Mission & History

The mission of the Rodel Foundation of Delaware is to help Delaware build one of the finest systems of public education in the world by 2020.

Rodel, Inc. began in 1968 as a garage start-up in the home of William “Bill” Budinger. The firm produced specially surfaced rollers used to sweep dust and other bits off printing press plates. In fact, the name “Rodel” is short for “Rollers of Delaware.” The key to the roller was the chemical coating, and Rodel went on to adapt that chemical for polishing semiconductor surfaces, working with electronics industry leaders. Its watchwords: constant innovation and an insistence on quality.

The company grew to about 1,000 employees with plants in Delaware, Arizona, North Carolina, France, Germany, Japan, and Malaysia. It was privately held until it joined the Rohm and Haas’s Shipley Electronics Group in 1997 and is now part of Dow.

In 1999, Bill, Don (Rodel’s co-founder and Bill’s brother) and Susan (director at Rodel and Bill’s daughter) Budinger, wanting to give back to the community that they called home, decided to address what they believed to be the most important issue for our future: preparing students for a 21st century global economy and a more diverse world.

The result? The creation of the Rodel Foundation of Delaware. And over a decade since then, our founders are still inspiring us to help Delaware build one of the best school systems in the world.

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