New business to employ 100+

Published 12:00 am Friday, February 15, 2008

WINDSOR – For centuries, agriculture has played a major role in Bertie County.

That tradition continues today.

On Friday, an announcement was made regarding the opening of a new Lewiston business that promises to create more than 100 jobs in the field of agricultural equipment manufacturing. There, Roanoke Manufacturing, Inc. will be located in the old Gregory Manufacturing Co. building, formerly the home of Harrington Manufacturing, a firm that for years was one of the mainstays within Bertie County’s agricultural landscape.

Job opportunities at the new business range from general laborers to secretarial to welders and many other specialty workers.

“Just about any job description you can think of, it needs to be filled at this point,” stated co-owner Al Collins of Delaware.

Collins, along with Don Cathell and Jim Messick, purchased the old Gregory property and plan to continue the tradition of farm equipment manufacturing there.

All currently own multiple businesses in Delaware, but have chosen to open this new business branch in Bertie County.

The three closed the loan on the business late Friday afternoon at Pritchett & Birch Law Firm in Windsor.

They are wasting no time trying to find employees to work at the new company as they are expected to start hiring almost immediately, beginning Monday morning.

Bertie County officials reacted positively to the news, with several showing up for the loan closing.

County Manager Zee Lamb remarked, “We’re excited about this development and look forward to working with Roanoke in the future to make their transition into Bertie County as seamless as possible.”

He continued, “Given the current state of national economics, 100 new jobs in Bertie County is very much welcomed.”

Bertie County Economic Development Director Steve Biggs was equally excited about the new business.

“This is an absolutely great, great day for Bertie County. From a company (Gregory Manufacturing) that because of hurricanes and 9/11 had some financial problems, we’ve found a company that was able to purchase it and instead of completely that original company folding down, we’re able to put 100 people to work here where there was only three or four working there before,” he stated.

Biggs continued, “The commissioners and the county manager have allowed me to work hard to find companies like this, so that we can be fortunate enough to have them come in and revive a company that is going down.”

To apply, a person can stop by the building at 506 Oak Drive in Lewiston.