4/3/2013 10:57:00 PM Vassar re-elected to national trade board
By Van Mitchell Journal Correspondent
Jacque Vassar, vice president of Vassar Manufacturing was recently re-elected to a second three-year term on the board of directors for Farm Equipment Manufacturers Association or FEMA.
Ms. Vassar is the second family member to serve on the FEMA board as her father Jack served as board president from 1972-73. She is also only the second woman in the 63-year history of the organization to serve on the 16-member board.
FEMA is an organization of over 600 manufacturing organizations and suppliers across the United States and internationally.
Vassar said she was pleased to be able to continue serving on the FEMA board. She also serves on the FEMA Post Hole Digger Council working closely with the ASABE to develop and improve national safety standards for the Post Hole Diggers.
"I think it's an honor," she said. "I think that it shows a level of trust and respect for our company and for me."
Vassar added with the news.
"He was just really excited about it," Vassar said.
Vassar Manufacturing recently celebrated its 50th year as a member of FEMA which is headquartered in St. Louis, Mo.
FEMA was started in 1950 and today boasts over 600 member companies. FEMA's mission is to provide industry leadership to enhance business opportunities and profitability to the membership by providing a forum for marketing short-line equipment through networking, communications, and technology, and a forum for purchasing materials and services required by the members.
"We (board of directors) meet three times a year and we go over policies and procedures," Vassar said. "We talk about legislation that impacts manufacturers specifically farm equipment manufacturers."
Vassar said serving on the FEMA board has been beneficial both for her and Vassar Manufacturing.
"It has really been good for me," Vassar said. "One of the advantages of being on the board is we interact with suppliers and distributors that we do business with. It gives us an opportunity to network with them face to face. I also get to interact a lot with our competitors and we are all good friends. We work on issues that are important to us as manufacturers."
Vassar said her family's business was started in Perkins in the 1930s by her grandfather and later operated by her father. She said Vassar now has 30 employees which is a 25 percent increase in staffing over the past five years. She said the company continues to grow and evolve with its product line and customer service.
"Over the last several years we have worked really hard to improve the quality of our products" Vassar said. "Last year was our largest sales volume ever for us. We have really good customer service. We have a really strong relationship with the people we sell to. There is a loyalty there. People are noticing what we are doing. We are just trying to take that next step."