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H i s t o r i c - l o w InterestRates T A R P F u n d s I n s o lv e n c y F a n n i e M a e B e a r S t e r n s LehmanBrothers B a n k r u p tc y RecordCha rge- offs A



F r e d d i e M a c C o n s o l i dat i o n

The changing face of banking

Banks are still lending money. But they’re doing so carefully and with more regulation than ever before.

F o r e c l o s u r e s D e f a u l t s F








Climbing out of the VC cellar Marian Business & Industry Awards

November 2011 $3.95


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18 COVER STORY ❘ The changing face of banking ❘ Banks are still lending money. But the environment has changed.

23 Business & Industry ❘ Marian University ❘ A special supplement recognizing Marian’s 30th Annual B&I Awards

32 HUMAN RESOURCES ❘ Still in the fringe ❘ The growing trend of employers offering same-sex partner benefits.

38 ENTREPRENEURSHIP ❘ E-Connect ❘ Annual event connects entrepreneurs with others who’ve lived and learned.

Departments 4 From the Publisher 5 Professionally Speaking 6 Since We Last Met 10 Build Up Pages 17 Pierce Stronglove 31 Guest Commentary 42 Who’s News 48 Business Calendar 49 Advertiser Index 50 Key Statistics

On our Cover

Cover illustration by John W. Furkin of New North B2B.



Region’s cultural mores still make it difficult for many to discuss samesex domestic partner benefits

Sean Fitzgerald New North B2B Publisher 4 l NEW NORTH B2B l NOVEMBER 2011

Still in the margin

After nearly 15 years writing about the business community in northeast Wisconsin, I’ve often found our regional business culture identify itself as fairly progressive. But even in the course of our coverage in B2B over the years, we’ve stumbled on some subjects that appeared to make our readers a bit uncomfortable. I expect the article on same-sex domestic partner benefits published this month on page 32 will do the same for some of our readers. The fact of the matter is that talking about workplace benefits for same-sex domestic partners of gay employees is still a sensitive subject in northeast Wisconsin, at least more so than it might be in larger metropolitan areas on either coast. The making of the article in this month’s edition confirms the sensitive nature of this topic. The majority of companies we contacted to take part in this article respectfully declined participation. Bear in mind, these are all employers in northeast Wisconsin already extending health insurance benefits to the same-sex domestic partners of their employees. In making arrangements with the sources for this article, I didn’t push the issue with any of these employers why they wouldn’t want the publicity that would accompany being interviewed. We could assume they make it a practice not to discuss human resource policies publically, or we could assume they had a concern about possible negative feedback from customers who might not agree with the perceived social mores of extending the same family benefits to gay employees as it does heterosexual employees. What forced the issue further into the public conversation – and in a large part what prompted our article in this edition – were the on-the-record, highly public discussions that took place at Appleton and Green Bay common council meetings in recent months relative to extending family benefits to same-sex domestic partners of their municipal employees. The private companies that have adopted such benefits have done so behind closed doors and with limited, if any public scrutiny. But public sector entities weren’t able to do so in such a private, behind-closed-doors fashion. As a result, those contesting such measures have had to air their opinions publically as well. Appleton Taxpayers United brought a vocal opposition to the

new policy enacted in that city, citing the additional cost burden to taxpayers during a period in which local government has been trimming back on personnel and benefits expenses. It’s an argument that’s worth a debate, but admittedly, Appleton Mayor Tim Hanna didn’t respond to our requests for an interview. So goes the challenge of getting local employment leaders to openly share why their organization supports samesex domestic partner benefits when they’re not forced by state or federal law. This is a discussion employers in the New North must become more comfortable having, because it’s increasingly become an issue of business competitiveness. As the companies involved in our article explain – and the reason for discussing this topic in a regional business publication – is because the issue of same-sex domestic partner benefits truly is one associated with workforce development and economic development. These employers have the opportunity to attract a greater segment of talent to fill its open positions because they offer a benefit their competitors may not. They also create an atmosphere of inclusivity within their organization, a characteristic more and more employees find critical to maximum productivity, as well as toward encouraging quality employees to stick around for the long term. As we become a more diverse in the region – whether by race, religion, sexual orientation or being a Chicago Bears fan – inclusivity will become all the more important for employers to remain successful and thrive. In case you’re wondering, it’s estimated about 3,500 employers nationally including nearly one-fifth of Fortune 500 companies - offer domestic-partner benefits. The cost hasn’t appeared to overwhelm any particular employer. Use of such benefits is typically extremely low within an organization, according to studies from the Employee Benefits Research Institute, usually at less than 3 percent. The anecdotes in our article from Aurora Health Care and AT&T illustrate this trend, with less than 1 percent of the overall employee population taking advantage of same-sex domestic partner benefits. This issue has come a long way nationally in moving from inside the margins and into the mainstream. When will that same dynamic occur in northeast Wisconsin?


Legal risks of social media/networking by Davis & Kuelthau, s.c. Tony Renning


If you have a particular labor/employment law question, please forward your question to Mr. Renning at info@ If he responds to your email in a future issue, your name and company will be withheld to preserve your privacy.

Reader Question: What are some of the legal implications associated with the use of social media/networking? Tony Renning: Businesses are seeing potential benefits from using social media/networking. Businesses increasingly are using Twitter, FaceBook, LinkedIn, YouTube and other social media/networking sites to promote their products and services, find employees, disclose information, receive customer feedback and respond to negative publicity. However, companies need to understand that, along with the benefits, there are legal risks associated with using social media/networking. For instance: • Often unknowingly, confidential information such as trade secrets, may be disclosed by an employee or other party with knowledge on popular social media/networking sites. • Copyright protected works, such as text, videos, music, photographs

and other source code, are often copied from another location and pasted on a social media/networking site without the authorization of the content owner. • Businesses who make unfavorable employment decisions based on information gathered from a social media/networking site may violate applicable employment laws. • The Federal Trade Commission has established rules requiring those who use social media/networking to disclose any paid endorsements. • The NLRB recently released a report that summarizes the outcomes and reasoning behind several cases involving employees’ use of social media and the legality of social media policies. Employers should exercise care from a labor-relations perspective in handling social media issues and treat recent N LRB scrutiny as an invitation to revisit their own social media policies.

NEW NORTH B2B is published monthly by WINNEBAGO B2B LLC for $20 per year or $3.95 for a single issue. A single complimentary subscription is offered to all members of the Fond du Lac Area Association of Commerce, Green Bay Area Chamber of Commerce, Heart of the Valley Chamber of Commerce, and the Oshkosh Chamber of Commerce.

John Furkin

Printed by Digicorporation, 120 Lake St., Neenah, WI 54956

Sean Fitzgerald

Publisher & President

Carrie Rule

Sales Manager


Contributing writers

Robin Bruecker Lee Marie Reinsch

Chief Financial Officer

Vicky Fitzgerald, CPA

If your business is using social media/ networking, then it should adopt a social media/networking policy that is clearly and regularly communicated to employees and updated to keep abreast of new developments, opportunities and evolving legal guidelines. For counsel as to the lurking legal issues associated with social media/ networking, contact Tony Renning at (920) 232-4842 or trenning@ or any other member of the Davis & Kuelthau Labor and Employment Team. Tony Renning is an attorney in the Oshkosh office of Davis & Kuelthau, s.c. (219 Washington Avenue). Mr. Renning provides counsel to private and public sector employers on a wide variety of labor and employment law matters. This article is intended to provide information only, not legal advice. For advice regarding a particular employment situation, please contact a member of the Davis & Kuelthau, s.c. Labor and Employment Team.

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Fond du Lac NEW NORTH B2B l NOVEMBER 2011 l 5


Since we last met Since We Last Met is a digest of business related news occurring in the Green Bay, Fox Cities, Oshkosh and Fond du Lac areas in the one month since the previous issue of New North B2B.

September 21

September 21 Rolling Meadows Development LLC, the group building the $12 million Rolling Meadows Hotel and Conference Center on the site of the former county nursing home in Fond du Lac, acknowledged it’s halted construction as a result of financial challenges, but hopes to resume construction next spring. The development group hoped to open the facility by spring 2012, and is now targeting opening next July.

A study prepared to help determine the potential efficiencies of combining government health departments in Winnebago County indicated operational costs could be trimmed by nearly 20 percent, or about $350,000 a year, in merging the public health departments from the county and from the cities of Neenah and Oshkosh. While details of such a merger have not been finalized, the consolidation would like result in a main office lead by county officials in Oshkosh, and a satellite office in Neenah to serve residents in the northern part of the county. If all three government entities agree to move forward, the consolidation could be complete by early 2012.

September 23


November 2 - Bemis Company officials announced the corporate headquarters would move from Minneapolis to Neenah to be closer to the 12 plants and nearly 3,400 employees based in the area.


November 16 - Employees at Tecumseh Products Co. in New Holstein were told the small engine manufacturing plant would close in March 2007, effectively laying off about 340 people at the plant. The move comes after more than 200 employees were laid off a month earlier from Tecumseh, which had been Calumet County’s largest employer as recently as 2001.


November 7 - Fond du Lac Family YMCA kicked off a community capital fund raising campaign to generate nearly $4 million toward a $12.5 million goal to construct an upgraded facility to house both the YMCA and the Fond du Lac Boys & Girls Club.


November 11 - The Public Service Commission of Wisconsin postponed implementing the 274 area code overlay in northeast Wisconsin from 2012 to 2014. A combination of effective number conservation measures and current economic conditions extended the anticipated life of the 920 area code.


Twin City Catholic Educational System announced plans to construct a $4.7 million Fine Arts Education Center at St. Mary Central High School in Menasha. The 22,000-sq. ft. addition will include a 495-seat auditorium, a 96-seat forensic theater, as well as four interactive electronic classrooms. The group raising funds for the project has generated $2 million in donations, and expects the new facility to be complete and operational by April 2013.

September 24 State transportation officials reopened the Scheuring Road bridge over U.S. Highway 41 in De Pere, marking the completion of the $14.7 million interchange reconstruction project that had been closed to motorists at least partially since February. The project included replacement of the bridge, new interchange ramps, and a series of multilane roundabouts at the ramp terminals.

September 26 The Board of Education for the Green Bay School Board offered its tentative approval to a $235.6 million budget for the 2011-12 school year, a 3 percent decrease from the previous year’s spending plan. The budget would set a levy of $81.2 million, up nearly $2 million from the 2010-11 school year, increasing the tax rate by about 18 cents for every $1,000 of equalized property value. The increase in the levy was attributed primarily to reductions in state aid. District officials said they were able to reduce the budget by nearly $12 million compared with a year earlier due to changes in the state’s collective bargaining law which required employees to pay more for health care benefits and retirement programs. The proposed budget also cuts $2 million in salaries by eliminating nearly 26 teachers and paraprofessionals.

September 26 The Wisconsin Department of Transportation began work on the $54 million project to reconstruct the US 41/WIS 21 interchange in Oshkosh. The initial work involves constructing a temporary bypass around the existing

SINCE WE LAST MET interchange before it closes for reconstruction in March 2012. At that time, the entire interchange will close to all traffic until November 2012.

September 27 The Kimberly School District will recover nearly $458,000 from RBC Capital Markets that it and four other Wisconsin school districts lost in an investment determined by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to be fraudulent. RBC reached a settlement on the federal charges for failing to disclose the high risks involved in the complex investments, which collapsed in early 2008.

September 27 The 2011 Wisconsin 75 annual list of the largest privately held businesses headquartered in the state included the following local firms: No. 6, Schneider National Inc. of Green Bay; No. 9, U.S. Venture Inc. of Kimberly; No. 11, Green Bay Packaging Inc. of Green Bay; No. 13, Menasha Corp. of Neenah; No. 15, Appleton Inc.; No. 23, Bergstrom Automotive of Neenah; No. 24, The Boldt Company of Appleton; No. 25, Miron Construction Co. Inc. of Neenah; No. 41, J. F. Ahern Co. of Fond du Lac; No. 46, Werner Electric Supply Co. of Neenah; and No. 65, Creative Group Inc. of Appleton. S.C. Johnson & Son, Inc. of Racine topped the annual list, released by the accounting firm Deloitte.

September 28 Oneida Seven Generations Corp. ended negotiations with Brown County officials to accept as much as a quarter of trash disposed in the county to be used in an alternative energy facility in Green Bay which would incinerate the waste at extreme temperatures and convert the energy into electricity. Oneida Seven Generations gave no reason for ending the discussions other than to say it didn’t believe its organization and the county were moving in the same direction.

September 29 Menasha Utilities asked the state Public Service Commission to approve a 23 percent increase in municipal water charges for its customers in 2012 to help generate nearly $1 million in additional revenues to cover operational and capital costs. If approved by the PSC, it would be the first water rate increase in Menasha since 2009. Utility officials indicated there’s been a nearly 17 percent decrease in water consumption in recent years as a result of water conservation efforts and the loss of customers due to closing businesses and vacant homes.

September 29 The Fox Cities Convention & Visitors Bureau awarded a $15,059 grant to the Building for Kids Children’s Museum through its Tourism Development Fund for a new exterior sign.

October 3 The University of Wisconsin Colleges selected Martin D. Rudd as the new campus executive officer and dean at the University of Wisconsin-Fox Valley in Menasha, succeeding Jim Perry, who retired earlier in the year after serving as the CEO and dean of

UW-Fox for the past 18 years. Rudd, who begins his new role on Jan. 1, is an associate professor of chemistry at UW-Fox and was the associate campus dean for academic affairs from 2006 to 2010. He was also interim CEO/dean at UW-Manitowoc County during the 2010-11 school year.

October 3


Patriot Taxiway Industries in Lomira received an $11.7 million, four-year contract with the Federal Aviation Administration to manufacture a lighting system with a runway alignment indicator light system, designed to help pilots align their aircraft with the centerline of the runway. The LED lighting solutions provider expects to create seven fulltime and three part-time positions during the next year.

October 4 Community leaders from the Green Bay, Fox Cities and Oshkosh areas released the first ever Leading Indicators For Excellence, or LIFE, Study Report for the Fox Valley region, as well as the reports for three LIFE studies conducted separately but simultaneously in each of the three communities. Each community LIFE study, as well as the regional LIFE study report, is the result of 18 months of research on 10 key indicators for economic, physical and emotional wellbeing. The results will be used by community organizations, nonprofits, governments, schools and businesses in making decisions about how to allocate resources to improve the community. All LIFE Study reports are available online at

October 4 Outagamie County officials unveiled a $232.4 million budget for 2012 which increases spending by more than 10 percent from the 2011 budget. If eventually approved by the board of supervisors, the budget would increase the tax levy nearly 2 percent to $62.3 million, setting the tax rate at $4.77 for every $1,000 of equalized property value, up 14 cents from the tax rate approved a year ago. The county expects to save nearly $3 million in personnel expenses in the coming year for the additional contributions employees will make toward their health insurance premiums and their pension plans.

