Rick Wintermute and Rod Berens

Rick Wintermute (left) and Rod Berens are the current owners of Kingery Construction. They are pledging $50,000 towards the Nexus project.

 

The company that has provided construction management services to Northeast Community College has made a $50,000 investment to the institution’s Nexus project to build new agriculture facilities on the Norfolk campus.

Kingery Construction, which has headquarters in Lincoln, has contracted with Northeast since 2014 on projects that include Path Hall, Hawks Village, the current student center remodeling and addition and repair of more than 20 roofs and buildings after a large hail storm in 2014, according to a college media release.

“The people we’ve worked with at Northeast have been great partners and allies,” said Rod Berens, president and co-owner of Kingery Construction.

Kingery Construction was owned and operated by three generations of the Kingery family for nearly 90 years until 2013, when it was purchased by the current owners, Berens and Rick Wintermute.

“Rick and I both have children,” Berens said, “and further education is something we believe is important. We see the real need for the local community college providing a quality education at an affordable price. That’s why we wanted to be a partner in the Nexus project at Northeast.”

Funding for the $23 million Agriculture & Water Center for Excellence project is being solicited to enhance and expand the agricultural facilities at Northeast Community College.

In addition to the college’s commitment of $10 million, Northeast is seeking at least $13 million in private funds to begin the initial phase of construction, which includes a new veterinary technology clinic and classrooms, a new farm site with a large animal handling facility and other farm structures for livestock operations, a farm office and storage. The new facilities will be located near the Chuck M. Pohlman Agriculture Complex on East Benjamin Avenue in Norfolk.

“We appreciate the support of Kingery Construction for the Nexus project,” said Dr. Tracy Kruse, associate vice president of development and external affairs and executive director of the Northeast Foundation. “They have been a good partner with Northeast on several projects over the past five years, and this financial investment will support agriculture students and the local communities where those students will work and live after graduation.”

In August, the Acklie Charitable Foundation (ACF) announced a $5 million lead gift to the Nexus project. ACF was founded by the late Duane Acklie and Phyllis Acklie, both Madison County natives and graduates of Norfolk Junior College, a predecessor institution of Northeast Community College.

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