This October, Darwill celebrates 70 years of business! That’s seven decades of growth, teamwork, change, support, smiles, laughter, camaraderie and more. Thanks to our dedicated team and loyal clients, we have been able to conquer each challenge thrown our way year after year.
We take this time to reflect on our history and appreciate the achievements of our team that continue to propel us forward. We wouldn’t be who we are today without acknowledging those that helped laid the groundwork for our success.
A lot has changed since our start in 1951. What started as a small printing company has expanded to a national, integrated marketing company bringing proven direct marketing strategies to clients of all sizes.
In 1951, founder and CEO William Van Dyke Sr. bought a small letterpress and rented a 15x15 space at the corner of LaSalle and Ohio in Chicago. This was the start of Darwill – named after his two children Darlene and William.
Over the next 70 years, the business was passed down each generation in the Van Dyke family. In 1978, William Sr.’s son, William Jr., purchased Darwill and became CEO. Later after William Jr.’s passing in 1993, his wife Janice became President of Darwill, and his cousin Howard Van Dyke stepped in as CEO. As time went on, Howard stepped down, going back into sales, and Janice became CEO in 2000.
Janice retired in 2013, leaving Darwill in the very capable hands of her and William Jr.’s sons, Troy and Brandon. As Co-CEO’s, the brothers continue building upon our culture and focusing on lead generation through marketing for our clients. They are leaving their mark on the family business by doing honest and ethical work, taking care of their employees and making a positive impact in the community all derived from the determination passed down from their grandfather and founder, William Sr.
Throughout 70 years, Darwill increased in locations, number of employees, clients and service offerings. We embraced changes from the “old school” traditional way of printing and manufacturing to a new technical and digital era. Darwill has adapted each decade and welcomed new services to complement technology changes allowing us to meet our client’s needs.
As always, we recognize the accomplishments of our staff that have positioned us to where we are today. Whether they’ve been with us for over 40 years or recently joined, each person has made an impact on Darwill’s history. From accounting, sales, human resources, maintenance and every department in between – we thank you. It goes without saying that we are awestruck and inspired by the commitment and dedication that each staff member has shown year after year.
In seven decades, we have witnessed many ups and downs. Whether it be an economic recession, natural disaster, or even a pandemic, we as a company have been able to survive together. Through all the challenging times we have faced in the last 70 years, it is humbling to witness firsthand the strength and determination from our team. Through our perseverance, we continue to grow, adapt and survive. We would not have made it through decades of challenges without our outstanding, supportive team.
Through the years we’ve had the pleasure of meeting and working with many wonderful people. Darwill takes pride in the number of clients that entrust us to lend a hand in their marketing efforts. We treat each job as though it is our own campaign. When our clients succeed, we succeed. No matter the project, we treat each client as we treat our employees, like family. Clients immediately see and feel the lasting effects of our culture and note how it sets us apart from the rest.
We thank you for trusting us to work on your projects and help drive your marketing initiatives. Darwill is excited for what’s to come and continue to help each client grow through marketing.
Looking back at our history and growth through the years is inspiring. We have accomplished a lot together and have supported each other year after year. Working at Darwill is more than “just a job.” It’s being part of a team that cares for one another and supports each other professionally and personally. We look forward to providing this support and building on our culture and team for many more years to come.