October 5 The state Department of Transportation approved $500,000 toward the construction of a $9.25 million aircraft rescue and fire fighting facility at Austin Straubel International Airport near Green Bay. Brown County is contributing $835,455 toward the project, while the Federal Aviation Administration is providing the remaining $7.91 million. Construction is expected to be completed by November 2012.

October 5 Fox Valley Technical College in Appleton received a $20,000, two-year MentorLinks: Advancing Technological Education Program grant from the American Association of Community Colleges and the National Science Foundation. MentorLinks is designed to help colleges develop or strengthen technician training programs in science, technology, engineering and math fields. NEW NORTH B2B l NOVEMBER 2011 l 7

SINCE WE LAST MET October 5 The state Department of Health Services announced plans to increase the premium for enrollees in Wisconsin’s BadgerCare Plus Basic health insurance plan from $250 to $325 a month beginning in November. The program is for low-income adults with no dependent children who are on a waiting list to get into the BadgerCare Plus Core plan. When the program began in 2010, premiums were $130 a month and the plan was expected to be self sustaining.

October 5 City of Appleton Mayor Tim Hanna unveiled a $146 million proposed budget for 2012, down less than 1 percent from the previous budget, but would still increase the city’s tax levy by more than 1 percent to $37.6 million. The budget proposal includes $3.4 million toward the proposed Fox Cities expo center as well as $1 million toward the renovation of Houdini Plaza.

October 7 The U.S. Department of Labor reported nearly 103,000 jobs were created in September, holding the national unemployment rate steady at 9.1 percent. The increase partially reflected the nearly 45,000 Verizon employees who returned to work after striking since August. During the month, job gains occurred in professional and business services, health care and construction.

October 11 Oshkosh City Manager Mark Rohloff released his proposed 2012 city budget of $64.7 million, which decreases spending


by nearly 2 percent compared with the previous year’s budget, but increases the tax levy by 2 percent to $30.1 million to help offset $2.4 million in funding cuts, including almost $1.9 million in state funding. The proposed budget increases employee health insurance premiums on a family plan from nearly $92 each month to $190 a month.

October 11 The Wisconsin Department of Transportation reopened the Breezewood Lane interchange at US Highway 41 in Neenah, which had been closed to motorists since March. Work on the second phase of the total $56 million project involved the widening of southbound US 41 to three lanes between Breezewood Lane and U.S. Highway 45 north of Oshkosh, replacement of the bridge, new interchange ramps, and a series of multilane roundabouts at the ramp terminals. The third phase of the project, scheduled to begin next spring, involves reconstructing all northbound lanes in this section of US 41.

October 12 Forest Resources LLC, an organization considering purchasing the former NewPage paper mill in Kimberly, announced it has withdrawn its interest in the transaction. Various community and economic development leaders discussed redevelopment plans for the mill with Forest Resources during the past nine months, but the company ultimately determined economic pressures and changes in market conditions no longer made the acquisition of the idle mill feasible.

SINCE WE LAST MET October 15 United Auto Workers Local 578 ratified a five-year labor agreement with Oshkosh Corp. after several weeks of negotiations and two previous failed votes. The new agreement provides an 8.5 percent wage increase during the next five years and eliminates the company’s options to hire temporary workers, which had been a critical component of the negotiations. The union represents nearly 3,100 employees for the specialty heavy-duty truck manufacturer.

October 17 The state Department of Transportation approved two new surface replacement projects for northeastern Wisconsin’s two commercial passenger airports. The first is for a $438,889 project to replace aging concrete panels on the north terminal ramp at Outagamie County Regional Airport in Greenville, as well as to cover the costs of developing a design plan to replace aging panels on one of its key runways. The Federal Aviation Administration will pick up 95 percent of the cost of the project which is expected to be completed this fall. The state also approved a $730,000 parking lot reconstruction project at Austin Straubel International Airport in Green Bay. The state will cover $584,000 of the cost of the project, while Brown County will contribute the remaining $146,000. Construction of this project should be completed by May 2012.

Network. Learn. Grow.

Entrepreneur’s Connection 2011 Tuesday, November 15 • 4:30-7:30 p.m. University of Wisconsin - Fond du Lac Cost: $30 per person Featuring: An Entrepreneur Experience

Meet our expert panelists. Four business owners in the trenches who have found success:

October 18 Basic American Medical Products in Fond du Lac announced plans to build a 40,000-sq. ft. addition to its Southwest Industrial Park manufacturing facility to house a state-of-the-art fiber optic laser tube cutting system. The expansion project is expected to be completed by February. The company is one of the largest manufacturers of healthcare beds in the world.

Rhonda Horvath of RagSpun

Jessica Serwe, D.C. Ideal Chiropractic

October 18 The Wisconsin Assembly unanimously approved AB 179 during the special Back to Work Wisconsin session which authorizes the creation of multi-jurisdictional tax incremental financing districts. The measure has been discussed for years as an approach to enable communities within a region to work together to create TIF districts to encourage economic growth. If ratified into law, the new measure could take effect as early as the beginning of 2012.

October 19 A letter from Wisconsin Department of Administration Sec. Mike Huebsch asked state agencies to cut another $126 million from the current 2011-13 biennial budget, on top of the more than $174 million in cuts approved when state legislators ratified the two-year budget in late June. The request comes as a result of concerns the state won’t generate sufficient tax revenue to support program spending due to economic challenges which have curtailed consumer spending. The University of Wisconsin System was asked to make some of the largest cuts of any state entity, trimming an additional $44 million over the two-year period. The 2011-13 biennial state budget did exempt cutting certain programs, such as aid to local schools, health programs for the poor, technical colleges, child welfare programs, local prosecutors and financial aid for college students.

Chanda Anderson Caramel Crisp & Cafe

• • •

Panel MC: Heather Robbins Linstrom Entrepreneur and Sunny 97.7 host

Sandy Martin Green 3

Connect with other entrepreneurs Meet professionals who can help you grow your business Attend seminars on the following topics: Financing Guerrilla Marketing Relationship Building Challenges of a young or new entrepreneur

New North B2B 4Imprint Insight Publications


The Reporter Sunny 97.7 Jackson Kahl Insurance

Learn more by contacting Annette at (920)929-2928,, or click NEW NORTH B2B l NOVEMBER 2011 l 9



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C - Indicates a new listing

Build Up Fond du Lac

December. General contractor is Keller Inc. of Kaukauna.

3 - 217 E. Larsen Dr., Fond du Lac, Tru-Fire, a 17,900-sq.

6 - 1045 E. Johnson St., Fond du Lac, CitizensFirst Credit Union, a 4,100-sq. ft. new credit union office. Project completion expected in December.

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ft. office and warehouse facility. Project completion expected in

5 - 430 E. Division St., Fond du Lac, Agnesian Healthcare St. Agnes Hospital, a build out of the fourth through sixth floors of the South Tower for private patient care rooms.


336 Trowbridge Dr., Fond du Lac, C Basic American Medical Products, a 40,000-sq. ft. expansion of the existing manufacturing facility. Project completion expected in February. General contractor is Keller Inc. of Kaukauna.



4 - 855 Martin Ave., Fond du Lac, Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, an addition and interior alterations to the existing daycare. Project completion expected in December.


1 - 145 N. Rolling Meadows Dr., Fond du Lac, Winnebago Oral Surgery, a 2,730-sq. ft. oral surgery center. Project completion expected in December. General contractor is Keller Inc. of Kaukauna.





C - Indicates a new listing


Build Up Oshkosh


13 a 52,871-sq. ft. addition to the existing industrial facility.


- 606 E. Murdock Ave., Oshkosh, C Muza Metal Products, a 45,000-sq. ft. addition to the existing manufacturing facility. General contractor is Frontier Builders of Kaukauna.

11 - 4000 State Road 91, Oshkosh, C Cloud City L.P., a new industrial facility.


12 - 3159 S. Washburn St., Oshkosh, C Bergstrom Volkswagen, a new retail automotive deadlership.

- 600 Block of Algoma Blvd., Oshkosh, University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh, a five-story, 340-bed student residence hall. Project completion expected in mid-2012.


- 1190 S. Koeller St., Oshkosh, Olive Garden, a new restaurant building.

10 - 2045 W. 20th Ave., Oshkosh, C

Jay Manufacturing,

13 - 500 W. Waukau Ave., Oshkosh, Oshkosh Corp., a 7,000-sq. ft. addition to the existing manufacturing facility. Projects completed since our October issue: • Marian University, 980 E. Division St., Fond du Lac.



C - Indicates a new listing

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Build Up Fox Cities The Build Up department of New North B2B includes a monthly two-page spread identifying significant commercial and industrial construction projects ongoing in the Fox Cities area. C - Indicates a new listing

1 - 4082 N. Richmond St., Appleton, Timbercrest Dental Center, a 3,594-sq. ft. dental office. Project completion expected in December. General contractor is Keller Inc. of Kaukauna. 2 - 1500 Lamers Dr., Little Chute, Building Services Group, a 4,430-sq. ft. addition and remodel of the existing industrial facility. Project completion expected in November. General contractor is Keller Inc. of Kaukauna. 3 - 1506 S. Oneida St., Appleton, St. Elizabeth Hospital, a 6,370-sq. ft. addition as part of the ongoing campus revitalization project. 4

- 310 S. Lynndale Dr., Appleton, Gustman Subaru, a 2,793-sq. ft. addition and remodel of the existing car dealership building to accommodate a new showroom and customer service area. Project completion expected in November. General contractor is Keller Inc. of Kaukauna.


- 800 S. Lynndale Dr., Appleton, C Wisconsin Electric Power Co., a new service utility garage.


- Two Plexus Way, Neenah, Plexus Corp., a two-story, 20,000-sq. ft. training and development center. Project completion expected in the summer of 2012.

7 - 1100 Harrison St., Neenah, Wisconsin Central Railroad Co., a 5,500-sq. ft. rail yard office building.

8 - 1645 Bergstrom Road, Neenah, Menasha Packaging Folding Carton Group, a 20,000-sq. ft. addition to the manufacturing facility for a new sheeter and scrap removal system. Projects completed since our October issue: • A to Z Machine Company, 2701 Winslow Ave., Appleton. • Andres Machine Service, 2351 Northridge Dr., Kaukauna • Badger Utility Inc., 1111 DeLanglade St., Kaukauna.




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BUILD UP GREEN BAY Build Up Green Bay The Build Up department of New North B2B includes a monthly two-page spread identifying significant commercial and industrial construction projects ongoing in the Green Bay area. C - Indicates a new listing

1 - 2555 Lineville Road, Howard, Anduzzi’s Sports Bar, an 11,669-sq. ft. restaurant and bar facility.

of five other industrial buildings on the campus.

10 - 2845 Greenbriar Road, Green Bay, Aurora Baycare Medical Center, an addition to house a linear accelerator and supporting equipment. 11 - 2502 S. Ashland Ave., Ashwaubenon, Western Racquet & Fitness Club/ Prevea Medical, a two-story, 28,418-sq. ft. addition to the existing fitness center and a new health care clinic. Project completion expected in November.


2348 Lineville Road, Suamico, Midwest Expansion, a 15,000-sq. ft. addition to the existing multi-tenant retail center.

12 - 2385 Holmgren Way, Ashwaubenon, C no business given, a 3,711-sq. ft. retail building.

3 - 1520 Brookfield Ave., Howard,

13 -

The Solberg Company/ Amerex Foam Products, a 19,494-sq. ft. manufacturing facility and corporate office headquarters, as well as a separate 5,976sq. ft. research and test laboratory. Project completion expected in spring 2012.

4 - 2949 Riverview Dr., Howard, Community First Credit Union, a 6,705-sq. ft. credit union office. Project completion expected in November. 5 - 2300 Woodman Dr., Howard,

Menard’s, a 214,000-sq. ft. retail store and offices and a separate 42,352-sq. ft. lumber warehouse.

6 - 2740 W. Mason St., Green Bay, Northeast Wisconsin Technical College, a 7,000-sq. ft. addition and alteration to the existing education institution. 7 - 1230 Hurlbut St., Green Bay, Oneida Energy Gasification, a 70,000-sq. ft. pyrolytic gasification electricity generation plant. 8 - 300 Block of N. Washington St., Green Bay, Watermark, a six-story, 70,000-sq. ft. mixed-use development which will house Hagemeister Park restaurant and Children’s Museum of Green Bay. Completion expected in early 2012. 9 - 501 Eastman Ave., Green Bay,

Proctor & Gamble Paper Division, a 20,000-sq. ft. cold storage facility, as well as remodel

2422 S. Oneida St., Ashwaubenon, Mattress Firm, a 5,000-sq. ft. retail store. Project completion expected in November.

14 - 871 Hansen Road, Ashwaubenon, Kwik Trip, a new convenience store, fuel station and car wash facility. Project completion expected in November. 15 - 100 Grant St., De Pere, St. Norbert College Michels Commons, an addition to the existing student commons and cafeteria. Project completion expected in May 2012. 16 - 1313 Lawrence Dr., De Pere, Menard’s, a 162,340-sq. ft. retail store and warehouse space as well as a nearly 50,000-sq. ft. covered lumberyard. Project completion expected in November. 17 - 1455 Lawrence Dr., De Pere, C

Culver’s Restaurant, a

new restaurant building.

18 - 352 High St., Wrightstown, Village of Wrightstown Municipal Office Building, a 10,000-sq. ft. office building. Project completion expected in December. General contractor is Keller Inc. of Kaukauna. Projects completed since our October issue: • Auto Zone, Lineville Road, Suamico. • Donald & Patricia Schneider Education Center at Green Bay Botanical Garden, 2600 Larsen Road, Green Bay.

