Over the past year, the value of Stewardship has been highlighted as a guiding principle throughout the organization’s history. While Stewardship wasn’t defined as a value in the organization back in 1945, the idea of decision-making being focused on future decades rather than the next quarter has been passed on from generation to generation. This value guided our original founders in the early years, guided Ted and Ray over the last several decades, and continues to guide the current leadership team today. It is also the value that Ted said was closest to his heart, during an interview in 2013.
Over the years, many pivotal decisions have been made that have shaped the future of the organization. Decisions such as rebuilding the hatchery with state of the art novel technology after a devastating fire in 1978, purchasing the Willmar Regional Treatment Center Campus in 2005 to allow space for our organization to grow, finding work placements for employees affected by the HPAI pandemic, and many more. Ted understood the decisions made by leadership affected not only the future of the organization and those who worked for it, but they also had a huge impact on the community. Ted and the entire leadership team took the value of Stewardship to heart, and our organization thrives in large part due to this way of forward thinking instilled in the core of who we are.