The long-standing commitment the late Martin K. Eby, Sr., founder of Martin K. Eby Construction Co. Inc., had to improving the quality of life for those with visual impairments has been commemorated with the installation of a bronze plaque in the lobby of the Envision headquarters at 610 N. Main. The plaque celebrates the partnership Mr. Eby created between his company and Envision – a partnership that has now spanned five decades and just recently surpassed more than $100,000 in charitable contributions.
“Envision ranks in the top five organizations that Eby Construction supports. I think my grandfather would be very proud to know that his initial efforts paid off and yielded a multi-decade relationship,” said Eby Construction President and CEO Michael A. Grier. “He was committed to bettering Wichita and that is what drove him to get involved.”
Mr. Eby, who passed away in 1992, was a member of the Kansas Foundation for the Blind (now known as Envision) General Board from 1965-1979. He served on building and executive committees during his tenure. “Building a Better Tomorrow” was his motto as a businessman and community volunteer. His family is proud that he is being honored for his civic-mindedness and lifelong connection to a cause that most likely started when his son Charles was diagnosed with a vision impairment at an early age.
“My father had a big heart and was especially sympathetic to and generous with the disadvantaged,” Martin, K. Eby, Jr. said. “He always did a lot for the community.”
In recent years, Eby Construction contributed to capital campaigns to construct the Envision Vision Rehabilitation Clinic (EVRC) and Envision Research Institute (ERI). The company served as general contractor for the EVRC, ERI and Envision Child Development Center – projects that were particularly satisfying for its employees who knew they were creating work environments for the blind and visually impaired community.
“It would be impossible to measure the impact Martin K. Eby Sr. had on Wichita through his business, which continues to do great things, and his community involvement,” said Envision President and CEO Michael Monteferrante. “Envision is honored to have the continued support of Eby Construction as we expand our operations and do even more for the people Mr. Eby sought to help. The plaque in our lobby will be a daily reminder of his service and devotion to our mission.”
The close proximity between the Envision and Eby Construction offices has helped to strengthen the relationship through the years. Both companies have been in the same five-story building since 2004 (Eby Construction offices are on the fifth floor). Grier doesn’t expect the connection his company has built with Envision to change anytime in the near future, even though Eby Construction will be relocating its headquarters to 2525 E. 36th Circle North this June.
About Envision: Envision promotes advocacy and independence for those who are blind or low vision. Founded in 1933, Envision is one of the largest employers of individuals with vision loss in the nation. Headquartered in Wichita, Kan., Envision’s mission is to improve the quality of life and provide inspiration for the blind and visually impaired through employment, outreach, rehabilitation, education and research. For more information, visit www.envisionus.com.