Originally announced in late 2006, JELD-WEN placed the project on hiatus in 2007 due to market issues. After Governor Jindal took office, LED worked with the company to provide a comprehensive workforce solution to encourage JELD-WEN’s completion of the project. JELD-WEN began in 1960 as a small Oregon millwork plant with 15 employees and today has approximately 20,000 employees across more than 100 locations in the Americas, Europe, Asia and Australia. The company’s extensive product offering encompasses windows, exterior doors, interior doors and related building products that are sold globally through multiple distribution channels, including retail home centers, wholesale distributors and building products dealers. Website
Governor Jindal said, “In 2007, the national economy impacted the construction industry and lowered the demand for interior doors which stalled the project and put new job opportunities at JELD-WEN on hold. We could have easily blamed the national economy and written off JELD-WEN, but we fight for every single job opportunity in Louisiana and take nothing for granted. That’s why for the past four years, we’ve worked closely with JELD-WEN to see how we could help restart the project. The bottom line is that we did not give up on this project. We did not give up on JELD-WEN and JELD-WEN did not give up on Winn Parish or Louisiana.”
Located between Winnfield and Jonesboro, the JELD-WEN facility will manufacture wood fiber door-facings using a proprietary process. From Winn Parish, the door-facings will be shipped to JELD-WEN’s door assembly plants. LED will provide the resources of LED FastStart™, the nation’s No. 1 workforce development program, as JELD-WEN begins hiring its staff in the coming months.
“This plant will be the most technologically advanced molded door-facings plant in the world,” said Orsino, the JELD-WEN president. “The efficiency and quality this plant will deliver will enhance JELD-WEN’s global leadership position.”
“Louisiana has a steady and reliable source of hardwood fiber,” said JELD-WEN Senior Vice President Jim Morrison. “We’re also impressed by the employment base throughout Winn Parish.”
In addition to offering FastStart services, the state secured the project by providing a performance-based, $750,000 Economic Development Award Program grant for site infrastructure, and JELD-WEN is expected to utilize Louisiana’s Quality Jobs and Industrial Tax Exemption Program incentives. The state also assisted Winn Parish and the company in securing an $899,000 federal Community Development Block Grant for sewer and water infrastructure development and a $1.5 million U.S. Economic Development Administration grant to defray the costs of providing electrical service to the site.
“Winn Parish welcomes JELD-WEN and looks forward to continuing a great working relationship with the company and its officials,” said Jack McFarland, the Winn Parish Police Jury president. “The impact of the opening of this facility will be a tremendous economic boost to the local and surrounding economies. We are very pleased that JELD-WEN chose to locate its newest facility in Winn Parish.”