Gougeon Brothers, Inc.

Gougeon Brothers, Inc.

In 1960, Meade Gougeon and his younger brother, Jan, built two boats using an epoxy as the adhesive. In 1969, they founded Gougeon Brothers Boatworks to build iceboats. With the help of friends from The Dow Chemical Company, they developed their own epoxy system which was ideally suited for their applications. Modifying the epoxy system so it was suitable as a coating was a major breakthrough.

By 1971, Gougeon Brothers was selling West System ® Brand Epoxy to other customers for use building their own boats. Brother Joel Gougeon joined the company in this year, and was very involved in developing the epoxy business during his years with the company. (Joel went on to a successful career in politics and is now Advisor of Government Relations at SVSU.) By 1973, the company was the largest builder of iceboats in the country.

Today, the epoxy systems are sold across the United States and in a dozen foreign countries. In 1979, NASA researchers contacted Gougeon Brothers to build experimental wind turbine blades, leading to a multi-million dollar contract.

Gougeon Brothers is an employee-owned company. The scholarship fund was established in 1997 because the employees of Gougeon Brothers have a strong interest in science and education, and wish to recognize and encourage outstanding students.