Pella native Gary Vermeer was posthumously awarded the 2009 Lifetime Achievement Award at the 10th Annual Iowa Venture Capital and Entrepreneur Conference.

Vermeer was the founder of Vermeer Corp., a manufacturing company that makes farm, construction, environmental and industrial equipment in Pella. Of his many innovations, Vermeer revolutionized farming when he created the hay baler in 1971, said organizers. He also started the Vermeer Charitable Foundation that donates to local and worldwide charities.

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