Kevin Bogan – President, Newmar Kountry Klub Board of Directors | Vice President of Operations, Newmar Corporation
Greetings from Nappanee! 2018 went by incredibly fast, and I expect nothing different for 2019. We are into January and so far we have had a mild winter in Northern Indiana. I would be happy if the mild weather continued into spring! I hope your holidays were enjoyable and healthy, and you were able to spend quality time with family and friends, maybe even while using your Newmar.
Thank you for your support of the Kountry Klub and Newmar Corporation. We appreciate and thank all of the Klub leadership, directors, chapter officers, rally hosts, volunteers, and everyone that helps to drive the Klub. As always, this includes Linda Feece and DeAnn LaMaine in the Klub office in Nappanee who do a great job supporting the organization.
In a time when many RV manufacturer owner clubs are shrinking in size or closing, the Kountry Klub has continued to grow. New memberships grew by 10% in 2018, on top of the growth for the last few years. The growth of the Klub is a real credit to the leadership at all levels and our members living the Klub experience.
Bob and Bonnie Krieger have decided to make 2019 their last year as the International Directors of the Kountry Klub. I have truly enjoyed working with Bob and Bonnie for the years they have been in the Klub, and am looking forward to working with them this year. Their passion, dedication, commitment, efforts, experience, and leadership for the Newmar Kountry Klub have been great and they will be very difficult to replace. If you have interest as a candidate for the International Director position, please find the details in this edition.
Newmar continued to be very blessed in 2018. We always have our challenges and opportunities, but it is a blessing to be able to work with the Newmar team, which now numbers over 1,000 people.
Here are a few highlights from 2018:
- started operations in our new Paint Building expansion in January, 2018.
- increased our production rate twice, and are currently building 55 coaches per week.
- continue to implement process improvements internally and with suppliers to improve product quality and reliability
- construction and startup of the state of the art expanded Newmar Service Facility in Nappanee. I believe the results of this project show Newmar’s commitment to our customers, and am sure you will agree if you have the opportunity to visit us in Nappanee. The overnight service park, reserved exclusively for service appointments, will be completed in the spring.
- continued to change manufacturing department layouts to improve safety, process quality, material flow, add new processes to support new product features, and increase capacity.
- very recent addition of two large mezzanines in our main assembly facility
Looking ahead into 2019, we have many projects in process to enable us to further enhance and grow the Newmar Plant Tour experience in Nappanee. We feel that highlighting more of our manufacturing process through a more comprehensive plant tour will help us further demonstrate “When You Know The Difference.” Look for more details in the spring.
As this is written I look forward to seeing many of you at the Tampa Supershow Rally in mid-January and in Syracuse for the Kountry Klub’s 2019 International Rally in the fall.
God Bless, and Safe Travels!