love. Don’t make money your goal. Instead, pursue the things you love doing, and then do them so well that people can’t take their eyes off you.” I am driven by things I do not know in the world of technology. I am driven by curious youth that have a desire to learn from me. I want them to know more than I know. The speed of technology reminds me of the speed of a light rail train traveling hundreds of miles in just seconds. I don’t want to be on the platform waiting for the next new thing, blink, then run the risk of missing it. This is the reason I have chosen to return to the Silicon Valley to immerse myself in the field of technology, working with youth and a technology network with a plethora of techies with like minds. I am driven to learn new things. Then, return to Waterloo and share it with youth. Just when I thought I had an understanding of virtual reality, I was on a plane headed to M.I.T. to be trained in the field augmented reality. I’ve seen how small steps can make a difference by improving and enhancing the tech skills of youth. What was your biggest accomplishment in 2018? Is it possible to measure the size of accomplishments? In 2018, I was given an opportunity to re-


Cherie “Chillin’” Kabba facilitates youth tech workshops, including programming robots from mobile devices, like Kuri, The Adorable Home Robot. join the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Peninsula (Menlo Park, Calif.) and the Clubhouse Network, an international community that provides technology education to underserved youth, while simultaneously leading the team of The SoulTown Digital & Print Magazine in Waterloo. We have successfully published 25 magazines. I have worked on many teams, but the dynamics of these teams are, by far, the most rewarding. This part of my life’s journey is about me going where I am celebrated, not tolerated. It is about balance. It is about being

the best mother, grandmother, team player, friend, colleague — the best person I can be. What are your goals for 2019? My goals for 2019 center around me being intentional with what I create with the youth while retaining as much about new technologies as my mind will allow. goals include exposing youth to technology in a fun and fulfilling way. I want our youth to declare STEM-related majors during their first year in college. I’d love to coach a teen tech team that creates a project to exhibit at Maker Faire.

My goal for The SoulTown Magazine, our virtual city, is to keep the Sankofa Promise I made to my ancestors in 2006. As I left the House of Slaves on Goree Island, off the coast of Dakar, Senegal, West Africa, I promised my ancestors that I would help to tell their stories so their great-greatgreat-great-great-grandchildren would know of them and their struggles. We are connecting our culture to our cyber and conscious communities. Each story is written from the heart and includes the depth of the writer’s soul.

What makes the Cedar Valley a great place for business/ education? The Cedar Valley is an untapped market, a good place for the impetus for product innovation or customization. However, when I returned a few years back, I realized the Cedar Valley is a manufacturing city first. Technology is a close second. The bridge in the middle of Waterloo is a symbol of connections. The connections made via networking in the Cedar Valley are forever. Once the myths have been dispelled, common ground is established between the cultures, and the bonds built are endless. The most valued possession we have in the ... the Cedar Valley today is our networks and “circles.” What’s a lesson you’ve learned in your career journey? The 10 most valuable lessons I have learned in my career are: 1. The path I have chosen to be a black, female entrepreneur blazing trails in literacy, technology and education is not easy. ... If it were easy, everyone would choose it. 2.Self-preservation is the first law of nature. Once I take care of myself, it becomes easier to take care of others. 3. I can help you build your dreams as long as I am building my dreams, too. Unsure of what your dreams are? I dare you to discover a passion project. 4. Seek first to understand, then be understood. Never assume a person can read your mind. 5. If you permit it, you promote it. 6. If someone wants my opinion, they will ask. 7. Don’t talk about it, be about it. My actions speak louder than my words. 8. I am a doer. Execution is the name of the game. 9. I know my strengths and I stay in my lane. 10. I go where I am celebrated, not tolerated.




IS YOUR FULL SERVICE PRINT ER Printin g in Iowa for over 150 years









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I6 | Sunday, March 3, 2019


CF schools superintendent strives for excellence




meta.hemenway-forbes@ wcfcourier.com

meta.hemenway-forbes@ wcfcourier.com

‌CEDAR FALLS — On July 1, 2013, Andy Pattee officially began his duties as superintendent of Cedar Falls schools. He left his job as superintendent of schools in Charles City to lead the charge in Cedar Falls. He is a Humboldt native and graduated from the University of Northern Iowa in 1998. He also has a doctoral degree in education from Drake University. What drives you? Like most people, I am driven by positive relationships, collaboration and a focus on excellence. On a deeper level, as an educational leader, I am motivated by creating engaged learning opportunities and richer experiences for students and staff members. I strive to be a servant leader, helping the system improve for the sake of our constituents. Our community school district is one of the foundational cornerstones of our great city of Cedar Falls and surrounding regions. With collaborative and forward thinking systems, we can make certain our community stays vibrant and continues to grow for generations to come, and that is certainly a strong motivational factor. What is your biggest accomplishment in 2018? The Cedar Falls Community School District had several accomplishments during 2018. A few include Aldrich Elementary opening for the 2018-19 school year as the district’s seventh elementary building, Center for Advanced Professional Studies expanding and providing enhanced partnerships and opportunities for students and business/industry, having

‌WATERLOO — Jane Lindaman became Waterloo Schools superintendent in 2014 following the retirement of her predecessor Gary Norris. She arrived in Waterloo in 2005 as principal of Bunger Middle School. After a year, Lindaman was promoted to executive director of learning and results and middle school education. Later, she was named to the associate superintendent position. She has a doctorate in educational leadership from the University of Northern Iowa. What drives you? From the time I was young, I wanted to be a teacher. I used to set up a makeshift school room in my back yard, making the neighbor kids come over to do math worksheets throughout the summer. Why they listened to me, I’ll never know. I think education has always been in my blood, as is leadership. Becoming the superintendent was truly a leap of faith and it certainly wasn’t on my radar. In this role, I want so much for the students of Waterloo Schools. What drives me is my desire to provide leadership for our district that ensures students get what they need. I want others to see our students for the bright amazing kids they are. I want to be one of the few districts that has closed the achievement gap for students of color. While we have made some wonderful progress, there’s so much to do. My faith is strong and drives me to lead our district to be among the best. What was your biggest accomplishment in 2018? I’m proud of the work our district has done to launch


ang e


oo l


Andy Pattee sits in the library near the entrance of the new Aldrich Elementary School in Cedar Falls. three students receive perfect scores on their ACT, recognized as being one of only two school districts in the state of Iowa named to the Advanced Placement Honor Roll, expansion of our computer science/coding curriculum to all K-12 students, enriching essential standards through our learning based grading process to ensure all students know what must be learned and which skills must be exhibited for success, and being named a Top 10 District in Iowa by Niche and U.S. News & World Report, to name a few. What are your goals for 2019? Our goals are to continue to focus on excellence and enhancing our student, staff and community opportunities for enhanced learning, collaboration and growth. As we continue to increase student enrollment, we know we still have facility challenges that need to be addressed. The high school facility limits educationally what we can provide, and safety and security must be addressed. Additionally, we continue to explore how can we provide greater collaborative partnerships with the city of Cedar Falls, UNI, Cedar Falls Utilities, etc. as we look at both efficiency and quality in our services.

We will explore the expansion of our CAPS program, ongoing and deeper use of technology allowing students to showcase their critical thinking and analytical skills, and provide greater enrichment activities to all students. What makes the Cedar Valley a great place for business/education? We have passionate, caring, innovative and creative people who want, expect and are willing to work for excellence. From quality of life, cultural and community events, business/industry diversity, UNI experiences, educational quality, recreational opportunities and location, it is a tremendous place to raise a family. What’s a lesson you’ve learned in your career journey? I think this is twofold. The power of collective thought and unwavering focus on integrity and fairness can have dramatic and impactful influence on change. Change is challenging as it moves people past the known, current state. Having a collective commitment from a divergent group of individuals to create a path toward a better tomorrow has to be accomplished together, but must also be for the betterment of everyone in the system, community, etc.


Education, leadership ‘in her blood’


Jane Lindaman is the Waterloo Schools superintendent. the Waterloo Career Center. When the bond vote failed in February of 2016, we found another way to move forward with expanding career programming for students in our district. In a couple of short years, we have grown from two career programs to 14, and we’re on track to have over 600 students at the Career Center next year. We are drawing a diverse group of students to these programs, and we’re collaborating with other districts so their students can attend, as well. These courses are engaging students at high levels, increasing our graduation rate (which reached its highest point this past year at 84 percent), while helping students earn college credits and certifications that provide them with a competitive advantage for their future. It is truly a point of pride for 2018. What are your goals for 2019? In 2019, we will be launching a new strategic plan that will drive our work over the next five years. There are several things that will be front and center in our plan, including additional strategies to close the achievement gap, additional supports for mental health and emotional well-being, and expanded experiential

learning opportunities. My personal goals for 2019 are to continue to engage with and listen to our stakeholders and increase teacher retention. What makes the Cedar Valley a great place for business/education? The people and the opportunities. The Cedar Valley is the perfect size, small enough that you know many, but large enough to offer a variety of experiences. The sports, theater, shopping, cultural opportunities … we enjoy them all! We love raising our two boys here, and I love that they attend Waterloo Schools. The diversity in Waterloo provides us with experiences that are more like the real world than anywhere in Iowa. What’s a lesson you’ve learned in your career journey? I learned early on the importance of staying true to my values. When I make decisions, I always think of the students first. From instructional decisions to weather decisions, it’s just easier to determine our next steps if I stay focused on kids. There will always be some who disagree with my decisions, and I understand that. But if I make decisions in the students’ best interest, I sleep a lot better at night.

209 Lots


Waterloo’s largest proposed Housing Development

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For information call 319-234-1715


This is a premier development surrounding the new Orange School on Kimball Avenue and Orange Road. It is planned to be done in phases with different sized lots at various prices, along with some spec homes.


Good for Waterloo  Good for Orange School! 00 1



Sunday, March 3, 2019 | I7

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I8 | Sunday, March 3, 2019





Sunday, March 3, 2019  |  wcfcourier.com  |  SECTION J

Moving ever forward Major changes in downtown Cedar Falls propel district’s growth

Arabella, a mixed-use building going up on First Street in Cedar Falls, will feature 50 residential units and retail space. BRANDON POLLOCK, COURIER STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER‌



‌CEDAR FALLS — You can’t go near downtown Cedar Falls without noticing the dramatic changes taking place there. Whether it’s the residential and commercial building going up between Washington and Clay streets on First Street or the six-story hotel under construction on First and Main streets, developers are changing the face — and the feel — of the city’s downtown district. But more subtle and longer term changes — which are now coming to fruition — have been in the works for years. The Hampton Inn, which will grace the site where the Broom Factory Restaurant and Cedar Falls Chamber of Commerce buildings once stood, will feature 130 guest rooms, including double queen rooms and larger senior suites, a large meeting room and services for guests, according to Damen Trebildick, vice president of development with Hawkeye Hotels, the Coralville-based company building the multi-million dollar facility. “Those five corner suites will have balconies with glass rails, a patio and wet bar,” he said. “And the view from the top floor is amazing. You can look right down Main Street. “Cedar Falls is a growing market for hospitality rooms,” Trebildick said. “With the streetscape and the boutique-style businesses, we really wanted to be downtown. “With the positioning of this hotel, the proximity to downtown, there isn’t anything comparable within a couple of miles,” he said. Construction of the hotel began in July 2018 and it is about 60 percent complete, Trebildick said. “We expect to be done by late spring or early summer,” he said. “Our goal is to be open for the Sturgis Falls Celebration. That’s what we are trying to hit. “This is a big investment for us,” he said. “We own and operate more than 50 hotels and have 25 in construction. “Cedar Falls has been able to bring people downtown and attract outside investors. We’re very excited to join the community.” Just a block away, Arabella, the mostly residential building being built on Washington and First streets is a project Brent Dahlstrom and Jim Sulentic are partnering on.

Neither are newcomers to bringing construction projects to the Cedar Valley. Sulentic alone owns five buildings on Main Street in Cedar Falls, and he’s excited about Arabella. “This is the best project we’ve ever done,” he said. “The retail space is spoken for, and I expect to have the place completely rented out by the time it is finished.” Arabella, which will feature 50 residential units — 46 studio apartments and four two-bedroom units — is expected to be complete this summer, bringing even more people to reside in the downtown district — a trend started by Mark Kittrell, owner and CEO of Eagle View Partners, with River Place Apartments on State Street. Kittrell continues to put his mark on the downtown district. His company acquired the Blackhawk Hotel as well as the former Wells Fargo building. The bank building and drive-thru are being demolished, and new buildings are expected to be constructed there. Another of Kittrell’s downtown properties, Mill Race — a co-working space and kind of business incubator — is bearing fruit as well. Emergent Architecture has made the move from Mill Race and set up a storefront in the downtown district. Not as glamorous, but certainly necessary, is the ongoing levee work that will resume in the spring. “We are going through and extending the levee two feet from the Ice House Museum to the Western Home’s downtown campus,” said Matthew Tolan, a civil engineer with the city of Cedar Falls. “That will be an increase of 2.77 feet over the crest of the 2008 flood.”

