1957: The Beginning
Lad Irrigation Company was established in Moses Lake, Washington, in 1957. Many have asked, “Why L A D”? The original partner’s first names were Larry, Arlie, and Don. The first initials of their names formed the name of the company. Larry and Don soon left the company, leaving Arlie and his wife Aurora as owners. Arlie served in the Korean War. After his honorable discharge, he enrolled at Washington State University and received a degree in agricultural engineering. He then moved his family to Moses Lake to start his career.
1967: A Family Affair
From the very beginning, Lad Irrigation’s focus was on designing, installing, and servicing pumps for agriculture. During the early days of the company, the business had to be sought out. Arlie would drive the dirt roads searching for drilling rigs. Upon seeing one on the horizon, his heart would start beating faster with the hope of a future pump design and sale. In the early days, Lad Irrigation’s installations were a family affair. Arlie, Aurora, and their four children were often working together assembling a wheel line in a grower’s field. In 1967 Lad Irrigation was incorporated in the state of Washington.
1968: Awarded service
In 1968, Lad became a dealer of Valley Irrigation Systems. In the beginning, these mechanized center pivots were propelled by water pressure, but in the early ’70s, electric center pivots came onto the scene. Over the years, Lad Irrigation has received several awards from Valley, including premier dealer, dealer of the year, salesman of the year, parts dealer of the year, and service dealer of the year. Lad and growers in the Columbia Basin have been very instrumental in developing irrigation reliability and technology.
1984: Eastern Washington Expansion
Over the years, Lad has stayed focused on ways to improve customer service. In 1984, Lad expanded operations to Othello, Washington. The store quickly grew from a parts depot to a full-service sales design, parts, and service resource for growers.
1995: Shared Ownership
Arlie felt that Lad’s greatest assets were our customers and employees. One of Arlie’s greatest desires was to sell the company to his employees.
In 1995, an Employee Stock Ownership Plan was established and 51% of the company’s stock was purchased by the ESOP.
1998: Expansion continues
In 1998, a branch store was opened in George, Washington.
2007: 100% Employee Owned
In 2007, the remaining 49% was purchased by the ESOP making Lad Irrigation 100% employee-owned. Lad Irrigation is organized with a board of directors made up of 3 company officers and 4 elected employees.
2018: Introduces Royal City
In 2018, a branch store was opened in Royal City, Washington.
2019: 3 New Locations
In 2019, Valley expanded Lad’s dealership territory to cover the Pasco, Basin City, and Sunnyside areas.
Lad acquired the facilities servicing these three areas. These strategically located operations allow Lad to better service the grower operations with row crops and permanent crops in the Columbia Basin and Yakima Valley.