BD, Glion and Roger Allmand Inducted Into Local Business Hall of Fame
17 Nov 2021
Awards and Recognition, Events, Business
PCDC inducted three new members into the Phelps County Hall of Fame at its HOF Celebration Banquet on Thursday, October 28, at JB’s Sports Bar & Grill.
Becton-Dickinson, Glion Electric Scooters and Roger Allmand are the latest inductees into the Hall of Fame, which celebrates the risk-takers, the change-makers and the community builders who want to make tomorrow better.
PCDC Vice President Shane Westcott presented the awards to the 2020 and 2021 honorees at this year’s banquet. Since the 2020 banquet was canceled due to COVID-19, both the 2020 and 2021 honorees were recognized this year.
“The bountiful harvest we reap today is due to the seed sown years ago,” Westcott said. “Fortunately for us, our forefathers didn’t sit back and say ‘let’s just preserve things the way they are.’”
Glion Electric Scooters
Glion Electric Scooters is at the forefront of producing electric scooters. It is one of the leading sellers of li-ion-powered adult electric scooters on Amazon. It is owned by Holdrege resident Robert McCormick and his business partners Jeff Kong and Wei Chang, who live in the Chicago area.
“Because of the entrepreneurial spirit of Glion’s owners, its international partnership and its quickly growing nationwide customer base, PCDC has chosen Glion as its 2020 hall of fame honoree,” Westcott said.
Glion’s service center is located in downtown Holdrege in the F. Johnson Building. McCormick accepted the award for the company he helped start in 2014.
“I can’t tell you how impressed we are with the people we work with here,” McCormick said. “We wouldn’t be where we are without the great team we found in Holdrege. We are really grateful to be doing business here in Phelps County.”
Westcott said that when BD started operations in Holdrege in October 1966, it had just 66 employees. Now, it is Holdrege’s largest employer with nearly 700 employees. It has grown from a 12,000 square foot building to more than 400,000 square feet. BD has recently invested hundreds of millions of dollars into plant upgrades and expansions, and more investment and more hiring are on the horizon.
Because of the company’s generosity to the community and local investment, it was also selected as a 2020 business hall of fame honoree.
BD Plant Manager Stuart Rogers accepted the award on behalf of the company.
“I am honored to receive this on behalf of the company today,” Rogers said. “I am at the end of a very long line of people who have supported BD over those 55 years. It’s been a significant part of the community for an extended amount of time.”
Rogers said he is proud of what the company does in Holdrege.
“Currently, we employ near 690 associates, many of whom have given 30 plus years of service and have given their lives to the company,” he said. One BD employee recently retired after 51 years at the plant.
Rogers said the Holdrege BD plant currently manufactures more than 2 billion syringes each year that are exported to every corner of the world. The Holdrege plant has also played a key role in meeting the demand for vaccinations in the United States and beyond.
“It’s just an ongoing incredible story of how something starts small and grows and grows over the decades,” he said.
He also mentioned the “incredible innovation” that occurs at the local facility. He shared how in the early 1970s, a local employee sketched an idea on the back of a napkin. That idea facilitated the ability to mass-produce needle assemblies throughout the world.
“It’s the reason why BD can make tens of billions of medical devices a year,” he said. “This was actually achieved in the breakroom in Holdrege.”
Rogers, who is originally from the United Kingdom, said the innovation and dedication at the Holdrege plant have been surprising for him.
“You come here and realize that people in this community recognize that they can achieve anything,” he said. “They can stand up next to anyone anywhere and compete and innovate. Perhaps it wasn’t what I was expecting to find when I came from the UK.”
Westcott then introduced the 2021 hall of fame honoree, Roger Allmand. He noted that Roger started working at Allmand Bros., the company his family founded, when he was 10 years old. He worked his way up from sweeping floors to sales manager and eventually president of the company that provided more than 200 local jobs.
“Like Holdrege’s famous flying Dr. Brewster, Roger flew all over the United States selling equipment to whoever would listen,” Westcott said. “He has logged more than 10,000 hours flying.”
Westcott said Allmand enjoyed his role as being the “chief encourager” to Allmand employees.
Since the sale of Allmand Bros. to Briggs & Stratton, Allmand now shares what he has learned to help others build their businesses through Legacy Purpose LLC. He encourages entrepreneurs to think about living life intentionally.
In accepting the award, Allmand said Phelps County has been wonderful to him and his family.
“We are just thankful that the Holdrege Area Chamber of Commerce recruited this big company with five employees from Huntley to Holdrege all those years ago and gave us free rent for a year,” he said.
Allmand said his father would always tell him when he was running the machines to respect the equipment.
“Respect has been a powerful word to me,” Allmand said. “We need to respect our community. We respect our church. We respect our family. If we can respect and encourage one another, we can continue to enjoy living in Phelps County.”
Previous inductees in the Phelps County Business Hall of Fame are Lost Way Brewery, Landmark Implement, Breining Diesel, the Phelps County Community Foundation, Phelps Memorial Health Center and the Bridal Isle.