Garwin McNeilus, who acknowledged he “started out dead broke,” ultimately became successful manufacturing concrete mixers and garbage trucks.
All the while, he said, there was a desire to help less fortunate people, and he continually backed international outreach charities of Seventh-day Adventist organizations that built and staffed orphanages and associated schools. McNeilus sold the family business and said that at about the same time he realized the potential of wind energy in his area of Minnesota.
The wind farm near Adams was dedicated October 27, 2003, and today McNeilus says his company operates 56 turbines. The largest—more than 200 feet tall with three blades each measuring more than 100 feet—generates 1.65 megawatts of electricity.