Over 1,400 employees gathered at EMD’s headquarters and manufacturing campus in La Grange, Ill. to celebrate the company’s fifth year of independence since being spun off from General Motors Corporation in April 2005.
Honored guests included U.S. Congressional Representatives Dan Lipinski and Judy Biggert, along with Mayor Jeffrey Tobolski of McCook and Mayor Robert A. Conrad of the town of Countryside.
A variety of activities were held to mark the occasion including a formal program that featured the remarks of EMD’s president and chief executive officer, John S. Hamilton.
Hamilton observed, “Five years ago there were feelings of uncertainty regarding the future of the organization. Employees who had worked their entire careers at GM did not quite know what to expect as there were many challenges facing the Company.”
“There is little doubt that had EMD remained under GM ownership that the story today would be quite different.” Hamilton went on to describe EMD as arguably the most successful of all GM spin-offs despite the effects of the great recession.
Over the past five years, EMD has increased investment in R&D, nearly tripled capital expenditures upgrading its factories with state-of-the-art equipment, doubled revenues, increased exports five-fold and grown its labor force and supplier base significantly.
“EMD is an iconic American high-technology manufacturing company that has transformed itself into one of the true success stories in heavy manufacturing,” Hamilton said.
“EMD’s ability to successfully navigate through a period of extraordinary economic turmoil is a testament to the talent and hard work of the investors and managers who have revitalized this once-dominant company since purchasing it from General Motors,” Congressman Lipinski said. “EMD’s performance over the last five years furnishes yet more proof that with dedication, foresight, and the proper investment, American manufacturing has what it takes to thrive in today’s global economy. I congratulate EMD and its employees, and I look forward to watching it build on its storied past and continue growing as a major employer in the Third District for many years to come.”