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YEAR IN EVIEW R 2017-2018

PROGRAM & EVENT HIGHLIGHTS ANNUAL DINNER More than 290 members attended the 2017 Annual Dinner held at the Hilton Garden Inn on September 21. Dennis Winters, Chief Economist with the Department of Workforce Development was the keynote speaker at the event. President/CEO Dave Eckmann also spoke about his vision for the Chamber in the new program year.

THE BRANCH The Branch, a workforce development initiative introduced in the summer of 2016, continued to grow. Fourteen college students participated in fall and spring cohorts in this skills accelerator built to retain talent in central Wisconsin. Eight high school students participated in the first Branch Academy in the summer of 2018.

BUSINESS PM EVENTS Twenty networking events provided an opportunity for members to showcase their business in an informal ‘open house’ atmosphere. An average of 80 individuals attended each event.

GOLF OUTINGS The annual Golf Outing was held on June 25 at the Wausau Country Club; 156 golfers participated.

LEADERSHIP EXCELLENCE 35 graduates in our Leadership Excellence program were recognized on May 9 at a ceremony held at The Great Dane Pub & Brewing Co in Wausau.

RIBBON CUTTINGS Fifty-four members took advantage of a ribbon cutting or ground breaking opportunity this year. These members celebrated one of the following successes at their business: broke ground or opened a new facility, moved to a new location, remodeled an existing facility, welcomed new ownership or underwent a significant re-branding or name change.

SMALL BUSINESS WEEK In addition to the Business EXPO and the EXPO Business PM, this week included the Small Business of the Year Awards, Legislators’ Forum and the Small Business of the Year Recognition Ceremony.

WOMEN’S LEADERSHIP CONFERENCE More than 450 women attended the third annual conference to discover their highest level of personal and professional development. This conference was held on January 17 at the Stoney Creek Inn & Conference Center in Rothschild.

WORKFORCE HUB This initiative offered multiple opportunities for business, education and community leaders to connect and facilitated partnerships to address the region’s workforce issues. Educator Workforce Tours and Inspire Central Wisconsin training offered additional opportunities for members to collaborate.

YOUNG ENTREPRENEURS ACADEMY The third and final year of the YEA! program at the DC Everest Senior High School expanded to include students from all area schools, grades six and up. A class of 13 students completed the program, which took students through the process of starting and launching a real business or social movement. One student, Jackson Boersma, took first place at the program’s Investor Panel event, earning $750.

BUSINESS EXPO & EXPO BUSINESS PM There were 320 booths set up for the more than 3,987 attendees at the 2018 Business EXPO on April 19. Visitors learned about the products and services provided by our members. Both the number of exhibitors and the number of attendees were new records for the event held at the Central Wisconsin Convention + Expo Center in Rothschild. Plus, hundreds attended the EXPO Business PM which took place after the EXPO at the Stoney Creek Inn & Conference Center in Rothschild and included EXPO Best of Show recognition.

AWARDS AMBASSADOR OF THE YEAR AWARD The Ambassador of the Year Award is presented to an Ambassador who contributes countless hours of service to the Chamber at ribbon cuttings, ground breakings, programs and events. The 2017 Ambassador of the Year Award was presented to Connie DeVoe.

RUDER WARE INNOVATOR AWARD IN MEMORY OF G. LANE WARE Created to honor Lane G. Ware and to recognize outstanding individuals who personify the spirit of entrepreneurship, this award is given to an individual who demonstrates excellence in the way they conduct business. Trena Loomans of The Caring Tree – Children’s Counseling Center LLC was recognized with the award at the 2017 Annual Dinner.


The ATHENA Leadership Award® Program recognizes members of the community who have played an important role in business, our community and the advancement of women. The ATHENA Award is presented to a person who has demonstrated professional excellence, taken part in community service, and actively assisted women in attaining leadership skills that have helped them advance professionally. The 2017 ATHENA Award was presented to, right above, Bridget Wenman of Perspectives Training & Consulting LLC. The ATHENA Young Professional Award is presented to a woman who demonstrates excellence, creativity and initiative in her business or profession, provides valuable service to improve the quality of life for others in her community and clearly serves as a role model for young women both personally and professionally. The 2016 ATHENA Young Professional Award was presented to, left above, Erika Van De Yacht of Sentry Insurance.

The Small Business of the Year Award recognizes business growth, community involvement, and innovative efforts in the Wausau Region. This award is also an opportunity to review the best business practices of successful entrepreneurs and set a benchmark of excellence for the years to come. TCTeardrops LLC, above top, (Business-to-Consumer), The Women’s Community Inc, above middle, (Charitable Non-Profit) and Colby Metal Inc, above, (Business-to-Business) were named as the Wausau Region Chamber of Commerce’s 2018 Small Businesses of the Year recipients. The awards have been given annually since 1981 and were presented during the Chamber’s Small Business Week in April.

BUSINESS EXPO BEST OF SHOW AWARDS The Best of Show recipients for Business EXPO 2018 were named at the EXPO Business PM on April 19. The winning members included Mid-Wisconsin Beverage Inc (Eats or Treats), RE-VI Design LLC (Overall), Full Promoted (Best Theme) and the Prosper Wealth Management (Attention Strategy).


Sharon Baumann Special Projects Manager

Dave Eckmann, Ed.D. President/CEO


James Gabower

Renae Krings

Membership Talent Development Development Manager Manager

Stacy Livernash

Brian Otten

Judy Pitek

Sue Wokatsch

Programs & Events Director

Marketing Manager

Member Relations Manager

Finance Director

THANK YOU to all of our member businesses. We want to acknowledge all of the volunteers who assist with committees, programs and events.

We also want to thank all of our member businesses who sponsored our programs and events. They provided critical support for ongoing services and for the expansion of Chamber programs in the last year.



Cory Heckendorf Wisconsin Kenworth Chairperson

Dr. Jeannie Worden Northcentral Technical College Chairperson Elect

Darrell Lentz Aspirus Treasurer/Secretary

Don Bohlin Wisconsin Public Service Corp Immediate Past Chairperson

Dave Eckmann Wausau Region Chamber of Commerce

Al Lancaster WSAW/WZAW Director at Large


Craig Timm Domtar Paper Co LLC Director at Large



Kim Fischer Central Beer Distributors Inc

Ted Fox Ameriprise Financial - Cornerstone Advisors

Karen Katz Paul LaPree EO Johnson Business Miron Constructon Technologies Co Inc

Tom Frank Greenheck

Michael Loy North Central Health Care

Dawn Bernatz Church Mutual Insurance Company

Cole Bruner Buska Wealth Management LLC

JoAnn Draeger Nicolet National Bank

Thomas Felch J & D Tube Benders Inc

Rebecca Frisch Marathon County Conservation, Planning & Zoning

Bill Gleason Retired

Robin Hegg River Valley Bank

Jack Hoogendyk Hope Life Center

Alfred Nakhla Associated Bank

Tammy Pestka Ansay & Associates

Nicole Williams QPS Employment Group

Jeff Zriny MCDEVCO Inc

NEW MEMBERS A-Rite Construction Inc

Action Asphalt Maintenance LLC

Great Lakes Cheese

Advanced Maintenance Solutions LLC

Greenfire Management Services LLC - Wausau

Align Wellness Center LLC

GrouVe LLC

Amaximmo LLC

Hip Pocket Designs LLC

American TelePsychiatry Inc Wausau

IBA Resources LLC

Bautch Chiropractic Blades & Boards LLC - Hatchet Throwing Budget Blinds of Wausau Cash Store - Wausau Catch All LLC Cattail Organics Central Wisconsin Insurance Associates Inc - Weston Central Wisconsin Off Road Cycling Coalition Client Focus Solutions Condor Coffee Company Cover It All LLC Cracked LLC Daly’s Restaurant

JH Findorff & Son Inc - Wausau Jacquart Fabric Products Jay’s Auto Repair JEM Productions Jemma’s CAFE Jim Tait Real Estate Kettering University Online Kwik Trip Inc - Wausau E Kent St #728 Kwik Trip Inc - Wausau W Campus Dr #322 Kwik Trip Inc - Wausau Stewart Ave #851 Kwik Trip Inc - Wausau N 6th St #601 Kwik Trip Inc - Wausau Rib Mountain Dr #204

