Komatsu donates $250K to AED Foundation’s Vision 2025

Komatsu has contributed $250,000 to Vision 2025, a project created by the Associated Equipment Distributors (AED) Foundation to address the current skills gap and workforce shortage issues and to increase the number of qualified technicians entering the equipment distribution industry.

Left to right: Dan Stracener, CEO, Tractor & Equipment Company; Ed Kirby, chairman, Kirby-Smith Machinery; Michael Brennan, president and COO, Bramco; Rod Bull, EVP North America Region, Komatsu; Brian McGuire, president and CEO, AED. (Photo: Komatsu)

“We recognize the imperative to build a talent pipeline for our distributors and the heavy equipment industry at large,” said Rod Bull, Komatsu executive vice president, North America Region. “Komatsu supports Vision 2025 and its focus on helping schools promote careers in the technical field to young people who often aren’t aware of the great family-supporting jobs available in this industry. We’re excited to do our part to share this story of opportunity to join an industry that keeps our world growing and sustains our way of life.”

According to the AED Foundation, the equipment industry needs to fill approximately 73,500 heavy-equipment technician positions over the next five years, and this labor shortage is compounded by a gap in required skills and available training.

Vision 2025 aims to combat these issues by growing the foundation’s impact to include a minimum of 120 accredited college programs (the project currently has 71) and a minimum of 200 recognized high school programs (currently 36).

The project’s goals are to fundraise $10 million over the next five years and to create a talent pipeline that includes an additional 10,000 skilled technicians entering the workforce, 5000 AED Foundation-certified technicians and 500 AED Foundation-certified managers.

The AED Foundation said that Vision 2025 funds will be directed toward:

  • New college accreditation programs targeting underserved areas where an existing heavy equipment/diesel technology program is already in place
  • High school recognition programs that will prioritize locations that can serve as a feeder system into current and anticipated accredited college programs
  • Expanding the AED Foundation’s endowment to ensure Vision 2025 efforts are sustainable over the long term

“The AED Foundation is grateful for Komatsu’s leadership and investment in our Vision 2025 campaign,” said AED Foundation President Brian McGuire. “Komatsu’s support, in conjunction with nearly 75 other investors, brings our Vision 2025 campaign to over $6 million. These investments provide the Foundation the sustainability needed to continue to be the heavy equipment industry’s leader in workforce development.”

With the company’s $250,000 donation, Komatsu and its dealer network have contributed a total of $1.45 million to the Vision 2025 campaign. Dealers that made a donation include:

  • Anderson Equipment Company
  • Berry Tractor & Equipment Company
  • Brandeis Machinery & Supply Company
  • C.N. Wood, Inc.
  • Continental Equipment Company
  • Equipment Sales & Service Ltd.
  • General Equipment & Supplies, Inc.
  • Kirby-Smith Machinery, Inc.
  • Modern Machinery, Inc.
  • Power Equipment Company
  • Road Machinery & Supplies Company
  • Roland Machinery Company
  • Waukesha-Pearce Industries, LLC
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