IMG_0488 (2)Son of Iowa

The grandson of a gypsum miner and the son of a World War 2 veteran-turned school superintendent, Gary Carlson learned at an early age the importance of hard work, service and education.

Growing up in the Hawkeye State, he developed a love for the honesty, work ethic and compassion of his fellow Iowans.

Gary, and his wife Sheryl, instilled those values and love of Iowa to the five children they raised and educated in Iowa.

After graduating from the University of Iowa, Gary went to work as a First Line Production Supervisor for Bandag, Inc. on the night shift. It was there Gary learned how to lead a diverse team of people by maximizing the skills of each team member and creating an environment of communication. During Gary’s almost 25 year career with Bandag, he held increasingly responsible roles in manufacturing, logistics, human resources, strategic planning, and international operations, ultimately serving as a Senior Vice President responsible for Europe, Africa, and the Middle East.

Legacy of Leadership

During his time as the President and CEO of the Greater Muscatine Chamber of Commerce & Industry, he helped foster a thriving, vibrant local economy that emphasizes entrepreneurship and innovation.

Currently an executive with HNI Corporation, Gary helps lead a company whose core values include the commitment to community involvement and leadership.

Gary has made it a point to be actively involved in our community, serving as

  • Member, St. Mathias Catholic Church
  • Committee member, Vision 20-20
  • Co-Chair, Mayor’s Community Improvement Action Team
  • Director, Crossroads Foundation
  • Director, Muscatine Community College Foundation
  • Director, Trinity Hospital Foundation
  • Board Member, Muscatine Community Health Foundation

Serving in the State Legislature has been an extension of his long journey of public service.

Gary believes that together, Iowans can use common sense to find real, workable solutions to improve our schools, strengthen our economy, and insure Iowa has a strong future.