Woodward's History

Woodward, Inc. was founded in 1870 in Loves Park, IL as Woodward Governor Company after Amos Woodward invented his first water wheel governor. Amos handed over the business to his son Elmer, who patented the first successful aircraft propeller governor in 1934. Irl Martin Amos’ son-in-law followed Elmer, keeping the company within the Woodward family for over 100 years.

For almost 150 years, Woodward has innovated products for control of water, wind, and gas turbines, as well as steam, gas, and diesel engines. Woodward has grown to over 7,800 members across the globe and has become a leader in the aerospace and industrial markets.

Woodward’s aerospace systems and components optimize the performance of fixed wing and rotocraft platforms in commercial, business and military aircraft, smart weapons, ground vehicles and other equipment. Our industrial-related systems and components enhance the performance of gas and steam turbines, reciprocating engines, compressors, wind turbines, electrical grids, and other energy-related industrial equipment.

The Woodward Constitution, established in 1970, embodies the fundamentals of our values and principles. It documents the unique corporate partnership of Woodward’s members and shareholders, as well as our principles of business practices, which have been part of Woodward’s fabric since 1870.

Tom Gendron became Woodward’s sixth CEO in 2004, and the company headquarters moved to Fort Collins, CO in 2007. In 2011 Woodward Governor Company became Woodward, Inc., Nasdaq symbol, WWD.

In 2015, new state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities were established in Niles and Loves Park, IL. A new campus opened in 2016 in Fort Collins, CO to support industrial turbomachinery systems and the corporate headquarters.