Gentex Corporation, a global leader in personal protection and situational awareness solutions for defense forces, emergency responders, and industrial personnel kicked off its 125 year-anniversary last week with company president and CEO, L.P. Frieder doing a tandem jump with The Red Devils, the official parachute display team of both The Parachute Regiment (The Paras) and the British Army. Conducted in DeLand, Florida, the jump marks past accomplishments, including its pivotal parachute production, and launches the company’s next quarter-century of innovation and excellence.
Established in 1894 with the construction of its first textile plant, the company leveraged its material science and manufacturing expertise to produce silk cartridge bags during World War I, then parachutes during World War II, which directly led to the development of the nation’s first hard shell helmets for jet fighters in 1948. This firmly established Gentex as the global leader in helmet systems for defense forces and solidified its enduring mission of providing personal protection and situational awareness solutions for defense forces, emergency responders, and industrial personnel.
“Our evolution is a direct result of listening to our customers and providing them solutions to their problems,” said L.P. Frieder, president and CEO of Gentex Corporation. “We’re all proud of this and the many notable programs we’ve supported over the past 125 years, including the recent USMC Enhanced Combat Helmet (ECH), USSOCOM Ops-Core FAST Helmet programs, and now the F-35.” Frieder added, “We’ve stood for innovation, quality, and reliability, which will continue to define us in the future as we address the issues of the ever changing, and increasingly challenging environments our customers work in.”
As Gentex embarks on its next quarter century, the company will further its focus on mission effectiveness, integrating new technologies into their helmet system platforms, as well as continued expansion of its optics, hearing protection, communications, and respiratory capabilities and products.
“A key aspect of our 125th anniversary celebration is making a positive difference in the lives of our customers and the communities that have supported us and made our success possible,” said Frieder. “Employees at each of our five global facilities will be holding special fund-raising events over the course of our anniversary year.” Frieder added, “I couldn’t be prouder of our employees who are further contributing to the great work that charities are doing in support of the sacrifices many of our customers have made.”
Other members of Gentex’s leadership team, including Chairman of the Board, Peter Frieder and Heather Acker, Executive Vice President and CFO, also participated in the anniversary jump, along with special guest, Travis Haley, a veteran Force Reconnaissance Marine and CEO of Haley Strategic Partners.
Gentex partnered with The Red Devils in 2016 to help support The Paras and the British Army, both long time customers of Gentex Corporation, and to promote their common goal of advancing parachuting and skydiving safety. Gentex provides their Ops-Core FAST Carbon High Cut Helmets and Ops-Core Mk1 Performance Protective Eyewear to The Red Devils to use during their promotional water jumps and for team training.
Gentex Corporation, www.gentexcorp.com.