Northwest Iowa Manufacturers Announce Major Workforce Partnership

Top officials with leading Northwest Iowa manufacturers joined community college and economic development leaders today to announce a unique new partnership to address a critical workforce development challenge facing regional employers. The announcement was held in the Manufacturing Lab at Northwest Iowa Community College in Sheldon.

“There are tremendous career opportunities available with Northwest Iowa manufacturers and for our companies to grow, we need to fill up the workforce pipeline,” said Don Van Den Top, a leader with the newly-formed Northwest Iowa Regional Manufacturers Partnership and Human Resources Director for Link Manufacturing in Sioux Center, Iowa. “Our companies are committed to making manufacturing a career choice that is at the top of the list.”

The Northwest Iowa Regional Manufacturing Partnership (The Partnership) includes 11 manufacturing companies from throughout the Northwest Iowa region and Northwest Iowa Community College (NCC) and Northwest Iowa Development (NWID) as supporting partners. The Partnership has created an organizational structure and a focused action plan with the support of NCC and NWID, with the primary goal being to help grow the manufacturing sector.

“Supporting this partnership and assisting manufacturers with their workforce needs is critical to our mission at NCC,” said Alethea Stubbe, President of Northwest Iowa Community College. “Manufacturing is the lifeblood of our regional economy, along with agriculture, and working as partners with economic developers and manufacturing companies makes strategic sense.”

Manufacturing companies participating in the Sector Partnership are: AIM Aerospace and Diamond Vogel, Orange City; Demco, Boyden; DTI- Sudenga Industries and Dur-A-Lift, George; Link Manufacturing, Sioux Center; Maintainer Corporation, Sheldon and Rock Rapids; Rosenboom, Sheldon; and Midwest Pro Manufacturing, Post Equipment, Rock Industries, and Valley Machining, Rock Valley.

The Partnership unveiled an action plan that includes an aggressive online and social media marketing effort aimed at students, parents and educators and the establishment of a new Manufacturing Career Coach position. Kristi Heisinger, a manufacturing engineer and northwest Iowa resident, was introduced as the Career Coach. Heisinger unveiled the new “Manufacturing Careers Beyond Expectations” website and reviewed the content of the site. (

“Everything about this partnership and our new website has been custom-designed to effectively communicate and promote the positive features and benefits of careers in manufacturing,” said Heisinger. “The new website will support my role as Career Coach in communicating about the exciting world of manufacturing.”

The group is also looking to add more partners in 2019. “We are confident that this unique partnership will grow as more companies learn about the valuable mission we are undertaking.” said Don Van Den Top.

For more information on the Northwest Iowa Regional Manufacturing Partnership, you can contact either:

Steve Simons at 712-470-6508

Kristi Heisinger at 712-631-5652



Link Manufacturing, Sioux Center

Rosenboom, Sheldon

Maintainer Corporation, Sheldon

AIM Aerospace, Orange City

Diamond Vogel, Orange City

DEMCO, Boyden

Diversified Technologies (Sudenga and Dur-A-Lift), George

Midwest Pro Manufacturing, Rock Valley

Post Equipment, Rock Valley

Rock Industries, Rock Valley

Valley Machining Company, Rock Valley


Manufacturing Career Opportunities

Career Coach Information

Kristi Heisinger
MS Industrial Management
NW Iowa Manufacturing Sector Career Coach
Northwest Iowa Community College
(712) 324-5061
(800) 352-4907 ext. 334

Kristi attended SDSU in Brookings where she obtained her BS in Mechanical Engineering and her MS in Industrial Management. Her first job was in Spencer as a Manufacturing Engineer at Eaton. She spent 12 years there in various roles (manufacturing engineering, production supervision, special projects, and engineering supervision). More recently she held positions at Rosenboom, both in Spirit Lake and Sheldon, in Process Engineering and Continuous Improvement. She and her husband have four children ranging from a senior in college to an 8th grader.