Old Fort, NC (October 21, 2021) – Kitsbow, manufacturer of premium cycling apparel and accessories, is the proud recipient of the NCWorks Governor of North Carolina’s Award of Distinction for 2021 in the “Employer” category exceptional ”. The award was presented at the Virtual 2021 NCWorks Partnership Conference on October 20.
Kitsbow, based in western North Carolina, was nominated for the award by the Region C Workforce Development Council in recognition of Kitsbow’s demonstrated contributions to the economy and for its innovation during the COVID-19 pandemic as the company turned to the production of personal protective equipment (PPE).
“A highly skilled workforce is the key to preparing for employment in North Carolina,” said North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper. “With its commitment to employing North Carolinians, teaching them how to sew and participating in our on-the-job training program, Kitsbow is setting an exceptional example to other employers.”
David Lee, director of the Foothills Workforce Development Board, also noted: “Kitsbow was one of the first manufacturing companies in the country to pivot in March 2020 to manufacture both face shields and fabric face masks from the material. that they already had on hand. It might be hard to remember now, but it was at a time when medical professionals and first responders were running out of masks or shields, and Kitsbow employees stepped up to help. “
Since moving its headquarters from California to Old Fort in October 2019, Kitsbow has created over 50 new jobs and is currently recruiting for another 10 open positions. As part of its benefits offer, Kitsbow offers its team members 100% employer-paid health insurance, paid vacation, subsidized food, secure indoor bike racks, a shower and a changing room, as well as service on employee bikes subsidized by the company. .
“It is an absolute honor to be recognized by Governor Roy Cooper with this NCWorks Distinction Award and most importantly to be honored as an outstanding employer,” said David Billstrom, CEO of Kitsbow. “Our team has been an integral part of our success. I am deep
grateful and proud for a team of 60 people who came to a facility every day during a statewide lockdown to manufacture PPE to help keep our community and country safe. “
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Pictured, left to right: David Lee, director of the Foothills Workforce Development Board; Sarah Crank, Foothills Workforce Development Board Business Services Representative; Jessie Inglis, Kitsbow Production Manager; David Billstrom, CEO of Kitsbow.
Kitsbow was created in Sonoma County, California eight years ago by dedicated mountain bikers and apparel industry veterans. Because its designers have spent years in the saddle, every detail is obsessively considered. Every element, right down to the zippers and reflective piping, is checked for quality, style and durability.
By relocating its manufacturing to Old Fort, North Carolina in 2019, Kitsbow embarked on a just-in-time manufacturing model, minimizing waste and maximizing flexibility to serve the customer. All products are packaged in compostable packaging, along with all shipping materials, ready to return to Earth in your own backyard. Kitsbow already manufactures over 75% of its products in the United States and is on track to manufacture all of its products in-house by 2021. Kitsbow is a cyclist-friendly company, designated at the highest level (Platinum) by the League of American Cyclists . .