The levee work started in November 2017 and is expected to be done in June. The levee consists of a mix of systems, Tolan said. “The structural wall made of concrete starts at the Ice House and goes to the First Street bridge. Then there is an earthen levee, which is a clay mound with topsoil and seed, that goes to the waste water treatment plant.” The remaining work is aesthetic. “We’ll be installing decorative wall caps and painting and adding lights,” Tolan said. Crews also will restore the flower beds at Peter Melendy Park, add new sidewalks and reinstall lighting, and will do work on the proposed downtown plaza at State and Second streets — as part of new trail connections — by adding stairs, a retaining wall and planter beds. The work is being financed with a $6.6 million flood mitigation grant from the Iowa Homeland Emergency Management Department. “We don’t expect to use the entire amount on the levee,” Tolan said. With all that is going on, it is an exciting time for the downtown district, as Carol Lilly, executive director of Cedar Falls Community Main Street, will attest. “We’re seeing a period of pretty dramatic growth and changes to the downtown area,” she said.” I anticipate that is just going to continue. There is a lot of interest in investing in the downtown right now.” Lilly credits some of that success to what she says is the continued focus and constant attention that has been put on the district. “I think it’s been a lot of the

businesses and volunteers who appreciate and know what a healthy downtown means to the greater community. The small things add up,” she said. “Those details matter.” When people want to hang out somewhere, there are people who will want to invest in that location. Lilly says that is due in no small part to Community Main Street and the National Main Street initiatives. “There is a set pattern and flow, a methodical approach to development,” she said. “The mix of businesses. We help identify what type of business would be a good fit. When you have a strong base, that builds traffic. And people can walk along and enjoy the aesthetics. It all works together. And we have been celebrating each small success along the way. “We are continually trying to improve, to attract investors and better what it is like to live, to work, to have a business downtown. Having Community Main Street helps because we constantly keep downtown in the community’s consciousness. That’s part of the reason we keep thriving.” It’s a lot of hard work and deliberate, conscious decisions that have been made that help it stay a thriving downtown. The addition of a multitude of apartments to the district expands the focus of all involved with Main Street. “I think the downtown residents are looking for a place to connect,” Lilly said. “Their focus is on experiencing everything downtown has to offer. We need to be seeking businesses that help the residents’ experience. Those extra touches

you won’t get when you shop online or go through a drive-thru restaurant. It’s a different experience when you are in a business. And I think our businesses are embracing the downtown residents.” “It has brought changes. You will see more foot traffic at different times of day, people walking their dogs up and down the street. Residents are bringing a different feel to the downtown.” Lilly, like a lot of people, is keeping an eye on the parking situation in the district. “Our organization has done a lot to keep ahead of the curve,” she said. “The city has recognized we are at least at the cusp of that curve and has brought in an outside entity (referring to a recent parking study for the area). ... It will be interesting to see what happens next. I think we will be seeing some changes. Following a parking survey and two public meetings, the city recently voted to implement recommendations from the parking study. Lilly also is anxious for the downtown streetscape project to begin. “It’s a four-year plan,” she said. “We are trying to expand the look and feel of Main Street to the surrounding streets. There will be decorative light poles, more banners and flowers, hub areas, benches, bike racks and trash cans. “We are trying to improve the walkability of the district and we’ve been working really hard to give the residents a beautiful, safe and comfortable downtown district.”

Downtown Waterloo shows no sign of slowing down AMIE RIVERS


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WATERLOO — Call Rodney ‌ Lewis a downtown Waterloo convert. When he decided to move Rodney’s Kitchen to a storefront with inside seating, he just happened to find the perfect place on Sycamore Street, he said. But since seeing his business boom there, he’s encouraged other entrepreneurs to locate downtown as well. He says he helped convince business owners of Boujee Berries, Five Seasons Hair and Beard Studio and The Spot to join him on Sycamore Street, building a destination block of sorts. “I like the way that Main Street Waterloo is always involved with different businesses around here, always getting us involved in different activities,” Lewis said. “I love it.” When Jessica Rucker took over as Main Street Waterloo’s executive director last spring, she found herself in the middle of the city’s downtown renaissance, she said. “We already had a lot of great momentum going on downtown, and I was able to step in and continue what was going on,” Rucker said. Depending on how you classify

Waterloo’s downtown district, between 23 and 32 new businesses have opened just in 2018. And there’s more to come in 2019, from new construction like Rucker the Art Block to rehabilitation of existing structures like the Masonic Temple. Historic buildings on both sides of the Cedar River have been saved from the wrecking ball and redeveloped into thriving storefronts, restaurants, bars and loft apartments in recent years. Other spaces have been turned into more or less public spaces for the community, like the RiverLoop Amphitheatre, Expo Plaza and the Waterloo Dek Hockey rink. Entrepreneurs looking for reasonable rents have been attracted to downtown on both sides of the river, and even begun straying past Fourth Street, including Boujee Berries and The Spot, which both opened up in the 600 block of Sycamore Street in the past year. “There’s just a lot of excitement and vibrancy, and people are seeing that good things are happening and this is just a great place to play and live and run their businesses,”

Rucker said. “It’s spreading like wildfire.” But it wasn’t always such a rosy outlook. Perhaps no downtown project more exemplifies the initial resistance, community support and ultimately successful revitalization better than SingleSpeed Brewing Co., which transformed the old Hostess bakery on Commercial Street. While the multi-million-dollar historic and LEED-certified renovation of a former industrial bakery into a 500-capacity brewpub and beer distributor seems a foregone conclusion now that it’s been thriving for more than a year, it wasn’t always that way. “You have to think about how much of a battle it was,” said Jeff Kurtz, the executive director of Main Street Waterloo from 2010 until 2015. “I think a lot of people forget that a lot of the city leaders had a bull’s-eye on that building: They wanted to tear it down. They wanted to make it a parking lot.” Kurtz, the Main Street Waterloo board and a community-supported Friends of Wonder Bread activist group saw the building as a good candidate for reuse. John Molseed, a former Courier reporter who began volunteering

with Main Street in 2012 and later served as president of its board of directors, said Main Street worked to convince SingleSpeed owner Dave Morgan to locate his planned distribution center there, then educated the community and Waterloo City Council on the benefits of saving the building. “One of the top things in the last decade would be this Wonder Bread project,” Molseed said, noting it succeeded because it had grassroots community support. “It shows what a repurposed historic building can do, it shows its potential, and I don’t think it’s something city leaders thought of at the time.” It’s still a battle Main Street Waterloo wages with city leaders and some community members: saving historic buildings instead of tearing them down. But it’s gotten a bit easier as projects like SingleSpeed, as well as the Walton block, the dilapidated John Deere manufacturing buildings and the Fourth Street Bridge walkway, prove to be successful. “We live in a throwaway time,” said Tavis Hall, who was Main Street’s executive director from 2015 until 2017 and is now executive director of Experience Waterloo, formerly the Waterloo Convention and Visitors Bureau.

“It’s hard to realize we can look at something old and see it with a new purpose.” But Hall sees a shift in that mindset nonetheless — he points to antique event Funky Junkaloo and pop-up thrift shop Epic Finds as two examples of how people in this area are valuing old and historic items. “Nobody looks at Jameson’s now and says, ‘They should have torn that down,’ or goes into SingleSpeed and thinks it should have been a parking lot,” he said. “It takes people with vision to step up and be part of the process, instead of sitting back and complaining that things are being destroyed in front of our eyes.” Hall points to the fact that he can walk into Basal Pizza and grab his favorite pizza, and remembers when his senior photos were developed in that same storefront years ago at Walden Photo. “Everywhere we look there continues to be progress, and in every story of progress it dips its toe into historic preservation,” he said. Rucker says it’s something she sees continuing for a long time. “We’re really excited about the momentum and excited to keep it going,” she said. “We don’t see any end in sight for us.”


J2 | Sunday, March 3, 2019



Waterloo works to revitalize Highway 63



‌WATERLOO — Noel Anderson recalls a 2008 meeting with Iowa Department of Transportation leaders to talk about U.S. Highway 63. The state had agreed to rebuild the highway from downtown through Waterloo’s east side and had a message for the city’s newly appointed director of community planning and development. “Their message was crystal clear,” Anderson said. “They said: Look, we’re giving you the money to do the road. Now you’ve got to make it look nice and get homes and businesses to come here. “They told us we need to hold up our end of the deal and redevelop the corridor,” he added. “It was about improving the whole corridor, and I think that’s what we’re doing.” More than $60 million has been spent since construction started in 2013 to rebuild the highway from Jefferson Street downtown to Donald Street near UnityPoint Health-Allen Hospital. The final phase, which includes a skyline-changing bridge to replace the Canadian National Railway underpass, is slated to wrap up in the fall. But the city has focused outside the curbs. Homes with front porches just feet from the highway were torn down or relocated, creating room for new decorative lights, trails and green space. Community Development and others focused on fixing up homes that remained. The city reconfigured its tax-increment financing districts to help incent commercial projects along route, including Grand Crossing downtown, a new CVS Pharmacy and planned grocery store near Franklin Street, and a complete overhaul of the former Logan Plaza strip mall into new medical offices and retail space. John Rooff was the city’s mayor in 2001 when a deal was reached with IDOT to begin studying the U.S. 63 project. “We really needed that,” Rooff recalled. “That was such a narrow corridor, and those people living there were having problems. We


Peterson Contractors Inc. constructs pilings for a new U.S. Highway 63 bridge over the Canadian National Railroad tracks in Waterloo on Feb. 11. couldn’t get the old Logan Plaza people to work with us, so we turned to (UnityPoint Health) and Allen College to do the HyVee store. “I look at it now and think it definitely will be good for the city when they’re done,” he added. “It’s amazing how it’s improved in looks already.” Construction crews finished work on the downtown portion of the highway project, which utilizes First Street and Mullan Avenue, in 2018 just as two projects along the highway also opened for business. The second phase of Grand Crossing, which is a 36-unit residential building with ground floor commercial space, wrapped up at Jefferson and Mullan. Hawkeye Community College also opened the Van G. Miller Adult Learning Center, at 120 Jefferson St. Those projects replaced what had been the troubled Grand Hotel and a muddy lot that once

housed the Waterloo Bowl-In. Grant Crossing developer Brent Dahlstrom said all of the housing units are leased already while Jimmy John’s and Sidecar Coffee have taken two of the storefronts. “So much has happened in downtown Waterloo since we started, with the new (Courtyard by Marriott) hotel, SingleSpeed and Hawkeye Community College,” Dahlstrom said. “We always hoped all of those items would happen, but it is great to be a small part of all the great activity going on downtown.” The city is currently planning additional improvements improve access and beautify the highway downtown. “The new Highway 63 design has made pedestrian safety improvements that allowed for connections and accessibility from John Deere Waterloo Works and the TechWorks campus to downtown businesses, residential and entertainment,” said

Marta Purdy, of Vandewalle and Associates, a downtown planning consultant. Across the Cedar River at Franklin Street, a new CVS Pharmacy was built in 2013 to replace the former Immanuel Lutheran Church and School. The city is working with developer Rodney Anderson to build a new All-In Grocers store and restaurant next to the pharmacy. Rodney Anderson said he expects construction on the grocery to begin in April. “I cannot wait to get that up and going,” he said. “It’s going to be a beacon of light in the community.” Farther north, Dr. Thomas Gorsche is planning to construct a new $1.5 million orthopedic clinic at the former Logan Middle School site at Highway 63 and Louise Street. The school was demolished after being replaced by George Washington Carver Academy.

Developer Ben Stroh’s redevelopment of the former Logan Plaza into North Crossing is also continuing to move ahead. UnityPoint Health has invested in new medical offices there, a Kwik Star convenience store opened, and additional space is being readied for tenants. Dr. Kalyana Sundaram has also continued to invest on land just east of North Crossing, completing a $1.1 million expansion of his clinic at 419 E. Donald St. last year. Neighborhoods along the U.S. 63 project were heavily involved in the planning process before construction began. But the Walnut Neighborhood Association abutting the highway just north of downtown is becoming a model for redevelopment. “I do believe that the Walnut Neighborhood has been taking steps over the past five years to strengthen and move together toward a flourishing neighborhood,” said the association’s president Laura Hoy. After identifying housing conditions and vacant lots as its greatest challenge, a coalition was formed to address the issue, which included the neighborhood, Link Christian Community Development, Habitat for Humanity, JSA Development and the city. Many Walnut area homes are being restored, and the coalition also is working on tree planting and other beautification efforts. “So much of holistic neighborhood development is about building momentum through listening to and engaging neighbors, building on assets that exist and creating a strong network of communication and collaboration,” Hoy added. “We see a lot of positive movement in this regard in the Walnut Neighborhood.” Despite the success stories, Anderson said there’s still work to be done to revitalize the highway corridor. “We’re doing all these things to make the area look attractive and redo all of these sites,” he said. “Momentum’s a good thing to have and it’s good to see a lot of people interested in this area.”

Cedar Falls is developing and expanding southwest THOMAS NELSON


‌CEDAR FALLS — Cedar Falls is a growing community because of the commercial and residential development. “What kicked this off was about nine to 12 months ago we had three different companies come in that needed a certain amount of acreage for a certain sized building,” said Cedar Falls Mayor Jim Brown. Brown was told if more companies around the same size came in the city they would struggle to find space. From there Brown credits his staff with working to incorporate new areas for the city. “It’s just indicative of Cedar Falls being a great place to do business, and we want to make sure to be ahead of that, not behind,” Brown said. “We’ve had some great paperwork come across our desk from folks looking to expand and looking to come into town for this coming construction season.” The city’s growth is primarily spreading to the southwest in its technology park and western residential areas. More growth is coming southwest because of the industrial park and residential locations and Waterloo city limits and landscape barriers to the east. “We want to be able to provide for continued industrial growth because we are seeing businesses expand or want to locate in this area,” said Community Development Director Stephanie Houk Sheetz. Brown said staff and elected officials are doing their best to predict what new business and residential growth will look like for Cedar Falls. “To make sure that kind of growth is what the public is looking for and what those folks that spend the capital are looking for in terms of doing business and living in Cedar Falls,” Brown said. Throughout 2018 new businesses have come to Cedar Falls like Raising Cane’s Chicken, and


Construction on Raising Cane’s Chicken on Viking Road in southwest Cedar Falls. others have expanded, like Rabo Agrifinance. “We purchase land because we’re seeing the trend remains very strong,” Sheetz said. A lot of residential plats have been popping up in western Cedar Falls. “The residential is being driven by the new elementary school,” Brown said. Bess Streeter Aldrich Elementary School started its first school year in August 2018 and is Cedar Falls’ seventh elementary school building with 340 to 350 students. In November, Cedar Falls began to add land west of its city limits to the city’s industrial park tax increment finance district. The city is planning to purchase and annex the property on the east side of Union Road between Viking Road and Ridgeway Avenue. In November the city got Black Hawk County’s approval for the

Construction on the corner of Ridgeway Avenue and Viking Drive in southwest Cedar Falls. expansion. “We’re doing on average 150 The expansion has correlated residential permits a year,” Sheetz with the city’s increased popula- said. “We’re seeing that stay tion over the last decade. steady and because the residen-

tial growth is steady, usually the commercial kind of follows that.” The commercial growth in Cedar Falls has followed the city’s residential growth. Viking Road and Highway 58 have seen large amounts of development. “In the industrial park we saw the opening of Ashley Furniture Warehouse,” Sheetz said. “Cedar Falls has been pretty steady in terms of both its residential and commercial growth.” Cedar Falls has seen some its highest permit evaluation years over the past five years. “We’ve had some really strong years,” Sheetz said. 2018 was Cedar Falls’ second highest year for construction activity. A total of $129.1 million worth of building permits were issued in the Cedar Falls area for the fiscal year ending June 30, with 115 new homes, 14 new commercial and industrial buildings, and $57 million worth of commercial and residential alterations, additions and garages were started. 2018’s construction edged out last year’s total of $113.5 million in construction activity for 2017, but couldn’t top 2016’s record of $151 million. Last year a record 221 homes were added compared to this year’s 115. “What’re generally anticipating is continuing to have strong permits happening here,” Sheetz said. “We think we’re going to have another strong year (this year) comparable to 2018.” For three years Cedar Falls has had over $100 million worth of construction permits issued. “We’re really excited about what’s going to be taking place,” Brown said. “We still have room to grow both commercially and residentially; it takes careful planning to make sure it goes well in the future.” 00 1

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J6 | Sunday, March 3, 2019


Cedar Valley TechWorks welcomes more 3D printers TIM JAMISON


WATERLOO — A relic of a ‌ bygone manufacturing era has been retooled as a cutting-edge research lab to create the foundry of the future. The University of Northern Iowa’s Additive Manufacturing Center is doubling in size, adding millions of dollars in new 3D printers and drawing national attention to the Cedar Valley TechWorks campus in downtown Waterloo. The TechWorks also took on a new tenant, began installing a vital elevator and welcomed a new restaurant in the adjacent Courtyard by Marriott hotel over the past year. But the highlight, said TechWorks president Wes James, was a decision by the Metal Casting Center to lease the entire first floor of the Tech One building in 2019. “It’s still our crown jewel at the TechWorks,” James said. “Jerry’s program has been really successful in the past few years and is growing. They doubled their footprint at TechWorks to make room for the new printers.” Jerry Thiel is director of the Metal Casting Center, which has become a go-to site for industry and the military to learn about adopting 3D printing to their manufacturing processes and for researchers to improve the technology. “The amount of industry draw we have for the technology that we assist companies with just never slows down, whether that’s on a national, regional or local basis,” Thiel said. “They need our help; they need our assistance. “Additive manufacturing is being adopted at an ever increasing rate,” he added. “It’s becoming a major part of how we produce parts now.” It’s importance to the future of U.S. manufacturing has made the center a must stop for every politician touring Iowa with presidential aspirations. And the state has been generous with grants to buy new equipment, including a


Landon Hinchman, right, cleans excess material from a 3D wax printer mold as Jiayi Wang cleans another type of 3D printed mold at the UNI Additive Manufacturing Center in Waterloo. $1.5 million grant from the Iowa Economic Development Authority last year. The new equipment has allowed the center to grow from its initial large-format sand printer installed in 2013 to include polymer printers, a mold milling robot and new equipment focused on investment casting. The center just accepted delivery in January of a $1 million VX1000 printer from VoxelJet Systems that make plastic parts for investment casting, and another sand printer is expected to arrive this spring. “By the end of the year we are going to be really pushed hard to maximize the space,” Thiel said. Randy Pilkington, director of UNI’s Business and Community Services program, which includes the Metal Casting Center, said downtown Waterloo is now the “go-to place” in the country for manufacturers wanting to adopt the technology to their supply chain. “This is cutting-edge stuff that nobody’s doing in the country,” Pilkington said. “This will be the

Landon Hinchman cleans a 3D wax printer mold at the UNI Additive Manufacturing Center. foundry of the future, with full automation.” The Cedar Valley TechWorks campus was created in two sixstory buildings John Deere abandoned when it modernized its Westfield Avenue manufacturing facilities. The campus still

includes a John Deere presence and its tractor museum. Cedar Valley TechWorks has been working since 2010 to fill the Tech One building, which includes the Advanced Manufacturing Center on the first floor, Greater Cedar Valley Alliance of-

fices on floor two and the Cedar Valley Makers Makespace and private businesses on the third floor. James said the TechWorks is still seeking tenants to fill out the third floor and occupy the three upper floors, which are about 25,000 square feet per floor. Several out lots on the campus are also available for stand-alone buildings. The TechWorks got a boost last September when Productive Resources, a firm based in Springfield, Ill., that does design services work for John Deere, leased 6,000 square feet on the third floor. The TechWorks is also putting a new elevator in the Tech One building to replace the giant, hard-to-use freight elevator accessing the upper floors. “This really became a bottleneck for our growth,” James said. The Black Hawk County Gaming Association provided a grant to help fund the elevator project while Schumacher Elevator Co. provided a great deal to complete the work, James said. Another element of the TechWorks campus, a Courtyard by Marriott hotel, opened in December 2017 but saw a restaurant, The Blue Iguana, and bar, Iron Horse Social Club, open in early 2019. A John Deere training center, planned for half the second floor, is slated to open later this year. Developer Rodney Blackwell, based in Davenport, started the project in 2012. “It took us six years and $42 million and was one of the hardest projects I’ve ever done,” Blackwell said. “It was a very distressed building. There was a reason there was no one in line behind us.” But Blackwell praised the support he received from city, county and state officials who stepped up to help make it happen. “I’ve never met a team of people that were just about making the community better, putting in all of the effort and really not getting anything for themselves,” he said.



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Sunday, March 3, 2019 | J7

Cedar Valley housing market remains steady TERRY HUDSON

For the Courier‌

‌CEDAR FALLS — The housing market in the Cedar Valley continues at a remarkably steady pace, with building and realty officials predicting more of the same for 2019. Real estate experts also see a real opportunity for community growth in the Cedar Valley for subsequent years. While the number of single family home starts dwindled somewhat, home prices continue a steady climb. “Interest rates have bumped up some, but are still very competitive,” said Dick Robert, owner/ broker with Cedar Falls Real Estate Co. “Inventories are down. The number of houses for sale was down a bit from 2017.” Robert provided statistics from his 2018 real estate market summary, which indicated that in Waterloo, the number of single-family home sales decreased by 55 to 898, a decrease of 5.77 percent. In Cedar Falls, the number decreased by 52 to 509, or a 9.27 percent drop from 2017. The average sale price in Waterloo increased 6.39 percent from $115,445 to $122,817. The average also increased in Cedar Falls from $219,263 in 2017 to $226,891, a gain of 3.48 percent. Robert’s comparisons are based on each month’s residential sales — detached single-family homes only. They do not include condos or townhouses. “Both housing markets are very strong and steady,” Robert said of Waterloo and Cedar Falls. “But inventory has been somewhat picked over pretty good. People have been lot more particular.” Noel Anderson, Waterloo’s Community Planning & Development Director, provided information from the current fiscal year, which began July 1. At the halfway mark of the fiscal year, Waterloo is at 40 new units. “We had a total of 55 last year, so we have a great start to gain more housing units than last year,” he said. “We are anticipating over 100 new units this year, with the potential for over 120 with proj-


New homes are built on Red Oak Lane near the new Aldrich Elementary in Cedar Falls. ects forthcoming.” Cedar Falls building official Jamie Castle reported than in fiscal year 2018 there were 115 new homes with a valuation of $28,949,644. For the first half of fiscal year 2019, Cedar Falls has seen 58 new homes. That compares with 55 homes over that same time span from fiscal year 2018. “We’ve had consistent growth with what’s available,” Castle said. “There’s more development coming, so I believe those numbers will remain consistent.” She noted development near the new Streeter Elementary School is currently a hot area. The housing market has been holding steady in the area for quite some time. Come spring, according to some officials, it could get a little crazy, because of a possible lack of inventory in some areas. “To be in such a tight market so early in the season – it’s going to make for an interesting spring,” said Mary Shileny, CEO of the Northeast Iowa Regional Board of Realtors. Days on the market is telling another interesting story. Five years ago, Waterloo had

337 sales within the first 30 days on the market — or about 40 percent of homes available. “Now we’re selling 55 percent in 30 days and another 15 percent in 90 days,” Shileny said. In Cedar Fall over that time, approximately 60 percent of homes that hit the market sold within 30 days, with another 16 percent selling within 90 days. Five years ago, 30-day sales hovered around 50 percent. “The numbers tell the story. We’re selling hot, fast and heavy,” Shileny said. Kevin Fittro, vice president of Skogman Homes in Cedar Falls, also reported 2018 success. “Last year, sales were up about 30 percent from 2017, and we’re looking for a better 2019. It’s a great feeling going into this year, because we will carry more homes into 2019. We’re 50 percent ahead in 2019 versus 2018.” Helping builders, according to Fittro, is more consistent pricing on building materials such as lumber and siding. “That’s allowing us to ease into the year a little bit better than in the past,” he said. Bob Manning, executive officer

for the Cedar Valley Home Builders Association, said there were approximately 351 new housing starts in the Cedar Valley area. That number is primarily single family homes and twin homes and does not include multiple units like 8-plexes. On the demand side, the capacity is determined by availability of lots. “Developers are going slowly, in some regards, so we hope they will speed up to develop lots.” Adam Hunemuller, president of Cedar Valley Home Builders Association, noted the Cedar Valley has some great advantages to help keep a steady market. “Waterloo and Cedar Falls are blessed with a strong mixture of medical, good schools and a strong government system,” he said. “The communities that seem to be doing the best in Iowa are those that have higher education in their communities. We are lucky enough to have two in UNI and Hawkeye Community College.” Builders and remodelers have been very busy,” Manning said. “Remodeling actually is bigger than new housing, so the stats

don’t take that into account.” That aspect was reinforced by Wayne Magee, president of Magee Construction. “We had an excellent year,” Magee said. “Obviously people wanted to spend money for upgrades.” For residential remodeling, Magee saw an approximate 50 percent increase in 2018 over 2017. “People seem to have a little more confidence in the direction the economy is going, he said. Kugler Construction has been building six to 10 custom homes per year for the past 10 years. Bill Kugler Jr., general manager at Kugler Construction noted that 2019 has all the indications of being a very strong year for custom home building. “There’s a very high volume of people interested in building right now,” he said. “The Cedar Valley has a good combination of an excellent workforce, good employers and is a good place to raise kids and provide good opportunities for people. It’s all just a win-win combination.” Mike Taylor, with Lockard Realty, said that company also enjoyed a good 2018. “It was one of our better years and 2019 is starting out good,” Taylor said. “Housing is still pretty strong, and the market is doing well in Iowa in general.” As expected, due to increased development, downtown neighborhoods in Waterloo and Cedar Falls have become popular residential areas. That includes apartment and condo living. “The restaurants and nightlife has helped,” said Taylor. “People like to be in walking distance of home.” Fittro agreed. “You’re seeing a very big push on apartment buildings and multiplexes in the downtown areas,” he said. “It’s a great move by those developers along the Greenhill Road areas and downtown with developers like Brent Dahlstrom and Mark Kittrell. They’ve done a wonderful job of fulfilling market needs when it comes to rentals, leasing and condos.”

Working for you, not for profit. Veridian Credit Union was founded in 1934 by a handful of John Deere employees who wanted to offer their coworkers an alternative to commercial banks. Eighty-five years later, we're still a member-owned, not-for-profit cooperative and ranked #1 in the nation for value.*

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J8 | Sunday, March 3, 2019


Veridian still has a green thumb for growth PAT KINNEY

For the Courier‌

‌WATERLOO — Eighty-five years ago, hard times gave birth to one of the Cedar Valley’s and Iowa’s most enduring financial institutions — Veridian Credit Union. In 1934, at the depths of the Great Depression, when many local banks were failing or struggling, a group of employees of John Deere’s Waterloo operations pooled their resources. They decided, in essence, they would be the bank. “We were founded by seven employees of the John Deere Waterloo Works,” said Monte Berg, credit union president. “We were originally John Deere Employees Credit Union. Then they added John Deere employee family members.” It was part of a movement that became widespread given the economy at the time. “Many Iowa credit unions were charted in that same time frame,” Berg said. “1934 was kind of the peak of the Depression. You think of people, having the wisdom to do something like that, was pretty incredible. The banks, made of stockholders, were having struggles too. So people decided to take matters into their own hands and form their own financial institution.” Because of the growth in Deere’s employment base through the mid1970s, the separately organized credit union became the largest credit union in the state. The institution once had its offices within Deere plants. It had offices in the old clockhouse at the John Deere Waterloo Tractor Works on Westfield Avenue, as well as at Deere’s Westfield Avenue Foundry and at the Product Engineering Center in Cedar Falls. But in late 1974, the institution broke ground at the site of its current headquarters on Ansborough Avenue between Home Park Boulevard and U.S. Highway 63. The institution faced another


Monte Berg, president, Doug Gilbertson, chief operating officer, and Renee Christoffer, chief operating officer, stand in the Veridian Credit Union lobby in Waterloo. crossroads during another downturn 60 years after its founding, during the 1980s farm crisis. That’s when Deere trimmed its work force by nearly 10,000 employees at its Waterloo operations, after topping 16,000 in the late 1970s. The institution was going to have to reach out beyond Deere’s employment base to weather the economic storm. It did. “We expanded to a community charter,” Berg said. The institution became the John Deere Community Credit Union — first, expanding its membership to all of Waterloo, then Cedar Falls and beyond. “We were probably ahead of most of the community charters in the state,” Berg said. “I commend our leadership and our board at that point in time for having the foresight to realize that being linked to one employer was not healthy for a member (driven), not-for-profit financial institution.” “It was a scary thing,” said Gaylen Witzel, a 43-year Veridian credit union board member, but one that had to be done to maintain service

to credit union members. “We diversified into the community — originally Waterloo-Cedar Falls — then added some counties in this area, like Bremer, Buchanan and Fayette,” Berg said. “Since then, we’ve continued to diversify and shift. The shift in employment at John Deere in the ’80s was a significant factor in the decision. I’m sure it was a difficult decision. If the credit union was going to continue to grow, and be successful, stable financially, they had to make a shift.” In 1993, the credit union began opening branches within Hy-Vee grocery stores, first in Waterloo-Cedar Falls, then outside the metro area. “It’s a good partner,” Berg said of Hy-Vee. “ It was a real convenience to our members to be open seven days a week, evenings, many holidays,” concurrent with the grocery store’s hours. In 2002, the credit union opened its first location in Cedar Rapids, then expanded into central Iowa with a merger with Deere Community Credit Union in Ankeny in

2004. By that time, the institution, always a separate organization from Deere & Co., had grown far beyond the ag-implement manufacturer’s employment base. Deere said, and the credit union agreed, the financial institution should have a name that identified it as its own, separate institution. The color green, with which Deere closely identifies, was still symbolic of the financial insitution’s growth. So the credit union chose Veridian — drawing from the world “verdant” or green and growing, derived from the Latin “viridas” for green and “veritas” for truth. The name change was effective in 2006 “I never thought I’d ever see the day when we’d have John Deere out of the name,” said longtime board member Witzel, who worked 36 years as Deere supervisor at its Westfield operations near downtown. Credit union officials marketed the Deere name wherever they went. But, he noted, “We’re still green,” like Deere. ” We worked that into our name,” like Iowa itself, synonymous with agriculture and growing. Longtime members still remember the Deere roots. Today, Veridian has more than 30 branches in 14 Iowa communities and two in Nebraska. It employs 850 people, 560 of whom work in Waterloo-Cedar Falls. And the company has immediate plans to add another 40 employees in various positions in Waterloo-Cedar Falls, taking it over 600 in the metro area. In addition to its various Waterloo-Cedar Falls branches and the headquarters on Ansborough, it also has some administrative operations at 6525 Chancellor Drive in the Cedar Falls Industrial Park, in space formerly occupied by Principal Financial Group. Today, Veridian is no longer Iowa’s largest credit union — the University of Iowa Community Credit

Union has claimed that title with its growth in recent years — but Veridian is hardly complacent in meeting the challenges of holding and growing its membership base. “Like any cooperative, any financial institution, it’s meeting the needs of our members; anticipating the needs of our members. Keeping current with technology. Being aware of economic cycles and changes in employment, unemployment. “If you remember back to the most recent recession, 2009, we did very well during that time frame,” Berg said. “Because Iowa was largely untouched by the recession for the most part, at least minimally touched, compared to a lot of parts of the country.” As in the 1990s, when some larger traditional banks shifted focus, Veridian grew. “We’ve had good presidents and a good board with good members,” Witzel said, all 15 of whom have stepped up to exercise leadership within the institution and in the community. All the staff and board have been involved in the community, he and Berg noted — the most visible activity being the annual Mike and Leona Adams Thanksgiving dinner. It’s put on at United Auto Workers Local 838 by Veridian in cooperation with Local 838 retirees — harkening back to the credit union’s concurrent growth and linked fortunes with the working people who are its members in Waterloo –Cedar Falls and other communities the institution serves. “The reason I’ve stayed so long is the culture of the organization fits closely with my personal values,” said Berg, with the organization since 1990. “It’s fun to work someplace where the people that own us are the same people that use our services. We do what’s best for our members. We do what’s best for our owners. They’re the same people. We have fun.”

Waverly’s Palace Theater redevelopment emblematic of downtown’s progress AMIE RIVER


‌WAVERLY — Last February, Brandon Zelle took to Facebook and announced he would be abruptly closing the Waverly Palace Theatre. It had been losing money, the theater owner explained in the post. But many in the comments of his post begged him to reconsider closing the 90-year-old theater, a cornerstone of Waverly’s downtown. “The theater is a staple in our community,” said Travis Toliver, executive director of the Waverly Chamber of Commerce. “A historic theater in a town of our size is rare to find.” Waverly Palace Theatre opened with just one screen in the late 1920s at 90 East Bremer Ave. It underwent several changes over the years, most significantly when it expanded to three screens in 1999 with seating for 440 after a complete building remodel. The theater became known for

showing first- and second-run movies at a discount, with regular adult ticket prices at $8 and various discounted days and times. But building maintenance proved to be too much for owners to keep up with financially — prior to closing, they were down to just two operational theaters after a furnace broke in one. It needed work. But it needed the right work, and amenities that would bring back customers, said Cory Henke. “I just don’t see how you could renovate the Waverly Palace Theatre without bringing it back the way it was,” he said. Enter Movie Guys LLC, a group of three managing partners: Cory Henke, Kyle Dehmlow and Brent Dahlstrom, who along with Zelle and project manager Wes Bruns are redesigning the Waverly Palace Theatre back to its historic roots — and adding modern theater amenities like a restaurant and bar, and upstairs apartments to boot. The project isn’t yet in full swing, and thus has no end date

in sight, Henke said. “Trust me, I wish I knew,” he said. All of the elements — from the historic approval to the exhaust vents to designing the apartments so that theater sound doesn’t creep in — are all being designed simultaneously. “It’s all got to be orchestrated together, and that’s been some of the challenges,” Henke said. But it’s worth it, he said. Henke said he remembers seeing his first movie, “The Bear,” in 1988 with his mother at the Palace Theatre, and the place he and his friends would visit often on the weekends. That translated into a love of going to movie theaters as an adult. “What’s unique about Movie Guys is all three of us have a passion for going to movies ... . We all go to movies frequently,” he said. “It ended up being really cool the three of us were able to do (the renovation) together.” Movie Guys is getting help from a Main Street Iowa grant awarded to the city’s Main Street

Program, and Toliver said the program is also helping Movie Guys with some historic photos to aid in the design. “They’re adding in some stateof-the-art features, but they really want to bring the Palace Theatre back to its glory days,” Toliver said. “I think it’s going to be a huge hit with the community.” Henke says they’re working to put in a kitchen, restaurant and bar space while allowing plenty of space in Theater 2, keep Theater 1 larger and use elements of the materials and color scheme from the original 1920s building. “Kyle, Brent and I would love to see elements of that era with a modern twist to it, so I think that’s kind of been part of our discussions,” Henke said. The 12 upstairs apartments will be a mix of economy-sized studio and one-bedroom apartments modeled after the “Big 6” renovated apartments in Waverly, Henke said. The movie experience will also be “renovated,” Henke said, with full meals and alcoholic bever-

ages available to patrons whether they take in a movie or not. “When you look at the movie theater experience, we’re not creating anything that hasn’t been trending across the country,” he said. “Consumers getting pop and popcorn is kind of old news. ... We’re just improving the whole experience.” Henke said the community support for the project has been “great,” even though it hasn’t yet begun in earnest. “It’s not every day you get to do a project that has this strong of support,” he said. “Seeing how the city of Waverly themselves has reacted has been awesome, to be frank, and it’s something that furthers our belief that this is right to do for the community.” Toliver agrees. “I think Waverly’s really excited about this opportunity to have a theater open again, and certainly in a new, updated fashion — and more downtown living,” he said. “I’m really excited about this project and hopefully it’ll get underway soon.”

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Sunday, March 3, 2019 | J9

HCC apprenticeships meeting changing business needs ANDREW WIND


‌WAVERLY — Machinists were in short supply at GMT Corp. when Jamie Kramer started there as a human resources manager just over a year ago. GMT employs almost 300 workers in three Waverly facilities. The company does production manufacturing for numerous industries such as military, agriculture, wind energy, gas and oil, airline and construction. “We had 25 or more openings just in this building,� she said, referring to a plant where cast iron parts are machined for John Deere and Caterpillar. “The worker shortage is horrible now.� The company also is thinking ahead to typical turnover and expected retirements in the coming years. It began providing six weeks of basic in-house training to new employees who were hired without completing a program in computer numerical control machining. In January, GMT also launched a registered apprenticeship program with the help of Hawkeye Community College. The apprenticeship lasts five years and the six participating employees commit to working for the company at least three years after completing it. “We decided we can’t find machinists, so we’re going to make our own,� said Kramer. “So, we went from 25 openings to under five.� The apprenticeship and others like it are just one way Hawkeye is responding to changing needs in the community. Various registered apprenticeships through the college enroll approximately 200 people. “We’re the leader in the state when it comes to apprenticeships and working with industry to provide them to their employees,� said


Jenny Miller works on the quality control of parts as a CMM Inspector apprentice at GMT Corp. Dave Grunklee, dean of business and applied technologies. Hawkeye also is working with high schools and area industries to develop pre-apprenticeship programs that expose students to a particular career field. That is an outgrowth of the college’s work on high school career academies and pathways. The programs offer concurrent Hawkeye credit to high school students while providing education about career options and potentially putting them on the path to earning a degree or another credential. In addition, the college has a growing profile in downtown Waterloo with the January opening of the Van G. Miller Adult Learning Center. The three-story facility replaces the Metro and Martin Luther King Junior centers. It doubles Hawkeye’s capacity to serve those earning high school and equivalency diplomas as well as English learners. The college plans to expand programs at the new center allowing

adult learners to enroll in credit classes where they can earn a credential or an associate’s degree. Currently, that includes the certified nursing assistant and CNC machining programs. The hospitality management degree program is also moving downtown from Hawkeye’s main campus. Students will use the center’s cafe as a learning lab along with some of the adult learners from various programs. Low unemployment levels are making it more important for companies to increase the methods they use to connect with potential workers. Education and training play a role in those efforts. “I fully anticipate we’re going to have a bunch of different modes and ways we’re going to be providing education to people, both credit and noncredit,� said Grunklee, pointing to GMT’s new apprenticeship as a prime example. “They know the more educated workforce they have, the more product and better product they

can put out.� Participating employees have a two-hour class twice a week that partially overlaps with their work shifts. They are gaining blueprint reading and CNC machining skills while getting 8,000 hours of on-the-job learning. They are expected to earn certifications in both areas and be qualified for a journeyman’s license by the time the apprenticeship is finished. As the apprentices reach milestones in the program, their pay increases. In addition, with 720 hours of classroom time, they are earning 34 Hawkeye Community College credits. All of the costs for the program are absorbed by the company, although it is seeking some grant funding. This is not expected to be GMTs only foray into apprenticeships. By the end of the year, the company hopes to have four groups of apprentices, some learning skills in other areas like welding. Flexibility is important, both for GMT and the college. Grunklee

noted that it is unusual to host the classroom portion at the business. Apprenticeships are “mainly run through our noncredit business and industry side of the college,� he explained, so having apprentices earn college credit is a new approach. “They would usually be doing it at our Cedar Falls center or one of our other centers. It’s a rather unique situation, we had to get some special approval.� It required some investment by GMT, as well. “What makes us unique is we have our own certified instructor here,� said Kramer. They’ve hired Jamie Dettmer, who was a CNC machining instructor at HCC for 17 years, to lead the classes. “I’m glad that you’re letting us do this,� apprentice Ethan Lines told Kramer after one of his recent blueprint reading classes. “It’s starting to make the job much easier.� Lines was trained as an auto mechanic, but the right job didn’t materialize. So he applied at GMT on the advice of a friend and has been working there since April 2018. “Originally, they wanted to hire me for preventive maintenance,� Lines said, but agreed to try him in machining. He likes the learnas-you-go approach. During work shifts, he’s using knowledge gained in class while getting assistance from supervisors and Dettmer in areas not yet mastered. “I feel that this job is very rewarding,� added Lines. Part of that reward is the wages. “By year five,� Kramer noted, “they will be guaranteed at being topped-out at Machinist 1,� one of three pay grades for the position. However, the company expects some of the workers to have progressed further by that point. “They’re establishing their career path,� Kramer added. “We’re just giving them the tools to do it.�

John Deere is pipeline for young employees KRISTIN GUESS


WATERLOO — John Deere ‌ Waterloo Works’ is helping area youths open the gate to a successful career path. As the largest employer in Waterloo, John Deere Waterloo Works is a member of the Iowa Business Council, which assists some of Iowa’s largest employers in programs to provide work, mentorships and life skills along the way. “They’re trying to keep young people working in the state by showcasing the many careers and leading businesses in Iowa,� said Georgia Van Gundy, executive director of the Iowa Business Council. “And hopefully we keep them in the state of Iowa.� Last year, IBC companies spent $37 million on training and education through internships and special programming. “It gives them a better idea of what different careers are in the state of Iowa and whether they

like them or not,� Van Gundy said. John Deere Waterloo Works, which includes several subsets of the international company John Deere, has taken part in several programs to inspire, stimulate and reward youths in the Cedar Valley. The Early Talent program is unique to John Deere Waterloo Works and gives qualifying students the opportunity to work full time for Deere during the four summers of their college career. Students are assigned to departments based on their career fields of interest. Since 2013, four people who have participated in the Early Talent program are now full-time John Deere employees. John Deere also participates in the Iowa Business Council’s Classic Upward Bound Program. Upward Bound is a federally funded, nationwide program that prepares disadvantaged high school students to excel in high school and ultimately enroll and graduate from a four-year institution.


John Deere Waterloo Works employees and students from Waterloo Community Schools District who are paired for the Upward Bound program. The Upward Bound program locally is administered through the University of Northern Iowa and serves the Waterloo Community Schools District and was launched during the 2017-18 school year. Two-thirds of the students in the program must be both low income and also the first in their family to attend a four-year school. The other one-third must be one or the other.

Around 50 John Deere employees volunteer to serve as mentors for Upward Bound students. They meet once a month for a twohour session in the evenings for discussion plus some group activities. Students are able to learn team-building exercises as well as business etiquette. Several of the students have gone on to participate in the Early Talent Program, according to Megan Zuniga, senior communica-

tion specialist with John Deere Waterloo Works. “These programs help grow students interests in not only pursuing STEM education, but all types of various career paths. The focus is on developing the next generation to enter the workforce, with an emphasis on being a change agent by growing and supporting student’s skills to enhance academic performance and motivation,� Zuniga said.




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5106 Nordic Drive Cedar Falls Ackley | Ames | Cedar Falls | Marshalltown | Webster City www.cgaconsultants.com | 319-266-0258



J10 | Sunday, March 3, 2019


Worship with these Cedar Valley Churches Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)

American Baptist


Prairie lakes Church 1907 Viking Rd. Cedar Falls, IA 266.2655 prairielakeschurch.org Sat, 5:30 Sat., 5:30 p.m. Sun., 9:00 9:00 & 11:00 a.m. Sun, a.m. Senior Pastor, John Fuller Cedar Falls Campus Pastor Chip Uhrmacher


River’s Edge

First Baptist Church

Central Christian Church

434 Baltimore St., Waterloo, IA 319-234-1537 firstbaptistwaterloo.org 9:00 a.m. Sunday School 10:15 Congregation Worship Rev. Joe Greemore & Rev. Carol Teare

3475 Kimball Avenue, Waterloo 319-234-6231 www.centralchristianwaterloo.org

Sunday, Apr. 14 - Palm/Passion Sunday Procession of palms by the children. Music by Celebration Choir and Bells of Praise.

We worship on Sunday mornings at 9:30am SundayWorship School for preschool and Wiggly

Thursday, Apr. 18 - Maundy Thursday Worship in the FBC Sanctuary at 6:30pm

early elementary ages hospitality hour following.

Friday, Apr. 19 - Church Row Good Friday Service; Worship at 12pm noon with Community Choir at First United Methodist, 614 Randolph. 11:30am procession from Zion ELCA to First United Methodist Church.

Faith Formation activities and Group Wednesday evening 6-7:30 5:45-7.pm birth through high School Group F.r.o.G, pad

Lutheran Church Missouri Synod

Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod

ImmAnueL LutheRAn

Faith Lutheran Church

Christian Church

1555 W Rideway Ave.

1247 Cedar Bend St., Waterloo 319-233-0055


4820 Oster Parkway Cedar Falls, IA

Church: 319-260-2000



Preschool: 319-260-2005 www.ilcv.org Sunday Worship:

Service time:


8:30 am and 11:00 am

Sunday 9:00 a.m.

Bible Study 9:15 a.m.

Evangelical Lutheran

Wednesday: 5:30 pm

Coffee Cafe 10:00 a.m.

Bible Study and Sunday

Senior Pastor:

Worship 10:30 a.m. Sundays

School 10:15-11:30 a.m.

Rev. Dr. Gerald Kapanka

Tim Platt, Minister

Sunday School: 9:45 am,

Jessica Hinton,Youth Minister


Trinity American Lutheran Church

Jeff Blank, Pastor 605 West 4th St., Waterloo 319-235-6269 talcsecretary@hotmail.com

Sunday Service 9:00 a.m. Sunday School 10:15 a.m. Communion offered the 1st & 3rd Sunday Thursday Service at 6:00 p.m.

Sunday Worship at 9 & 11 am

Adult Bible Study: 10:00 am

Clergy: Rev. David Menet


Find us at the corner of Rainbow and Rownd 2015 Rainbow Drive Cedar Falls @CedarHeightsPres on and @CedarHeightsCPC on


First United Methodist Church

Presbyterian Church USA

Presbyterian (USA)

505 Franklin St., Waterloo 319-233-6145 1stpresby.org Rev. Amy Wiles, pastor Sunday Worship: 10:00 am Adult Education-Sun. 8:45 a.m. Youth Group: Sun. 4:00 p.m. Sunday supper (free community meal), every Sunday 5:00 pm Bell Choir: Wed. 6:00 p.m. Sanctuary Choir: Wed. 7:30 p.m. Children Ed: Wed. 5:30 p.m.

find yourself in God’s great story


8:30 & 11:00 Sunday mornings


9:45 Sunday mornings


7:15 Wednesday nights

Believers and seekers are welcome!

Love First. Let’s Gather, Grow, Go Together. 718 Clay St. Cedar Falls www.aboutfirst.com

1207 Kimball Avenue, Waterloo, IA 319-232-4103 www.kimballaveumc.com Sunday Worship: 9:30 am Christian Education for all Ages: Sundays 10:45 am Youth Group: Sundays at Noon Youth Worship Wednesdays: 6:30 pm Rev. Karen M Larson

9:00am - 12:00pm Men’s Bible Study bibleWednesday Study Wednesday 5:00pm 4:00 p.m.

retiree’s breakfast 2nd Special services for Lent and thursday each month at Advent. Third Sunday each month 9:00am& Dessert. 6:00 p.m.-Dialogue

Lutheran (ELCA)

Bethlehem Lutheran Church 4000 Hudson Road Cedar Falls, IA 50613 (319) 266-3541 www.bethlehemcf.org Service Times: 8:30 am- Traditional Worship 9:45 am- Education Hour 11:00 am Contemporary Worship Clergy and Leaders: Pastor Audrey Lukasak

1301 Kimball Ave., Waterloo 319-234-5501 www.wpcw.org Sunday Services: 9:00 am Traditional 11:15 am Contemporary Sunday School for all ages: 10:10 am Wednesday Night Discovery Night Ages 3 through Adult Dr. Tricia Jacobs, Senior Pastor, Rev. Dan Voigt, Assoc. Pastor With Christ our Cornerstone We Believe. Become. Belong. Build.

Service Times: Traditional 8:45 a.m. Contemporary 11:15 a.m. Adult & Children Sunday School 10:00 a.m. Wednesday Evening 6:30-7:30 p.m.POP’s Disciples for youth 4 years old through 5th grade Pastor Steven Klawonn

Kimball Avenue United Methodist Church

Worship and and Spiritual Worship Spiitual Leader leader Lawrence J.D. lawrence A. a. Stumme Stumme Jr., Jr., B.D., b.d, J.d. Services: youth Sunday School 9:00am Sunday School 10:10 a.m. Sunday Worship 10:45 a.m. adult Sunday School 9:45am Quilting each Tuesday Sunday Worship 10:30am 9:00 am-12:00 pm Quilting each tuesday

Westminster Presbyterian Church

4031 Lafayette Road, Evansdale, IA

United Methodist

2812 Willow Lane Cedar Falls, IA 319-266-4183 stpaulcf@q.com stpaulcf2017@gmail.com


Prince of Peace Lutheran Church

First Presbyterian Church

A place for everyone

St., Paul ev., lutheran Church

Unitarian Universalist

First Presbyterian Church

Cedar Valley Unitarian Universalists

902 Main Street, Cedar Falls 319-277-3930 firstprescf.org

3912 Cedar Heights Drive

Sunday Worship: 10:30 a.m.


Wednesday: Children’s Program 6:00 p.m.

Cedar Falls, IA 319-266-5640 Pastor Emma Peterson Sunday: 10:00 am Thursday: 7:00 pm Buddhist Path Every Wednesday Night Community Meal 5:15 pm

United Methodist

St. Timothys United Methodist 3220 Terrace Drive, Cedar Falls, IA 319-266-0464 www.sttims-umc.org

9:00 a.m. Sunday School 10:15 a.m. Worship Service Valuing Inclusiveness & Diversity Rev. Wendi Gillan

Roman Catholic

Waterloo Catholic Parishes Blessed Sacrament Queen of Peace Sacred Heart St. Edward Information • Worship Schedules • Parish Links www.waterloocatholics.org


Cedar Terrace Church of Christ 2543 Cedar Terrace Dr. Waterloo, IA 50702 319-493-2900 www.CedarTerraceCOC.com Service Times: Sunday at 10:30 a.m & Wednesday at 7:00 p.m. Simple worship the way the Bible teaches 00 1



Sunday, March 3, 2019 | K1

years in business 182 YEARS 117 YEARS 100 YEARS


AAA Insurance and Travel

BDI 1826 Black Hawk St. Waterloo 319-234-6845 www.bdiusa.com

3366 Kimball Ave Waterloo, IA 50702 319-236-3620

Schoitz Engineering, Inc. HWY. 63 SOUTH WATERLOO, IA 234-6615


169 YEARS 114 YEARS P & J Equipment

Spahn & Rose

Grain Handling Specialists

850 6th St., Jesup 319-827-1448 www.spahnandrose.com

LaPorte City 342-3542 8 mi. S. of W’loo on Dysart Rd.


Waverly, IA 1-800-772-2085

113 YEARS Iowa Securities Investment Corp

Serving Iowans with Commercial real estate Loans/investments Since 1906. 3346 Kimball Ave., W’loo 236-3334 Iowasecurities.com

160 YEARS 113 YEARS The Courier WATERLOO CEDAR FALLS 319-291-1497

Wapsie Valley Creamery, Inc.

Since 1906...Looking forward to another 100 years.

99 YEARS Tjernagel Insurance

83 YEARS Schumacher Elevator





9716 University Ave. Cedar Falls, IA

Farnsworth Electronics

Standard Distribution Co.

100 E. 4th www.wcfcourier.com

317 Savannah Park Road Cedar Falls, IA 50613 319-277-9299 www.standarddist.com





Levi Bros. Jewelers

The Sinnott Agency, Inc.

“JEWELERS SINCE 1908” 306 E. 4th, Waterloo 233-6951


615 Main St., C.F. 266-3525 Noble-Brown-Jung-KunzNelson-Richardson

Northland Products, Co.

Serving the America’s with Premium Quality Motor Oils and Industrial Lubricants Since 1908! 1000 Rainbow Dr., W’loo 319-234-5585

155 YEARS 110 YEARS First National Bank Cedar Falls, Plainfield, Waverly www.myfnbbank.com

Always Dependable, Honest Service & Fair Prices 1010 BROADWAY 233-8411, 268-9110

151 YEARS 109 YEARS Matt Parrott

Bloom Mfg., Inc.

A Storey Kenworthy Co.

Hydraulic Cable Winches.

Printing & Mailing Office Supplies & Furniture Promo & Corporate Apparel Waterloo: 319-234-4621

Visit our website: www.bloommfg.com 1443 220th St., Independence 319-827-1139

147 YEARS 108 YEARS Black Hawk Mutual Insurance Association

Providing Farm and Home Insurance for Black Hawk and surrounding counties. 353 E. Eldora Road Hudson 988-4101

National Cigar Store Your Complete Newsstand Featuring quality pipes,cigars, tobaccos, and liquor 617 SYCAMORE, W’LOO 234-5958


Black Hawk County Abstract

“1937-2019” Your one source for Steve, Tom and Dan successful business Sinnott Insurance and facilities. Financial Services. www.kirkgross.com 4015 Alexandra Dr., W’loo 622 West 4th St., 233-6103 234-6641

93 YEARS Farmers Savings Bank Fred Rewoldt and Martha Bockholt Rewoldt started the bank in Feb., 1926 FDIC. No Service Charge www.frederikabank.com Frederika, IA 319-275-4301

92 YEARS Superior Welding Supply Co. Serving the community and industry for 92 years 7th and Commercial, W’loo 232-6861

89 YEARS Varsity Cleaners

Full shirt laundry service Dry Cleaning Shirt Laundry Alterations Drapes and More 216 W. 11th, Waterloo 233-3571 www.varsitycleaners.com

88 YEARS SinCe 1931

Bridal Fashion Custom Service



Moeller & Walter

Western Home Communities

Carney, Alexander, Marold



Cedar Falls 319-277-2141 WesternHomeCommunities.org

105 YEARS Hilpipre Auction Co.


105 years of family auctioneering. “Since 1914” www.hilpipre.com Cedar Falls 235-6007

124+ YEARS 104 YEARS Iowa Custom Machine

Lazer Cutting & CNC Machining

Black Hawk Electrical Co

Painting and Decorating Quality Since 1895 1008 JEFFERSON 232-3755

CBE Group

1309 Technology Pkwy. Cedar Falls, Iowa 319-234-6686 Join Our Team www.cbejobs.com

85 YEARS Petersen & Tietz

Florists & Greenhouses Deeply Rooted in since 1905 the Cedar Valley 1615 Jefferson St, 2275 Independence, W’loo Waterloo 319-234-6883 Family owned and operated 319-233-3387 www.ptflowers.com www.blackhawkelectrical.com

124 YEARS 103 YEARS Michael Painting and Decorating Co.


PDCM Insurance Locally Owned Since 1916 3022 Airport BLVD, Waterloo, IA 50703 234-8888 www.pdcm.com

84 YEARS Stoner Radiator

New radiators - heaters fuel tanks Air conditioning sales and service USED CAR SALES 724 Jefferson 235-9529

Denver, Readlyn, Shell Rock, Waverly 319-352-1187 www.kaisercorson.com

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Beecher, Field, Walker, Morris, Hoffman & Johnson, P.C. 319-234-1766 www.Beecherlaw.com 620 Lafayette St, Waterloo

Headquarters for Your Bicycling and Crosscountry Skiing Needs 2220 Kimball Ave, Waterloo 4302 University Ave.,C.F 320 W 1st St., Cedar Falls 277-0734 www.europacycle.com Flowerama.com


59 YEARS Wayne Claassen Engineering

Community Foundation of Northeast Iowa Here for good. 319-287-9106 www.CFNEIA.org

62 YEARS Stickfort Electric Co


Full-Service Florist

52 YEARS Modern Builders, Inc. Specializing in Pre-Engineered Buildings and Standing Seam Metal Roofs 201 Main Street Janesville, IA 50647


Financial Decisions Group

K&S Wheel Alignment Service

3013 Greyhound Dr. Waterloo, IA 50701 319-233-8476 www.FDG.net

Imports, Front Wheel Drives, Domestics 500 Ansborough, Waterloo 232-9991



Trust, Dependability, Experience

Goodwill Industries Paulson Electric Co. Of Waterloo of Northeast Iowa “Our business works so people can.”





AGENT: United Van Lines 5614 Nordic Dr., Cedar Falls 266-3591 www.bluelinemoving.com

Waterloo Warren Transport’s Home 210 Beck Ave., W’loo 233-6113

Rely on us for all Drywall, Painting and Insulation needs. 4601 Crestwood Dr, Waterloo. 296-1663. www.iowawallsystems.com

3533 W. Airline Hwy. Waterloo, IA 50703 Family Owned Highway Construction Business 319-235-6746

Independence 334-2868






Blue Line Moving & Storage, Inc.

Warren Transport, Inc.

Big River Wilber Auto Body Equipment Co., Inc. & Salvage Since 1939 Shop: 232-5927, Yard: 232-1747

79 YEARS Martin Bros. Distributing Co., Inc.

International Paper Waterloo Container Plant 800 W. Parker 234-1753


Dunkerton Co-op

Est. 1944 Your full service feed, agronomy, and grain cooperative business. Dunkerton, 822-4291


Locke Funeral Home Where your wishes have governed for four generations. www.lockefuneralhome.com 1519 West 4th, W’loo 233-6138

New and Used Forklifts, Parts, Service All Brands, Rentals 2950 West Airline Hwy.,




Don Gardner Construction Company

OUR ONLY BUSINESS www.schuckrealtyco.com PARKERSBURG 346-1364 319-404-1502


Bowers Masonry, Inc.

Huff Contracting, Inc.

1310 Grandview Avenue 2000 Heritage Way

Waterloo, IA 50703

Waverly, IA 50677





D&K Hickory House Family Owned Since 1952 “Best Darned Ribs in Town”

Town & Country Home Improvement

51 YEARS Ready Rooms Storage Co. La Porte City 342-2207

Ford Has Been Here Serving You

Witham Auto Centers

4920 Dubuque Rd Waterloo, IA 50703 319-235-9565 www.TCHomeImprovement.com

Ford, Kia, VW, & Chevy 20833 La Porte Rd. 234-4200 2728 Main St. C.F. 277-8123 www.withamauto.com


51 Years

Community Builders Supply Co.




Cedar Falls Mobile Home Village

“Knowledge and experience Quiet Park-New/Used Sales make the difference.” 1 mile W. of the UNI-DOME Hudson 319-988-3727 266-6093 www.holmeswelding.com www.cedarvillagecommunity.com

61 YEARS Ray Mount



Cedar Falls Construction Co.

527 Park Lane, Waterloo 319-233-8911 www.clarkpo.com


Dr. Bradley Kneeland Taking care of your furry friends for 68 years. 1799 Ansborough, W’loo 234-7511

2640 Falls Ave. Waterloo 234-4626

Over 57 years’ experience! 1127 Jefferson St, Waterloo 1-800-728-6665 www.communitybuildersia.com

Wrecker Service

Pawsitive Pet Care

Electrical Contractors 1915 Jefferson St., W’loo 233-3543

Iowa’s Oldest UL Listed Burglar Alarm Company 16 W. Commercial, W’loo 232-0490

Waterloo, Iowa 68 Years in Business Concrete, paving brick, block. 233-0168

67 Years of Delivering Innovation to Design Professionals 6201 Chancellor Dr., C.F. 319-277-5538 www.rapidsrepro.com

Formerly Schuerman’s Phillips 66 Serving Automotive Needs Since 1945 1505 West 1st, C.F. 277-5343

Hawkeye Alarm and Signal Co.

Schuck Realty Co. Holmes Weldingand SINCE 1950. Fabrication Ltd. REAL ESTATE

Wood, Metal and Plastic Patterns Full CAD/CAM Services 84 W. 11th St., W’loo 319-232-7993

Schuerman Auto Repair

Overhead Door Company of Waterloo

Waterloo 319-235-6741

Rapids Reproductions, Inc.


Iowa Wall Systems, Inc.

800 Commercial Street 319-233-0471 www.ohdcwaterloo.com

Midwest Pattern Co.

118 YEARS 101 YEARS 84 YEARS 73 YEARS Kaiser Corson Funeral Home



829 Sycamore Street, Waterloo 232-4444

Clapsaddle-Garber Associates, Inc. (CGA)

56 YEARS Sandee’S

Custom Engravers Stamps-Signs-Graphics Promo Products Waterloo 235-1681 www.sandeesltd.com

55 YEARS Kramer Sausage Co.

From Concept Through Completion, Wholesale-Retail We Are Your Engineering Firm! Custom Processing 5106 Nordic Drive 322 Main St., La Porte City Cedar Falls, IA 50613 342-2693 319-266-0258 www.cgaconsultants.com www.KramerSausage.com



HyPro Inc.

Precision Machined Components From Concept to Completion 711 Enterprise Drive Cedar Falls, IA www.hypro.com


McGowan’s Furniture

3754 West Airline Hwy. Waterloo, IA 50703 319-234-5575 We have been in business for over 50 years! www.mcgowansfurniture.com

50 YEARS Murphy’s Auto Service, L.L.C. Since 1969 414 East 7th Street Waterloo 319-234-9752

TrueNorth Kimble Insurance Group




Capri College

Toby’s Tax

RC Systems

A radio communications company. Property and Liability Insurance - Video Surveillance for Businesses and Individuals - Access Controls 226 Main St., Cedar Falls We Service All Major Brands 611 Ansborough Ave. 319-268-2034 1657 Falls Ave. Waterloo, IA 50701 234-3511 www.truenorthcompanies.com 319-233-8459

Narey’s 19th Hole 2073 Logan Ave. Waterloo 319-234-9739

2323 Crossroads Blvd. Waterloo, IA 50701 319-234-2600

110 Clay St Cedar Falls

Family owned since 1959






LaPorte City Specialty Care

912 West Viking Road Cedar Falls, IA 50613 (just off Hudson Road)

For All of Life’s Health Transitions 319-342-2125

319-232-9177 kjandkompany.com

999 Home Plaza Waterloo, IA 50701 319-277-8000 www.LockardRealty.com

Goos Implement Ltd 1333 IA-96, Gladbrook, IA 50635 641-473-2403 www.goosimplement.com

More Years In Business on next page.

when you


Elliott-Hartman Agency

315 Park Rd., Waterloo 233-9111

Lockard Companies

Europa Cycle & Ski


KJ & Kompany


General Machine Work 206 Edwards, Waterloo 233-3918

& Co., L.L.P., CPAs

511 E. 5th St., Ste. 300 233-3318 www.carneycpa.com


201 E 22nd St, Cedar Falls, IA 319-266-5438 www.stickfortelectric.com




Family Owned and Operated Tom Petersen, Owner 520 Main St. 988-3231



232-1477 or 1-877-488-1477

2700 Stanley Avenue Fredericksburg, IA 50630 800-568-4449 www.shawverwell.com Your Water Well Drilling Specialists



Building new villas in 2019-20


Petersen Hudson Hdwe. Plumbing & Heating

Jesup 319-827-1463

402 Viking Plaza Dr. Cedar Falls 319-277-3033 www.scheels.com

Morg’s Diner

“If You Need a Garage You Want ACTION!!” Free Estimate

1134 220th St.

520 Mulberry St.


Ready Mixed Concrete, Inc. Serving the Metro Area for 71 Years 725 Center, C. F. 266-2641

Store, Inc.


71 YEARS Benton’s

Action Garage Builders


AND SURVEYING, INC. Family Owned Locations in Ames, Bob Frickson, owner Fort Dodge, Iowa City, 2705 University Ave., W’loo and Waterloo Specializing in sewers, waters, 319-235-6294 319-233-3349 basements, and demolition. www.woodruffcompanies.com 319-235-0080

Com’l, Ind’l, Res’l Mark Gardner-owner 315 LaPorte Rd., Waterloo 234-0272

YWCA Black Hawk County

Harris Cleaning Service

B&B Farm


Woodruff Construction, LLC

“Foodservice with a Difference” 406 Viking Rd., Cedar Falls www.martinbros.com


101 Blackhawk St, Reinbeck, IA 50669 319-788-6459

Shawver Well Company, Inc.



Family Owned and Operated Since 1960 Fred J. Harris Brian - Tim - Ronda Waterloo, IA 235-6647

Frickson Bros. Excavating

Diamonds • Pandora 229 E. 5th Street, Downtown Waterloo Since 1931 RothJewelers.com

425 Lafayette St. Waterloo, IA 50703 319-234-7589 www.ywcabhc.org

Waterloo. 291-4000.


Recognized, Respected, Recommended for providing nothing but the best Real Estate Service in the Cedar Valley! 3321 Cedar Heights Dr. Cedar Falls, IA 319-277-2121


www.maximumsightandsound.com 4017 UNIVERSITY 234-0344 Terry Root - owner

Solving Water Problems Your Premier Staffing Agency Since 1948 Located In The Cedar Valley! 319-234-1223 221 E. 4th Street Waterloo www.tomlinson-cannon.com 319-232-6641


Coldwell Bank Trapp Realtors

need to know

Your Trusted Partner Since 1871, 614 Sycamore St,

Kirk Gross Co.

Tomlinson Cannon

Don’s TV & Maximum Sight and Sound


Where to go


Fereday Heating and Air Conditioning



83 YEARS The Cedar Valley’s leading Low-Slope Commercial Roofing Contractor 319-232-4535 www.serviceroofing.net

Residential and Commercial Wiring


99 YEARS The Rasmusson Company

Art Carter and Son Electric

725 Adams St., W’loo 319-232-9808

Sales/Service Freight, passenger and home elevators One Schumacher Way, Denver 800-779-5438, 984-5676 schumacherelevator.com

Service Roofing Company


451 LaPorte Rd., W’loo 232-0140

Complete Insurance Since 1920 www.tjernagelins.com 2920 Falls Ave. Waterloo, IA 50701 319-235-6719

“Electronic Parts Distributors” 2806 Falls Ave., Waterloo 234-6681 FarnsworthElectronics.com

801 S. State St., Denver, IA 50622 319-984-5255 www.firstmaxfield.com

Amana, Maytag, Kitchenaide Speed Queen, Frigidaire Adam Morris

105 BMC Drive Elk Run Heights, IA 50707 (Several locations across Iowa) 319-833-7648 www.manatts.com

Mark Nielsen, President 300 10th St. N.E. Independence 334-7193

First Maxfield Mutual Insurance


Peoples Appliance


K2 | Sunday, March 3, 2019


years in business 47 YEARS


John Deery Motors

Thompson Real Estate Thompson Farm Real Estate

Nissan Lincoln Mitsubishi www.deery.com 6823 University, Cedar Falls 277-6200

47 YEARS TnK Health Food Store






Basket of Daisies

Casa Montessori School

D&W Floor Covering

K Properties

Gulbranson’s Appliance Service

116 Main Street

Lic. Iowa & Minnesota 319-239-4130 Thompsonfarmrealestate.com


215 W. 9th St. Cedar Falls, IA 50613 277-8121 Serving Families For 36 Years




Automotive Service Solutions

Cedar Falls, Iowa 50613 319-277-3286

PIPAC Health and Life Brokerage

“Try TnK for a Healthier Way” 1023 Peoples Square, Waterloo 319-235-0246 www.tnkhealth.net

dba Automotive Electric Serving N.E. I.A. automotiveelectric.com Gary Gilbert, owner Dennis Rogers, svc advisor 500 W. 5th, W’loo 233-4466

1304 Technology Pkwy Ste 200 Cedar Falls, Iowa 50613 319-277-8541 www.pipac.com




Cedar Falls Brown Bottle

Omega Cabinetry 1205 Peters Dr, Waterloo

Italian dining


1111 Center Street, C.F. 319-266-2616 www.thebrownbottle.com




Aspro, Inc.

All Car Transmission

Asphalt Paving Contractors 3613 TEXAS ST. WATERLOO, IOWA 319-232-6537

46 YEARS Stephen D. Knapp

Quality and Service You Can Depend On All Work Guaranteed 407 E. Mullan, W’loo 235-6300


Ryan Exterminating, Inc.

B&R Quality Meats, Inc

Retail & Wholesale Same product & service New Owner: Tanner & Mallory Heikens 200 Park Road, W’loo 232-MEAT (6328) www.b-rqualitymeats.com

Servicemaster by Harris

We carry carpet, vinyl, wood, ceramic, laminate Sales & Installation Established 1986 3400 S. Hudson Rd. Cedar Falls 988-3587

32 YEARS Fifth Street Tire Co

When Used Will Do” 202 Glendale St., W’loo 234-7715


Kryton Engineered Metals

VJ Engineering

Mike and Derrick Reedy We Tote the Note Used cars of all types 232-4667 2009 Commercial St. Waterloo


Coachlight Homes

Modular Homes New/Used Manufactured Homes Dennis Payne Metal Spinning 3766 W Airline Hwy, for the Industry Waterloo, 50703 1501 Technology Parkway 319-234-8610 7314 Chancellor Dr., C.F. Cedar Falls 266-5829 www.coachlighthomes.com 266-1771 Civil/Structural Engineering and Surveying



Koch Construction

Midwest Boats Sales & Repair

30 YEARS Harting & Hunemuller CONTRACTORS, L.C.


Since 1980 215 E. Main St., C.F. 319-266-0807

Cedar Falls, IA 319-232-1268 www.midwestboatrepair.com

Complete service from Design to Finish. 516 Bluff, Cedar Falls 277-0627






Black Hawk Gymnastics

Dierks Tree Transplant, INC.

180 Provisions Parkway Waterloo, IA 50701 319-233-2533 www.blackhawkgymnastics.com

Specializing in large tree transplanting. Nursery stock available. Cedar Falls 277-7173



Blackhawk Automatic Sprinklers, Inc. 525 E. 18th St. Cedar Falls 266-7721

999 Home Plaza, Suite 201 319-833-5555 www.eslickfinancial.com



Douglas Trunnell Insurance Agency

Safeco - Travelers Progressive - State AutoNationwide An Accident” 3826 Cedar Heights Dr. 1605 Lafayette St. Cedar Falls, IA 50613 3419 Lafayette, Evansdale Waterloo, IA 50703 319-277-2320 235-0479 www.northeastiowafoodbank.org www.dtrunnellinsurance.com

37 YEARS Schaefer Tree

AND STUMP REMOVAL • Land clearing for new construction we also remove hedges and Corporate Wearables shrubs. Any stump, any size, any And Work Wear place. Our smaller stump grinder www.coverallembroidery.com fits thru a 3’ gate, call anytime. 1808 East. St., Cedar Falls 236-1956 269-1544 277-2385


Supported Living & Day Programs for adults with disabilities. 319-236-0901 www.northstarcs.org

Environmentally Friendly We sell Quality used parts and buy wrecked or unwanted cars. 945 Lowell Ave., 232-0704

B&R Quality Meats, Inc Retail & Wholesale Same product & service New Owners: Tanner & Mallory Heikens 200 Park Road, W’loo 232-MEAT (6328) www.b-rqualitymeats.com



Power Engineering Manufacturing LTD

Waterloo Oil Co., Inc.

www.pemltd.com 2635 W.C.F. & N. Dr. Waterloo, IA 50703 e-mail sales@pemltd.com 319-232-2311

Where customer and quality comes first offering custom blended renewable fuels. 319-234-4693


Pat’s Auto Salvage NORTH STAR I Care Certified COMMUNITY SERVICES

6818 Streeter Rd,

Northeast Iowa Diamond Body Shop Food Bank SPECIALIZING IN Fighting Hunger in COLLISION REPAIR Northeast Iowa “Quality Is Never

Cover-All Embroidery, INC.

601 17th Street S.E. Independence, IA 50644 319-334-2552 www.eastiowaplastics.com

Waterloo, Iowa 50702 319-236-3363 “Bring Your Body Back Into Balance.” www.taraacupuncture.com




Pump Haus Pub & Grill

301 East 4th St.






Pest Control & Radon Testing 6607 Hammond Ave Waterloo, IA 50702 319-296-3227

Dennis Eslick Eslick Financial Group


Plumb Tech

37 YEARS “Why Buy New

29 YEARS Furniture Showcase


Lichty Auto Repair

Brothers Construction, Inc.

European Car Specialist

Cedar Valley Medical Specialists

311 Main Street Downtown Cedar Falls, IA 50613 319-277-8111 www.thepumphaus.com





5743 Westminster Drive Cedar Falls, IA 50613 319-266-1134 www.cedarvalleyelctric.com



Henninger Electric

24 Hrs Service 7 days a week Family owned and operated 3488 Wagner Rd. Waterloo, IA 50703 234-9114

The Solution to Your Cleaning Needs 319-266-6947 www.procleaninginc.com

319-939-1611 bartelsk@hotmail.com Licensed in the State of Iowa




A-1 “Jim’s” Appliance Service

Farms, Residential and Acreages

New Creation Salon


We’re proud to be part of the community.

Tim & Mike’s Auto Repair

Kvale Insurance

Service Signing LC

1425 West 5th Street

Complete line of traffic control devices for sale or rental.

216 7th St., Janesville 319-987-2271 Tim Ward, Mike Paul 319-231-4459


3533 W. Airline Hwy 235-9356






C & C Welding and Sandblasting

Waterloo • Grundy Center Independence • Waverly 319-272-2002 800-626-2360 www.cvhospice.org

Owners: Jeff and Bryant Cizek Drawtite hitches Western & Boss snow plows Blue Ox Towing Equipment 1714 River St. 232-4741

Waterloo Warehousing & Service Co., Inc.

BW Contractors, Inc.

Raynor quality garage doors/openers. Service/parts for all brands. Locally Owned/Operated 1905 State St, CF 266-1627

Cedar Valley Hospice




Vanderloo Chiropractic Clinic Live a Healthy Life 3731 Kimball Ave., W’loo

Compressed Air and Equipment 707 Hwy. 218 N. La Porte City 342-2440 1-800-727-7908 24 hr. Answering Service www.compress-air.com

Design/Build Industrial, Commercial, Residential 1705 Waterloo Rd., C.F. mageeconstruction.com 319-277-0100




Automatic Amusements, Inc.


Rebuilders, Inc.

WATERLOO 233-7649

Providing the Cedar Valley with Internet Juke Boxes, Pool Tables and Dart Leagues 232-1371 Milton Horak, President



Helland Engineering & Surveying LTD

Cunningham Construction


6109 Chancellor Drive Cedar Falls, IA 50613 266-0161

1025 Center St. Cedar Falls 277-3001


Karen’s Print Rite

Peppercorn Pantry

Business and Personal Printing Embroidery

Mary Mayer

Mudd Advertising

Sweerin Brothers




Waterloo’s Leader in Office Supplies, Furniture and Printing 319 Broadway, W’loo, IA 234-1221 Fax 234-6506

Let Us - Help You Save Transportation Dollars! Waterloo, Iowa 1-800-234-3930




12 YEARS Enviro-Pest Solutions

Casey McLaughlin, 2109 Falls Ave. Rod Curran, Owner Registered PrinicipalSince 1996 Waterloo “The Plumber Your Friends Since 1984- full service brokerage. 319-232-2915 621 Grant Ave, Waterloo, IA 50702 Call” EnviroPestSolutions.com 287-5080 233-0353

www.benjamineedwards.com 2018-0247 Exp. 2/28/20





Kate & Co. Salon & Spa

Selesky Manufacturing



111 West 4th, C.F. 266-0105

Curran Plumbing, Inc.


3731 Pheasant Lane Waterloo, Iowa 50701 319-433-8766 (Cell) 319-232-7100 (Office)

319-266-9900 www.deerycollision.com


Remote car starters car video - car stereo - car alarms Professional Installation 4007 University Ave, W’loo 232-0119


Amy SchaeferRemax Agent

116 East 4th Street Waterloo, IA 500703 319-233-3297

319-291-7200 1800 Commercial St. Waterloo

All Makes of Vacuums

1118 Ansborough Ave.

Aspire Therapeutic Horseback Riding

1501 Technology Parkway, Suite 200 Cedar Falls, Iowa 50613 316-232-4332 www.impactmt.com

David Beaty Specializing in Retirement Income Waterloo, IA 50701 and Estate Planning Thunder Ridge Court (319) 233-8224 2302 W. 1st St., Ste. 120, C.F. www.bealssheetmetal.com 319-277-1059

25 YEARS Heartland Financial Services Ltd

7744 Ansborough Ave,

Farris Stereo

319-833-7226 www.pacorosic.com


Aable Pest Control

Beal’s Sheet Metal

Waterloo, Iowa 50701


Ray Dietz Auctioneering & Real Estate Specializing in farm and land auctions 1878 310th Street, Ionia, IA 50645 319-269-5161

2055 Kimball Ave, Suite 101 Waterloo, Iowa 50702 319-272-2112 www.familypracticecenter.org

Jason Strelow

“Complete Auto and Truck Repair”

ASPIRE Therapeutic Riding Masonry Program enriches the lives of Waterloo, Iowa 50701 Enriching lives individuals, volunteers, and 4 paws at a time. 319-961-3000 (Cell) families by forging bonds between Concrete and Masonry humans, animals and nature. 319-232-5292 319-235-9698 https://www.berkshirehathawayhs. 8100 Kimball Ave. 296-0964 www.denherdervet.com sweerinbrothersmasonry.com www.aspiretrp.org com/One-Realty-Centre-IA302

Waterloo, IA 50701

622 Commercial Street


Den Herder Veterinary Hospital

Car Wash

Galleria De Paco



224 Tower Park Drive,


425 LaPorte Rd., Waterloo 319-234-8822


Backes Auctioneers & Realty 6605 Dubuque Road Raymond, Iowa 50667 1-800-876-8070 www.backes-auction.com

Underground Utililty and Directional Boring contractors 3822 W. Airline 232-4807

Glass Tech Auto Glass

202 W. Gilbert Dr. Evansdale IA. 50707 319-232-7658 www.aas202.com





“Outdoor Living at it’s Best!” Over 25 years experience. 319-240-9565

Advanced Automotive


Craig’s Vac Shop


Fleming’s Landscaping and More

LJ’s Welding &



Hoffman & Hoffman Trenching, Inc.

Freed Construction, Inc.





Northeast Iowa Medical Education Foundation


4006 Johnathan Street Waterloo, IA 50701 319.236.2700 www.adiofiowa.com

King Automotive AND

2515 Falls Ave., Waterloo 235-6085

Ready and “Aable” to serve you!

Advanced Diagnostic Imaging


141 Center St

Office Concepts, Ltd.



Waterloo, IA 50703

Gray Transportation, Inc.

200 State Street #104 Cedar Falls, Iowa 50613 319-266-7517 www.kateandcompanycf.com

Waterloo, Iowa 50703 319-287-8110


Bonita Things Quality Consignment LLC 1423 W. 3rd Street Waterloo, Iowa 50701 319-883-8007

3 YEARS Cooks

140 Brookeridge Waterloo, IA 50702 319-234-8644

New York Life

“Let us show you Repair & Replacement the difference” Cedar Falls, Iowa 319-988-4051 319-268-9850 Family Owned and We appreciate all of the Operated business from our customers Joe and Dawn over the past 20 years! www.breakenridgememorials.com




Breakenridge Memorials

911 Parriott St., Aplington

We love it when you succeed! 915 Technology Parkway Cedar Falls, IA 50613 877-321-4992

El Patron

Follow us on Facebook





David J. Wrage, Broker 315 Main St., Dysart 319-476-7070 Cell: 319-640-8388

Jeff Fitzpatrick


Magee Construction

Wrage Realty

5540 Westminster Dr. Cedar Falls, IA 268-2233 www.americanpattern.com


324 Duryea St. 236-0467

8 YEARS Bottles two Backpacks 204 G. Ave Grundy Center, Iowa 319-825-888

Professional Carpet RE/MAX Alliance and Upholstery 300 S. State St, Cleaning, Inc. Denver, IA 50622

American Pattern & CNC Works, Inc. John Fitzpatrick and




Fishsticks Millwork, LLC


Emerson Crane Rental


Industrial Machinery Moving and Rigging Heated Storage Shrink Wrap Services 27 Years of Excellence Family Owned 987-2070

3015 Greyhound Dr. Waterloo, IA 50701 (319) 232-4242



319-233-2038 3130 Marnie Ave. Waterloo

Christie Door Company

Turnkey Associates


Montage Serving La Porte City, 706 Ansborough Avenue Outdoors Waterloo and Cedar Falls Make Your Mouth Dance! Waterloo, Iowa 50701 areas for all your electrical 319-987-3091 1910 Center Street contracting needs 222 Main Street, C.F. www.fishsticks.biz Cedar Falls, IA 50613 3008 S. Hudson Rd. 319-268-7222 We carry all types of floor covering, 319-260-2040 Cedar Falls, Iowa 50613 www.montage-cf.com cabinetry, countertops, backsplash, trim & 319-232-6373 much more! Design, Sales & Installation. www.cooksoutdoors.com



Cedar Valley Electric

“Enriching Lives, Enriching the Community” 114 10th St SW Waverly (319) 352-8029 www.larrabeecenter.org

Waterloo, IA 50701

Rainsoft of NE Iowa

Glass Tech Auto Glass

Repair & Replacement Cedar Falls, Iowa 319-268-9850 We appreciate all of the business from our customers over the past 20 years!

Remodeling New Construction

7735 Ansborough Ave.

East Iowa Plastics, Acupuncture & Chinese Medical Clinic Inc. 3120 Kimball Ave Suite 3118

4150 Kimball Avenue Waterloo, Iowa 50701 319-235-5390 www.cedarvalleymedical.com We Specialize in You.

9 20th St SE Over 40 years experience Oelwein, IA 50662 in the Waterloo, 319-283-2393 Cedar Falls area 233-4157 www.FurnitureShowcaseInc.com


Electrical Contractor 809 Ansborough Waterloo 235-2445


319-234-6871 www.fifthstreettire.com

Quail’s Auto Salvage Reedy’s Auto Sales

• Integration • Microprocessor Based Control Systems • Circuit Board Design • Mechanical Engineering & Design • Controller Manufacturing Cedar Falls 290-3910


Nelson Electric of Black Hawk County

Real Estate Leasing Self Storage

432 Locust St, Waterloo 319-291-3991 www.smbyharris.com

515 W 5th St, Waterloo

Cetek, Inc. Industrial Controls

Fast professional service on all major brands. 2509 Valley Park Dr., C.F. 266-1437 or 231-0765

Plumbing, Heating Sheet Metal Fabrication Commercial, Residential 3261 W. Airline Hwy., W’loo 223-5616 www.ptinc.us

quality tires from Goodyear,

Kelly, Dunlop and other Providing Fire and Water Damage top tire brands as well Restoration, Carpet and Upholstery as automotive repair and Cleaning, Mold Remediation and services to the Waterloo area Custodial Services

Satisfaction.... Today and Tomorrow


721 Timber Oak Rd. Evansdale, IA 319-231-6795


22 YEARS Deery Brothers Collision Center 201 E Seerley Blvd, Cedar Falls

Machining Welding - Fabrication 339 Rath St., Waterloo 234-1388

Impact Marketing & Benjamin F. Edwards Open Locally Technology Since 2013

Chapman Electric, Inc.

