Arctic Cat and Ericco Manufacturing Earn Excellence Awards

Arctic Cat Thief River Falls

Arctic Cat, Ericco, and four other Minnesota manufacturers have been selected to receive “2023 Minnesota Manufacturing Excellence Awards.”

All six companies will be honored at the Manufacturing Excellence Awards event in Golden Valley, Minnesota, on March 09, 2023 from 5:00 pm – 7:30 pm.  Event tickets may be purchased online.

About Minnesota Manufacturing Excellence Awards

Manufacturing Excellence awards seek to recognize excellence in manufacturing. Nominations are open to original equipment manufacturers, contract manufacturers, and makers, both large and small from across Minnesota.

The goal of the awards is to spotlight truly exceptional performance in at least one of the following areas:

  • Growth/Performance
  • Product Design and Innovation
  • Operational Excellence
  • Workforce Development
  • Supply Chain Development
  • Sustainable Manufacturing
  • Collaboration in Manufacturing
  • Local Impact

Arctic Cat

Advance Thief River nominated Arctic Cat for demonstrating excellence in three areas: product design and innovation, workforce development, and local impact.

Arctic Cat is proud to call Thief River Falls its hometown, and prides itself on being a devoted supporter of the community. Each year, on the advice of the company’s employee-driven community relations committee, the company provides tens of thousands of dollars in financial contributions and in-kind support to local charities, civic organizations, schools, and other institutions.

The company has four focus areas for its charitable giving:

  • Education, particularly STEM education at the K-12 level
  • Community health and wellness, with a focus on youth fitness
  • Local and regional workforce development
  • Overall community impact

In 2021, Arctic Cat provided more than $38,000 in financial support alone, helping more than 15 organizations in the community. This help included funding new microscopes at Red Lake County High School, sponsoring the robotics team at Lincoln High School, supporting local events hosted by the Thief River Falls Chamber of Commerce, and providing support to local volunteer fire departments.

To date in 2022, the company has provided more than $45,000 in local assistance, including support for the Thief River Falls Education Foundation, the Thief River Falls Area Food Shelf, and BIO Girls, to name a few.


Ericco Manufacturing

Advance Thief River has nominated Ericco Manufacturing for demonstrating excellence in three areas: growth and performance, workforce development, and local impact.

The company’s growth and performance have been demonstrated through an increase in the number and types of products they manufacture, as well as through diversifying their customer base. The company’s new 10,000 square foot production building was built to accommodate the growth they are experiencing.

Ericco Manufacturing has also demonstrated a tremendous impact on area workforce development. The company’s leadership has contributed to efforts to grow the local economy by working with area nonprofits and workforce services.

Ben Erickson, Owner and President of the company, is on the Advance Thief River Board of Directors. Mike Sorteberg, General Manager, has served on the Advance Thief River Talent Taskforce for the last two years. Sally Erickson, Owner, has served faithfully on the board of the Northwest Private Industry Council for a number of years.

The company has provided numerous job shadowing experiences as well as providing tuition reimbursement for employees. They have also helped to coordinate manufacturing days in the high school, helping area youth understand the benefits of a career in manufacturing.

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