John Hand grew up in North Carolina and attended North Carolina State University where he studied computer engineering. He moved to Warsaw, Indiana in 1986, as a 21-year-old, to take a job with the company his cousin, Terry Hand, led – Hand Industries. Thirty years later, John is now President of Hand Industries, which has divisions in orthopedic and aerospace metal finishing, agriculture and recognition awards. John credits his dad, John E. Hand, with shaping his values and work ethic more than anyone else. “He encouraged me to go the extra mile, to do the right thing, and to always work hard.”
Florell Hand is originally from Okeechobee, Florida. She attended Grace College where she studied elementary education. Florell began her teaching career in Warsaw at Madison Elementary. She was introduced to John during her first year of teaching, and they were married in 1990. Florell now works in the School of Education for her college alma mater. John and Florell have twins – a son and a daughter.
The Hand Family also operates a private foundation, the Hand Family Foundation, which primarily supports charitable activities related to education, religion and the environment.
Terry and Terese Hand established scholarship funds at the Community Foundation in memory of their mothers in 1986. When the Community Foundation announced its “Bring it Home” campaign in which donations to Community Funds would be matched by Lilly Endowment’s GIFT VI initiative, Terry recommended that the Hand Family Foundation honor John and Florell with a Community Fund endowment in their names.
“We were excited that this gift would be matched,” John said.
John and Florell’s message to future generations is, “Give back to the community where you’ve made a living.”