All the credit goes to you. Associated Bank was recently named Wisconsin’s #1 Small Business Administration lender for the seventh consecutive year. For more information, visit an Associated branch or call Business Customer Care at 800-728-3501. Loans subject to credit approval. Equal Opportunity Lender. Member FDIC and Associated Banc-Corp (10/11) 9367

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6 Number of Wisconsin banks who have repaid federal TARP funds as of early October 2011 among the 21 banks in the state receiving funding. Source: FDIC

Title: Aftershock: The Next Economy and America’s Future Author: Robert B. Reich Publisher: Vintage; April 2011 Pages: 192 List Price: $14.95 Why Buy: Reich, secretary of labor under Bill Clinton and former economic adviser to President Obama, argues Obama’s stimulus package won’t catalyze real recovery because it fails to address 40 years of increasing income inequality. The lessons are rooted in the responses to the Great Depression, according to Reich, who compares the speculation frenzies of the 1920s to1930s with present day.

QUOTEWORTHY “ I think it proves Tommy will do anything to get elected.” State Sen. Frank Lasee (R-Ledgeview), in a comment to the Green Bay Press-Gazette on former Wisconsin Gov. Tommy Thompson signing the Taxpayer Protection Pledge after state spending doubled under Thompson’s administration from 1987 to 2001. Both Lasee and Thompson announced in October they would seek the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Sen. Herb Kohl (D-Wis.) in 2012.


FACE of Keller

I am your next door neighbor. I may have worked alongside you for the Fond du Lac Humane Society. I’m a Board Member for the Fond du Lac Economic Development Corporation and an active member of the Fond du Lac Lakeside Evening Kiwanis. As a commercial Regional Manager, I may have built your church, bank, or office building. I am a face of Keller and I live and work in your com-

munity. I am an Employee Owner, Regional Manager, and Design/Build Expert. But don’t just take me at face value, call today and experience for yourself the difference that is Keller, Inc.

Construction Excellence Since 1960 See Bob’s work at the following local businesses: PanelTEK, Fond du Lac State Bank, Osborn & Son Trucking, McNeilus Steel, Muthig Industries, Living Water Lutheran Church, Blue Hill Senior Cottages, RE/MAX Millennium Realty, and Shopko Express to name a few.

Bob Regional Manager Co-Owner 16 l NEW NORTH B2B l NOVEMBER 2011

1.800.236.2534 l Offices in the Fox Cities, Madison, Milwaukee & Wausau


Glossary of Revulsion The popularity of words comes and goes – that’s the fun part of communications.


ut we’re judged by our words, our tone, our accents and the images they connote. There are no magic words for our advertising-saturated culture. In fact, look at what I just found in the mesh as I was unclogging the Crap-O-Matic® Filtration System. It’s a partial list of puffed-up corporate jargon, useless Styrofoam filler, and lazy attempts to appear fashionable or clever. These words irritate readers, waste your media dollars, lose your audience, and make people dislike you. You can struggle to sell with them, but readers won’t buy them. They’re overused. And they make your face hurt. While there are effective exceptions to nearly every advertising guideline, try to see why you should avoid these losers. A lot About exactly Actually Advisement Aha-moment All things being equal Anyhoo (Anything)-gate Applied systems

Attention to detail Authored Back in the day Backchannel me Based on actual events Basically Begs the question Big (anything; e.g., oil)

Most overall



Nearly flawless Nosh

Setting the standard


On a daily basis


Very unique

On the same page

Skill set



Slow up


Outside the box

Sport (verb)


Paradigm shift


Past history


Perfect storm

Subsequent to

Perfectly honest


Personal service



Talking points


Teachable moment

If you will

Prior to


In shock (unless describing dangerously low blood pressure)

Pushing the envelope

That being said


The American People

Where you’re at

Going forward Hails from

Concept solutions

Honest truth



Don Dub Duo Dynamic


If you know what I mean

In the wake of Incentivize


Issues (meaning “problems”)





Facebook (as a verb)

Lessons learned

Facilitate (help) Fast-forward to

Business entity

For free





Come aboard (unless referring to watercraft)

At the end of the day

Truth be told



Google (as a verb)

Dealer (or Employee) pricing



Close proximity







Man up

Reach out to

Robust (except coffee)

Close personal friend


Locally owned and operated

Level playing field Lion’s share Literally Live life to the fullest

Qualified Quality Quality workmanship Quantum leap Quasi-(anything) Queried Rather

The whole nine yards The Who’s Who of (anything) Toast (as in dead meat)


Wake-up call Weather conditions Weather event Wearing many hats We’re just saying

You know what? Your friends in the (anything) business Zeitgeist

Trained professional

Behind the façade of Mr. Stronglove is an advertising professional with more than 25 years of award-winning industry experience. You can contact him at piercestronglove@gmail. com. To submit work for review, it must be attached as a PDF in Adobe format with no other attachments.



The changing face of banking

Banks are still lending money. But they’re doing so carefully and cautiously, and with greater regulation than ever before. Story by Sean Fitzgerald New North B2B Publisher


COVER STORY Given the tumultuous headlines three years ago using terms like Bear Stearns, Too Big to Fail, Lehman Bros. and Troubled Asset Relief Program – or TARP, for short – one might have thought the U.S. financial industry was in collapse. Since that time, if you attend any conference of business owners and managers in a given industry, there’s invariably at least one break out session covering a certain topic about financing. And in that session, there’s at least one question – if not an entire agenda of discussion – focusing on the perception of why banks are no longer lending money. It’s certainly not a universal perception among business owners, but it’s a question heard more often at business networking events. The question bears some consideration, because on its surface, the financial industry appeared to change overnight to most laypersons not actively involved in lending on a day-to-day basis. That being said, any perceptions of a financial fallout during the past three years didn’t come primarily as a result of problems with commercial loans, but overwhelmingly more because of the sub-prime mortgage crisis. That market dynamic did lead to even more regulatory authority and increased scrutiny on the banking industry. Still, a number of lenders – particularly those who toughed it out during the past three years and didn’t have to pick up the pieces of a shattered loan portfolio – do have money to lend and have been actively looking to make loans. The difference is that the risk that banks are willing to take – or even allowed to take – on loan deals with little money down, speculative projects with little-to-no proof that

it will cash flow positively, and lack of sound management practices from the borrower are now part of a bygone era in business finance. Financial institutions which previously did lend with such flighty judgment were more susceptible to problem loans. Those who stuck to sound banking principles often did all they could to stave off troubling loans without cutting off lending altogether.

Real estate woes The real estate and new construction market was hot from the late 1990s into 2007 and 2008. Many felt that if they didn’t get in on the action of making more development happen, they’d miss earning their share of profit. Unfortunately, in all the excitement a hot commodity has to offer, loans were made that probably shouldn’t have been approved in the first place. The excess capacity of available real estate in the market since 2009 – particularly retail and office space – combined with the plummeting value of those properties created a recipe for potential disaster. A number of the owners of these properties - often multitenant, multi-use developments – had difficulty generating sufficient revenue to make the payments on their loan to the bank. When those developers defaulted on the loan and the bank took possession of the property, the financial institution often couldn’t sell the real estate for what it was worth. That left some financial institution’s loan portfolios in rough shape. “We probably, like a lot of other banks in the area, got overly involved in the real estate sector, specifically with development loans,” said Steve Tramp, the Fox Valley market president for Associated Bank. During the past

three years, Associated has been able to significantly reduce the number of problem loans it previously had in its portfolio, Tramp said, a trend indicated in the publically-traded company’s financial reports during the past four quarters. Associated is back to profitability after a challenging 2009, and this past September it paid back the remainder of the $525 million in federal TARP funds it was issued nearly three years ago. The bank still does loan for certain real estate development projects, Tramp said, but he said bank officials scrutinize those deals much greater than before. A number of the financial institutions we spoke with in northeast Wisconsin either didn’t have an excessive amount of nonperforming commercial real estate loans heading in 2008 or were able to shed a number of their loan quality problems just as the bubble was set to burst, leaving them in comparatively better shape. All of the bankers we spoke with said there’s likely not going to be a return to lending on real estate developments based on speculation alone. If the project isn’t producing a positive cash flow from the day the doors open, and if the loanto-value ratio is too high, such a loan simply won’t be made from a financial institution.

Slow economy isn’t helping The chicken-or-egg question of whether lending spurs the economy or if a revved up economy spurs loan requests if difficult to answer precisely. If anything, action by the Federal Reserve Board during the past three years would seem to indicate that just because lending rates are lowered doesn’t mean consumer demand is going to climb in proportion.

I think what you’re going to see within the next few years is banks specializing in the markets that they serve.

Mickey Noone , Northeast Wisconsin market president, First Business Bank


COVER STORY If anything, when the economy slows, the demand for new capital slows along with it, said Tim McFarlane, president and CEO of Fond du Lac-based Hometown Bank. Hometown has grown its book of business during the past few years primarily through its strength using various loan guarantee programs through the U.S. Small Business Administration. The SBA had eliminated most of its fees for new loans – enticing businesses to seek additional financing – and the federal agency also increased the amount of guarantee it would back on those loans, removing some of the risk for banks to make loans on deals where they might otherwise ask for substantially more collateral from the borrower, or perhaps wouldn’t have even made the loan at all. “As a result of (the SBA loan enhancements), we were able to very cost effectively raise new business,” McFarlane said. Hometown has ranked among the top SBA lenders in the Wisconsin so far in 2011, an accomplishment McFarlane said is a testament to his lenders’ knowledge and understanding of how to work with SBA programs. Universally, though, demand for new capital is simply down. There’s far less inquiries for financing coming in from start ups, said Peter Prickett, president and CEO of First National BankFox Valley, a Menasha-based financial institution with locations in Winnebago and Outagamie counties. “We want to lend,” Prickett said. “Good deals will get done. It just might take a bit longer.” Still, FNB isn’t experiencing enough qualified demand from businesses needing to extend their lines of credit or take out new capital to grow. As a result, Prickett said his bank is sitting on historic record levels of deposits, a scenario many financial

institutions are facing. Nicolet National Bank has been growing its loan portfolio year over year since 2008, and looks as if it will do so again for fiscal 2011, said Mike Daniels, president of the Green Baybased bank with 10 locations from Outagamie County north to the Marinette and Menominee area. The bank was a recipient of $15 million in federal TARP funding, which it also repaid in full this past September. Nicolet used the additional funds to continue lending during the downturn in the economy. As a result, the bank sacrificed its earnings for 2008, pushing that income back further into 2009 and 2010. “We took a position that cost us a lot of money,” Daniels said, acknowledging that the strategy helped strengthen relationships with customers by meeting their needs during a critical period.

Relationships crucial Building a strong relationship with clients is perhaps more critical now than during times when the economy is healthier. Business owners, like consumers, can be fickle and chase down new capital as if it’s a commodity, going to five different financial institutions in order to get the best deal – or even trying to find one that will give a loan when no other bank will approve any financing. “It’s not Burger King – it’s not like you can have it your own way,” said Nicolet’s Daniels, who said the relationship between a banker and their client is an intangible amenity that can make the difference in terms of knowing what a business truly needs to survive and grow compared to simply giving the business owner what it thinks it wants. The two aren’t mutually exclusive.

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“You can’t get top-notch relationship banking when you’re looking for a commodity,” Daniels warned. Such relationships can also be critical to a business owner concerned about the uncertainty of the economy, noted Tim Lamers, vice president of Appleton-based Business Lending Group. As the old adage goes, ‘the devil you know is better than the devil you don’t know.’ “If people are with a financial and they’re happy, they don’t want to change because they don’t know what’s going to happen,” Lamers said. Maintaining a tight focus on a client and a particular industry – instead of trying to be all financial solutions to all businesses – is what helped First Business Bank successfully endure the recession without creating any issues for its commercial loan portfolio. The bank has successfully carved out a niche for itself serving certain industries, said the bank’s Northeast Wisconsin President Mickey Noone, such as manufacturing, wholesale/distribution and transportation, as well as a limited amount of medical and commercial real estate developments in its portfolio. “If a loan request comes to us in the industries we’re not in, forget about it,” said Noone. “I think what you’re going to see within the next few years is banks specializing in the markets that they serve.”

You can’t get top-notch relationship banking when you’re looking for a commodity.

Mike Daniels, President Nicolet National Bank While a ‘boutique’ approach to banking isn’t entirely new to the industry, it’s an approach that will allow smaller financial institutions to set themselves apart from their larger competitors.

When the economy turns After a nearly two-year run, the federal government discontinued its fee waivers and higher loan guarantee rates on SBA lending programs at the end of 2010. In a post-TARP era, Congress approved a Small Business Lending Fund earlier this year aimed at opening up additional capital to banks with assets of less than $10 billion. Nicolet, Horicon Bank and FNB-Fox Valley are among the handful of lenders in the state participating in the program, which Daniels said is helping it make loans to businesses in situations where other banks might not have the liquidity to do so. Unfortunately, without much growth in the economy, new clients for one bank typically means the loss of a client from another. Growth for the entire industry will only come when demand for commercial loans from qualified borrows picks up, and that’s unlikely until the economy shows sustainable progress. “We’re starting to see a small pick up of demand, but it’s nowhere near where it had been 10 years ago, or 5 years ago,” said Tramp from Associated Bank. “Unfortunately, right now, it’s a matter of everyone trying to get a bigger piece of the pie. We would eventually like to see the pie get bigger.”


& Industry

30th Annual Awards Dinner

Preparing the Next Generation of Business Leaders November 1, 2011

Stayer Center

Economic Development Award

Kondex Corporation

Helping customers feed and fuel the world

Quietly manufacturing component products for other original equipment manufacturers of agricultural products, Lomira-based Kondex Corp. has grown from humble roots into a firm aimed at improving its customers’ “ability to feed and fuel the world.” That notion – clearly stated in its mission – might sound like a grand undertaking, but the nearly 200 employees of the specialty cutting implement manufacturer wouldn’t expect anything less. “I think the secret here is the Kondex associates. We have a can-do attitude. We can find solutions,” said Jim Wessing, president of Kondex, the recipient of this year’s Economic Development Award from Marian University. Kondex Corp. was founded by Jim Wessing and Ben Braunberger in West Bend in 1974, fabricating sharp cutting parts for agricultural customers such as Allis-Chalmers and J.I. Case. The company moved into a newly constructed facility in Lomira in 2007, and is currently building a 58,000-sq. ft. addition to increase capacity for new products and for increased demand from its existing customers. Current products includes parts such as disc mower knives, baler knives, sod cutter blades, chipper/shredder blades and aerator tines, among many others.

W essing

With a close interaction between Kondex employees and their longtime customers, the company has literally been on the cutting edge of new product advancements for equipment that takes quite a beating by its end users in the agricultural, lawn and turf, and biofuels markets. The company has become particularly adept in adding value and innovation to its new products through its various metallurgy, thermal spray, heat treat and surface coating processes. The company has its own metallurgy lab to research, develop and design parts altogether new to the market. “We’re seen as a key partner for them because we’re finding solutions to a lot of the high-wear issues that they have,” Wessing said. Wessing said Kondex is identifying new opportunities for itself in the construction, forestry and underground utilities markets, again following demand from many of their longstanding partners. He expects the company to continue to add employees in coming months as production in its new plant addition ramps up.

M arian U niversity


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S p e a k e r • i n f o

Mark Skogen Festival Foods

The third generation of grocers, Skogen’s grandfather, Paul, opened the first grocery store in Onalaska in 1946. His father, Dave, developed the small chain of stores in the 1970s and ‘80s, and the business transitioned to the Festival Foods banner throughout the 1990s. Mark joined the company fulltime after graduating from Viterbo University in 1992. He became president and CEO of Skogen’s Festival Foods in 2006. Through Mark’s leadership, Festival Foods has 16 stores across Wisconsin. Mark attributes the company’s success to his 3,800 associates who are the culture of the company. In addition to leading Festival Foods, Mark serves on several boards of directors, including the Green Bay Packers, M&I Bank, the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay Trustees and the Boys & Girls Club of Green Bay.

Entrepreneur of the Year

Ripon Printers

The Entrepreneur of the Year Award is presented to Ripon Printers, which will celebrate its 50th anniversary in 2012. The company was founded by Doug Lyke in 1962 after he moved his family to Ripon and purchased the Ripon Commonwealth Press, a weekly newspaper whose roots date back to the Civil War era. The company purchased a modest web press in 1965 which significantly grew capacity, allowing it to produce longer run work for commercial customers regionally and then statewide.

Nearly a half-century after Doug Lyke founded the company, Ripon Printers has grown to 235 employees and has remained a family business owned and managed by Andy Lyke, president; Audry Lyke, vice president of finance; and Tim Lyke, publisher of the Ripon Commonwealth Press.

that range in size from 1,000 pieces to more than one million. In 2006 it printed the Guinness World Record “largest printed catalogue” for one of its customers, each copy consisting of 2,656 pages, weighing 7.4 pounds and nearly 3 inches thick.

A Full Service Printer that offe

• In-House Mailing

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Ripon Printers was recently awarded

• Fulfillment Distribution • awards QR Codes in the Ripon Printers has and expanded its a total of 12 first place physical plant eight times over the years and now operates out of a 244,000-sq. ft. facility. The printer handles jobs

• Variable Data

The commercial printing side of the business split off as a separate entity from the newspaper in 1986.

2011 Web Offset Association Print Competition and the 2011 Graphic Excellence Awards. It was also recognized as a Gold Award Winner in the 2010 Marketing Plus Competition toll free 656 S. Douglas St. Association sponsored by National for 800-321 Printing Leadership and Xerox, and tel 920-748-3136 P.O. Box 6 received a 54971-0006 Platinum “RAVE”fax Award Ripon, WI 920-748-374 from National Association for Printing for customer relationship.

• Email Campaig

Business of the Year barrels a year, crafting six year-round beers and more than

New Glarus Brewing Company

Well-known, popular brands such as Spotted Cow and Fat Squirrel have helped New Glarus Brewing Company surge in growth during the past few years. The upstart brewery was founded in 1993 by Deborah and Daniel Carey, who bought equipment for a 20-barrel stainless system from a brew pub in Appleton, and traded stock in the company for rent on a warehouse in New Glarus. Today, operating out of the newly constructed Hilltop Brewery – a 75,000-sq. ft. facility which became operational in 2008 – the company has a capacity to brew 100,000

10 seasonal beers. New Glarus Brewing uses 100 percent natural ingredients in each of its handcrafted beers.

Its beers have literally won hundreds of awards during the past two decades, and the company was named Midsize Brewery of the Year in both 2005 and 2006 at the Great American Beer Festival in Denver. Dan, a diploma brew master, was also named Brewer of the Year in both 2005 and 2006 at the Great American Beer Festival. New Glarus Brewing has been named to the Inc. 500|5000 for each of the past four years, ranking No. 81 among food and beverage companies in 2010 for achieving 64 percent growth during the past three years. Deb, the president of the company, was named the 2011 Wisconsin Small Business Person of the Year by the U.S. Small Business Administration and was the first runner-up for national Small Business Person of the Year.

A special supplement to New North B2B


M arian U niversity

Special Achievement Award

75 Years in Business

Two Special Achievement Awards will be presented to C.D. Smith Construction of Fond du Lac and Hornung’s Pro Golf of Fond du Lac, both of which, like Marian University, are celebrating their 75th anniversary of being in business.

Hornung’s Golf Products

C.D. Smith Construction

Hornung’s Pro Golf Sales, Inc. was established by Clarence and Sue Hornung in 1936 in their home on Third Street in Fond du Lac.

C.D. Smith Construction was founded by Charles D. Smith in 1936. Since that time, the commercial general contractor has helped shape Wisconsin’s economic landscape with innovative corporate structures, sustainable manufacturing plants, heath care facilities and inspiring schools and churches.

Three quarters of a century later, the fourth generation of the Hornung family is involved in the wholesale business specializing in golf accessories, gifts, novelty items and course equipment. It now operates out of a 50,000-sq. ft. office and warehouse headquarters in Fond du Lac, selling to 12,000 retailers around the globe. Despite the surge in the popularity of golf in the United States since the 1970s, sustaining growth has come with its own challenges in recent decades in what President Bob Hornung, Jr. – the grandson of the founders – calls “a smaller market than most people realize.” The industry is driven by discretionary income, which exposes it to recessions. Since the company doesn’t sell directly to the public, it relies on the success of its retail partners – pro shops, country clubs and specialty stores – to develop business. And with the advent of the Internet, new competitors have appeared in the industry in an attempted to take marketshare away from Hornung in certain segments. Still, the company has carved out a niche for itself in providing industry-leading customer service and innovation to its clients, such as the product personalization services Hornung Golf Products began offering more than 40 years ago.

M arian U niversity


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Notable projects locally include Fond du Lac High School, Agnesian Health Care, Fond du Lac Surgery Center, Kondex Corp., Holy Family Catholic Church and the Stayer Center at Marian University, among so many others. Some of the first large projects for the company were primarily water treatment facilities. In time, business began to expand into municipal and government buildings. Today, with more than 400 employees, C.D. Smith has completed major projects in nearly 20 states. Through the leadership of third generation President Gary Smith, the firm has expanded its breadth of experience to include church/religious, correctional, educational, health care, hospitality and industrial/commercial projects as well. In building much of the community, the company has made a commitment to helping it thrive. “We were able to adapt and change with the markets and industry of the economy around us, and it’s important that our partners in Fond du Lac have the ability to do that as well,” said Gary Smith. The company recently received 2010 Top Project Awards from The Daily Reporter and Wisconsin Builder for its work on municipal projects in Evansville and Delafield.

George Becker Business Spirit Award

Robert Fale

high quality outcomes in key centers of excellence, including heart, cancer and orthopedic services. These efforts earned Agnesian a site visit from the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Program and four consecutive Wisconsin Forward Awards from the state. Agnesian also became a choice of quality employment for its staff of more than 2,800, being named as a Top 100 Best Place to Work in Healthcare as part of the prestigious annual list published by Becker’s Hospital Review.

Fale’s leadership at Agnesian leaves a lasting legacy When Bob Fale ends his nearly 16-year tenure at the helm of Fond du Lac-based Agnesian HealthCare in early 2012, he’ll likely be remembered for the tangible landmarks patients see around the community.

As a mission-driven health care organization, Agnesian has grown its charitable care provided to the community ten-fold under Fale’s leadership. Its community benefit topped $2 million when Fale was hired to lead the newly consolidated organization in 1996, and this year its ministry is poised to top the $20 million mark for the first time ever.

For most patients, that means the millions of dollars invested in the monumental transformation of the St. Agnes Hospital campus, the construction of a new ambulatory surgical center, and the erection of hometown community clinics dotting small villages in the rural landscape of Fond du Lac, Dodge and Green Lake counties. Or even his efforts to lead the merger of such entities as Consultants Laboratory of Wisconsin, Waupun Memorial Hospital and Ripon Hospital. As visible as those achievements are to patients in the communities served by Agnesian HelathCare, they hardly illustrate the impact of Fale’s role leading the integrated healthcare organization since the boards of St. Agnes Hospital and Fond du Lac Regional Clinic merged together in 1996. “I think the things I’m most proud of are those things that aren’t seen,” said Fale, president and CEO of Agnesian HealthCare and the winner of this year’s George Becker Business Spirit Award from Marian University. The award’s namesake, George Becker, is a former president of Giddings & Lewis in Fond du Lac and a member of Marian’s Board of Trustees. During the past 15 years under Fale’s leadership, Agnesian and its physician partners have consistently achieved nationally recognized

The resume of accomplishments for Agnesian all come during a time in America’s health care industry where federal Medicare reimbursements are shrinking, regulatory burdens are increasing, and local governance of not-for-profit health care organizations in smaller communities is more difficult than ever to sustain. Fale credits his predecessors for setting the framework. “I think it speaks to the vision of the leaders who pulled together the rudiments of Agnesian HealthCare, even before my time,” Fale said. Even though he’s stepping back from Agnesian in February 2012, Fale still plans to maintain a voice shaping state and national health care discussions. A past chair of the board of directors for the Wisconsin Hospital Association, Fale plans to continue his service to its board, as well to its Wisconsin Quality Initiative committee. He also serves as a regional policy board delegate for the American Hospital Association, as well as an American Hospital Association alternate delegate for the WHA.

A Full Service Printer that offers • In-House Mailing

• Digital Storefronts

• Fulfillment and Distribution

• QR Codes

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toll free 800-321-3136 tel 920-748-3136 fax 920-748-3741

A special supplement to New North B2B


M arian U niversity

M a r ia n

U n i v e r si t y

Business & Industry Awards 1989-2011 Business of the Year 2011: Festival Foods 2010: Oshkosh Corp. 2009: J. F. Ahern Co. 2007-08: Marchant Schmidt, Inc. 2006: SC Johnson 2005: RB Royal Industries, Inc. 2004: Quad/Graphics 2003: Marshall & Ilsley Corp. 2002: Bergstrom Automotive 2001: Michels Corp. 2000: Alliant Energy

Entrepreneur of the Year 2011: Mark & Patty Trepanier 2010: Orion Energy Systems 2009: 2007-08: The Wreath Factory/Otter Creek 2006: The H.S. Group (service), Ariens Company (manufacturing) 2004: Wisconsin Physicians Service (service), Supple Restaurant Group (retail) 2003: Grande Cheese Company (manufacturing), Grant Thornton LLP (service), Destination Kohler (retail) 2002: BCI Burke Co. (manufacturing), Blue Cross & Blue Shield United of Wisconsin (service), Shelly Stayer (individual) 2001: Baker Cheese (manufacturing), Schenck Business Solutions (service) 2000: Jim Voight, Hometown Bancorp, Ltd. 1999 Sargento Cheese (corporate), David Noe (individual) 1998: Ray E. Wood Floral (retail), Flaherty Company (small), Pick & Save - Prescott Supermarkets (large) 1997: Edgarton, St. Peter, Petak, Massey & Bullon and Adashun Jones Real Estate 1996: Gilles Frozen Custard (retail), Hierl Insurance (service) 1995: Fedco Electronics, Inc. (small business), Louis Andrew, Jr. (individual) 1994: Kristmas Kringle Shoppe, Ltd. (retail), The Little Farmer (small business) 1993: Alphonse Schneider, Silica Appliance TV & Hardware (retail), Thomas H. Tobin, Jr., Tobin Tool & Die (manufacturing) 1992: Arthur, Ron and Gary Sadoff, Badger Liquor 1991: Mike Shannon and James Flood, Holiday Auto & Truck Inc. 1990: Bernie Schreiner, Schreiner’s Restaurant 1989: Dale Michels, Michels Pipeline Construction, Inc.

M arian U niversity


Economic Development Award 2011: Mayville Engineering Company 2009: New North, Inc. 2007-08: Fond du Lac Association of Commerce 2005: Berbee Information Networks Corp. 2004: Agnesian HealthCare / Froedtert Hospital 2003: Green Bay Packers 2002: Road America 2001: Fond du Lac County Economic Development Corp. 2000: EAA 1999: Brotz Family Foundation 1998: C.D. Smith Construction, Inc. 1997: Whispering Springs Development Company 1996: Fond du Lac Association of Commerce 1995: Fond du Lac Reporter 1994: EAA 1993: Threshermens Mutual Insurance 1992: J. F. Ahern Company 1991: C.D. Smith Construction, Inc. 1990: National Exchange Bank & Trust 1989: Action Advertiser/Action Printing

George Becker Business spirit Award 2011: David Klumpyan 2010: Wayne Matzke 2009: Peter E. Stone 2007-08: Sr. Judith Schmidt 2006: Richard Kleinfeldt 2005: Virginia Duncan Gilmore 2004: Dr. Michael Strigenz 2003: Jim Hubbard 2001: Congregation of Sisters of St. Agnes 2000: Hospice Hope - Fond du Lac 1999: Dr. Ewald Pawsat 1998: Wayne Huberty 1997: Joseph P. Colwin 1996: Don & Terri Jones

Regional Media Achievement Award

2010: Journal Communication, Mountain Dog Media, Radio Plus and The Reporter 2006: InSpire Magazine 2005: Lake Winnebago B2B 2004: The Post-Crescent 2002: The Business Journal Serving Greater Milwaukee 2001: Trails Media Group/Corporate Report 2000: Charter Communication

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1999: William Janz, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel 1998: Action Advertiser 1997: KFIZ Radio 1996: Marketplace Magazine

International Business Achievement Award 2009: Schneider National, Inc. 2007-08: Manpower, Inc. 2006: Alliance Laundry Systems 2005: Johnson Controls, Inc. 2004: The Manitowoc Company 2003: Appleton, Inc. 2002: Sensient Technologies 2001: Oshkosh Truck Corp. 2000: Serigraph, Inc. 1999: Bemis Manufacturing 1998: Wisconsin Central Railroad 1997: Kaytee Products, Inc. 1996: Mercury Marine 1994: Mid-States Aluminum 1992: Brunswick Corp. 1991: Brenner Tank 1990: Giddings & Lewis, Inc.

Special Achievement Award

2011: Fond du Lac YMCA and Boys & Girls Club 2010: Mercury Marine Management Team, International Association of Machinists & Aerospace Workers Local Lodge 1947, Fond du Lac County Economic Development Corp., City of Fond du Lac, Fond du Lac County, Fond du Lac Area Association of Commerce, Sen. Randy Hopper, Wisconsin Governor’s Office and Wisconsin Department of Commerce 2009: United Hearts for Health 2007-08: Fond du Lac Symphonic Band 2006: Langdon Divers 2004: Milwaukee Irish Fest 2003: Oneida Nation 2003: West Bend Mutual Insurance Company 2002: Fond du Lac Area Convention & Visitors Bureau 2001: John Korb 2000: The Todd Wehr Foundation, Inc. 1999: JoAnn Ward 1998: Jack Twohig 1997: Carl Tonjes 1994: Rotary 1993: JoAnn Ward

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Climbing out of the VC cellar Creating a state venture capital program should be a goal for the state’s legislature

Tom Still, President Wisconsin Technology Council

Connecticut launched the nation’s first state-leveraged venture capital program 35 years ago. Today, more than 30 states have similar funds, including many of Wisconsin’s neighbors and peers. The story of Connecticut’s success in building its supply of venture capital is among the reasons why Wisconsin should also embrace a bipartisan approach to developing sources of capital for its highgrowth, early stage companies. Connecticut has nearly 3.6 million people versus Wisconsin’s 5.7 million, but it routinely outperforms Wisconsin when it comes to landing its proportional share of venture capital. Since roughly the time Connecticut created the “Connecticut Product Development Corp.” to leverage private investments, about $6.6 billion has been invested in 502 in-state companies. Over that same period, $1.2 billion in venture capital has been invested in 166 Wisconsin companies. Sure, Connecticut is wedged between New York and Massachusetts, two venture capital leaders, but Wisconsin is located between Illinois and Minnesota, which also perform well in venture financing. So, what’s the real difference? About 45 percent of Connecticut’s venture capital investments have come from home-grown VC firms, compared to 5 percent of Wisconsin’s investments. Wisconsin has 1.84 percent of the nation’s population but roughly one-half of 1 percent of U.S. venture capital investments, based on five-year averages. Worse yet, it has about one-tenth of 1 percent of all venture capital under management. That’s mostly because there are so few venture firms in Wisconsin, which otherwise has the ingredients for success. The state’s assets include a strong tradition of entrepreneurship, above-average research and development investment, high production of patents and other intellectual property, and a skilled work force created, in large part, by the state’s education system. Wisconsin also has one of the strongest angel capital foundations in the country, but it lacks venture capital to bring young companies to the next stage. Why is this capital important? Venturebacked companies in the United States represent 21 percent of GDP – at an investment rate of about 0.2 percent. That’s a huge return. Those companies also

represent 11 percent of the nation’s private employment. That’s 11.87 million jobs. If Wisconsin had received its proportional share of venture capital over time, that would mean 259,215 jobs today versus the 60,156 venture-rooted jobs. The Wisconsin Growth Capital Coalition, a broad coalition of companies, organizations and angel networks and venture funds, examined Wisconsin’s standing versus peer states, neighboring states, U.S. population and other factors, and concluded Wisconsin could absorb nearly four times the investment dollars it receives today. Its report recommends the state: • Create a state-leveraged “master” fund, called a fund-of-funds, which would invest in 14 to 20 venture capital funds over time. These recipient funds will raise an additional $350 million to $1.05 billion and commit to offices, staff and investments in Wisconsin. • Catalyze the development of indigenous Wisconsin funds by committing a minimum of one-third ($117 million at the target of $350 million) to certified Wisconsin funds. These “home-grown” funds have existing structures, network connections and dealflow pipelines, a portion of the money can be put to work quickly. • Incent additional Wisconsin angel investment by creating accelerator funds. These smaller, targeted funds would co-invest with the angel networks and funds closest to the entrepreneurial action in Wisconsin. This would also enhance deal flow for venture funds later in the capital continuum. • Invest across the full capital continuum, from seed stage to growth stages. • Construct the program in a way that mitigates taxpayer risk and pays back the taxpayer’s investment. • Target industry clusters with high-growth, high-wage job creation potential. The Wisconsin Legislature returned for a brief floor period this fall with job creation and economic growth dominating the agenda. One of the best ways lawmakers can help on both of these fronts is to create a stateleveraged capital program for Wisconsin. Still is president of the Wisconsin Technology Council and is the former associate editor of the Wisconsin State Journal. An online version of the report is available at: publications/venture_capital. NEW NORTH B2B l NOVEMBER 2011 l 31


Still on the fringe

Just a handful of area employers extend health insurance benefits

to same-sex partners, but that number is growing

Story by Lee Marie Reinsch

Used to be that job perks meant the roly-poly pension, the corporate retreat at Club Med and the company Crown Vic. But that was back when we called them “fringe benefits.” Now workers are thrilled for the privilege of buying into a health insurance plan that has a deductible smaller than the GDP of some Eastern European countries. Emerging from the fringes of society are companies in northeastern Wisconsin that are even willing to extend such benefits to same-sex partners of employees. For some employers, it’s part of their hard-boiled business strategy – a way of attracting the best employees and of gaining an edge over their competitors. For other employers, it’s the warm and fuzzy ideals of human dignity, civil rights and karma. Still, other employers don’t seem to ask ‘Why?’ but rather ‘Why not?’


HUMAN RESOURCES Business case There’s nothing warm and fuzzy about it: Offering everyone the same benefit package makes good economic sense, say employers who include same-sex partners of employees in their benefit plans. If Fred Smith can include his life partner, Mary, on his benefit plan, then Fred Jones can include his life partner, Mark, on his, and no more expensively. “There’s a business case to be made,” said Kimberly-Clark Corp.’s Julia Smith, vice president of research, engineering and supply chain for the several thousand-employee consumer products manufacturer. “It’s something we believe is necessary to attract the best talent for our business. For us to be on top of our game and to innovate for our consumers, we need to have the best and brightest – and the only way you can do it is to be competitive in the recruiting of employees.” Bright and creative people are attracted to communities that are open and affirmative, said Bob Pedersen, president and CEO of Goodwill Industries of North Central Wisconsin Inc. “There’s a need in virtually every business environment to be able to attract from the broadest base of future and potential talent,” Pedersen said, citing author and business guru Richard Florida. “We want to make sure we have policies in place that make us an attractive opportunity for everyone.” Aurora Health Care also takes the stance that extending health benefits to same-sex partners of employees helps it attract the best employees. It’s been including same-sex partners in its benefits packages since 2005. “The fact is that we are in a very competitive marketplace, in general, as

far as vying for qualified business staff,” said Dwight Morgan, vice president of human resources for Aurora Health Care. “From a business perspective, we certainly didn’t want to exclude a qualified caregiver because someone else offered something we did not, although we were among the first in the health care industry (in Wisconsin) to offer benefits to same-sex domestic partners.” Morgan said at first, a few Aurora employees questioned that decision based on their religious beliefs. “We approached it from (the perspective of) ‘This is a business decision.’ Based on that fact, we want to attract and retain the most and the best-qualified people – and if he or she happens to be gay or lesbian, so be it.” Smith pulls no punches when it comes to employers that don’t extend their health (and other) benefits to same-sex partners of their employees: “Obviously those businesses don’t want the best talent that’s available in the marketplace, because you are going to limit yourself (if you do). Because if you look at the family unit today, it isn’t what it was 50 years ago. “Those businesses (that don’t extend benefits to same-sex partners of employees) are making concessions and saying they’re not playing in the competitive game for the best talent. And from our experience, this isn’t a big cost – less than a 1 percent increase in our total benefiture for domestic partners,” she said. Kimberly-Clark supported the recent legislation by the City of Appleton to extend benefit coverage to same-sex domestic partners of its municipal employees, Smith said. She said it can only help the area economically to be seen as cutting edge.

Obviously those businesses don’t want the best talent that’s available in the marketplace, because you are going to limit yourself (if you do).

Julia Smith, vice president of research, engineering and supply chain, Kimberly Clark Corp.



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“As we try to bring people to this community, we are bringing talent, and they want to see that this community is progressive,” Smith said. “Oftentimes they have a trailing partner, and we want to make sure those trailing partners have opportunities to have full careers; those trailing partners may look to the City of Appleton for employment, and so I think it’s important that they see us as having a progressive environment as well as job opportunities for their trailing partners.”

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Another reason employers give for offering benefits to same-sex domestic partners is the same one they give for embarking on diversity movements in general: “We want our employees to represent our population of customers.” “We recruit for diversity,” Pedersen said. “We want people who either receive our services or shop or donate to Goodwill to see their faces reflected in the faces of our team. So we want to have a strong representative workforce.” The family unit of husband, wife and two children doesn’t exist in but 20 percent of households in the United States today, Smith said. “There’s a lot of diversity in families. There are same-sex couples who choose to have children but never marry. There are, obviously, opposite-sex couples who choose to have children and never marry. And those employees all have talent. If we are going to attract a broader perspective of the population, we need to accommodate those families.” Like the other employers interviewed for this story, Aurora cited its desire for its employee base to reflect the communities they serve. “To be true to our vision and true to our values, we need to treat those caregivers with the same consideration as we would give other caregivers,” Morgan said. Aurora Health Care offers benefits to same-sex domestic partners of its employees but not to heterosexual domestic partners, with the rationale that heterosexual couples have the choice to get married, while same-sex couples do not.

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Aurora has 30,000 employees in Wisconsin, and of that number, only 49 statewide are taking advantage of the same-sex domestic partnership benefits, Morgan said. That computes to less than one quarter of one percent - 0.163 percent, to be precise. That’s significantly less than the percentage of the population as a whole that is gay, which a Williams Institute study released earlier this year cited at 4 percent. Aurora employs 7,000 people in northeast Wisconsin. The financial effects on Aurora of including same-sex partners in its benefit plans have been negligible, Morgan said. “Certainly there would be additional expense that would go along with additional insureds, however, but we have very few people by comparison who are taking advantage of it – 49 in total.” He said it definitely hasn’t been a negative for Aurora. “It may have had a positive impact on us because much of our benefit plan is geared toward wellness, and if we can keep

HUMAN RESOURCES our communities well, then that is to our advantage.” A marginally larger percentage of City of Green Bay employees might have taken advantage of a benefits expansion, had an initiative passed for same-sex partners of city employees registered in the Brown County Domestic Partner Registry. Of Green Bay’s 1,000 employees, between one and three workers (that’s 0.3 percent on the high side) might have opted in, according to Ned Dorff, the Green Bay City Council member who brought forward the initiative this past September after being approached last year by a city employee who wanted the benefits extended.

Cost?...or something else? The Green Bay City Council voted down the initiative 7-4 in early October. “One alderperson said it was an attack on marriage,” said Dorff. He said he asked for the rationale behind that comment, and none was given. “Most people said it was a cost issue, but I would counter that by saying that you wouldn’t say it costs too much to give benefits to interracial couples or elderly couples or couples with handicaps – what is the real reason you guys are saying this is a cost factor? (They) didn’t justify why domestic partners would cost more than married couples. In reality, married couples probably would cost more because they have more kids.” None of the companies interviewed for this story cited any additional cost of offering health benefits to same-sex partners of employees as being in any way noteworthy. “It really doesn’t cost the organizations (that much) more; if anything it costs the individuals, because they get taxed at tax time,” said Jesse Heffernan, program director for Harmony Cafe in Appleton. It’s not uncommon for individuals to pay upwards of $1,500 in taxes on benefits for domestic partners, Smith said. Typically, both members of the relationship work and each will seek benefits with their own primary employer, because in most cases, even if benefits are extended to same-sex partners of employees, they are considered taxable income, Smith said. The same is true for opposite-sex domestic partners. Benefits for a spouse are not considered taxable income. “They weigh the financial benefit of being covered on their partner’s plan versus being covered on their employer’s plan,” Smith said. Despite its failing to pass, Dorff’s effort has prompted a lot of positive feedback, he said. “Every single day – I am not kidding, every single day – somebody has come up to me and said, ‘Thank you for bringing this forward.’ Every single day. People at church, people on the street, people at work. So I really believe the will of the people is behind this.” Dorff said he believes his initiative will eventually win out. “It’s just going to be a matter of a couple of election cycles to get some representation in there,” he said.

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510 N. Oneida Street Appleton, WI 54911 (920) 734-9997

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Care about people Goodwill’s Pedersen said his organization hasn’t seen an increase in health care costs in two years, and he credits the environment at Goodwill for that.

Lisa Bouwer Hansen President


HUMAN RESOURCES “That’s a product of caring well for people, so when you really live this concept of putting people first, and you wrap a lot of care around them, you find that they get healthier, and when they get healthier, your cost for health care either maintains or drops,” Pedersen said. Goodwill’s health benefit plan goes beyond premiums and co-pays. Outside the doctor’s office, Goodwill stations wellness professionals -- including financial professionals, health coaches and chaplains -- throughout its facilities. “We want our people to be emotionally healthy, physically healthy, spiritually healthy and financially healthy,” Pedersen said. If you care for people well, then dealing with health issues including mental illness in the workplace gives you a stronger workforce and reduces your costs of caring for those people, he said. “What I believe we are doing at Goodwill is rewriting the script of how you benefit people. Rather than looking at it as a cost, we look at it as an opportunity for us to have a highly productive workforce, which in turn improves our profitability, which in turn improves our ability to serve our customers. So we think it’s a win to offer a strong benefits program – and not a corporate burden.” Kimberly-Clark finads that it’s the soft benefits that matter most to employees – being allowed to take time off for the death of a member of the partner’s family or to take care of the partner, or to take care of a sick child. “These soft benefits are very, very important,” Smith said. “The hard benefits we have like medical insurance, spouse life insurance, dental insurance, accidental (death) insurance, vision care, that’s a small dollar.”


‘A necessity of equality’ Jesse Heffernan, program director for Harmony Cafe in Appleton, said while offering benefits to same-sex domestic partners is a step in the direction of equality, there’s still a long way to go before society reaches equality. “It is a pretty good trend going on for the future, in that (including same-sex partners of employees in insurance plans) is one of the things that large organizations have to do to retain and recruit the best talent out there,” Heffernan said. Many Fortune 500 companies include domestic partners in their insurance plans. AT&T’s Jessica Erickson, director of public affairs for AT&T Wisconsin, said as early as 1975, her company was among the first Fortune 500 companies to adopt a non-discrimination policy toward sexual orientation. However, although still early comparatively, it took another 24 years before AT&T began offering health benefits to samesex partners of employees. Heffernan said it’s not so much a recruitment tool per se but one element in a package that an employer might offer a prospective employee. “(Employers) aren’t out there saying, ‘Hey, look at us, we offer same-sex domestic partner benefits.’ It’s more ‘how is the organization willing to treat everybody equally?’” he said. “Offering domestic partner benefits is just one of those things.” Lee Reinsch writes and edits from Green Bay.

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Connect the entrepreneurial dots

Story by Robin Bruecker

Annual E-Connect provides entrepreneurs with valuable advice from those who have been there and done that One of the great things about being an entrepreneur is, yeah, you’re the boss. One of the tough things about being an entrepreneur is, oh no!, you’re the boss. That means, along with all the great things about working for yourself, you’re also the one who deals with the less-fun parts like business plans, financing and employee issues. That’s where a program like Entrepreneur’s Connection, or E-Connect for short, can offer guidance. Since 2008, the Fond du Lac County and Oshkosh area economic development corporations have offered this networking and educational vehicle to local entrepreneurs and to those who would like to join the ranks with their own fledgling venture. Since E-Connect was created, its goals have remained the same. “E-Connect provides an opportunity for entrepreneurs to connect with each other and with professionals who can help those entrepreneurs with their businesses,” said 38 l NEW NORTH B2B l NOVEMBER 2011

Jacqui Corsi, marketing specialist for the Fond du Lac County Economic Development Corp. “Whether an entrepreneur is trying to get their business idea off the ground or is focusing on their current business endeavor, E-Connect is great for any entrepreneur to meet others facing similar challenges and hear about successes.” The annual event’s location alternates between Fond du Lac and Oshkosh, with this year’s venue scheduled for Nov. 15 at the University of WisconsinFond du Lac. E-Connect is timed with Global Entrepreneurship Week, also formed in 2008, which gives international recognition to those who enhance the economy and quality of life by creating companies and jobs. Today almost 24,000 businesses in 115 countries take part in the global event. Since its inauguration, the local event has drawn about 200 attendees. Last year that number was a bit lower, but Corsi said it’s expected to be up this time.

ENTREPRENEURSHIP “There has been an uptick in the number of clients we are serving this year at FCEDC compared to last year,” she explained. “It may be too soon to label this as a trend, but the recession has likely prompted many people to consider starting their own business. There are so many talented people who have great ideas and have much to offer society; entrepreneurship may be the right road to take. Many businesses have also streamlined the way they do business during the recession. They may now be ready to explore new avenues or find market opportunities. E-Connect would be a great way for them to prepare for those new challenges.”

An Entrepreneurial Experience Corsi compared the fourth annual E-Connect to a reality show. “For the keynote event, we have assembled a panel of experts who are in the trenches,” she noted. “Each has written a business plan and all of them have placed in the Northeast Wisconsin Business Plan Competition. They will be able to share what worked and what didn’t work. They all happen to be women – something we did not plan.” One of the panelists for this keynote event is Rhonda Horvath of Brandon, founder of RagSpun Studio LLC. She creates dimensional textured cotton appliqué shapes that can be sewed or glued on quilts, wall hangings, clothing, pillows and more. Since she came up with her first appliqué in 2003, Horvath has received welcome guidance and contacts from a friend in the quilt-pattern business, and also approached the FCEDC several years ago for help with a business plan for expansion. When she realized she needed to write the plan herself on the outline the FCEDC provided, she set it aside and continued along on “trial and error” until she wanted to get RagSpun out of her basement. “We had purchased a building and now I needed to make sure what I was going to do would work,” noted Horvath. Back she went to the FCEDC. Again she received guidance for her business plan, but again she needed to be the one to do the research and writing. This time she did. “And it was so worth it. (An associate at FCEDC) would answer

my questions by leading me to where to find the answers such as organizations, Internet sites, etc. At first I hated this idea, but then I grew to love trying to find the answers. I learned so much about my business and what I needed to do to succeed.” Horvath said she also continues to get answers from the staff who run the Northeast Wisconsin Business Plan Competition. “When I contact them, they are like a huge Internet site full of information, but with a personality!” She attended last year’s E-Connect, enjoying the group sessions so much she wished they were longer. “I loved the speech by Mr. (Dick) Bergstrom. He helped me to realize that the process of success takes time. I related well with him because he talked

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ENTREPRENEURSHIP about working hard but smart. I have really focused on what will make my business succeed just like he did. He talked about trying certain things in his business, and then they wouldn’t work but that was OK, just move on to what does work.” Now that she’s one of the business owners sharing their experiences this year, Horvath plans to convey that “we are each blessed with a special skill whether we want to admit it or not. When you follow that skill into a business, you will succeed if you are a hard worker. I love what I do each day and not many people can say that. But I also work very hard at it. I have to be very scheduled and so organized.” Another E-Connect panelist is Sandy Martin of the organicapparel company green 3 in Oshkosh. Her company, which has been in business for six years and currently has 17 employees, used the money awarded in the inaugural year of the regional business plan competition toward the cost of attending a wholesale trade show. At the outset of her business, Martin also took the opportunity to enroll in the E-Seed entrepreneurial preparation program through the Venture Center at Fox Valley Technical College. “In addition to the financial assistance, the E-Seed classes benefited us by exposing us to high-quality outside services that any fledgling business would need,” said Martin. “We met the people who would ultimately become our attorney, our software consultant, and our tax advisor. The biggest advantage of being involved with (the business plan competition) and E-Seed was the guidance and critical eye that helped develop a solid business plan. We are convinced that success as a business is unlikely without a sound business plan, and this

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program helped us lay the foundation for success.” From its start as a wholesaler of American-made organic cotton T-shirts distributed through specialty stores, green 3 today is a wholesaler, direct-toconsumer marketer, and the operator of its first brick-and-mortar store in Oshkosh, Martin noted. They’ve added sustainable fibers like recycled and reclaimed cotton, sell to more than 600 specialty stores, and conduct half their business with catalog retailers such as Sundance, Uncommon Goods, Acacia and Fair Indigo. Other E-Connect panelists for the event include Jessica Serwe, a chiropractor and owner of Ideal Chiropractic in Fond du Lac, and Chanda Anderson, who re-opened Caramel Crisp in Oshkosh. Heather Robbins Linstrom, owner of Linstrom’s Catering in Fond du Lac and Seasons Food and Spirits in Peebles, will lead the panel discussion.

Entrepreneurism 101 in a nutshell IN ADDITION TO THE panel, attending entrepreneurs – wannabe or established – can sign up for two of the 30-minute breakout sessions. Presenters include Rich Diemer of Wisconsin Business Development Finance Corp. in Oshkosh and Owen Rock of FCEDC, who will talk about small business financing in the region; Joyce Fischer, owner of Timeless Bridal in Waupun, who will discuss relationship building; John Doemel, owner of Glass Nickel Pizza Co., who will cover guerrilla marketing; and Brian Macak, owner of Jimmy John’s in Ripon and Fond du

E-Connect 2011 Starting your own business or thinking about it? Sign up for E-Connect and develop some building blocks for your company’s foundation.

What: 4th Annual Oshkosh/Fond du Lac Entrepreneur’s Connection

When: Tuesday, Nov. 15 from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m.

Who: Any and all entrepreneurs, or those looking to start their own business, or for professionals who provide services to business owners

Cost: $30 per person

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Where: University of Wisconsin–Fond du Lac, 400 University Dr.

Register: Go online to http://econnect. For more information, visit www. or call FCEDC offices at 920.929.2928.

ENTREPRENEURSHIP Lac, will discuss the challenges facing new entrepreneurs. In talking about financing for small businesses, Diemer, vice president and economic development officer for WBD, will address local, state and federal programs as well as the ways entrepreneurs can get ready to approach a lender about financing. Some of the costs can be easy to determine, such as rent, utilities, equipment, and so on, Diemer said, while others are harder to pin down and affect the amount of working capital the business will need – the cost and amount of inventory, schedule of payment for your product or service, and, if you have employees, what their wages and benefits will be. “New owners tend to underestimate the real cost of starting a business, and as a result, do not access sufficient funds to make the business successful,” noted Diemer. “Without sufficient working capital, the business will be limited in how it can respond to both increased demand and slow periods. Sales will be lost and performance hurt. The entrepreneur will very likely find him or herself in the unenviable task of once again looking for additional financing rather than concentrating on business operations.” Things have been different for lenders and borrowers since the economy stumbled in 2008. Since the U.S. Small Business Administration stimulus ended last December, Diemer has noticed small business lending has slowed. “There has been some improvement in lending to small business start-ups, but much of it is predicated on the strength of the borrower, experience in the industry, strength of that industry and the amount of equity they can bring to the table,” he explained. “The strength of their business

plan and their support of network (franchise, professional, incubator, etc.) can also be factors.” Diemer and Rock will discuss these and other start up business financing issues even further during their breakout session.

Do what you love – with a little help EVELYN McLEAN-COWAN, OWNER of McLean-Cowan Graphic Design in Fond du Lac, has attended E-Connect since its inception. After she graduated from Minneapolis College of Art and Design and gained work experience in Madison and Minneapolis-St. Paul, her business was born in Minneapolis in 1990, with some mentoring from a previous employer. A year later she brought it to Fond du Lac. “At the E-Connect events I have learned about different business practices and have had the opportunity to network with other business owners,” said McLean-Cowan. “This year will be my fourth E-Connect. I highly recommend it to other entrepreneurs.” An idea or young venture can develop into something beyond the initial plans and become even more rewarding. “What started out as something we wanted to do has become something that we are now passionate to do,” said Martin. “The idea that we would do this until we decided what we would do next has become something that potentially now could be a part of our family and this community for years to come.” Robin Bruecker has more than 15 years of experience in feature writing and marketing communications. Contact her at


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WHO’S NEWS Incorporations New North B2B includes a monthly list of new business incorporations filed with the Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions.

Brown County Six Nationz Kreationz LLC, Lionel W. Schuyler, W450 County Road EE, De Pere 54115. Ecosense Hair Salon LLC, Lynn M. Kosky, 2156 Tenmile Dr., De Pere 54115. Build Your Puzzle LLC, Peter J. Barbacovi, 600 George St., De Pere 54115. Tynebridge Creative LLC, Mark Moran, 233 N. Broadway, #106, De Pere 54115. Inga’s Swedish Massage Ltd., Inga Centers, 825 Sunrise Ct., De Pere 54115. JM Precision Carpentry LLC, Jeffrey Scott Murphy, 2067 Bridge Port Ct., De Pere 54115. D & J Extractors LLC, Jesse Jossart, 682 Swan Road, De Pere 54115. Wagamon Anesthesia Services LLC, Craig A. Wagamon, 624 River Ave., De Pere 54115. Bay Area Packaging Inc., Bryan Vander Bloomen, 1334 Sand Acres Dr., De Pere 54115. Kathys Cuts LLC, Kathleen Ann Pansier, 2002 Pheasant Run Trail, De Pere 54115. Main Oriental Market LLC, Kao Shoua Yang, 310 N. Monroe Ave., Green Bay 54301. Allcox Insurance Group LLC, Jon Allcox, 505 E. Kalb Ave., Green Bay 54301. De Moulin HVAC LLC, Laurie De Moulin, 2849 Blue Spruce Dr., Green Bay 54311. Marketing Magic Now Inc., Kendra A. Bellue, 3095 Kingswood Court, Green Bay 54313. American Prosthetic Components LLC, Bradley Curtis, 900 Ontario Road, Green Bay 54311. Global Wisconsin Ginseng Trading Ltd., Eric Vandenhouten, 1600 Shawano Ave., Ste. 200, Green Bay 54303. Buckman Martial Arts LLC, Brady Buckman, 1845 Farlin Ave., Green Bay 54302. Fox Remodeling and Maintenance LLC, Steven L. Behm, 2701 Larsen Road, Green Bay 54303. Bug Brands LLC, Patrick Nathan Stoa, 2681 Vail Ct., Green Bay 54311. Veterinary Group Purchasing Services Inc., Christopher R. Mau, 3139 Essen Road, Green Bay 54311. St. George Press LLC, Cheryl Rotherham, 840 Willard Dr., Ste. 201, Green Bay 54304. Laboratory Informatics Services LLC, Michael Cross, 3518 Leeds Castle Dr., Green Bay 54313. Bodilly Furniture Repair LLC, William Wedlake Bodilly, 321 Terraview Dr., Green Bay 54301. Gady Building Maintenance LLC, Ray A. Sears, 2122 9th St., Green Bay 54304. Nature’s Way Taxidermy LLC, Jeffery C. Champeau, 1110 S. Allen Road, Green Bay 54311. GBC Safety Glow LLC, Jason Doran, 1050 Glory Road, Ste. C, Green Bay 54304. George Street Bar LLC, Leslie Conard, 2769 Humboldt Road, Green Bay 54311. Mikulsky Hope Matters Foundation Inc., Phillip M. Mikulsky, 2789 Newcastle Ct., 42 l NEW NORTH B2B l NOVEMBER 2011

