In 1999 Haas founded the Gene Haas Foundation. Growing up with a strong social conscience instilled by his family, Haas initially formed the foundation to fund the needs of the local community and other deserving charities. Haas is the owner Haas Automation, Inc., America’s leading builder of CNC machine tools, which he started in 1983. Haas Automation is a now a billion dollar company and this extraordinary growth has all come in an era when American’s were being told that the United States doesn’t manufacture anything here anymore. Those perceptions and decisions made in our education system regarding vocational education have lead to dire statistics. A recent report called “The Skills Gap in U.S. Manufacturing 2015 and Beyond” projects that, “Over the next decade, nearly three and a half million manufacturing jobs will likely need to be filled, and the skills gap is expected to result in 2 million of those jobs going unfilled.” Gene’s commitment to the importance of US manufacturing has incited him to grow his personal foundation and direct his foundation board to focus on manufacturing education and grants for scholarships for students entering CNC machinist training have been a key area of focus. Grants are funded that help some strong technical programs that teach these skills grow and expand. This, while Haas is still remaining a primary supporter of the community where his 1 million square foot manufacturing facility is located.
To date, more than 1200 charitable (501 C 3 ) organizations and schools have received funds totally over 27 million dollars from the Gene Haas Foundation.