Chairman & Owner East Penn Manufacturing (Deceased) – Lyon Station, Pennsylvania
In 1946, DeLight Breidegam Jr., a young Air Force veteran, started a battery business called East Penn Manufacturing with his father, DeLight Sr., who was a seasoned battery professional. At that time, the war made materials for new batteries scarce, but there was a great demand for rebuilt batteries to allow the returning GIs to get their cars and trucks started. DeLight and his dad filled that need by collecting old batteries and rebuilding them into new. Eventually, East Penn Manufacturing began to build new batteries as materials became available, and a new plant was built in Lyon Station, PA. By 1971, the company had grown to 350 employees, a number that would double in the next five years. Investments in new manufacturing and battery technology led to expansive growth throughout the 1980s and 1990s. The company is now the largest manufacturing employer in Berks County with a 490+ acre plant site that features on-site environmental and recycling facilities. Mr. Breidegam has been recognized by numerous business, professional and trade organizations for his entrepreneurial and leadership abilities. He holds honorary degrees from Moravian College, where he served on the Board of Trustees, and from Kutztown University, where he has served on the Foundation Board. With satisfied customers such as Caterpillar, Harley-Davidson and Freightliner to name a few, East Penn Manufacturing is truly a powerhouse which grew from humble beginnings, and Breidegam’s dedication to the company he and his father began almost 60 years ago remains unwavering.