Green Bay 54313. A-Dec Landscaping and Snow Removal LLC, Carl M. Ducharme, 1040 St. Lawrence Dr., Green Bay 54311. Phil’s Driving School LLC, Philip James Wilson, Sr., 1204 Cleveland St., Green Bay 54304. Venture Theatre LLC, Michael Yoder, 830 S. Baird St., Green Bay 54301. Howell & Associates Advanced Planning LLC, Gregory J. Howell, 613 Greenbell St., Green Bay 54301. Angel’s Life Skills Center LLC, Angela J. Laurent, 3607 Libal St., Green Bay 54301. Titletown Oil Fueling LLC, Daniel J. Pamperin, 1275 Glory Road, Green Bay 54304. Nicolet Custom Builders LLC, Christopher Lee Hermans, 4050 Nicolet Dr., Green Bay 54311. MSO Legal Nurse Consulting LLC, Melody A. Sims-Ohnesorge, 3290 Sitka St., Green Bay 54311. Rent-A-Chef LLC, Larry A. Weber, 1207 Smith, Green Bay 54302. Apex Vending LLC, Charles Martin DeFrance, 221 Allen Ave., Green Bay 54302. Ideal Detailing LLC, Robby Matthew Rosek, 2067 Holmgren Way, Green Bay 54304. Green Earth Industrial Refinishers LLC, Ruth Ann Lasee, 817 Ardennes St., Green Bay 54303. Northeast WI Rugby Foundation Inc., Pete Weber, 2628 Vicki Lane, Green Bay 54311. Blue Daisy Marketing Inc., Frederick P. Haney, 1226 Porlier St., Green Bay 54301. Digital Asylum Games LLC, Thor David Anderson, 1215 S. Webster Ave., Green Bay 54301. United States Learning Materials LLC, Tom Sieber, 480 Masters Lane, Green Bay 54311. Pizza Pros LLC, Charles E. Adrian, 3442 Shady Lane, Green Bay 54313. Shimmer Salon LLC, Thomas D. Janus, 2239 Cathedral Forest Dr., Green Bay 54313. FTM Anesthesia LLC, Scott W. Harris, 2675 Englewood Road, Green Bay 54311. PTI Fuels LLC, Jeff Shefchik, 2701 Executive Dr., Green Bay 54304. Sky Rider Hobbies Inc., Timothy Benton, 2461 He Nis Ra Lane, Green Bay 54304. Usa Nails and Spa Salon LLC, Huyen Vu, 105 S. Military Ave., Green Bay 54303. Voga Wigs & Hair Adds LLC, Keith Zimmerman, 904 Military Ave., Suite 105, Green Bay 54303. H&R Exteriors Inc., Jose Alfredo Reynoso, 1331 Bellevue St., Lot V, Green Bay 54302. Holy Grail Vineyard LLC, Matthew Thomas Skaletski, 1152 12th Ave., Green Bay 54304. Goodman Lumber Company, Glenn S. Gardipee, 3111 Liberty Bell Road, Green Bay 54313. CNC Construction LLC, Mitchell Ryan Koenig, 3069 Greenview Dr., Green Bay 54311. Sell Ur Cell LLC, Justin Callan, 330 E. Mission Road, Green Bay 54301. SRS Tax Services LLC, Secure Retirement Solutions LLC, 3061 Allied St., Suite B, Green Bay 54304. Blumb Communications & Consulting LLC, Jeffrey D. Blumb, 2946 S. Telemark Cir.,

Green Bay 54313. N.E.W. Communications LLC, David Jerome Cumber, 2575 Parkwood Dr., Green Bay 54304. Titletown Trailer Rentals LLC, Peter S. Petasek, 1214 S. Military Ave., Green Bay 54304. Titletown Carpet Cleaning LLC, Ross R. Buettner, 1400 N. Baird St., Lot 69, Green Bay 54302. V-Dog Video Production LLC, Benjamin Hommerding, 1594 Manderly Way, Apt. 1, Green Bay 54311. AEI Electric LLC, Joy M. Abel, 3385 Belmar Road, Green Bay 54313. Prokash Farms LLC, Adam Ray Prokash, 543 Hill Road, Greenleaf 54126. Ledgetop Milk Trucking LLC, Dave Francis Diny, 1902 Mill Road, Greenleaf 54126. Sugarbush Sawmill LLC, Scott B. Hansen, 2731 N. County Road P, New Franken 54229. Vandervest Harley Davidson of Green Bay Inc., Rick Vandervest, 5881 Marys Road, New Franken 54229. Kelly Jo’s Smoke Shop LLC, Brian Joseph Diedrick, 130 Morrow St., Seymour 54165. P & M Transport LLC, Merrit Hanson, W3041 Tubbs Road, Seymour 54165. Idea Fire Creative LLC, Peter James Diefenthaler, W2780 Shady Road, Seymour, 54165. Joe Lambert Vending LLC, Joseph Lambert, 547 Songbird Ave., Wrightstown 54180.

Fond du Lac County Heavenly Hands Massage Therapy LLC, Heather Mittelstaedt, W11988 Hemp Road, Brandon 53919. Campbellsport Lions Club / Mary Hahn Fund Inc., Christopher Schanen, 131 E. Main St. P.O. Box 910, Campbellsport 53010. Candy’s Limousine Service LLC, Candy L. Ficht, N3901 State Road 67, Campbellsport 53010. D & J Remodeling LLC, Jeffrey A. Jones, 1028 S. Main St., Fond du Lac 54935. El Taco Loco LLC, Lidia Cortes-Velazquez, 813 Chester Pl., Fond du Lac 54935. Riverwalk Art Center LLC, Kathryn Ann Dreifuerst, 33 West 2nd St., Fond du Lac 54935. Loaves and Fishes of Fond du Lac Inc., Greg Giles, 8 Aurora Lane, Fond du Lac 54935. Used Laptop Spot LLC, Samuel Walgenbach, 293 McKinley St., Fond du Lac 54935. Ashleymae Photography LLC, Ashley Wendt, 796 Forest Ave., Fond du Lac 54935. Flying Crown Aviation LLC, Patrick T. Doyle, N7648 Autumnwood Tr., Malone 53049. JJK Storage LLC, Jeffrey M. Kraemer, 215 Waupun St., Oakfield 53065. Hair Today LLC, Victoria L. Robbins, 229 Watson St., Ripon 54971. Quality Storage & Services LLC, Jacqueline Nelson, W13299 Cork St. Road, Ripon 54971. Affordable Computer & Network Repair LLC, Michael Finley, 605 County Rd. E, Ripon 54971. Palenque Coffee House LLC, Brad Eisenberg, 339 Stanton St., Apt. 6, Ripon 54971. Eldorado Sheet Metal LLC, Daniel Knaus, N5722 County Road C, Rosendale 54974.

WHO’S NEWS Rosenbaum Ranch LLC, Susan M. Schmitz, 197 Clark St., St. Cloud 53079. Bear Claw Performance Products Inc., Brian D Cisar, 20 ½ N. Watertown St., Waupun 53963. The Chic Diva Boutique LLC, Waunell Trepanier-Friese, N3165 Cattaraugus Road, Waupun 53963.

Outagamie County Red Barn Distribution LLC, Sarah Jane DeBruin, 639 E. Woodcrest Dr., Appleton 54915. J-Max Realty LLC, Richard C Drewa, 1007 E. Glendale Ave., Appleton 54911. White Pine Publishing LLC, Steven Arvid Anderson, 1528 W. Schneider Pl., Appleton 54914. The College Bound Resource Center Inc., Robert L. Schoelzel, 2800 E. Enterprise Ave., Appleton 54913. Nick’s Sals Pizza LLC, Merije Elmazi, 411 W. College Ave., Appleton 54911. Mr. Frog’s Nightclub LLC, Luis A. Morales, 2450 Honey Lou Ct., Appleton 54915. Highlands/Odyssey Elementary P.T.O. Inc., Cassandra Lee Molenda, 2037 N. Elinor St., Appleton 54914. Ozone Foods LLC, Scott C. Barr, 2401 E. Enterprise Ave., Appleton 54913. Sunka Wakan Dragonfly Film Studios LLC, Patricia Marriott, 301 N. Lynndale, Appleton 54914. Riverwalk Place MM LLC, Debra Dillenberg, 925 W. Northland Ave., Appleton 54915. Pat’s Movin and Haulin LLC, Patrick Long, 800 N. Hawthorne Dr., Appleton 54915. K&J Stairs LLC, Kathleen M. Schipper, W5328 County Road JJ, Appleton 54913. The Townhomes At Riverheath Condominium Association Inc., Kris Oates, 103 W. College Ave., Ste. 103, Appleton 54911. Mach IV Motors LLC, Charles D. Tullberg, 724 S. Outagamie St., Ste. A, Appleton 54914. Care And Compassion LLC, Kristin Lee Stehula, 3402 N. Gillett St., Appleton 54914-690. Appleton Animal Adoptions Inc., Jeannette Vandomelen, 516 N. Garfield Pl., Appleton 54911. NEW Capital Management II Inc., Charlie Goff, 200 E. Washington St., Appleton

54912. Mader & Mader Auction Service LLC, Ryan Jeremiah Mader, 1920 E. Northland Ave., Ste. 98, Appleton 54911. Express Jewelry and Watch Repair LLC, Steven Richard Maschari, 5500 W. Capitol Dr., Appleton 54913. Wetzel Philanthropic Consulting LLC, Kimberly M. Wetzel, 2800 Schaefer Cir., Appleton 54915. Options Counseling Services LLC, Jennifer W. Koeppl, 477 S. Nicolet Road, Ste. 9, Appleton 54914. AKR Strong and Fit LLC, Andrea Rohde, 3505 Commerce Ct., Ste. B, Appleton 54911. Heeg Ag Services LLC, Michael Robert Heeg, 1001 E. Frances St., Appleton 54911. Synergy Basketball LLC, Lucas Jadin, W3479 County Road S, Appleton 54913. Appleton Alliance Association Inc., Karen Vanderbush, 2963 W. Grand Chute Blvd., Appleton 54913. Unified Chiropractors of Wisconsin Inc., Dr. Roy Ostenson, 2425 W. Wisconsin Ave., Appleton 54914. Gonzalez Drywall Specialists LLC, Hector Gonzalez, 518 W. Spring St., Appleton 54911. Real Estate Rehab Investments LLC, Randall J. Kenowski, 4936 Schuh Road, Appleton 54913. Spitfire Rodeo LLC, Tad Krogstad, 1460 S. Nicolet Road, Appleton 54914-821. Classic Woodworks LLC, Randy Anderson, 3204 E. Canary St., #9, Appleton 54915. CV Cleaning Service LLC, Chongthao Vang, 2637 S. Jackson St., Appleton 54915. Master Elite Exteriors LLC, Michelle Miller, W2860 Brookhaven Dr., Appleton 54915. Farseer Games LLC, Jeff Weber, 4553 W. Parkway Blvd., Appleton 54913. R N R Quality Home Improvements LLP, Alysha Thompson, 916 N. Fernmeadow Dr., Appleton 54915. Build It Green Construction LLC, Nicholas James Dalton, 1633 N. Ullman St., Appleton 54911. Steve Johnson Tax Consulting LLC, Steve Johnson, 4520 N. Knollwood Lane, Appleton 54913.

Huntley Elementary PTO Inc., Julia Squier, 2224 N. Ullman St., Appleton 54911. Fields of Real Estate Sales & Construction LLC, Kristina Fields, N2657 County Road N, Appleton 54913. Flower Girl Design Studio LLC, Michelle Northey, 2615 Kirkland Ct., Appleton 54911. N.E.W. Wave Pallets LLC, Patricia M. Schroeder, 2013 N. Lynndale Dr., Appleton 54914. JB Lightning LLC, Ben Boldt, 1520 W. Rogers Ave. Appleton 54914. Back on Track Chiropractic LLC, Aprill Erika Rykal, 1528 N. Ballard Road, Ste. 8, Appleton 54911. Element 21 Salon and Spa LLC, Heidi Elizabeth Hauser, 208 Lom St., Combined Locks 54113. TF Tiling and Remodeling LLC, David R. Siegmann, W6973 Everglade Road, Greenville 54942. Maiman Motorsports Development LLC, Grant Maiman, N1280 Thrush Dr., Greenville 54942. Hand Drawn Pictures LLC, Gregory Brian Cebulski, N1122 Barnwood Ct., Greenville 54942. Endurance Trucking LLC, Trevor J. Larson, W6411 Greenville Dr., Greenville 54942. Play & Grow Learning Center At Mayflower LLC, Play & Grow Learning Center LLC, N1673 Municipal Dr., Greenville 54942. Quality Tile LLC, Eric Randall Zitzelsberger, N3867 Laird Road, Hortonville 54944. Legendairy Care LLC, John K. Dobberstein, N1030 North Road, Hortonville 54944. Brownie’s Concrete Conveying Enterprise LLC, James P. Peterson, W2699 County Road S, Kaukauna 54130. Rueden Ag Services LLC, Jeffrey H. Rueden, 276 Crestview Road, Kaukauna 54130. BJ’s Limousine LLC, Brandon J. Luedtke, 1421 Washington St., Little Chute 54140. In Home Personal Training LLC, Zachary Adam Welhouse, 402 Johnson Ave., Little Chute 54140. Hietpas Home Improvement LLC, Michael L. Hietpas, 7 Clover Ct., Little Chute 54140.

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WHO’S NEWS Winnebago County

Central Grading & Excavating Inc., David DeKeyser, 4721 Grandview Road, Larson 54947. Community Vision and Hearing LLC, Charles J. Burgess, 1255 Appleton Road, Menasha 54952. Big Impact Fitness Center LLC, Brandon Alex Barker, 1026 Ida St., Menasha 54952. Northside Kiters LLC, Luis Armando Morales, 1033 Kernan Ave., Menasha 54952. Reed Law LLC, Carey John Reed, 430 Ahnaip St., Menasha 54952. J&J Maintenance Pros LLC, Jordan Engle, 3013 Chain Dr., Menasha 54952. Coenen Graphics LLC, Steve James Coenen, 333 First St., Menasha 54952. BJS Tools LLC, William James Seidling, 1252 Deerfield Ave., Menasha 54952. Nikos Home Improvement LLC, Nikos Charitinidis, 2128 E. Prairie Creek Dr., Neenah 54956. The Haven Counseling and Wellness Center LLC, Mary Margaret Christenson, 104 Oak St., Neenah 54956. Brimark Builders SD LLC, Brian J. Wogernese, 980 American Dr., Neenah 54956. Lighthouse Insurance Outfitters LLC, James Hammond John Lewis, 533 Oak St., Neenah 54956. Metal Maxcanicks LLC, Maxwell Von Biggar, 1591 Cowling Bay Road, Neenah 54956. Fairway Construction LLC, Jon J.


Lasee, 8094 Coleman Ridge, Neenah 54956. Thunder Marketing LLC, Randall Reiter, 1610 South Park Ave., Neenah 54956. The Deeper Why Ministries Inc., Laura Lenhart, 1415 Ridgeway Dr., Neenah 54956. Jacob M. Logistics LLC, Linda L. Grow, 2340 Industrial Dr., Neenah 54956. Complete Renovation Services LLC, Paul James Schroepfer, 674 Oak St., Neenah 54956. Gotjava Cafe LLC, Michael W. Holborn, 303 N. Commercial St., Neenah 54956. MJ’s Hardwood Floors LLC, Michael Paul Olson, 949 Adams St., Neenah 54956. N.E.W. Pawsibilities LLC, James H. Deering, 407 Third St., Neenah 54956. Briteway LLC, Kevin R. Selle, 5382 White Cap Ct., Omro 54963. J&K Trucking & Property Management LLC, Kathleen M. Tavs, 2963 Jackson St., Oshkosh 54901. Craig Sand Company LLC, Stephanie L. Craig, 1815 Fabry St., Oshkosh 54902. K Custom Renovations LLC, Mitch Kahl, 234 W. 7th Ave, Oshkosh 54902. Kindred Homes LLC, Kris Audrey Wilz, 1118 School Ave., Oshkosh 54901. SBS Stockbridge Saloon LLC, Mark Harold Schultz, 313 Allen Ave., Oshkosh 54901. Elizabeth’s Garden Supply LLC, Alan P. Olson, 805 Ohio St., Oshkosh 54902. Impact Graphix Design LLC, Frank Buelow, 2203 Doty St., Oshkosh 54902. Badgerland Lenders Inc., James L. Donker, 45 W. Snell Road, Oshkosh 54901.

