The Chippewa County Business of the Year awards were presented at Chippewa County Economic Development Corporation’s (CCEDC) 22nd Annual Meeting, which was held on Friday, May 19, 2017, on the main stage at the Chippewa Valley Music Festival grounds in Cadott. CCEDC was honored to have Governor Scott Walker present the awards to the recipients.
The Chippewa County Business of the Year Awards recognize businesses which have greatly impacted the economic development of Chippewa County. Award winners demonstrate: creation of new, quality job opportunities and commitment to the continued education and training of their workforce; new facility construction or expansion, or substantial investment in capital; innovations and development of new technologies and products; support or involvement in a broad range of economic development activities. A winner is selected from each of the County’s four quadrants, as well as one overall winner. This year’s overall Business of the Year Award is sponsored by Chippewa Valley Newspapers.
The Quadrant 1 Award went to Dove Healthcare (photo above). Dove employs over 300 individuals within their 3 Chippewa County facilities, offering benefitted full and part-time positions. Dove maintains and develops partnerships with Workforce Resource, Chippewa River Industries, and the Chippewa Falls School District in effort to keep the talent here in Chippewa County and insure minimal gaps between training and employment. In addition to Dove’s strong commitment to their employees the company recently opened a new facility in Bloomer, and also made significant investments in IT system and technology equipment improvements.
Moonridge Brewing Company (photo above) in Cornell was the winner for Quadrant 2.Moonridge Brewing Company was established by Roger and Cindy Miller in 2015 when the couple invested in a neglected property with a mission to revitalize downtown Cornell and open a microbrewery offering homemade pizzas and other specialty items. Moonridge Brewing Company offers high quality unique products; focuses on customer service; and is committed to employee development. Check out Moonridge Brewing Company’s featured story on, “The Squeaky Curd’s” Great Wisconsin Brewery Tour, https://goo.gl/xjifdC
The Quadrant 3 and overall Chippewa County Business of the Year Award winner was the Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company (photo above) of Chippewa Falls. Celebrating 150 years in Chippewa Falls the Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company is a landmark for Chippewa County and the State of Wisconsin. Over the past 3 years the brewery invested over $10 million in improved technology and facilities, including an updated brewing process, malt handling facility, a new filtration system; and launched 10 new beers. Thousands visit the Leinie Lodge in Chippewa Falls weekly to partake in a unique opportunity to sample their many handcrafted beers and tour the brewery, thus creating a signifgant economic impact to the area. The company currently has 125 employees in Chippewa Falls.
The CCEDC’s annual event host and Quadrant 4 Business of the Year Award recipient is the Chippewa Valley Music Festival (CVMF) (photo above), home of Cadott’s Country Fest and Rock Fest. The Wisconsin Department of Tourism estimates the direct annual economic impact of both Rock Fest & Country Fest combined is approximately $30 million, with the estimated indirect economic impact of both events being approximately $50 million. Annually the CVMF makes improvements to the festival grounds to continue their mission of maintaining the location as a premier outdoor concert venue. CVMF is a leader in festival technology and was the first festival in the Midwest to invest in an Android/Apple phone applications and to implement Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID) technology, allowing for faster entrance and also increased financial security for concert goers.
The Construction Industry Partner Award recognizes a business which has greatly impacted the economic development of Chippewa County. Award winners demonstrate: creation of new, quality job opportunities and commitment to the continued education and training of their workforce; new facility construction or expansion, or substantial investment in capital; innovations and development of new technologies and products; support or involvement in a broad range of economic development activities. The recipient of the 2017 Chippewa County Construction Industry Partner Award goes to CBS Squared (photo above). CBS Squared is a multi-disciplined, single-source engineering, architecture, and surveying firm based in Chippewa Falls. Since opening their doors in 2011 CBS Squared has created nearly 40 fulltime professional jobs- experiencing 70% year over year growth! CBS Squared has invested over $2.3 million in equipment, software, and facilities, and continually invests approximately $60,000 annually for new equipment and software training.
The Entrepreneur of the Year Award recognizes an entrepreneur which has demonstrated substantial growth and development. Award winners demonstrate: creation of new, quality job opportunities and commitment to the continued education and training of their workforce; new facility construction or expansion, or substantial investment in capital; innovations and development of new technologies and products; support or involvement in a broad range of economic development activities. In 2017 the CCEDC recognized Cook Chiropractic (photo above) as the Chippewa County Entrepreneur of the Year. Since 2015, Cook Chiropractic has been in growth mode; the business purchased and remodeled their Chippewa Falls location, expanded operations into Hudson, and in 2017 established a facility in Cadott. Their aim is to normalize chiropractic care and self-care through a proactive and open environment. In 2016, Cook Chiropractic updated their “Insight Technology,” which has become an essential tool in the diagnosis and treatment process. This technology is used to evaluate spinal muscle tone, blood dilation, heat, and heart rate variability. Cook Chiropractic currently employs 8 people and encourages their employees to continue to improve their skills through chiropractic care seminars and learning opportunities.
The Economic Development Partnership Award recognizes a community institution (university, community college, hospital, local foundation or other community institution) that have made significant contributions to the community in support of economic development through their leadership, financial support, local investments, hiring, training or related activities. Award winners demonstrate a sustained effort in the promotion and support of local economic development program. The 2017 Chippewa County Economic Development Partnership Award was given to the Regional Business Fund, Inc. (RBF) (photo above). Over the past ten years, the RBF, under the administration of the West Central Wisconsin Regional Planning Commission (WCWRPC), has assisted 70 Chippewa County businesses in reaching their goals. RBF issued 71 loans to these businesses, totaling over $3.6 million dollars invested. 25 of these businesses were start-ups. RBF funds are flexible and can be utilized for acquisition of property, buildings, working capital, equipment, or technology investment. This invested capital manifests job growth and employment opportunities for Chippewa County. RBF has impacted the creation of 219 jobs since 2007
The Economic Development Leadership Award is given to an individual who is an influential and active economic development advocate in the Chippewa County. Award winners have significantly shown advocacy for economic development in the Chippewa County. In 2017 this award was given to Dr. Mary Randall (photo above). Dr. Randall is the Superintendent of Bloomer Schools and throughout her tenure has put forth outstanding effort to achieve success for Bloomer youth through a number of programs and efforts which have focused on being a communication link between the needs of local businesses and the education community. Dr. Randall believes people want to live in an area with a strong economic base, career opportunities, and an excellent education system. Recently Dr. Randall assisted with the Boy Scouts Explorer program to provide youth with opportunities and experience in job skills desired by local employers. She has also facilitated Co-op programs for CAN training, welding programs, ISO certification, and beginner CAD program.
CCEDC utilizes the Business of the Year Awards program to recognize businesses, organizations, or individuals who maintain the highest standard of excellence throughout Chippewa County. These awards are to acknowledge those that display leadership characteristics, stand out, and succeed~ CCEDC congratulates the 2017 award recipients.
Click the link below to see past Chippewa County EDC Business Award recipients: