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Randy, John Winegard inducted into Iowa Hall of Fame

Randy, John Winegard inducted into Iowa Hall of Fame

DES MOINES, Iowa — The Greater Des Moines Committee will recognize Kyle J. Krause, along with Randy Winegard and his late father, John R. Winegard, as the 2016 Inductees to the Iowa Business Hall of Fame.

The inductees will be honored during the Greater Des Moines Committee’s annual Black Tie Dinner to be held on Dec. 1 at The Meadows Events and Conference Center.

The Iowa Business Hall of Fame honors the achievements of Iowans who have made outstanding contributions to the development and enhancement of Iowa’s business climate, the release noted.

John Winegard

John R. Winegard was the founder of Winegard Company, a family-owned business located in Burlington that specialized in designing and manufacturing over-the-air television antennas, mounts and accessories.

He founded the company in 1953. His love for electronics started at a young age, as at the age of 13 he built a one tube radio so his family could listen to President Franklin Roosevelt’s Fireside Chats. Before founding his own company, he designed a television antenna which allowed the people of Burlington to watch President Harry Truman’s inauguration from Chicago station WBBM.

In 1956, three years after starting the company, he received a special citation of merit from Iowa Gov. Leo A. Hoegh for outstanding industrial growth and for his service to the state. He was awarded more than 30 patents by the United States Patent Office.

John’s son and fellow Iowa Business Hall of Fame honoree, Randy, took the helm in 1977. John also founded Home Lawn and Garden Services and Pzazz! Restaurant Complex. The companies he started today employ more than 1,000 people in Burlington.

In 1965, John Winegard received Iowa’s Outstanding Businessman Award. In 1969, he received the Recognition of Service Award from Manned Spacecraft Center and Philco Houston Operations for notable contributions to the success of the Apollo 11 space mission, the first lunar landing.

He was honored by the Burlington Chamber of Commerce in 1989 for his lifelong contributions to the local economy. Philanthropically, Winegard donated 15,000 trees to individuals to be planted in Burlington after the city’s elm trees were ravaged by Dutch Elm disease. Winegard died in 2002.

Randy Winegard

Randy Winegard is the CEO of Winegard Company, founded by his late father and fellow Iowa Business Hall of Fame honoree John R. Winegard.

Randy Winegard took over the company in 1977 when his father retired. His relentless desire to challenge his leadership team to seek out new opportunities transformed the company from being solely invested in manufacturing traditional over-the-air television antennas, mounts and accessories to expanding into the satellite television and commercial two-way VSAT real-time broadband technologies.

This in turn has paved the way to new markets for home, recreation vehicle, trucking, automotive, tailgating, marine, medical, military, emergency response and oil, gas and shale drilling industries, not only in the United States but abroad. With the same entrepreneurial spirit as his father, Randy Winegard has been the driving force in making Winegard Company a respected world leader in the antenna industry, the release noted.

Randy Winegard is well-known throughout the Burlington and southeast Iowa communities for his support to schools, churches, athletics, colleges and new business development. He has launched numerous real estate developments including the Spirit Hollow Golf Course and Residential Complex, along with numerous restaurants, hotels and family entertainment establishments such as Fun City and Catfish Bend Casino and Resort. Current plans involve the construction of a Hampton Inn, Panera Bread restaurant and Cold Stone Creamery.

Kyle Krause

Kyle J. Krause is president and CEO of Kum & Go, a company of more than 400 convenience stores in 11 states. Krause was named president in 1997 and became CEO in 2004.

With Krause’s leadership and vision, Kum & Go has transformed from a group of acquired gas stations that offered grocery staples to a modern convenience store chain that focuses on delivering more than customers expect, the release explained.

Krause has leveraged his investments, reinvested for continued growth and taken the right risks to propel the business to an unprecedented level of success. Krause is also the owner of Krause Holdings, the parent company to Kum & Go, as well as other business ventures close to the Krause family’s interests including local farming operations, real estate and the Des Moines Menace men’s and women’s soccer teams.

For four generations, the Krause family and Kum & Go have shared 10 percent of profits to charitable causes and organizations. Krause and his wife, Sharon, have built a reputation on philanthropic giving and community involvement locally and nationally.

Krause serves as the president of the Des Moines Art Center Board of Trustees, a board member for the Community Foundation of Greater Des Moines and is on the advisory board for the University of Iowa Henry B. Tippie College of Business.

Nationally, Krause has been inducted into the United Soccer Leagues’ Hall of Fame and serves on the trustees’ council for the National Gallery of Art and also chairs its collectors committee.

Criteria for selection

Inductees to the Iowa Business Hall of Fame are selected on merit rather than endorsement. the release explained. Past Hall of Fame honorees under the leadership of the current chair serves as the selection committee. The criteria for selection are as follows:

  • Business Leadership:  The nominated individual should lead or have led a business that has provided valued jobs and economic development to his/her community and the state; creating both wealth and workforce opportunity.
  • Community Development Impact:  The nominated individual should have made an impact by improving the economies of the community and the state through his/her leadership in such organizations as Chambers of Commerce, economic development organizations or centers of education.
  • Community Volunteerism/Leadership:  The nominated individual should have personally given of his/her time and financial resources for the betterment of the community through support of charities and organizations.
  • Strategic Leadership:  The nominated individual should have contributed to community economic growth through visionary leadership, community problem-solving, and building strategic alliances.
    Business Recognition:  The nominated individual should be recognized by his/her peers as a business leader.

SOURCE: Greater Des Moines Committee press release

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About Greg Gerber

Greg Gerber is a freelance writer and podcaster who has been writing about the RV industry since 2000. He is the former editor of RV Daily Report.

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