Archer’s Pursuit LLC, Jeffrey Keller, 314 N. Koeller St., Oshkosh 54902. Microionic Systems LLC, Annamalai Karthikeyan Ph.D., 3311 Mockingbird Way Oshkosh 54904. CSS Deliveries Corp., Cory Scott Schaefer, 2384 Hickory Lane, Oshkosh 54901. Sola Salon WI LLC, Daniel George Hoeck, 2440 Vinland St., Oshkosh 54901. Tech On Tap Training Series Inc., Mark Cyrulik, 306 W. 14th Ave., Oshkosh 54902. Anton’s Auto LLC, Anton Hajducek, Jr., 4905 County Road S, Oshkosh 54904. Ready Or Not- A Baby Planning Service LLC, Amanda Rae Hammond, 403 N. Lark St., Oshkosh 54902. Nguyen Jewelers LLC, Thieulang Nguyen, 1573 Sheboygan St., Oshkosh 54904. Scorpion Welding LLC, Colin D. Donnelly, 1661 Covington Dr., Oshkosh 54904. Babbling Brook Saloon LLC, Carmen R. Brooks, 300 W. South Park Ave., Oshkosh 54902. J B Masonry LLC, Jeremy W. Booth, 1923 Minnesota St., Oshkosh 54902. Accelerated Marketing LLC, Timothy Donald McAdow, 1007 Twin Harbor Dr., Winneconne 54986. Streblow Custom Woodworking LLC, Adam Carl Streblow, 7042 Howlett Road, Oshkosh 54902. Asylum Bay Farms LLC, David A. Clabault, 5125 Killdeer Lane, Oshkosh 54901.

WHO’S NEWS Building Permits B2B includes a monthly list of building permits (not to include residential projects) in excess of $400,000. Brown County Library, 974 9th St., Green Bay. $428,000 for alterations to the bathrooms in the existing building. General contractor is Milbach Construction of Black River Falls. September 1. Cloud City L.P., 4000 State Road 91, Oshkosh. $817,981 for an industrial facility. General contractor is C.R. Meyer & Sons Construction of Oshkosh. September 2. Wisconsin Electric Power Co., 800 S. Lynndale Dr., Appleton. $1,981,000 for a new service utility garage. General contractor is Miron Construction Co. of Neenah. September 13. Tru Fire Corp., 217 E. Larsen Dr., Fond du Lac. $1,007,800 for a 17,900-sq. ft. office and warehouse facility. General contractor is Keller Inc. of Kaukauna. September 19. Galloway Company, 601 S. Commercial St., Neenah. $523,000 for a renovation to the boiler room of the existing food processing facility. General contractor is Miron Construction Co. of Neenah. September 19. Prolamina, 1055 Winchester Road, town of Menasha. $781,000 for alterations to the offices, bathrooms and locker rooms of the existing industrial facility. General contractor is Boldt Company of Appleton. October 7.

Acquisitions/mergers The Boldt Company in Appleton agreed to take over future projects and industrial construction services from The Selmer Company in Green Bay as it exits the general construction services arena to focus strictly on construction management. Selmer will continue to serve as the lead contractor on existing projects through 2013. As part of the agreement, Boldt plans to hire a number of existing Selmer employees, and will operate from Selmer’s offices in Green Bay.

Business anniversaries Bassett Mechanical in Kaukauna recognized its 75th anniversary this past September. The third generation family business began in 1936 to service home refrigerators and light


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WHO’S NEWS New hires

Business Honors

Bank First National hired Sherry Jonet as vice president of human resources. Jonet has 16 years of human resource management experience in the banking industry and has also worked as a corporate recruiter.

Awards and honors earned by individuals are listed separately in the Who’s News section of New North B2B. The Best Western Bridgewood Resort Hotel and Conference Center in Neenah was named a Premier property, ranking it among the top 15 Best Westerns out of 2,200 in North America. The hotel recently went through a $500,000 upgrade, adding amenities like triple sheets and high-definition flat screen televisions in rooms.


Neenah-based SPARK Advertising received five American Graphic Design Awards presented by Graphic Design USA magazine. The winning entries represented projects Spark created for AAF Fox River Ad Club, Elizabeth Jean’s, Menasha Corp. and Menasha Packaging.

Michael Jones, MD rejoined Agnesian HealthCare in Fond du Lac as a medical oncologist at the Central Wisconsin Cancer Program. Dr. Jones had previously served as an internal medicine provider with the Fond du Lac Regional Clinic, and left to pursue a fellowship in medical oncology. He is board certified in internal medicine and hospice/palliative care.


Recoveron Restoration Services in Green Bay hired Tony Willems as a project manager. Willems is rejoining Recoveron after previously serving as operations manager for ten years. He holds a II CRC certification in the restoration industry for water, fire and odor control restoration.

Skyline Technologies, Inc. in Green Bay and Appleton received the 2011 Families in Good Company Award from Partners in Education of the Green Bay Area Chamber of Commerce, Start Smart of Brown County and Green Bay Press-Gazette.


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Omnni Associates in Appleton hired Peggy Hutnik as a real estate specialist. Her responsibilities include real estate acquisition, relocation and property management services for expanding and relocating highway and airport projects. Hutnik previously worked for the Wisconsin Department of Transportation where she provided many of the same real estate services. Spark Advertising in Neenah hired Tom Cioni as its vice president. Cioni manages client and agency services and heads its public relations team. Cioni has a decade of experience in corporate communications in various industries including manufacturing, transportation/ logistics and insurance. He also worked as a newspaper journalist for a decade.

Canl as Richard Canlas, MD, joined ThedaCare Orthopedics Plus as a family sports medicine physician in Appleton and New London. A former U.S. Olympic Committee consultant, Dr. Canlas’ resume includes being the team physician for the Detroit Lions as well as other positions at the professional and collegiate levels. His career also includes several stints as medical director and coordinator for a number of musculoskeletal-sports medicine programs.

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WHO’S NEWS Unity in Green Bay hired Marge Mattice as a nurse practitioner with an adult emphasis. Mattice has more than 20 years of nursing experience, previously working for a local wound clinic, and before that, in emergency response as an Eagle III flight nurse.

Inspiring your potential.

Elmstar Electric Corp. in Kaukauna hired Steve Gerend as a maintenance sales representative. Gerend has 11 years of customer service and sales experience in the mobile phone industry. Building Service Inc. hired Vicki Dehne as project leader in its Appleton office. Gerend

Miron Construction Co., Inc. in Neenah hired
Chris VanDreese as a hard bid estimator. VanDreese has worked in the construction industry for the past five years, most recently for a contractor in Denver.



Oshkosh Convention & Visitors Bureau hired Jennifer Masini as its office manager. She previously worked as the office manager for a development firm in Iowa. Choice Bank in Oshkosh hired Scott Giltner as its vice president and retail lending manager. Giltner has 27 years of experience in the financial industry, having recently served 15 years as vice president of mortgage lending at two community banks in Oshkosh. Giltner is a board member and instructor for the Wisconsin Bankers Association Mortgage Lending School.

Promotions Keller Inc. in Kaukauna promoted Lindsay Stellmacher to marketing assistant for its corporate marketing team. Stellmacher had served as an intern for the past year. She is responsible for Senso agricultural business development, social media and various public relations. Taylor J. Bogdanske was promoted to executive chef at Evergreen Retirement Community in Oshkosh. Bogdanske has been with Evergreen for two years serving in various culinary and dining services roles. R.A. Smith National named Doug Senso as one of its new associates. Senso has been with R.A. Smith since 2002 and is a senior project manager in the transportation division. He has 18 years experience in roadway design and transportation

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C o lt o n

ABC Supply Co. named Steve Colton as a managing partner. Colton is manager of the ABC Supply store in Neenah. As a managing partner, Colton joins ABC Supply’s National Branch Advisory Board, which advises senior management on a wide range of topics.

Menasha Packaging promoted John Van Driest to sales manager of its Neenah Complex, which includes corrugated manufacturing facilities in Neenah, Green Lake and Hartford. Van Driest joined Menasha Packaging in 2010 as manager of marketing and lean solutions. He was previously owner of Ideas That Deliver in Neenah.

New North B2B encourages businesses and organizations looking to attract interested persons to upcoming events to send an announcement to: New North B2B, Attn: Who’s News, P.O. Box 559, Oshkosh, WI 54903. For more events, log on to:

Va n D r i e s t

Tina Dettman-Bielefeldt, owner of DB Commercial Real Estate in Green Bay, was named district director for SCORE Wisconsin. Dettman-Bielefeldt leads and supports the eight local SCORE chapters that make up the Wisconsin region, providing small business mentoring and workshops across the state. She has been with SCORE since 2004.



Business Calendar

Elections/ appointments


Cassie Wenzel, an internal communications specialist with Integrys Energy Group in Green Bay, earned the Accreditation in Public Relations (APR) professional designation.

November 2 Fond du Lac Area Association of Commerce Coffee Connection, 7:30 to 8:30 a.m. at Fond du Lac Credit Union, 171 N. Pioneer Road in Fond du Lac. Cost to attend is $2 for AC members. For information or to register, go online to or call 920.921.9500. November 8 Oshkosh Chamber of Commerce Sales Club, 7:30 to 8:30 a.m. at the chamber building, 120 Jackson St. in Oshkosh. No cost to attend for chamber members. For information or to register, call 920.303.2265.

BUSINESS CALENDAR November 10 Women in Management - Oshkosh chapter monthly meeting, 11:15 a.m. to 1 LaSure’s Banquet Hall, 3125 S. Washburn St. in Oshkosh. Program is “Be Alive As Long As You Live” presented by Ted Balser. For more information or to register, go online to or contact Nancy Jo at njdietzen@ or 920.232.9786. November 15 Entrepreneur’s Connection, an evening seminar and networking event for local entrepreneurs, 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the University of Wisconsin-Fond du Lac. The event will feature a panel of Oshkosh and Fond du Lac business owners sharing their stories of growth. Cost to attend is $30. For information or to register, contact Annette at 920.929.2928 or, or go online to December 7 New North Summit, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Radisson Hotel & Conference Center, Green Bay. For information or to register, go online to December 13 Oshkosh Chamber of Commerce Sales Club, 7:30 to 8:30 a.m. at the chamber building, 120 Jackson St. in Oshkosh. No cost to attend for chamber members. For information or to register, call 920.303.2265.

Better Business Bureau New Members

Businesses accredited through the Northeast Wisconsin office during September 2011 Accents LLC, Appleton All Around Roofing & Siding LLC, Greenville Allied Electric LLC, Green Bay Baileigh Industrial, Inc., Manitowoc Goin’ Green LLC, Sheboygan Falls Green Bay Home Furniture Solutions, Green Bay Gunderson Cleaners, Inc., Appleton Gunderson, Inc., Menasha Health & Comfort Products LLC, Manitowoc Hearts of Gold Retrievers LLC, Two Rivers The Focus Realty Group, Appleton The Veteran Tree & Stump Removal, Little Chute Tradition Cleaners, Appleton Verhagen Construction LLC, Kaukauna

Advertiser Index 44 Degrees North Advertising 45 Agnesian Healthcare Insert Associated Bank 14 Bank First National 34 Bank Mutual 43 Bouwer Printing and Mailing ..................... 35 C.D. Smith Construction Inc. ....................... Insert Capital Credit Union 33 Casper Truck 35 CitizensFirst Credit Union . ............................ 44 Davis & Kuelthau, s.c. 5 Digiprint 8 E-Connect 9 Epiphany Law ............................................ 52 Fast Signs 36 First Business Bank .................................... 50 First National Bank ~ Fox Valley ................... 46 Green Bay Botanical Gardens 37 Great Harvest Bread Co. 37 Guident Business Solutions 45 Hanson Benefits, Inc. 40 Horicon Bank 12 Industrial Protective Coatings ...................... 20 J. F. Ahern Co. ................................................. 20 Keller Inc. ................................................... 16 Lombardi’s Steakhouse 37 Marian University 47 National Exchange Bank & Trust 2 Network Health Plan . ................................ 51 NEW Building & Construction Trades Council 39 New North Summit 22 Nsight 21 Oshkosh Country Club .................................. 37 Outagamie County Regional Airport ........... 11-15 Ripon Printers ........................................ Insert Sadoff & Rudoy Industries 10 Skyline Technologies Inc. .................... 12 Stifel, Nicolaus & Co. . ......................................... 34 UW-Oshkosh College of Business 41 Winnebago County Solid Waste Management .................... 36

Coming to B2B in December Locally Grown Chains

Recognizable brand names born and developed right here in northeast Wisconsin.


KEY STATISTICS Per gallon of regular unleaded gasoline.

$3.40 October 15 $3.40 October 9 $3.40 October 2 $3.47 Sept. 23, 2010 $2.84 October 23

Source: New North B2B observations




from August


from September 2010 September


from August


from September 2010


$395.5 billion


from August


from September 2010

Appleton Fond du Lac Green Bay Neenah Oshkosh Wisconsin

(2007 = 100)




from August


from September 2010 (Manufacturers and trade)


$1,536 billion


from July


July June July ‘10

9.2% 9.6% 8.8% 9.2% 10.8% 11.2% 8.7% 9.2% 7.8% 8.4% 7.7% 8.1%

10.6% 9.8% 11.0% 10.0% 8.3% 8.4%

Prices for small businesses using less than 20,000 therms. Listed price is per therm.

$0.729 September $0.727 Oct. 2010 $0.741 October

Source: Integrys Energy (Numbers above 50 mean expansion. Numbers below 50 mean contraction.)

September August

51.6 50.6

from August 2010

If there are indicators you’d like to see in this space, contact our office at 920.237.0254 or email

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November 2011  

November 2011 Issue

November 2011  

November 2011 Issue