Robert “Bob” Lee Vermeer, passed away at 78 years old on August 17, 2022. For many years, Bob was known as CEO and later chair of the board of U.S. based Vermeer company.
Born in Oskaloosa, Iowa, Bob grew up on a family farm near Pella. He was the son of Gary Vermeer, founder of the Vermeer company, manufacturer of industrial and agricultural equipment.
Bob joined the family company in 1974 and held multiple roles that drove the business strategy and long-term growth of Vermeer, including Chief Executive Officer beginning in 1989 and later Co-Chief Executive Officer in 2003 alongside his sister Mary. Bob also served as Chair of the Board from 1989 through 2014. It was during his tenure that the business grew to more than 60 countries on six continents with a team of employees and products supported by hundreds of dealers around the world. On the family side, Bob was a leader in promoting succession planning to transition the business to future generations of the Vermeer family.
Bob was committed to countless philanthropic endeavors as President of the Vermeer Charitable Foundation. The Foundation’s efforts have improved the lives of people throughout local communities, the State of Iowa and worldwide.
His business expertise and passion for people resulted in several board roles, past and present, among which the U.S. Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM).
Bob also dedicated time as an ambassador for Vermeer, family business planning and shareholder engagement.