Lieutenant Governor Adam Gregg visited Harrison County on Friday, May 31, with a trip to Sullivan Supply in Dunlap.
Matt Burkhart, General Manager of Sullivan Supply, offered Gregg a tour of the company’s newest facility, a large commercial building on the south side of Dunlap along Highway 30. Prior to the new facility, the company occupied 11 different locations.
Like many stories of the American Dream, Sullivan Supply’s story begins in the family garage with borrowed money and materials, a determined spirit, and a belief in one’s product.
Today, the company has distributors worldwide and will celebrate their 30th anniversary.
Sullivan Supply provides many opportunities for others in the community, including summer jobs for high school students and returning college students, along with internships.
Local businesses and families also benefit from the growth of this homegrown business in northeastern Harrison County. One Dunlap business and one Dunlap family, both producing leather and rope harnesses, are sold at Sullivan Supply, said Burkhart.
“They put all their kids through college on these ropes,” Burkhart said of the local family partner.
Additionally, the business has branched out into metal fabrication, providing six Harrison County jobs right away, and there are plans to add more in the near future.
“In our old space that we vacated, we started metal fabrication last year,” Burkhart said. “We do all the show box fabrication on our own.”
Locally, the business employs nearly 50, but as is the case throughout Southwest Iowa, finding employees can be a challenge.
“It is a struggle finding good help,” Burkhart said.
Burkhart is also considering a program to pay for the training of welders in exchange for a contracted number of years of work.
“One of the things that we have heard is making that connection with high school and college kids and helping them realize that there are opportunities with great businesses right in our backyards that can open a door,” Lt. Gov. Gregg stated. “There are some great opportunities here, and you can really support your family.”