Maytag Corporation, Newton

Those who knew Dan Krumm described him as a very reserved man with a low quiet voice, but he knew how to use that voice very effectively. He is credited with leading Maytag through its greatest period of growth.

Born in Sioux City on October 15, 1926, Krumm grew up in Primghar, Iowa. He earned a business degree from University of Iowa before beginning a 40-year career with Maytag in 1952.

Krumm managed Maytag operations in several European countries in the early sixties, returning to Newton in 1967. He saw this experience as being critical to his later success saying “in a company full of specialists, the European experience made me one of the few generalists in the company.” In 1972 he was elected to the board and named president and treasurer. Two years later he became CEO, a position he would hold until 1992 when he stepped down upon reaching Maytag’s mandatory retirement age of 65.

During his tenure he expanded Maytag through acquisitions aiming to round out its product line. The purchase of Magic Chef tripled the company’s employees and sales went from 700 million to 1.8 billion while market share increased from 5% to 13%. Krumm received praise for the smooth incorporation of Magic Chef into Maytag. His being a generalist was also an asset as Maytag diversified their product mix.

While he closed two plants in Iowa during his tenure, Krumm kept the headquarters in Iowa to preserve what he called the “Newton Ethic” of the Maytag corporate culture, slow but steady growth. He died in 1993 at age 67, but his commitment to Newton and the state of Iowa continues to be seen through the work of his foundation.