Raymon honored as ‘Legend in Manufacturing’

CONTRIBUTED PHOTO Larry Raymon, CEO of Raymon Donco Air Distribution Equipment in Albion, was recognized at the Legends in Manufacturing dinner held by the Iowa Association of Business and Industry and Elevate Advanced Manufacturing.

Larry Raymon has never been one to seek out accolades, but even he can admit that receiving recognition from his peers in the manufacturing industry is a big source of pride.

Raymon, the CEO of Raymon Donco Air Distribution Equipment in Albion, was recently honored at the Sixth Annual Legends in Manufacturing dinner hosted by the Iowa Association of Business and Industry and Elevate Advanced Manufacturing on Sept. 28. About 200 people were in attendance.

Raymon earned recognition for a business with under 100 employees. The nominations and the selection committee are anonymous.

“It always means a lot more if you’re in the same arena as those that are choosing you for awards,” Raymon said. “I’m very proud of it. It’s nice to be recognized.”

The dinner wasn’t held last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Everybody was so excited to get back together,” said Michele Farrell, program manager of Elevate. “It was awesome to see everybody.”

Farrell said honorees are chosen for both their contributions to the industry and what they do to give back to their communities. Raymon’s company opened Raymon Veterans Memorial Park in Albion in July.

The company also converted part of its operation to manufacture fabric masks for residents of Marshall County, bringing on more than a dozen additional employees to do so. They provided plastic dividers for the Iowa Veterans Home and distributed about 3,000 face shields to people who needed them. Several distribution centers were set up around the county.

Giving back has been a staple of Raymon’s vision since he became a partner in the Donco Company in 1979. He moved the company to its current location in Albion in 1984 before becoming sole owner in 1985.

“I have this philosophy that a corporation needs to be a part of the community and needs to give back to the community,” he said. “Whenever we get the opportunity to help, we do that.”

The company manufactures grills and registers for commercial buildings around the country, including some of its biggest clients in Washington D.C., Chicago, Los Angeles and Houston. Its products can also be seen locally. It supplied grills and registers for the original and new UnityPoint Hospitals, Fisher and many area restaurants.

While Raymon Donco was the smallest company honored at the Legends in Manufacturing dinner, it has grown dramatically — through five site expansions- to a 60,000 square-foot facility. It started with four employees, and that number is now close to 80.

Raymon says his workforce is filled with many long-term employees who have been with him for as long as 40 years. New employees have flowed in as the company has grown, but turnover remains very low.


Contact Joe Fisher at news@timesrepublican.com.


Today's breaking news and more in your inbox

I'm interested in (please check all that apply)
Are you a paying subscriber to the newspaper? *

Starting at $4.38/week.

Subscribe Today