Greg Butler Receives Prestigious Harold Schafer Leadership Award


Bismarck, ND - The University of Mary, America's Leadership University, and its Gary Tharaldson School of Business proudly presented the Harold Schafer Leadership Award to Greg Butler on Monday, Oct. 25, at the Holiday Inn in Fargo.

Inspired by North Dakota entrepreneur Harold Schafer, this prestigious award recognizes North Dakota entrepreneurs for their spirit of innovation and servant-leadership; their contributions to the benefit of the state, region, and nation; and their faithfulness to those values cherished at the university.

In keeping with its emphasis on values and servant-leadership, the University of Mary bestows this award on individuals with North Dakota roots, who through hard work, determination, creativity and resourcefulness, have established new ventures or led existing ones to renewed growth by exemplifying entrepreneurial spirit and modeling ethical business practices.

"The presentation of the Harold Schafer Leadership Award to Greg Butler recognizes his success both as an entrepreneur and as a servant-leader," commented Father James Shea, university president, who presented Butler with the crystal award. "Committed to giving back to his native North Dakota, he has contributed generously of his time and resources in support of the University of Mary and its Harold Schafer Executive Operations Committee, providing leadership and guidance to future generations by sharing his wisdom and experience and modeling Christian values and ethical business practices."

Butler, now partially retired, serves as chairman of the board of Gremada Industries, Inc., a family-owned company since its inception in 1955. Throughout his career, he has worked with employees at all levels to ensure quality products, consistent sales growth and a work environment that fosters innovation, creativity and longevity. Crucial in the company's innovative movement toward using laser technology for cladding and heat treating of parts, and believing in remanufacturing as the heavy equipment industry's primary means of recycling, he is committed to passing on both the skills to succeed and the values and ethics for responsible Christian leadership to the next generation through education. (See bio below.)

Gregory F. Butler is chairman of the board of Gremada Industries, Inc., in Fargo, ND. Born in Grand Forks, ND, he moved to Fargo with his parents, Francis and Doris Butler, and siblings Matt, David and Judith (Nikle), when he was 10. Greg graduated from Saint Thomas Military Academy, St. Paul, MN, and attended the University of North Dakota and North Dakota State University, graduating from Moorhead State University with a major in business administration and marketing management.

While working for Butler Machinery in Bismarck from 1970 to 1987, Greg became CEO of Gremada Industries in 1981. During his nearly three decades heading the family-owned company founded by his father in 1955, Greg helped lead Gremada to great success in the remanufactured parts industry. He guided Gremada's growth and expansion into various manufacturing areas, resulting in its recognition by the Fargo Moorhead Chamber of Commerce as one of the 10 fastest growing companies in the area and its receipt of the Triumph Award for excellence in the field of remanufacturing. Under his direction, in 1996, Gremada became one of the first companies in North America to utilize laser technology in the remanufacturing process, opening Laser Cladding Services in Houston, TX, and continuing to expand its facilities. Having sold most of Gremada's West Fargo assets to Caterpillar in 2008, Greg has continued to provide leadership, expanding Gremada's Houston presence with the recent purchase of a machining operation and helping to actively pursue other business in a number of states, including North Dakota.

Throughout his career, Greg has strived to maintain a work environment that fosters innovation, creativity and longevity, working with employees at all levels to ensure friendly, dependable, high-quality service and superior products. As Gremada goes forward with new leadership and a redefined business model, Greg and his family remain committed to the entrepreneurial values that motivated Francis to start Gremada and have shaped its success.

Influenced by his parents and teachers, Greg has contributed generously of his time and resources. In addition to having served on the Cloverdale Foods Company Board, he was active in United Way and Girl Scouts in Bismarck. He also was a charter member of the Harold Schafer Leadership Center Executive Operations Committee for Business and has been a long-time supporter of the University of Mary, where Greg Butler Hall, a men's residence, was named in his honor.

Presently, Greg resides in Fargo, where he enjoys spending time with his children and grandchildren. Now partially retired, he also enjoys traveling, skiing, fishing, and spending time pheasant hunting and enjoying time at his lake cabin in Minnesota, with his family and friends.