St. Croix EDC announces 3 firms, distinguished member to be honored
A new winery in the Town of Kinnickinnic, a Woodville casting firm, a multi-national corporation with a strong presence in Hudson and New Richmond and an attorney with an area law firm have been named recipients of 2015 awards to be presented by the St. Croix County Economic Development Corp.
Chuck Jerrick, current president of St. Croix EDC, announced Tuesday afternoon that Sixty-Five Vines LLC (Town of Kinnickinnic), St. Croix Castings Inc. of Woodville, and Phillips-Medisize Corp. with facilities in Hudson and will be recipients of the 2015 Business of the Year awards.
The EDC board of directors also named attorney Thomas R. Schumacher as the recipient of the 2015 EDC Directors Award.
The firms and Schumacher will be honored at a banquet Thursday, Feb. 25, at Kilkarney Hills in River Falls.
“Our 2015 winners reflect the depth and breathe of St. Croix County’s diverse business base,” said Jerrick. “65 Vines joins past winners that have a strong foundation in agriculture. The company successfully merges two growing trends – agri-tourism with a small scale, boutique vineyard in a rural setting.
“St. Croix Castings is well-regarded as a foundry and aligns age-old processes with modern, automated manufacturing. Phillips-Medisize has a global footprint, but is firmly grounded in two communities in St. Croix County and even more communities across the state.
“Throughout his career, Tom Schumacher has made a significant impact on economic development in many circles throughout the county and west central Wisconsin.”
Sixty-Five Vines was chosen the 2015 Emerging Business of the Year -- based in St. Croix County and in business for five or fewer years.
In 2012, following four years of searching for land in west central Wisconsin, Julie and Scott Andrzejczak found their 33-acre dream property along Coulee Trail in the Town of Kinni and relocated from the western Twin Cities.
The move allowed Scott, originally from Franking, Wis., to follow his dream of operating a vineyard and winery. He is a graduate of the UW-Madison College of Agriculture.
After 10 months of meetings, introductions and education involving town and county officials, the Andrzejczaks secured municipal approvals, and 65 Vines became St. Croix County’s first bonded winery.
With the help of family and friends, the Andrzejczaks planted their first acre of grapes in June 2013. The couple has chosen whimsical names for their various wines, including Up a Creek, Dry Fly, Tippy Canoe, Kinni River Red, Lilydipper, Shuttlebuns and PFD (Personal Floatation Device).
This past fall the winery received approval for extended hours (now August-November), additional parking spaces for vehicles and removal of the “By Appointment Only” restriction.
Julie is the proprietor, and Scott is the winemaker and vineyard manager.
St. Croix Castings
St. Croix Castings is the 2015 Small Business of the Year -- distinguished by 29 or fewer employees.
Milton and Robert Sell own and operate St. Croix Castings. As small business owners, the Sells wear multiple hats with Milt serving as the sales manager and Robert as project manager.
The company is a job shop that offers medium- to small-volume aluminum castings in sand and permanent molds.
The business has expanded over the last 10 years with ongoing automation and modernization of the operations. The Sells anticipate future growth and automation to enable St. Croix Castings to continue providing new and better ways to meet customer’s needs.
The firm serves businesses that deal in commercial lighting, fire suppression equipment, bulk material handling and transfer, ag equipment, industrial and recreational vehicles, and industrial tools and equipment. The company is 9001:2008 ISO certified.
Phillips-Medisize Corporation was chosen the 2015 Business of the Year among firms with 30 or more employees.
Headquartered in Hudson, Phillips-Medisize is a global leader in outsource design, development and technology-driven manufacturing.
Phillips-Medisize employs over 3,400 people in 14 locations throughout the United States, Europe, Mexico and China, with facilities totaling 1.7 million square feet. The company also has design centers in Wisconsin, California, The Netherlands, and China.
Three of the company’s locations are in St. Croix County – corporate headquarters and a design center in Hudson and a medical manufacturing facility in New Richmond.
Phillips-Medisize has become a dominant force in the medical device and diagnostics, drug delivery, primary pharmaceutical packaging and commercial markets. The company features a list of blue chip medical device, pharmaceutical and commercial customers.
Phillips-Medisize has annual sales of over $600 million with 80 percent of the total revenue coming from drug delivery, medical device and diagnostic products, such as disposable insulin pens, glucose meters, specialty inhalation drug delivery devices, single-use surgical devices and consumable diagnostic components.
The company is led by Matt Jennings, chairman and chief executive officer.
Tom Schumacher has over 30 years of legal experience and is one of the three founders of the Bakke Norman law firm. He has served as the firm’s managing shareholder since 1999.
He represents closely held businesses with all aspects of business planning, including choice of entity, capital formation, business transitions, mergers and acquisitions.
One of Bakke Norman’s areas of expertise is its municipal practice, including land use and development, ordinances and resolutions, public finance and economic development, including tax incremental financing matters.
Schumacher has volunteered in various capacities with the State Bar of Wisconsin and area economic development boards, including St. Croix EDC from 2006-2013 and served as its president from 2010-2011. He also served on the Baldwin-Woodville Area School Board for 15 years.
He stays active as a basketball coach and referee and also runs and plays golf. Schumacher served as captain of the cross country and track and field teams and was recognized as the most valuable runner while attending UW-Madison. He earned NCAA All American honors in cross country in 1976 and is a member of the National W Club.
The upcoming banquet marks the 22nd annual business awards program for St. Croix EDC. The EDC was established in 1994 as a countywide business league that operates as the independent economic development arm of St. Croix County.
Activities include marketing and communication, business retention, expansion recruitment, new incorporations and legislative advocacy.