Business of the Year

Gardner-Denver, Co., Inc. 2019 – 2020 Business of the Year


Krista Dicks, Stacey Brown, Chris Bell, Paul Dick

In 1859 Robert W. Gardner founded a machine shop in Quincy Illinois to manufacture a gravity-type flyball governor used to control the speed of the steam engine.  In later years, the Gardner Governor Company was awarded the medal for the best steam engine governor built in this country. 1

        Once prospectors discovered gold in Colorado Territory, the development of the mining industry provided a market for Gardner Governor’s products. By 1920, the Denver Rock Drill Company offered many possibilities for the sale of products of the Gardner Governor Company. This was a major factor in the merger of these two entities to form what would become Gardner-Denver Company. 1

        Due to years of growth and various acquisitions, the Quincy, Illinois plant had expanded immensely. By the mid 1970’s, there was a need for a new manufacturing facility. Sedalia, Missouri was chosen by Gardner Denver due to the availability of a facility, a source of trainable manpower and cooperation of community leaders. The company has grown significantly since the assembly and shipment of the first compressor in July of 1979. Today, they are a manufacturer of PD blowers and vacuum blowers, reciprocating type compressors used in locomotive braking systems, and rotary screw compressors from 25 horsepower up to 500 horsepower. 2

        In the years since coming to Sedalia, the plant has undergone many changes, from expansion and product acquisitions. Some of those acquisitions came from other parts of the country, making the Sedalia plant the largest Gardner Denver manufacturing plant in the world.2

        Over the past 40 years, there have been many changes, but two things remain constant. Gardner Denver has excelled in employee benefits, and in their dedication to philanthropy in the communities where they reside.

1Gardner Denver: 150 years of industrial innovation, copyright 2009

2Sedalia Democrat August 21, 2015


Prior Business/Employer of the Year


Business of the Year Application can be found on the Resources page

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