Connecting local

buyers and

sellers Place your ad now!

Get the word out quickly and effectively with our unmatched local reach online, and in print. Whether you’re selling a car, a home, having a garage sale, or looking for the perfect employee, we’ve got a solution that meets your needs. Just fill out the form to get started.  Farm & Ranch  Free Ads  Garage & Estate Sales  Jobs  Merchandise  Pets  Real Estate & Rentals  Services  Vehicles

P.O. Box 561

319-232-5228 Cedar Falls, IA 50613 www.chapmanelectricinc.com



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Sunday, March 3, 2019 | K3



One nominee per form. Please attach a short description of why your nomination meets the criteria above. Please be sure to include your address and phone number in the event further information is required.


Nominee: Occupation/retired from:


• Contributes now and in the past to the betterment of the community, often behind the scenes.


• Continues to be a success in their vocation.

Address: City:


• Has been a role model/mentor for others.


Submitted by: Phone:



MAIL: 8 over 80, P.O. Box 540, Waterloo, IA 50704



FAX: Attn: 8 over 80, (319)-234-3297


ONLINE: www.WCFCourier.com/8over80

Winners will be selected by a committee and featured in the July issue of Cedar Valley Business Monthly. A special reception will be held honoring the 8 selected leaders.


Event Sponsored by:



High School Completion IBEST Program College Credit Courses English Language Learning Senior Companion Program Citizenship Classes Family Literacy



Restore Comfort to Your Space Get effective ef commercial and residential HVAC HV solutions with Petersen Hudson Hdwe. Plumbing & Heating.

and Hudson Hdwe., Plumbing and Heating, two names you can trust.




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K4 | Sunday, March 3, 2019


LOIS OHLENDORF, PARKERSBURG The winner of our Logo Contest and the recipient of a year’s subscription to the Waterloo Courier. The following businesses participated in our contest in December. How many were you able to identify? 1















Appraisal & Real Estate Service Jammie W. Howard (319) 478-2990 (877) 844-SOLD













KAISER CORSON Funeral Homes, Inc. Our Way Of Life Since 1901.




ony’s 31









40 THE RICK BAUER TEAM Rick Bauer 493-3500

Bobby Kastli Cole Stricker 269-7267 239-9877

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Sunday, March 3, 2019 | K5


K6 | Sunday, March 3, 2019



An aerial view of the Wapsie Valley Creamery making cheese in Independence.

Wapsie Creamery plans upgrade, expansion THOMAS NELSON


‌WATERLOO — The Wapsie Valley Creamery Inc. has been in Independence for more than a century with generations of the same family providing cheese and dairy products all around the Midwest. Four generations of Nielsens have worked at the creamery, and Mark Nielsen is the latest president. Mark Nielsen’s son works as engineer in the plant. “I’m the third generation of family, and my son’s the fourth,” Mark Nielsen said. “We’ve been in the cheese business since about World War II times.” Nielsen’s son is a chemical engineer and runs the plant, while Mark Nielsen, 66, does the book work and deals with customers. The creamery sells its cheese wholesale to companies around the country to use in processed cheese, cheese spreads, shredded cheeses and calf milk replacer. Odds are you’ve tasted their product without knowing it. “They really are a cornerstone of this community,” said George Lake, Buchanan County Eco-

Ryan Nielsen, Mark Nielsen and Wilbur Nielsen represent three generations at the Wapsie Valley Creamery, a business that has been in Independence for more than a century. nomic Development Commission director. The creamery is one of Iowa’s three cheese factories still operating. “There’s lots of smaller farmstead people in smaller operations,” Nielsen said. The creamery has customers all around the world. Most of their

customers are east of Iowa. “Most of our product leaves the state,” Nielsen said. “Everything we sell goes to a private label.” The company is continuing to expand into 2019 and hopes to add more employees to its roster. Currently, Wapsie Valley Creamery employs more than 80 in the plant and works with dairy farm-

ers around the Midwest. “My grandfather came over from Denmark and he took dairy science at the University of Minnesota and got in to it,” Nielsen said. The creamery makes cheddar, Colby Jack, Monterey Jack, Muenster, queso and other varieties.

Nielsen said he’s looking to expand the creamery’s equipment and capacity. “We’re planning to go up 50 percent on production capacity to keep the business going forward,” Nielsen said. “We want to expand the current product line. We want to make more of the same products that we’re making now.” Three years ago the creamery installed new cheese equipment sized for larger production. “We have a good reputation with our customers and they’re interested in more products,” Nielsen said. “As we upgrade everything we’re sizing it for a larger capacity.” A lot of the upgrades are coming through automation running through computers. “We trying to get the process so there’s less physical labor and more watching a computer screen and pushing a button,” Nielsen said. “Some of jobs we have now are pretty physically demanding,and we want to get so that pretty much anybody can do the job Please see CREAMERY, Page K7

restaurant Serving You for over 59 Years Daily Specials Open Monday-Friday 6am - 2pm; Saturday and Sunday 6am-1pm


520 Mulberry St., Waterloo (319) 234-2416

Drink SpecialS

Monday – all Beers Buy 1 Get 1 Free Taco Tuesday Wednesday – Buy House Margarita 1 Get 1 Free Thursday – pitcher Margaritas $14.95, 1.75 ltr.

10% OFF Dinner Or luncH

Stop in for

cOld beer, great fOOd, and gOOd cOmpany! Open daily from 11 a.m – 2 a.m.

Check our Facebook page for daily specials!

110 25th Ave, Gilbertville, IA 50634


301 e. 4th Street, Waterloo 319-287-8110

Cannot be combined with any other offer. Does not include alcohol. Expires 3/31/19

Join us for a new dining experience featuring juicy burgers, appetizers, pizzas, sandwiches, desserts, drinks and WaterlOO

more. Open daily.

777 Isle of Capri Blvd, Waterloo, IA 50701• 319-833-4753

Now serving Breakfast on Saturday and Sundays Each family needs that special place where everyone can find something they love on the menu! Monday-Thursday 11am-9pm • Friday 11am-10pm Saturday 9am-10pm Sunday 9am-7pm (Spring/Summer Sunday Hours: 7:30am-8pm)

www.highway63diner.com • (319) 232-0635 3030 Marnie Road, Waterloo, IA 50701

1111 Center St., Cedar Falls, IA (319) 266-2616 Monday-Saturday – 4:30-10 PM Sunday – 4-9 PM

222 Main St., Cedar Falls, IA (319) 268-7222 Monday-Saturday – 4:30-10 PM

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Creamery From K6

regardless of their physical condition.” The creamery is always hiring. Currently, Nielsen is looking for people with a background in computer engineering, maintenance and programming. “In 2020 we’re going have the next phase of the cheese expansion will be done and then we’ll need some more people,” Nielsen said. “Every year the demand is a little different.” The creamery works with several dairy farms in Iowa and other states. People throughout Buchanan County are employed by the creamery in one way or another.

“We’ve got 220 farms that we buy milk from,” Nielsen said. “Most of the farms are not in this immediate area. We go to Wisconsin, Minnesota and Illinois.” They also work with farmers in the hillier parts of the Mississippi Valley and other parts of Iowa. “Most of customers are just not in Iowa,” he said. “Wisconsin’s America’s dairy land so a lot of our customers are there or out east, because there’s plenty of cheese being made out west.” The creamery has won numerous awards for their cheese, primarily in Wisconsin based and national competitions. “We’re usually in the top five of what we submit,” Nielsen said. The Nielsens, and by extension the creamery, have been involved with Buchanan County and Inde-

Sunday, March 3, 2019 | K7

pendence community. “The family and the business are deeply active in the community,” Lake said. “The family members are active on various community committees and boards. They give very freely of themselves.” The creamery is one of the largest employers in Buchanan County. “We’re been here a long time,” Nielsen said. “We do a lot of contributions for local events.” The creamery helps sponsor the Independence Fourth of July celebrations and other community activities, he said. “We intend to be here for the long haul,” Nielsen said. “We’ve COURTESY PHOTO‌ been here for a long time. We like it here, and we want to continue The Wapsie Valley Creamery Dry Storage Warehouse used to hold dairy to grow here.” products for the creamery.


SALESPERSON OF THE YEAR, ERNIE DOEDEN Ernie Doeden has been a Bill Colwell Ford Sales Representative for 17 years and part of the Colwell organization for 24. During his time at the dealership, Ernie has been Salesperson of the Year 11 times, including this past year, which is no surprise to his customers. Ernie’s commitment to customer service and going above and beyond make him an industry leader. Customers often have “Ernie stories” where he stood in the rain to lend a hand or even ran to the rescue when a customer’s keys were locked in their car. Mike Gleason has been a Sales Representative with Bill Colwell Ford with 2.5 years and part of the automotive industry for 16 years. Amongst his loyal customers, Mike is known for his friendly and professional manner. He has a knack for listening and understanding customer needs and finding the perfect vehicle for them. He is also very knowledgeable when it comes to vehicles and he takes the time to explain all the features, so his customers drive away feeling excited and informed about their recent purchase.

Ernie’s generosity doesn’t stop at work. He is also a dedicated husband and father of three. When not working, you can often find Ernie at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church where he is a member and volunteer. Due to his outstanding character and professionalism, Ernie has developed a tremendous following of both repeat and referral business. When you are in the market, stop at Bill Colwell Ford and let Ernie help you find the perfect vehicle in a relaxed and fun buying experience. When not at work, Mike enjoys spending time with his wife of 28 years, Rhonda. They reside in La Porte City where they enjoy riding motorcycles, handing out with family, watching NASCAR, and motorcycle racing. Due to his welcoming personality and expertise in cars, it is easy to see why Mike is so popular amongst his customers. When you are in the market, stop into Bill Colwell Ford, talk to Mike, and see why he is a salesperson to know.

“Ernie always searches until he finds us the right truck. He goes out of his way to make sure we are satisfied.” – Kim & Brian M.


238 Waterloo Road - Hudson

“Mike Gleason is the best. Very knowledgeable, friendly, and no pressure. We recommend Mike and Bill Colwell Ford to all our friends!” -James & Linda H.


238 Waterloo Road - Hudson

beauty & barber


Opening eaRLy MaRch – neW LOcaTiOn

Monica Paulsen

ReLOcaTing TO ceDaR FaLLs aT 912 WesT Viking ROaD, suiTe 105

140 Brookridge Drive, Waterloo, IA 50702

New ServiceS!!! MaNicureS & PedicureS, Body SugariNg, FacialS & 2 chair BarBer area!

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*Waxing *Facials *Makeup *Microdermabrasion *Reflexology *Thai Massage *Hot Stone Massage

Students perform all services under the supervision of licensed instructors


Marlene & Rich Kucera Mary Olson Tammy Rieckenberg Rhonda Glaw Denna Cornwell Lenette Tangen Tonya Evenson

off your first visit Must present coupon for discount

2323 Crossroads Blvd, Waterloo, IA


Care Needs….Call Trish, Samira, Karen, Esma, Mindy or Monica For Your Appointment Today! Phone: 319-234-8644

PhoNe: walk-iNS alwayS welcoMe! Open 7 Days a Week 319-260-2250 *Cuts *Colors *Styles *Perms *Relaxers *Manicures *Pedicures

Owner/Stylist For All Your Hair

Sensations Salon

3642 University Ave, Waterloo, IA 50701

We proudly carry and promote Surface, Kenra, & Aquage products. Call or Text: 319-233-0888 or 319-233-4007


K8 | Sunday, March 3, 2019


childrens activities directory

The Bottom Line CCR&R is here for YOU! • Starting a new child care business • Developing contracts and policies • Outdoor play spaces and room arrangements • Professional development opportunities • And MUCH more!

855-299-0499 | www.iowaccrr.org Funding provided by the Iowa Department of Human Services through the Child Care Development Fund

Cedar Valley PresChool and ChIld Care CeNTer

• Morning Preschool 8:30-11:30 • Wrap-Around Child Care 7:00-5:30 • Certified Teachers - State Licensed

State Licensed • Limited Scholarship Options Providingquality quality childcare months through years for 49 42 Providing childcareforforages ages18 18 months to 1111years 43Years years. (319) 268-1944 - www.cvpccc.com


215 W. 9th St., Cedar Falls

With Support from Cedar Valley Promise and United Way


Non profit and non-sectarian

Immanuel Lutheran

The Only Olympic Style Gymnastics Training raining Facility in Bremer emer County!

Preschool 4820 Oster Pkwy Cedar Falls, IA 319-260-2005

Recreational to Competitive


Call for a FREE Trial Lesson & Call for a FREE Trial Lesson & for more information: for more information:

Openings in 3 & 4 year classes

““Preparing P reparing Children Children For Life Life””



Call 319-238-FINS (3467) www.dolphINgymNaStICSllC.Com

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Profile for Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier

Progress 2019: Cedar Valley Strong  

Progress 2019: Cedar Valley Strong