Robert DeShazer, an Assembly Specialist with the Hatco Corporation for almost seven years, recently was the first company employee to take advantage of a pilot employer-assistance housing (EAH) program initiated by Hatco and Door County Economic Development Corporation earlier this year. DeShazer borrowed funds from his Hatco-sponsored retirement account to make a down payment on his home purchase; his contribution was matched, dollar-for-dollar, by the Door County Housing Assistance program, which is administered by DCEDC
“I am so happy to be in my own home,” said DeShazer. “There’s no way I could have afforded this by myself. I had just about given up hope of owning my own home for at least another ten years. Hatco and DCEDC have been very generous.”
“We are so happy for Robert and his family,” said Jackie Miller, Human Resource Manager at Hatco. “We consider employees our greatest asset and we are thrilled to offer this homebuyer assistance program. This is an excellent opportunity for our employees to take advantage of a program that is designed to help working people attain the dream of home ownership and develop roots within the community.”
DCEDC reserved $60,000 for Hatco employees from the Community Development Block Grant-funded Door County Housing Assistance program, to be used towards down payments. The funds provide a one-to-one match to the employee’s down payment contribution, up to $10,000.
“We are pleased that Hatco has undertaken this program to assist their employees to achieve home ownership,” said Economic Development Manager Sam Perlman of DCEDC. “Programs like these have been demonstrated to improve employee recruitment and retention. We hope other companies will take notice and consider offering similar programs for their employees.”
Hatco is a leading manufacturer of foodservice equipment with offices in Milwaukee and
production facilities in Sturgeon Bay. The company employs 370 people and sells its products worldwide.
The Door County Economic Development Corporation (DCEDC) is a public/private partnership dedicated to improving the economic vitality of the county and its residents. Founded in 1989, DCEDC has been successful in helping existing businesses create and retain thousands of jobs through a myriad of programs and initiatives. Additionally, DCEDC places strong emphasis on fostering entrepreneurial instincts in county residents as well as those who vacation on the Door County Peninsula. Door County Economic Development Corporation offices are located within the small business incubator DCEDC founded in 1997 at 185 East Walnut Street in the Sturgeon Bay Industrial Park.