Jim Walker, a maintenance technician in the Pella Corp. door plant in Pella, IA, has been named the first recipient of the company’s Joan Kuyper Farver Spirit Award for his caring spirit and enthusiasm for community service.

Walker is a 42-year Pella team member who has had perfect attendance for 35 of those years.

Pella team members nominated Walker as the award recipient. He has demonstrated Farver’s caring spirit, generosity and servant heart through his work with many organizations, including the Mahaska County Community Emergency Response Team, which he has supported for the past decade and is the current deputy chief.

Each year, the award will recognize a Pella team member with a grant to an organization of the award recipient’s choice, given in the recipient’s name. The grants will be made based on the merits of Pella team members who have given unselfishly to enrich their communities and who demonstrate servant leadership. Walker has chosen to give $25,000 to the Mahaska County Community Emergency Response Team, which will provide a safe environment to meet the special needs of emergency responders during all types of emergencies.

“I nominated Jim because he is the only person I know that gives of himself all of the time to others,” said Pella team member David Croft. “The characteristics that make Jim, whom I treasure to call a friend, worthy of this award are his quiet patience, his humble service, and his integrity and fortitude.”

Joan Kuyper Farver was the daughter of Pella founder Pete Kuyper. She filled the role of chair of the board of directors from 1980 – 1995, when she became chair emerita. She was known for giving generously of her resources and unselfishly of her time. Farver understood the importance of quality communities, which was demonstrated through her active membership in the Pella Rolscreen and Kuyper Foundations, her personal foundation, and other community organizations. She passed away in February 2017.

“Her generosity and kindness will never be forgotten,” said Karin Peterson, vice president, human resources. “Her love of Pella Corp., our team members, and our communities was evident to all who had the privilege of knowing her. We believe this award program helps to honor her life of service.”

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