Business Donor Blog: Haag Companies

Twin Cities Habitat ReStore Home Improvement Outlets are vital to Habitat for Humanity’s mission. They do so many good things, like:

  • provide employment that focuses on individual and family development

  • serve as home goods stores for anyone who wants to furnish their house with quality and affordable products

  • pour resources into the homebuilding process

  • offer a tangible outlet for businesses and companies to partner with the work of advancing better affordable housing in the Twin Cities.

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Habitat’s business donors are the reason why our ReStores can provide excellent materials and furniture to the community. For this blog we are highlighting Haag Companies, a consistent donor that has given year after year because of their deep ethic of community building, lifting one another up, and passing on knowledge.

Glynn Haag, owner of Haag Companies, grew up on a farm in North Dakota. The Haag family immigrated to the States from Ukraine in the early 1890s.

A History Side-Note:

German-born Catherine the Great, Empress of Russia, enacted a manifesto that offered free farmland in Ukraine to German farmers in the early 1800s. This was to develop untilled land and bring about a new source of revenue to the empire. Less than a century later these very same migrant families were offered a similar opportunity in the United States.

Farmers_editedGerman-Russian Homesteaders of North Dakota 

More than 60,000 German-Russian migrants flooded states such as North Dakota, South Dakota, and Montana to become homesteaders. Glynn made sure to emphasize that while this was an opportunity to get out of abstract poverty for many of these families, it does not justify the fact that they were given Native land that didn’t belong to the government. “This is very sad, but we must face our past,” says Glynn. This shows why partnering with Habitat for Humanity to address racial equality and equity is so important.

As soon as Glynn was out of high school he joined the service for two years, then came to Minnesota to work construction. It wasn’t long before he heard of the need for more construction workers in Alaska, so young Glynn packed up his few belongings and went to work on the oil pipeline for the next 10 years. After this, he came back to Minnesota and began working on underground tunnels. While living and working in Minnesota for the second time he decided to buy a used lawn mower and cut grass. Glynn says, “that’s where it all began.”

It wasn’t long before his small mowing business turned into a full-blown lawn care operation. He started buying up storage units and equipment and eventually had his own sodding company. As the years went by, Haag Company began investing in more units, land, and property. Today, Haag Companies is a multi-million-dollar landscape and construction equipment retail and wholesaler.

Passing It On:

Glynn is passionate about teaching and training people on how to invest and become entrepreneurs. He gave this advice...

“Start saving now and look at money a different way,” says Glynn, “invest in your future by putting money away slowly at first… it really builds up if you do that steady.”

Young Boy lying on his bed putting money into a piggy bank

Glynn didn’t get this advice from his parents growing up. “I would ask my dad questions all the time. My father would say ‘that’s all you ask is all these questions - I don’t know a lot, I just don’t know’.” He tells of how his parents had just enough to provide for his needs through high school but after that he had to make his own way and learn as he went.

Now, Glynn carries a strong desire to instill the financial knowledge into the next generation, much like how Habitat provides homeownership classes and financial literacy education, Glynn wants to see people thrive and given a chance at building a future – another reason why he cherishes his partnership with Habitat.

homebuyer classes Habitat Provides Homeownership Training

Why Haag Companies Donate 

Glynn has been donating construction materials and lawn equipment to the Habitat ReStore for many years. I asked him what drew him to donating equipment and partnering with Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity for so long. He admits that it was role models such as Jimmy Carter that inspired him to give quietly and generously to organizations that invest in families’ lives.

Glynn wants to see people treated with respect, dignity, and honor by pushing companies and society to promote financial literacy, access to affordable housing, health care, and safe communities. He knows that Habitat for Humanity is not just about families receiving access to homeownership, but it is also a way for whole communities and societies to lift one another up for the prosperity of all.

ReStore Needs Your Help

Looking to donate? ReStore makes donating your items easy. Check out the ReStore donation guidelines to see if we would be a good home for your unwanted items. Your donations help generate revenue to create, preserve, and promote affordable homeownership in the Twin Cities.

Twin Cities Habitat and ReStore are hiring. Come join our team! Browse our open positions (full- and part-time) and find more info about building your career with Habitat.

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Topics: ReStore, Business Donor Spotlight, 2022