Manufactured Financial Solutions LLC

Social Security Disability Advocates of Wisconsin

Marathon County Crime Stoppers

Sound Health Home Care LLC

McLit: Marathon County Literacy Council Inc

Special Olympics Wisconsin North Central Area

Melissa Marie Salon LLC

Stuart Taube Contracting Services

Michael D Heilmann

Studinski Law LLC

Midwest Selfies

Sure-Dry Basement Systems Inc

Moments in Life LLC

TCTeardrops LLC

Mountain Bay Dental LLC

The Alliance

Mountain Edge Restaurant Bar & Banquets

The Bay at Colonial Manor Health and Rehabilitation Center

Mountain Terrace Senior Living

The Clay House & Pizza Kiln

National Wellness Institute Inc

The Jig

North Wind Renewable Energy Cooperative

The Palms Supper Club

Patron Mexican Restaurant & Bar LLC PawSau Pet Sitters Peak Appraisal Services LLC Perspectives Training & Consulting LLC Polka Dot Powerhouse - Wausau Chapter

Kwik Trip Inc - Wausau N 6th St #735

Portraits by Tiffany/Graphic Impressions Photography LLC

Faith Christian Academy

Kwik Trip Inc - Wausau 310 Grand Ave #188

Primrose Memory Care

Fey Printing

LB Shredding Services

Purple Monkey Garage

First Business Bank

La Taqueria Mexican Street Food

Qdoba Mexican Eats - Weston

First Supply LLC - Weston

Lakes Business Group Inc

Focused Cleaning Group LLC

Lee Beverage of Wisconsin LLC Rothschild

DigitalRoot Solutions Dream Flight USA Foundation

Forklift Management Specialists LLC

Lemke Industrial Machine LLC

Quazzi Charters Inc Rare Ginseng International LLC Red Barn Electric LLC Rib Falls Waterjet Rockman’s Catering

The Reserve at Greenwood Hills Trillium Creek Wedding and Event Barn LLC Tundraland Home Improvements - Wausau UCan Promotions von Briesen & Roper SC Green Bay W Ginseng Inc Wausau Riverlife Barker Financial LLC Wausau Spokeeasy Wausau VA Outpatient Clinic Wausau Web Design & Marketing Wells Fargo Commercial Lending Wildcard Corp Wil-Kil Pest Control Without A Hitch LLC

Ruppel Chiropractic LLC

Woodstock Flooring & Design Center

Link Media Outdoor

Shine Chiropractic

Yellow Letters Complete

Gander Outdoors

Living Life Chiropractic LLC

Shorty’s Transport Service - STS

Zone Garage Wisconsin LLC

Gordon Aluminum Industries Inc

MEP Solutions LLC

Skylight Autism Center

Four Seasons Heating and Air Conditioning

LIFT II - Wausau Rib Mountain Dr

Gabrielle Lynn & Company LLC

FINANCIALS REVENUES: Other 4% Programs 38%

Grants 7%

Affiliate Contracts 4%

Affiliate Contracts: Contracts with other organizations for the Chamber to provide administrative services. Programs: Educational, Golf Outing, Small Business Week

Membership Investment 47%

EXPENSES: Other 3%

Occupancy 11% Programs 23% Operations: Salaries and fringes, office expenses Occupancy: Rent, property tax, utilities

Operations 63%

Our Mission To strengthen our member businesses and enhance our community by building business success.

Our Vision We are the region’s indispensable source for business connections, opportunities, and solutions.

Contact Us Wausau Region Chamber of Commerce 200 Washington Street, Suite 120 Wausau, WI 54403 715-845-6231

Profile for Wausau Region Chamber of Commerce

Year In Review: 2017-2018  

The Wausau Region Chamber of Commerce recaps the 2017-2018 year for the organization and its members.

Year In Review: 2017-2018  

The Wausau Region Chamber of Commerce recaps the 2017-2018 year for the organization and its members.