Republic Turns 100! Let’s Celebrate by Giving Back
In honor of Republic’s 100th Anniversary, consider donating to help us build the J.S. Kimmel Technology Training Center at the HDC.
I did not have the opportunity to meet my great grandfather, Joseph Stephen Kimmel, Sr., but his legacy deeply impacted my life, the lives of thousands across the Midwest and beyond. Please take a moment to read below and consider making a small donation.
One-hundred years ago, J.S. Kimmel founded Republic Electric in Davenport, IA, bringing electricity to Midwest farmers. This fall, the third generation family-owned enterprise, now led by my father, Mark Kilmer, celebrates a century of business-excellence and commitment to the community.
Devoutly loyal to his family, faith, country and citizens of the community regardless of their situational status, J.S. Kimmel founded the Sheltered Workshop in 1957, with the mission to provide training and employment for the disabled via outsourcing remedial work from local companies.
In the first 6 years of existence, the Sheltered Workshop employed 486 handicapped citizens, otherwise deemed incapable of work. With a payroll over $250,000, not only did 100% of these “employees” receive a paycheck, but 20% also went on to land productive jobs in the community.
“It is a wonderful thing to see the confidence which we have been able to develop in people who previously had faith in practically nothing – much less themselves,” said J.S. Kimmel, Sr. in a 1960 interview with Davenport’s local newspaper, the Times Democrat.
Kimmel quickly became a catalyst to something much bigger. The Handicapped Development Center (HDC) was founded in 1969, combining the Sheltered Workshop’s mission with 3 additional non-profit initiatives in the community.
In honor of Republic’s 100th Anniversary of business and commitment to the community, we aspire to build the “J.S. Kimmel Technology Training Center” at the Handicapped Development Center, allowing handicapped “employees” to train for tech-savvy roles of today and tomorrow.
“Giving back to our community is deeply rooted in our culture,” said Mark Kilmer, President and third generation business owner of The Republic Companies. “From the early leadership of my wife’s grandfather, through my father-in-law’s reign, and it’s as strong as ever in our current Republic family of caring and compassionate employees.”
A donation as small as $5 will make a difference, and any dollar amount is greatly appreciated. Larger corporate donation amounts can fund a specific piece of equipment as displayed to the right.
We greatly appreciate your consideration in helping us make this a possibility.