Iowa Prison Industries Participates in Extreme Makeover Home Edition Episode

by Christina Guy, Administrative Assistant II, Iowa Prison Industries

Iowa Prison Industries’ slatwall workbench being fully utilized in the newly renovated garage

Iowa Prison Industries’ slatwall workbench being fully utilized in the newly renovated garage

When ABC’s Extreme Makeover Home Edition (EMHE) came to West Union, IA to shoot a
makeover of a rundown farmhouse, Iowa Prison Industries (IPI) was eager to pitch in and help. EMHE needed furniture builders, so IPI simply filled out a form on the EMHE website detailing their capabilities and within a few days, EMHE contacted IPI and asked if they could produce metal workbenches that also included pegboards for hanging tools. The work benches would go into their newly renovated garage.

IPI’s metal shop looked at EMHE’s request and recommended that instead of pegboard, the benches have oak slatwall instead. The designers for EMHE asked, “what’s slatwall?” After hearing that slatwall would not only look better, but also last longer than pegboard, IPI was put to the task of designing and producing the work benches using slatwall instead of pegboard. But there was a catch … IPI would have to design, manufacture and deliver workbenches in only nine days!

IPI was certainly up to the task and started production of the work benches. Unfortunately,
right as the deadline was looming, the Metal Furniture Shop Production Coordinator, Chris
Gillmore suddenly passed away and while this abrupt and shocking news caused a great deal of turmoil and anguish, the IPI team pulled together and completed the project on time. IPI was happy to deliver these new metal and slatwall benches that the family will surely use for years to come.

The episode featuring the West Union farmhouse aired on January 6, 2012. Iowa Prison Industries’ slatwall workbench being fully utilized in the newly renovated garage.